We're Hiring! Happy Holidays!

Yes, yes, friends. Team TINSEL is hiring! And just in time for the holidays.We're aiming to fill a number of positions for the new year. With the business expanding, we're looking for kindred spirits that will grow with us. Absolute must-haves:

  • An eye for good design
  • A work ethic that would make a tiger mom blush
  • A predilection for problem-solving
  • A mind like a diamond
  • A tendency towards OCD and an affinity for color-coded folders
  • An incurable desire to help people and give back
  • An urge to snuggle spontaneously with French Bulldogs

We're looking for Event Designers, Graphic Designers, Photographers, Planners, Studio Coordinators, and Interns. Apply here.

Get it,
TINSEL

The Tinsel Dinner Series: Granada, Nicaragua

'Tis the season for dinner parties, and we've been having a blast connecting with like-minded entrepreneurs in New York City. This fall, we packed our suitcases with swimsuits and took the show on the road. Destination: Granada, Nicaragua. Sí, claro.

Step 1: Find a jaw-dropping venue, complete with good looks and delicious food. In Granada, there was no shortage of picturesque spaces to host our dinner party. After sorting out a few options we and our friends at El Camino settled on gorgeous café and restaurant on Calle Real Xalteva called Café Espressionista. With its historic architectural details and super charming host and owner Andreas Lazar, Café Espressionista served as a beautiful backdrop and meeting place for our travel companions and the guests of honor: two local social entrepreneurs that are focused on bringing solar power to remote communities in Nicaragua, Carla and Sonia

Carla Estrada and Sonia Diaz of Grid Alternatives spoke to us about their experiences throughout the country, working to bring solar technology to communities that would not otherwise have access to electricity, providing a sustainable source of energy that's safe for the environment and also prepares families and workers for jobs in the fast-growing solar industry. Their upcoming project for the new year, Women in Solar: El Guaylo, Esteli,  brings together a team of local volunteers to install an off-grid photovoltaic system in a primary school: "As part of GRID's Women in Solar Initiative, this project gives Nicaraguan women interested in working in the growing renewable energy industry... a chance to gain experience.... While there are many universities with renewable energy programs in Nicaragua, hands-on training opportunities are very rare." 

Carla, who grew up in Nicaragua, shared with us the local landscape of the tech and science field–especially from the perspective of a Nicaraguan woman entering a field with a vast majority of men. Sonia outlined her own personal experience as an American visiting Nicaragua for the first time on vacation, falling in love with the culture and people, and later, finding the right opportunity to be of service with her work at GRID.

We ate a delicious dinner with them. We asked them a hundred questions. It was a night to exchange ideas and exchange contacts. And of course, we made sure it all looked beautiful. We sourced all the materials and décor from local shops and markets. The menus, were handwritten for each of the guests on postcards showcasing the colorful signature buildings of Granada.

Centerpieces were kept minimal and authentic to the Nicaraguan aesthetic. Mix-and-match table place settings added to the charm of the space, and local fruits and foliage were used to adorn the center of the table and complement the menu. And just like Granada, we were not shy with the use of color.

Can you tell this cold winter weather's got us craving another trip to Central America? We met so many amazing people doing incredible things for the world, and it seemed like the trip was all too short. Para los hispanohablantes, you can find more information on Carla and Sonia's efforts here. For everyone else that has any questions or would like to find ways to get involved, feel free to reach out to us, and we'll be more than happy to make the connection.

And on another note, if you're loving (and drooling over) all our stories about Nicaragua and would like to experience it for yourself (and even meet Carla and Sonia in person), you can find more information for upcoming trips in 2015 here. Plus, if you mention us, there's a bit of a VIP discount for you... and we've got first-hand experience and photographic proof that you'll have an amazing time.

Con el sol y todas las sonrisas,
TINSEL + compañeros

The Tinsel Dinner Series: Urban Cowboy

As these New York City days are getting colder, and the sun is setting earlier (4:30 PM today! Lawd. Why.), and as we're trying desperately to keep our heads high with all the bad news going down, we're reminiscing about the sunny summertime. Summer was happy. It was warm. We weren't wearing 17 layers of wool. 

Working in Event Design, we saw that there's big demand to connect entrepreneurs and creatives in seemingly disparate industries. So, we started the TINSEL & TWINE Dinner Party Series, where we connect various business owners, creative professionals, industry leaders, and ballers and hustlers to create mutually beneficial relationships–facilitating the perfect combination of good food, good people, good design, and good vibes. This summer, we hosted a little gathering as part of the dinner series, featuring our friends at Urban Cowboy and Poppy's Catering

The guests were seated at a long dinner table decorated tastefully to capture the mood of summer in a country-getaway right here in the city. The mood was fun, summery, and urban/country-chic.

The Urban Cowboy aesthetic is masculine and industrial. So, to add some brightness, we created and chose floral arrangements and table décor to complement the venue’s dark accent pieces. We kept it light, refreshing, and reminiscent of summer time.

TINSEL enlisted the help of Poppy’s Catering, who designed a beautiful seasonal menu meant for sharing. The meal started with fresh radishes with butter and maldon sea salt and local green salad with snap peas, corn, ricotta salata, and mint. The main course included quinoa tabbouleh and golden grilled chicken with lemon, green tomato and cucumber salad with basil, pistachio, feta, and herbs. Dessert was a blueberry peach cobbler with crème-fraîche whipped cream. Not to mention the fact that the presentation of the food was perfection. That's some good-lookin' cheese right there.

The premise of the TINSEL Dinner Party Series is to gather New York City-based tastemakers and movers-and-shakers in an intimate atmosphere to encourage real, meaningful connections. The guestlist included successful young professionals and entrepreneurs from Bergdorf’s, Birchbox, DesignSponge, Kate Spade, The Food Network, and Zio & Sons, in addition to the hosts: TINSEL, Poppy’s Catering, and the Urban Cowboy himself.

Big thanks to Armando Rafael for capturing a wonderful evening. Nothing like his brilliant eye to make us want to lick the food right off of this page. Just sayin'.

Champagne and chicken,
TINSEL

Spotted: Our Bus Stop!

We found one! We found one of our bus stops in the city, sitting pretty on 14th and 1st. It was cold, but we persevered. Not pictured: a few pissed of New Yorkers waiting for the cotdamnbus. The L decided not to be working today, btw, so that meant the bus stops were extra hairy. Brrr. NYC. Brrr. But we made some friends too! And we're happy to report: a lot of selfies were taken. (Hi, Evelyn!) 

We're so happy to find one of these bad boys IRL that we're thinking of using this for our holiday cards. If all else fails, we'll just mail out this sucker with the Frenchies in matching sweaters. 

Bus stoppingly yours,
TINSEL

'Tis the Season for Gift-Giving

There's nothing quite like a well-thought-out present. With all the nifty little gifts out there, it's easy to get overwhelmed. (Can you say "sale?" Danger danger.) Personally, when scheming about the perfect present, we're big proponents of getting something a little unexpected and a little more luxurious–something that your loved-ones wouldn't normally purchase themselves, but would really enjoy having in their lives. A treat.

So in the spirit of spreading the love, here's a quick list of some objects and shops we're crushing on, a good place to start for every nice (and naughty) person (and puppy) on your list.

TO KEEP THEM WARM: A handwoven Bolivian wool blanket for your resident wanderluster that can't escape the cold winter. (Us? Yeah...) From the gypsies at El Camino. 

TO KEEP THEM WARM: A handwoven Bolivian wool blanket for your resident wanderluster that can't escape the cold winter. (Us? Yeah...) From the gypsies at El Camino

TO KEEP THE PARTY GOING: Porcelain gold-glazed coasters from Accompany. Proceeds benefit homeless and low-income New Yorkers, at-risk livelihoods, and protecting human rights.

TO KEEP THE PARTY GOING: Porcelain gold-glazed coasters from Accompany. Proceeds benefit homeless and low-income New Yorkers, at-risk livelihoods, and protecting human rights.

TO KEEP THEM INTRIGUED: A visually stunning puzzle game for iOS and Android called Monument Valley. Each level is a work of art. (Yumm. Escher.) And there are new chapters you can purchase to help fight against AIDS for (RED).

TO KEEP THEM INTRIGUED: A visually stunning puzzle game for iOS and Android called Monument Valley. Each level is a work of art. (Yumm. Escher.) And there are new chapters you can purchase to help fight against AIDS for (RED).

TO KEEP THEM CLOSE: A hand-dyed ombre rope leash for your adopted pup from Found My Animal. Proceeds go towards animal welfare and animal rescues, so you'll be keeping your best friend close and helping other furry pals find their forever homes.

TO KEEP THEM CLOSE: A hand-dyed ombre rope leash for your adopted pup from Found My Animal. Proceeds go towards animal welfare and animal rescues, so you'll be keeping your best friend close and helping other furry pals find their forever homes.

TO KEEP THEM SASSY: A winter blue wide-brimmed hat made in Manhattan by Preston & Olivia. Who said piling on the layers has to look like you're wearing a sleeping bag? (OK, but let's be real, sleeping bag coats are still necessary. Erica can attest to that.)

TO KEEP THEM SASSY: A winter blue wide-brimmed hat made in Manhattan by Preston & Olivia. Who said piling on the layers has to look like you're wearing a sleeping bag? (OK, but let's be real, sleeping bag coats are still necessary. Erica can attest to that.)

TO KEEP THEM LOOKIN' GOOD: Face wash, shaving cream, and after shave from the dapper folks at The Blind Barber and Birchbox. Lookin' good, feelin' good, smellin' good, all the good...

TO KEEP THEM LOOKIN' GOOD: Face wash, shaving cream, and after shave from the dapper folks at The Blind Barber and Birchbox. Lookin' good, feelin' good, smellin' good, all the good...

TO KEEP THEM ON-THE-GO: A waxed leather bag from Billykirk that's proven to handle the gritty city commute with style, come frozen hell or high water. (Adette's pebbled leather number is a favorite for any season.)

TO KEEP THEM ON-THE-GO: A waxed leather bag from Billykirk that's proven to handle the gritty city commute with style, come frozen hell or high water. (Adette's pebbled leather number is a favorite for any season.)

TO KEEP THEM CLEAN: Fancy elderflower soap from Proper. Proceeds go towards providing clean water in rural villages in Asia and Africa.

TO KEEP THEM CLEAN: Fancy elderflower soap from Proper. Proceeds go towards providing clean water in rural villages in Asia and Africa.

TO KEEP THEM GUESSING: A cardboard ice cream truck for the curious cat in your life from the curious minds at Famous OTO.

TO KEEP THEM GUESSING: A cardboard ice cream truck for the curious cat in your life from the curious minds at Famous OTO.

TO KEEP THEM CHEERY: Cute mini plants in hand-painted terra cotta pots from The Sill. Because society frowns upon year-round holiday decorations. Bah, humbug. (Liz loves the geometric pots they come in. Who can resist?)

TO KEEP THEM CHEERY: Cute mini plants in hand-painted terra cotta pots from The Sill. Because society frowns upon year-round holiday decorations. Bah, humbug. (Liz loves the geometric pots they come in. Who can resist?)

TO KEEP THEM ASHORE: Nautical-themed Italian leather bracelets from Miansai. And you can even have them custom-made, choosing the perfect color and metal to match.

TO KEEP THEM ASHORE: Nautical-themed Italian leather bracelets from Miansai. And you can even have them custom-made, choosing the perfect color and metal to match.

As you can see, we're also big advocates of buying things for a good cause. A thoughtful present can often extend beyond the sole recipient, and with so many brands and boutiques that contribute to social good, it's easy to find something that will spread some cheer all around. 

And that's just the beginning! Stay tuned as we stumble on more finds, checking off our very long lists as we go along. Of course, suggestions are always welcome, so let us know if you find anything that would be perfect for a bookworm bestie, a culinary aficionado beau, a sartorial trendsetter co-worker, a don't-worry-about-getting-me-anything mother, or a super intelligent and intimidatingly creative business partner; we've got a few on our list (wink-nudge-cough-ourmailingaddressisbelow-holler).

Happy Holidaze,
TINSEL