November 7, 2016

Berry at a Table of 20

Hey there!

It's the start of another work week, and while there might be challenges, I pray we all overcome them and have beautiful and positive weeks! A few months ago, while browsing through blogs via Bloglovin (follow me please!), I came across an event on Titi's blog. You might remember Titi from this post. I got in touch with the hostess and determined to attend at some point, and that point was 2 weekends ago. Today I'm going to share a little bit about my time at Erica's Table of 20.

I woke up bright and early that Saturday morning as I had looked forward to the event for the whole month of October. I wasn't sure what to wear, but at the last minute I picked out a simple white tee, my skirt from this post, denim jacket and nude brown pumps. I think I might have a separate style post on this outfit, since it's been a while.


Erica Dias is a publicist and co-founder of The B Firm PR. Her company put this event together from a month ago. She's also an author, of the recently published Faith It Until You Make It, which is a book of quotes collected through her life experiences. Erica explained the reason behind her monthly Table of 20 event. She grew up in California (where I also lived for a few months in 1997), and moved to Atlanta a few years ago. She came up with the idea of networking with different men and women in the city, but instead of a big networking event, she wanted small ones where people could actually talk and listen to each other. At each Table of 20, Erica invites a guest speaker to share their different experiences, and inspire others. 

This was the 20th edition of Erica's Table of 20, and she invited a gentleman by the name of Michael Sterling, who is running to become the new Mayor of Atlanta. I got in just before he shared his story and it was very inspiring. This is a man who grew up in an orphanage, was in and out of foster homes, but eventually settled with a family that embraced him with love, care, prayer and helped him grow into the person that he is today. This really goes to show you that you can become someone inspirational, even from the most humble of beginnings.
The event was held in a private dining room of the Neiman Marcus Cafe at Lenox Mall. When I walked in, I almost gasped audibly as the decor was so beautiful! The decor was done by Ann-Marie Appiah, of the A.M.A. Experience, and she explained her reasoning behind the items she used in the room. For instance, the table cloth had a lot of texture, and basically symbolized how nobody's life is smooth and perfect. There was use of gold and silver elements that signified the brightness within us. The purple flowers were a symbol of our royalty. Other vendors included Martell (they made very tasty cocktails), Sprinkle Cupcakes (I enjoyed my red velvet cupcake), Out of the Box Photo Booth, and more.
Source - Fashion By Tatib Blog
Erica also addressed the room and shared her life's story with us. At the young age of 15, she knew that she wanted a career in fashion/styling, identified an established stylist she looked up to, called her on the phone and persuaded her to give her an internship of sorts. She parlayed that experience into styling celebrities for VIBE Magazine, and working on different BET shows. She talked about her grandmother, who was her best friend and sadly passed away from cancer. That kinda spurred her decision to move to Atlanta, where she floundered for a little bit, but quickly took her career and life back into her hands. Just like me, Erica is very family-oriented. So much so that she started her PR company with her sister, Ashley who runs the Alabama office of their firm. Erica talked a lot about her faith in God taking her through every challenge, and making her who she is today. She calls herself "God's Girl." She's my age and I was simply wowed just listening to her.  
Source - Fashion By Tatib Blog
The food and drinks were very good. I ordered the Salmon Tacos, which were amazing! The funny thing is that the week prior to this event, I was craving fish tacos! 




I didn't take a lot of photos of the room, because I was shy and I didn't want 20 pairs of eyes watching me and wondering who this random chick was :p But afterwards, Erica said I could have taken as many photos as I want, and I plan to do just that the next time I attend.

Thanks so much to Erica Dias, her sister Ashley (with whom she founded The B Firm PR), the vendors for having me.

And to my readers, like the title of Erica's book says, Faith It Until You Make It!

P.S. I met other bloggers there. Check out Tatib's recap here, and sisters who blog at BluHazl (their recap is here.)


19 comments:

  1. Aww. I enjoyed reading this and the story of the Mayor. Yes to Faithing it Before you Make it! You shy? Lol! I totally get you, and I like your blue skirt!

    www.KacheeTee.com || Bloglovin'!
    5 Amazing HeartFelt Moments & Photos From Our Wedding

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    1. Yes ma'am. I'm as shy as they come!

      Thanks for the compliment.

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  2. Looks like a thousand fun.... Lols@random chic taking pictures, that's like one of my hugest blogger problems, I'll see a prefect place for an outfit post background but I'll be like people will say 'wetin dey do this one? '......mhen, the snacks are looking way too good

    quirksandoutfits.blogspot.com

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    1. Yeah, as bloggers sha, taking 5 million photos at events is part of our "work" right?

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  3. Great post dear! And thank you so much for mentioning my blog post as well!!!
    Hope to see you around. Good luck with everything!!!

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    1. You're very welcome. I enjoyed your post and photos too.

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  4. Wow it looks so yummy. Great pictures. It's always an odd feeling when you are the one taking the most pictures. But we cant help it. You did well with yours because they came out great.

    ngraffi.blogspot.com

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  5. Wow, very inspiring write-up. Totally needed it. Thanks. The pictures look so good too.

    www.zinnyfactor.com

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  6. Lovely décor. The piece that strikes me most influentially is "Faith it till you make it" Thanks for sharing...

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  7. All I can see is the food lol.
    The pictures look so good.
    You are the last person I think of as shy oh Berry.

    The day my phone embarrassed me

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    1. Hahaha I'm shy o. Put me in a room with people I don't know and I hide in a corner.

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  8. Cool pictures berry

    www.liveinibadan.blogspot.com

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  9. I really like the idea of intimate networking parties as opposed to the type we have here in Abuja.

    I'm not even that shy a person, but I find most of the networking events here overwhelming. It's all usually the same Abuja crowd with their instagram popular clique of friends and we the not-so-popular are left lurking around the circles.

    But a table of 20 is genius. Everyone has a voice and will feel free to express themselves regardless of who they know.

    I like it.

    By the way your outfit is so comfy and chic!

    Ummi's Blog

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    1. Ummi you totally read my mind!!! It's something I would totally replicate in Lagos - unfortunately I'm not there anymore. But the concept is very good and well done. Maybe you can actually do something similar in Abuja - you provide the food and get extra publicity!

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    2. You're giving me ideas gurl!

      I'm actually thinking up possible spaces in my head....

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  10. Berry, you're really enjoying this ATL :)

    The table of 20 is an interesting concept. Initially i thought it was a birthday party until l looked more closely. The decor and food look great.

    I thought about this same idea the other day. A small networking dinner concept which could work in Lagos and Abuja. The challenge is finding good key speakers and also having a good mix of people in the forum to ensure proper engagement. The other thing to bear in mind is reducing the VIP entourage and people recognizing that the invite is for 1.

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Reading your comments ALWAYS makes me smile. I hope you smile when I reply :)