About Town | Serena & James Knows How to Party
Written by: Christine Broomhead
Photography by: Studio R Photography
Perfect Kids or Baby’s Birthday Event Planner
The perfect party is about the people, the food, drinks, and the setting. The right surroundings make all the difference when creating the party mood. But setting the scene takes patience and planning – things that many of us don’t have time for, and even if we do, we’re inevitably rushing to complete the finishing touches like a contestant on The Great British Bake Off with a sinking soufflé. Hoboken’s Serena & James Events, the brainchild of Kristin Bufano, makes planning the perfect party easy and stress free.
Kristin started her company after planning celebrations for her children’s birthdays. “Party” is too common a term to describe these soirees. These were Experiences. In 2014 at the famous Grimaldi’s Pizzeria, Kristin threw a Winter Wonderland party for her daughter Serena (yes, Serena & James Events is named after her two children). The party was a hit and soon Grimaldi’s was calling to ask if she would decorate parties for their other clients. One client turned into two and then four, and she quickly developed relationships with vendors. After party planning ad hoc, she decided to make it official and established her business. All this, while working as the director of web development at Carnegie Hall and being a mom.
ireChild’s First Birthday Party
Kristin certainly stays busy, and her knack for handling so many moving parts is a key skill in event planning. It all starts with a theme, something like New Year’s Eve, safaris, or hot air balloons (all themes Kristin has tackled). Sometimes Kristin’s clients come with themes in mind, other times she helps clients zero in on a motif with an array of Pinterest boards. After the theme is set, she gets to work. Take her recent hot air balloon party, decorated in pink, white, and gold. Appropriately, it was a first birthday party for a little girl held at Hudson Table. Kristin says the decorations for this event were the most extravagant she’s ever done. Of course there was a balloon archway, an elegant layer cake, and photos on the wall, but the real scene stealer: the clouds. Using pillow stuffing, hot glue, and fishing wire, Kristin and her team crafted fluffy cumulus masterpieces and suspended them from the ceiling. The transformative decorations made the venue a festive child-friendly haven. Kristin not only took care of the decor, she planned crafts for the kids, mouthwatering desserts, and was on scene during the party, ensuring it was a hit with the 70 guests.
Balloon Baby Photo
Baby Photo Boot
The secret to pulling off any event is preparation. If you’re aiming to do it yourself, try to have all mundane tasks completed in advance – roll the utensils in the napkins the day before, blow up the balloons hours ahead of time. This way you can enjoy your party. And if you don’t want the hassle, call the pros. @serenaandjames.events has got you covered.