How Designer Mich Araullo Hosts A Party With Art, Charcuterie, And Gin Tonic
When you enter Mich Araullo’s atelier, you immediately feel at ease and at home. The studio is cozy, with warm, welcoming lights that lend an aura of sophistication to the space. “I often entertain clients here. They would sit at the sofa while we talk about work or they’re waiting for a fitting,” Mich shares. The fashion designer is well known for her bridal gowns and entourage wear.
There’s a hidden quality to the space, especially since it’s located in a gated apartment complex. Inside, you’ll find an artful clutter of clothes, knickknacks, and curious curios. Racks of clothing featuring the designer's work are everywhere. Whitewashed walls are a dominant feature, but in the sala that overlooks the garden, one will find a dark green wall, which tastefully breaks the monochromatic design aesthetic of the studio.
You will find Mich’s work desk in the middle of the sala, backing this dark green wall; the heavy wooden desk a perfect pair to the colored barrier. At a nearby console table, one can find more oddities, a testament to the creative and playful mind of the designer. Malang paintings are displayed on the wall beside her desk, “They are family heirlooms,” says the designer.
She started designing clothes only for herself. Her passion for design and fashion then bloomed to a full career when friends and family urged her to do it professionally. She started by selling ready-to-wear pieces at Rockwell bazaars; today, she now has her own brand and atelier.
Mich treated her guests to a stunning Tropical-Bohemian themed party. The couturier masterfully mixed and matched different colors and textures for the setting. Woven chargers, printed plates, and geometrically patterned glasswares are the definite highlights to Mich’s table setup.
In this shoot, Mich played hostess and showed how a talented couturier treats guests to a good time.
How do you devise the theme for your house parties?
I find that my work as a designer influences how I host parties. Like right now, I’m coming out with a collection that features embroidered clothing, with little details like tassels and beadwork for a more bohemian feel. So all those translated to how I prepared my hosting setup today.
What do you do when preparing your table setting?
I like working with a lot of colors and different textures. I like contrasting wood with greens. Most of my pieces are also printed like the plates I used now. I like to mix-match different prints. My setup today is more like a garden party so I mixed different elements like woven chargers with printed plates. I also used tropical plants for the setting to reinforce the garden theme of the party.
My printed plates are from Anthropology. I also like to play around with different glassware. Like my goblet has a bit of geometric detailing, and then my solid blue glasses are crystal. So I just like to experiment with things. People should just have fun when setting up their table.
The charcuterie board, provided by aperitifph.com, gives the table setting a vibrant, refreshing, and appetizing look. Araullo added fruits and other greens to the mix, to further liven up the presentation.
What do you usually serve your guests?
Since I don’t cook, I usually just buy from the supermarket the cheeses and meats for the charcuterie board. I ordered the food I served today at aperitifph.com, you can also find them on Facebook. They deliver the platters straight to your home. I just add fruits to the platter for color like grapes, figs, etc. It’s perfect for people who don’t cook like me. Or for those who don’t have the time to set things up.
Name one item you can’t live without when hosting a party.
My bamboo bar cart from E. Murio. I use it when I have guests or clients so we can do happy hour at the studio after work. I would set up a gin tonic bar with assorted gin and different garnishes. I have a gin kit, with nine different compartments for the garnishing like rosemary, lavender, cinnamon, star anise, cardamom, rose petals, etc., to enhance the gin.
Mich Araullo’s Bar Cart is an indispensable tool in her parties. Apart from being a good conversation starter, the cart also holds her Gin Kit, which contains different garnishes used for Mich’s party concoctions.
5 Things Mich Araullo Can’t Live Without When Hosting A Party
1. The Bar Cart holds different gins and garnishes, an essential part of her parties.
2. The Gin Kit in her bar cart, which is a wooden box that contains the different garnishes used to enhance the flavor of drinks. It also adds color and unique texture to the table setting. It’s a perfect conversation starter as well.
3. Pocket garden, the small green space in her apartment where she loves entertaining guests. The cozy garden is a relaxing spot for the designer and her clients.
4. China collection, which Mich uses to decorate and complement her table setting. She loves the Italian brand Seletti, perfect for her Bohemian-themed parties.
5. Candles of various shapes and sizes add texture and colors to a table setting. Scented ones also give the ambiance and added gravitas.
Photographs by Paulo Valenzuela, courtesy of Metro Home & Entertaining