That Island Feeling! Mix.Mingle.Schmooze Hawaiian-Style

There’s something so appealing about Hawaii. The tropical smells and sound of the ocean are so inviting.

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I recently got a feel for the Hawaiian Islands when I attended a Hawaiian-themed party for San Diego Style Weddings – the wedding magazine for which I’m the editor.


The magazine’s “Mix.Mingle.Schmooze” event, which was held at Bali Hai Restaurant, featured all sorts of Aloha vibes, from the food to the music to the décor.

The flowers were so colorful and tropical. Each woman received a flower to wear behind her ear. Single women wear the flower behind their right ear, while married women (or those in a relationship) wear it behind the left ear. Haydee de la Cruz of Haydee’s Creative Flowers designed these blooms!

The photobus photo booth from Pacific Coast PhotoBus was fun. I loved the props, including a captain’s hat and fuzzy boa.

The menu included yummy pot stickers, coconut shrimp, jerk chicken lollypops and coconut rice.

Dessert was delicious too! We sampled Gelato Paradiso gelato and the Cravory cookies.

The Ohana cupcakes tasted as great as they looked! I love those personalized “SDSW” cake toppers.

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In addition to local wines, we sipped cocktails like Snake Oil Cocktail Company’s “Snake Oil Coco-Loco,” which featured coconut milk, applewood infusion, fresh ginger, pressed lemon and club soda.

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The “Passion of the Tiki” drink (seen here) was made with smashed passion fruit and pomegranate, almond, orange flower water, pressed citrus, island spice reduction and Angostura bitters.

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The “it” drink? Fresh coconut milk, served in a coconut, which was branded with the San Diego Style Weddings’ logo!


Here are a few photos of me with the San Diego Style Weddings’ team, including publisher Dena Nolen-Malasek.


With SDSW publisher, Dena Nolan-Malasek.
L-R Abby Barenholtz, social media; myself; Dena Nolen-Malasek, publisher; Suzi Battle, Account executive; Kateri Hansen, sales; Adam C. Walter, production.
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With Abby Barenholtz who handles social media for SDSW.


I recently attended the “Mix.Mingle.Schmooze” magazine release party for San Diego Style Weddings – the wedding magazine for which I’m the editor.

The latest issue of San Diego Style Weddings.

The party, held at Mission Brewery, featured great food, beer and wine, and of course wedding inspiration.


Another awesome party hosted by San Diego Style Weddings’ publisher Dena Nolen-Malasek.

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Posing with SDSW’s publisher, Dena-Nolen Malasek. Photo credit: Paul Barnett Photography.

Some of the highlights included:

  • The amazing paper flower backdrop created by Esmeralda Luxury Paper Flowers. What a colorful backdrop for photos!
  • I’m a sucker for photo booths and Captured Photos Booths didn’t disappoint!


  • Yummy milk and cookies from the Cravory. I especially liked the chocolate truffle and lemon bar cookies.
  • Comfy and stylish seating from Lounge Appeal
  • The “Idaho Nachos” (create your own potato ship nachos) from caterer Feast on This were great – a perfect late night snack at any wedding or event.
  • Cool caricature drawings from Caricatures by Dave.
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With my husband – does the caricature match us?   Photo credit: Eisenhower Photography

  • Tasty mini donuts and deep fried Oreos from Sensational Treats.
  • Pretty floral arrangements from local florists like Studio Flourish and Haydee’s Creative Flowers.


Fun fact: Mission Brewery is located inside a former Wonder Bread factory in downtown San Diego. The building has lots of open space, exposed brick and great city views.


Check out the latest issue of San Diego Style Weddings online and in local stores.


Photos are my own, unless noted.

Wedding DIY is Doable!

From flowers to centerpieces to invitations, being a do-it-yourself bride (or groom) seems easy but often it’s a struggle. Still some crafty wedding projects (like food favors and photo booth props) are doable. For ideas and expert advice, check out my San Diego Style Weddings’ article on DIY Weddings.

Here’s an excerpt:

“In all honesty, there are plenty of ideas and themes out there to create a fabulous DIY wedding,” say Jaime Beck and Diane Reichenbach of Whimsey Florals. “It can and has been done. It takes a large support system to do it, and lots of time and patience.”