On August 16th, we hosted an intimate dinner with members of the Darling community on the stunning rooftop of the ROW DTLA, an incredible location in the heart of Los Angeles featuring unique retail shops, restaurants, and event spaces, to celebrate the upcoming launch of our Fall collection. Leading up to September 1st, it has been so fun giving sneak peeks of what’s coming up for us! 

This event was definitely one of the larger-scale events we had put on as a team in a while, and boy, were we exhausted by the end! Once everyone started to arrive and we saw their faces, it was all worth it. Setting up was, well, a bit more exciting than usual. While there wasn’t a cloud in the sky, Hurricane Hillary’s approach had its own plan for us!

As we started to set up and arrange flowers, steam clothing and carefully hang pieces from the collection on new racks, and set the table for our guests, the wind picked up. Vases full of flowers carefully arranged by Sarah began to tip over. Racks hung with meticulously steamed clothes crashed to the ground. We all began scrambling around trying to remedy the havoc wreaked by the wind.  

We had an hour left until guests would start to arrive, so there was only one thing to do… Adapt and push through. Our tall vases were switched out for our shorter, wider ones. The racks were tucked away in a more sheltered area, new clothes steamed and hung, and table menus were weighed down. Things finally started to come together, and our spirits began to rise. As the sun started to set, the wind began to die down, and it was time for all our hard work to pay off. Our Darling Dinner was upon us!

Around 7pm, guests filtered in, stopped in their tracks by the Los Angeles skyline at golden hour. Coming around the corner, they had no idea of the blustery afternoon we had experienced just before their arrival. The table was set, the beautiful charcuterie board done by Chef Felix of KTCHN LA on display, accompanied by wine from Friendly Noise served at our bar.

Guests were immediately drawn to Love Weld’s beautiful setup for permanent jewelry, including both gold and silver chains and charms. Their Founder, Sarah Sides, created the brand to celebrate life through jewelry and for people to have a place to connect. Their concept of commitment and permanence through their jewelry inspires us to be thoughtful about what we put on our bodies. They also offer “Love Charms” to add to each chain to celebrate yourself or a loved one. Everyone was so excited to get their pieces and felt the love from the team and their process. 

After our guests were zapped and had some sparkle on their wrists, the flow of the rooftop brought them to the Darling clothing racks, still upright and ready to be shopped. Every time the Darling community gets their hands on our pieces, our hearts become so full as they adorn our message with each piece they try on.  

At last, it was time to sit and eat at the stunning table setting by Archive Rentals. In typical Darling Dinner fashion, Sarah presented each course with a question to prompt meaningful conversation around the table. The first course, a Pear and Pea Little Gem Salad, was accompanied by the following question: 

How would you like to “reframe” something specific in your life? 

The table jumped at this question, ready to dive in. It is always so amazing at these dinners to experience a group of strangers who come together and open up so wholeheartedly to these questions. Sarah spoke about how she feels like she doesn’t live up to the perfect “mom standards” that she sees on Instagram, and how she wants to reframe that, reminding herself that people don’t always post the hard, messy times in parenthood. Kid’s rooms might be trashed, toys everywhere, but all that is shown on social media is the pristine floor after a deep clean. She hopes to inspire others by presenting her own authentic experiences of motherhood, and showing those moments that might not live up to the perfection we usually see. 

With the main course of Miso Glazed Cod came another question: 

What is something that rattles your confidence? How can you maintain a sense of inner confidence despite outside circumstances? 

Each woman went around the table in their group of 6 and vulnerably answered this question. Many of the women at my table had trouble answering the second part of the question and looked to those around them for guidance. We all worked together to find different ways on how each of us could build that inner confidence. The unconditional support radiated from up and down the table. 

Dessert was served, an Orange Blossom Pana Cotta, and we were all instructed to affirm the woman across the table from us. From what we had all learned about the women around us throughout the evening, we each took turns sealing our connection with one another with personal and meaningful affirmations.  

After dinner, those who hadn’t been able to receive their stunning permanent bracelets from Love Weld did so while everyone else mingled, continued to try on more pieces from the Darling clothing collection, and grabbed their goodie bags! We were so lucky to partner with a few of our favorite brands to help fill these bags for our guests.  

Ilia Beauty’s dedication to clean and natural beauty has always been an inspiration to us. Just as we at Darling believe that your authentic self is a work of art, Ilia believes in “skin that looks like skin—and radiance that comes naturally.” We absolutely love their Multi-Stick and how many beautiful shades it comes in, keeping a wide range of skin textures and colors in mind to enhance all our natural beauty.  

We have worked with Osea in the past and will never get enough of them! For the past 3 decades, they have committed themselves to what we know today as clean beauty. For them, it has always been at the core of their mission, “a simple, holistic philosophy that our connection to nature is essential our collective well-being.” Their Sea Vitamin Boost and Ocean Cleansing Milk leave us feeling so refreshed and hydrated, and have become staples in our self-care routine. 

Rel Beauty, founded by actress and comedian Arielle Vandenberg, keeps it fresh and clean with organic ingredients, only plant-based preservatives, and natural aromas! We love that we never have to worry about any irritating chemicals. We can never leave the house without lip balm, and Rel’s “No Duh” tinted lip balm is the best! With its beeswax blend, shea butter, and natural oils, your lips will thank you for this hydration.  

No one can deny the importance of a good scent. Made in New York, D.S. & Durga has something for everyone with their wide range of fragrances, including perfumes, candles, soap, lotion, and more. Scents spark emotions and memories, and D.S. & Durga combines what we love in music, art, nature, and design in their aromas to bring us back to our favorite moments. If you’re in LA, visit their beautiful new storefront in Abbot Kinney! 

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