Pure Imagination

The Factory gates at The Huestudio + Company recently were opened to celebrate and honor Broadway’s delicious new musical, Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory!

Inspired by the five Golden Ticket winning children, our Factory shoot features whimsically colorful place settings on luscious amethyst Gatsby linens from Over The Top, Inc. and uniquely different chairs from Hall’s Rentals, depicting the nuanced personalities of each character.

Step inside our world of pure imagination!

The place setting for Charlie Bucket, the poor, kind and well-mannered young boy who finds the final Golden Ticket, is sparse and features real cabbage leaves, pieces of chocolate, tin and metal and an elegant silver lamour napkin from Over The Top, Inc. tied simply with twine. 

Originally played by Peter Ostrum in the beloved 1971 American musical fantasy film, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory starring Gene Wilder, the Broadway cast features three multi-talented Charlie’s – Jake Ryan Flynn, Ryan Foust and Ryan Sell.

Augustus Gloop, the gourmandizing German Golden Ticket winner who gets sucked up in a pipe after falling into the Chocolate River, is represented with vintage German china and beer steins, authentic German sausages + Topkuss chocolates to satisfy an insatiable appetite and black, red and yellow lamour napkins folded to resemble the German flag.

Brilliantly played by F. Michael Haynie on Broadway [and an Understudy by talented cousin Elliott Mattox], Michael Bollner was featured in the 1971 film.

The place setting for the self-indulgent and impatient Veruca Salt marries two distinctly different themes of “bad egg/bad nut” in an elaborate place setting, perfectly fitting for the girl who wants it all!

Discarded down the garbage chute after considering her a “bad egg” in the 1971 fantasy film, nut-testing, dancing black squirrels in the Broadway musical equally determine that spoiled Veruca is a “bad nut”.

Wonderfully played by the talented Emma Pfaeffle on Broadway, Julie Dawn Cole was memorable as selfish Veruca in the 1971 film.

Perfectly set for the “Queen of Pop”, gold + hues of purple spotlight the ultra-competitive, gum-chomping Violet Beauregard. Featuring artfully folded purple and violet lamour + blueberry fortuny napkins by Over The Top, Inc., colorful gum balls and scented violet gum stand ready to chew to blow big bubbles.

Portrayed on Broadway by the spectacular Trista Dollison, Violet blows up into a giant blueberry after sampling an experimental three-course chewing gum meal in the Inventing Room, but who could ever forget Denise Nickerson in the 1971 film. Simply eye popping!

With a playful nod to the TV/technology-obsessed Mike Teavee, a reduced place setting was created in miniature. With the Broadway update reflecting current trends, graffiti and color, neon green, orange and pink napkins by Over the Top, Inc. are secured with plugs and connectors.

Getting shrunk after attempting to become the first person to be sent by television and technology via the TV’s Television Chocolate Technology, Mike, played on Broadway by Michael Wartella, updated the pint-sized character to reflect current technology with social media, internet, etc.

Paying respect to Paris Themmen, the rambunctious, gun-totting Mike in the 1971 film, a vintage cowboy hat rests on a white folding chair.

Jeff Hughes, the Chief Experience Officer at The Huestudio + Company, channels the eccentric chocolatier Willy Wonka, artfully played on Broadway by two-time Tony® Award winner Christian Borle.

But what about the iconic Oompa Loompas, the small people who help Willy Wonka operate his chocolate factory?

They are magically wonderful!

So magical that Basil Twist won the 2017 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Puppet Design for Charlie and The Chocolate Factory!

Purchase a ticket. Go see them for yourself. You’ll be awed by their magnificence and wonder!

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View more of our photos in our Gallery, captured beautifully by the talented Gabi Bucataru of PhotoGabi to see how select Preferred Partners created custom gifts for our five #HuestudioGoldenTicket winners in our recent online promotion + see the video of the magic of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory on Broadway!

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Preferred Partners

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“The imagination is the golden pathway to everywhere.”

Terence McKenna

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Design by Nature

With our love for circles and colors, Alex Rose, founder of Blue Ring, is a perfect fit for a featured guest spotlight on Circle of Colors!

Recently returning from The Ocean Conference at the United Nations in New York to reverse the decline in the health of our ocean for people, planet and prosperity, be inspired to learn more and become part of a network to fund globally important ocean exploration and conservation projects by joining Blue Ring!

We did!

It is no coincidence that airplanes remind us of birds, or that the only things that seem capable of sticking to fabric, as well as Velcro does, are the burs from plants. The shape of birds and the design of their wings still inspire novel aviation equipment today, and Velcro was specifically created to mimic the tiny hooked structures that allow burs to securely attach themselves to an animal’s fur in order to ensure seed dispersal. Biomimicry or biomimetics is the imitation of biological designs with the goal of solving even our most complex problems. The applications are endless and include fields ranging from nanotechnology to building design to fashion to medicine. Although the discussion of this topic could (and does) fill entire books, here are just a few examples of ocean-inspired biomimicry.

A team of scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is studying the shell structure of the windowpane oyster, Placuna placenta, with the hope of producing a hard, lightweight, transparent armor that “resists mechanical penetration but is also optically clear,” just like the shell of the mollusk. The unique nanostructure of the shell allows it to localize damage, preventing it from compromising the structural integrity of the entire shell. A human armor like this could be nearly invisible and would be capable of withstanding multiple hits without collapsing.

The concept of a bioluminescent bulb is of growing interest as it would require no energy to power and would be a renewable source of cold light with no waste production or pollution. This idea was inspired by the bioluminescent marine bacterium, Vibrio fischeri. In a study recently conducted at the University of Madison, three undergraduate students genetically engineered E. coli bacteria that were capable of glowing just like V. fischeri and created a “biobulb.” This light source would essentially be a closed system containing several species of microorganisms where “each organism plays a role in the recycling of vital nutrients that each of the other microbes need to survive.” The bulb would be recharged by natural light, allowing the food organisms to grow and reproduce or “recharge” the system.

Sharkskin has been a model for more aerodynamic cars and wetsuits.

The surface topography of sharkskin and its incredible ability to ward off bacterial and parasitic infections prompted the Florida-based biotechnology company Sharklet Technologies, to develop its very own micro-textured adhesive film. The film is covered in microscopic diamond-shaped bumps, a characteristic that “prevented dangerous microorganisms…from establishing colonies large enough to infect humans.” This synthetic sharkskin does not actually kill the pathogens, but prevents them from colonizing the surface. Sharkskin has also been the model for more aerodynamic cars and wetsuits.

With so many brilliant colors and textures, it isn’t hard to see why fashion designers are inspired by marine life.

Then, there is of course fashion.

The underwater world is full of colors, textures, and structures that lend themselves incredibly well to being imitated in cloth. American luxury label Rodarte is known to have created an entire line of high fashion dresses inspired by the elegance and beauty of Siamese fighting fish, also called bettas. During Paris Fashion Week in 2016, haute couture designer Alberta Ferretti presented an entire collection influenced by the ocean. “I explored different moods inspired by the sea – that part of the earth with its fascinating fluidity,” she said. Also moved by the stunning beauty of sea life is recognized fashion designer Luly Yang, who has an entire couture collection called Ocean. According to Luly, the style of her Ocean collection is exemplified by “movements fluid, ethereal, and vibrant, with attributes of jellyfish, sharks, and coral, bringing the mysteries of the deep to the surface.” There are endless forms both spectacular and unusual to imitate in the underwater world, and I have no doubt that fashion designers will continue to explore these options for decades to come.

Marine debris in the form of recycled ocean plastic trash is becoming a textile of choice for a growing number of products.

Outside the world of couture, the ocean is inspiring the creation of new fabrics and materials. Oceans trash actually. Plastic pollution is a monumental issue in the world with 8 million tons of plastic being dumped into our seas annually, and companies are beginning to make good use of this refuse by upcycling ocean plastic. Adidas partnered with Parley for the Oceans to create a sneaker made from recycled ocean trash. According to Adidas, “We are working with Parley to transform marine plastic pollution into high performance sportswear, spinning the problem into a solution. The threat into a thread.” Fourth Element, a scuba diving brand that makes technical gear and lifestyle clothing, utilizes textiles created from recycled ghost fishing nets. The quality of their products is superb, and the styling is comfortable and modern, all the while helping to remove stray monofilament nets from the ocean that formerly captured marine creatures and damaged ocean ecosystems. The sunglasses company, Norton Point, launched a line of eco-friendly sunglasses in 2016 made out of high-density polyethylene taken from the ocean and recycled, as part of their “Sea Plastic Differently” campaign. In an effort to produce less plastic in the first place, Saltwater Brewery made edible six-pack rings out of barley to reduce plastic in the ocean and protect marine life. Clif Bar also changed their packaging from shrink wrap to 100% recycled paperboard.

Jellyfish are a constant source of inspiration both technologically and aesthetically. 

There scarcely exists a human problem that has not already been solved by nature; we need only to keep our minds open and the answers will present themselves in some of the most seemingly unlikely forms. There are many more incredible examples of biomimetic designs, including but certainly not limited to, those inspired by marine species. Consider keyword searching for boxfish body, mollusk glue, mantis shrimp claw, spider silk, lizard skin, gecko feet, butterfly scales, and bat echolocation in relation to biomimicry to get a broader look at the amazing design solutions that can be found in nature.   

The Huestudio + Company invites you to join Blue Ring today and become part of a global network + “marry” the ocean and join a global celebration on World Oceans Day next year on June 8, 2018!

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Alex Rose holds a B.S. in Biology, a M.S. in Aquatic Biology, and has a wide variety of experience in the biological sciences including but not limited to bioacoustics research, exhibit construction, science writing, teaching, public presentation, and aquatic animal husbandry and breeding. Alex is also a professional violinist, photographer, Explorers Club Fellow, PADI Divemaster, and lover of all things aquatic. She is currently the Science Editor and a principle writer for Ocean Geographic Magazine, the Managing Editor for Ocean Geographic Explorers (OGX) and is a free-lance science writer and editor as well. Alex also composes violin pieces for use in ocean themed films and exhibitions. Her driving goal is to find ways to protect our world’s precious marine habitats through diving, writing, photography, education, and research.

She founded Blue Ring at the beginning of 2017 in an effort to create a new method of ocean conservation accessible to and inclusive of everyone who wants to better understand and protect our seas.  

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View the colorful video, Our Ocean, Our Future.

“We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch – we are going back from whence we came.”

– John F. Kennedy

Photo Credits: © Alex Rose.

Land of the Free. Because of the Brave.

“My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”

– John F. Kennedy

On this special Memorial Day 2017, we salute all that are serving and honor all that have served.

This past Saturday, May 20, 2017, The University of Kentucky (UK) was the first university in the nation to sponsor an Honor Flight from Bluegrass Field in Lexington, Kentucky and sent nearly seventy veterans affiliated with UK – including my father Winfred C. Hughes – on an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C.

After landing, the American Airlines jet was saluted by local fire trucks with water cannons + veterans and their volunteer guardians were enthusiastically welcomed by cheering crowds, upon arrival.

While in Washington, the memorable day included a bus tour of Capitol Hill + World War II, Korean War and Vietnam War veterans visited the iconic memorials, including Iwo Jima Memorial, Women In Military Service For America Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery, National World War II Memorial, Korean War Memorial, Vietnam Memorial and the Air Force Memorial.

Following lengthy weather delays on the return flight home to Lexington, veterans were greeted proudly by hundreds of supporters. View the gallery for additional photographs, graciously provided by the talented Tami Stieger.

In honor of Memorial Day, please consider donating to Honor Flight, as a special tribute to your favorite veteran.

Let’s continue to honor those who have served, and continue to serve proudly today.

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Photo Credits: © Tami Stieger Photography, 2017.

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Five Things to Know About Us

Happy May 2017! As we begin the fifth month of 2017, we thought it was time for you to get to know us better.

Here are five (5) unique things you may or may not know about us at The Huestudio + Company.

We love luscious flowers. All types. All colors. All varieties. But, we especially love orchids, peonies and tulips. April showers do bring May flowers and The Flower Studio, a long time preferred partner, always delivers and never disappoints!

“Help us to be ever faithful gardeners of the spirit, who know that without darkness nothing comes to birth, and without light nothing flowers.”

– May Sarton

We love to travel. Anywhere. Everywhere. Anytime. Whether for exotic destination weddings or private events abroad, our whimsical bags are always ready + packed. We especially love our adventures with Very Troubled Child travel bags + colorful Kilim “Flying Carpet Shoes” by Artemis Design Co.

“I see my path, but I don’t know where it leads. Not knowing where I’m going is what inspires me to travel it.”

– Rosalia de Castro

We love inspirational quotes. Words matter. Often, the thoughts and talents of others have just the right words to communicate what we are thinking and feeling. Whether for event stationery or wedding invitations, connect with us on Instagram to see how we are daily inspired.

“At the beginning of a new project, often before I do any actual writing, I collect photos, quotes, song lyrics, and even objects that relate to the characters or the world I’m creating.”

– Kami Garcia

We love color. All colors. Each and every color. Our attraction and love for bright + bold; patterns + textures are immense. Each and every month we proudly select and feature a color to spotlight. For May 2017, we selected Moonstone. Typically colorless, Moonstone complements our Q2 quarterly spotlight of Air, one of the four elements forming our universe.

“Like a welcome summer rain, humor may suddenly cleanse and cool the earth, the air and you.”

– Langston Hughes

We love our Preferred Partners. As beloved creative collaborators of our + Company, each artisan has been personally hand-selected and exclusively invited to partner with us on select event experiences. Explore our elite listing knowing they represent the passion, power and perfection of  “our plus” in The Huestudio + Company.

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Photo Credits: © PhotoGabi exclusively for The Huestudio + Company.

Bow Ties + Bunnies!

Celebrate all things colorful with dapper bow ties + adorable chocolate bunnies!

Welcome family, friends and guests to your home and tables with playful patterns, fragrant florals, bouncing bunnies and bright + bold bow ties; bow ties filled with colorful jelly beans for a delicious guest favor + silk bow ties artfully tied onto china plates for a thoughtful gift!

“When you wear a bow tie, doors open for you. Your posture is a little more erect; your shoulders are a little further back; your style is a little more dynamic. It’s about the reestablishment of the gentleman.”

– Dhani Jones


Custom printed linen menus by Lucky Invitations delightfully welcome guests to each place setting.

Paint-splattered chocolate bon bon’s + bunny noses by Anna Shea Chocolates are artfully presented on pristine white china plates to tempt and indulge all guests. #Yum

Whatever you do.

Where ever you go.

Enjoy every color.

Delight in every pattern.

Always set a beautiful table!

Happy Day from all of us at The Huestudio + Company!

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Photo Credits: © PhotoGabi exclusively for The Huestudio + Company, 2017.