Thankfully Chic: All Things Neutral and Metallic

“Pick a theme and go with it!” they said. Those are sweet, sweet words to designers like me at Syzygy Event Productions.”

I’m obsessed with neutrals this season, so it was a given from the start what color palette I would choose. I didn’t realize how simple and fun it would be until I started to gather old Thanksgiving décor, purchase new ones, and took part in some DIY projects. I went all out; coordinating every item down to the outfits!

A Neutral Tablescape: In order to take your traditional Thanksgiving décor and turn it into a chic and elegant holiday display for your table, follow these three simple tips:

  • Create a focal point: use a combination of gold, white, and neutral colored props and accessories.
  • Search for the perfect white pumpkin! Drive to your local market or craft store to purchase these natural or faux beauties.
  • Mix in some metallic colored chargers, silver/gold toned placemats, and rustic candleholders to add a touch of glam and sparkle.
  • Have fun with it!



Set your table with neutral colored items; add a pop of sparkle and metallics.

Personalized Pumpkins: Make those pumpkins shine! Use gems, spray paints, and glitter to add ambiance and personality to your Thanksgiving centerpieces and accessories.

Thankful Pumpkins: A great family activity can turn into a new family tradition. Have everyone create their own thankful pumpkin or make one for the entire family. Each member can take a moment to write a special message or what they’re simply thankful for this year. A simple yet meaningful way to highlight the true meaning of this holiday!


DIY project: add some glam to your pumpkin!

Custom Backdrops: Whether you buy it online or create it yourself, burlap garlands make for a beautiful backdrop. It’s a simple way to add a custom piece to your festive décor. Go to your local craft store like Michael’s to purchase a burlap garland, spray paint, and stencils. The selections are endless! Grab a fun stencil and fabric spray paint to ensure the perfect visual effect.


Create a warm and inviting Thanksgiving display by making your own custom backdrop and garland.

Festive Drinks: During my recent trip to Nashville, I came across the most refreshing drink. It’s called, the FALL O’THE WHISKEY. By far the best cocktail in town! Take some of your favorite bourbon, and then add a splash of peach purée, and top with a sprinkle of cinnamon. The perfect cocktail for your Thanksgiving Dinner!


  • Weller Bourbon (Jigger)
  • Peach Puree
  • Dash of Cinnamon/Nutmeg
  • Top with Cider (Crispin)
  • Garnished with Cinnamon Apple



Start your dinner with a delicious Fall O’The Whiskey specialty drink!

By Lisseth Orellana, Event Designer

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Lets Talk Live: Memorial Day Entertaining


“It takes a village” – wise words from a woman I admire and hold true every day of my life.

When we get a wonderful opportunity to be on a show like Lets Talk Live the team at Syzygy Events gets really excited and we start brainstorming themes and ideas right away! Even yesterday as we hauled in all of our equipment and details, everyone at Lets Talk Live was amazed at how we can set up everything in 2min-yes I said it 2 minutes for set up! It was the team that made it happen. So I am thankful for my amazing team (“My Village”) as they make me and our company shine everyday with everything we do.

Memorial Day Entertaining: So you can relax on the day of the event we started with things that can prepped/made in advance. I marinated the chicken overnight so the flavor was rich and delicious. Our Chicken recipe originated from the Barefoot Contessa.

Tuscan Lemon Chicken (Serves 2 to 3)
Copyright 2008, Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics by Ina Garten, Clarkson Potter/Publishers, All Rights Reserved


  • 1 3 ½-pound chicken, flattened
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup good olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 lemon, halved


Sprinkle the chicken with 1 teaspoon salt on each side. Combine the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, rosemary, and 2 teaspoon pepper in a small measuring cup. Place the chicken in a ceramic or glass dish just large enough to hold it flat. Pour the lemon marinade over the chicken, turning it in the dish. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. Turn the chicken two or three times while marinating.

When ready to grill, prepare a hot charcoal fire on one side of a grill (or turn a gas grill on low heat). Spread most of the coals across half of the grill. Place the chicken, skin side up, on the opposite side of the grill and place the dish you used for marinating on top of the chicken to weight it. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes, until the underside is golden brown. Turn the chicken skin side down, weight again with the dish, and cook for another 12 to 15 minutes, until the skin is golden brown and the chicken is cooked through. Place the lemon halves on the cool side of the grill, cut side down for the last 10 minute of cooking. Remove the chicken to a plate or cutting board, cover with aluminum foil, and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Cut in quarters, sprinkle with salt, and serve with the grilled lemon halves.

My Moms “ Best Potato Salad in the World” Homemade Potato Salad:


  • 3lb Potatoes’ Boiled
  • Kosher Salt
  • 1 Cup of Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons of Dijon Mustard
  • 2 tablespoons of Regular Mustard
  • ½ Cup of Onion, Diced
  • ½ Cup of Celery, Diced Small
  • Celery Seed
  • Pepper
  • Paprika for the top for color and flavor

Once the potatoes are boiled and soft with a fork remove them and let them cool. This is a very important part of the process. Once cool cut them into bite sized pieces in a bowl
Combine all the ingredients and stir till smooth, You can add a bit more mayonnaise if needed
YUMMY Now enjoy!

Grilled Peppers: (So honestly I kept this simple)
Sliced the Yellow Orange and Green Peppers in large slices. Put them in a Zip Lock Bag with Olive Oil, Garlic, Salt and Pepper for a couple of hours then carefully grilled them till they got the pretty grill marks and were soft.

Potted Plants and Flowers:
PlantsPic01-EditPlants that can be enjoyed for your weekend celebration and all summer long: I chose this color scheme Yellow, White and Green because it was bright and beautiful and I love the texture. But the main reason because the color makes me smile, It’s that simple. Container planting works for many reasons. You can bring your herbs in when the season is done, Good for small spaces. They also make wonderful table centerpiece and accents to your celebrations. And I love to go pick fresh herbs and vegetables for summer cooking.


Our Guest Baker is Baked by Yael:
She owns brand new company and her shop is right outside the national Zoo ( Great Location)


Baked by Yael is a woman-owned small business based in Washington, DC specializing in cakepops, bagels, rugelach, black and white cookies, and other delicious baked goods.

I made my first bagel during my final year of law school and started baking frequently the summer I studied for the bar exam. I found it to be a wonderful form of procrastination that didn’t involve leaving home (and my stack of bar exam prep books).

In November 2011, I took the plunge and left my corporate law firm job of 8 years to focus on Baked by Yael full-time. Running my own business has its challenges, but so far I don’t regret it at all. Life is short and I think it’s important to make the most of it. I’m passionate about my business and excited about its future.

In January 2015, Baked by Yael opened its first brick-and-mortar store in Woodley Park! Dubbed DC’s first cakepoppery, our shop allows us to bring our products closer to the customer, whom we get to meet face to face! As DC’s first cakepoppery flourishes, I intend to keep my commitment to the community by using my legal skills and by supporting local nonprofits through Baked by Yael’s cause marketing initiatives.

Please check out the rest of our website and visit our online store to place your first order with Baked by Yael! Or stop into our cakepoppery located near the National Zoo in Washington, DC.


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Syzygy’s Premiere Event in Nashville: As We Begin the Launch of Syzygy South!

What an exciting time for our company! We have the opportunity to become one of the prominent event design company’s in Nashville with our premiere at the Nashville Ballet Ball at the stunning Schermerhorn Symphony Hall. Our team traveled by car, plane and truck to the beautiful southern city of Nashville.

We were greeted with open arms by Ballet Ball Chair, Melissa Mahanes and her team. Clean, sleek and green were her wishes, not fussy and frilly. So we did just that and created an event that we were so proud of!

The guests arrived and were greeted by an elegant, candlelit tree lined path, with hundreds of candles glowing overhead in the branches. Silver lanterns glowed along the green carpet pathway to the entrance to create a stunning entrance to the gala.

Inside, soft sheer drapery and boxwood walls with the Ballet’s logo greeted guests during the cocktail party. Beautiful ballerinas stood lovely and posed on platforms surrounding the room, slowly transitioning from pose to pose like elegant garden statues.

Inside the ballroom, the dinner glowed with thousands of candles, as our Lucite shadowbox tables created an elegant statement in the center of the room. Each table was filled with mood moss, green glass in swirled patterns and succulents, which created quite a feast for the guests’ eyes.

The table settings, linens and flowers completed the look in the room and five projection screens on the stage set were perfection in showcasing the beautifully choreographed ballet performance.  Special guest star, Clare Bowen, sang her Grand Old Opry debut song as the ballet danced in the background. A John Oats performance completed the evening.

We were thrilled to partner with the Nashville Ballet and Melissa Mahanes on this amazing event. What a wonderful way to start our Nashville experience. It truly was a memorable experience.

Julie Shanklin

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