There are many elements that go into making a perfect party. The venue, the food, the decor, and the signature beverage. But one thing that can really make or break a great night is the host. They need to be relaxed yet on point, welcoming, entertaining, stylish and make juggling many moving parts look like a work of art. No one can do that better than Richie Shazam as a New York Times-dubbed 'Multi-Hyphenated Renaissance Woman' - who has made a name for herself as a prominent model, activist, artist and now accomplished photographer - she was the perfect person to collaborate with Calirosa on hosting a magical night for her dearest friends.
The only ask for the party? Capture the moment. Of course, that can be a lot more complex than it sounds but Richie pulled it off in stride and in a beautiful palette of pinks and sparkles at the elegant and airy Du Val Suite in Long Island City. She described the incredible evening to us and gave us a glimpse into her passions and daily life. You may very well be inspired to throw your own party.
Describe your evening with Calirosa to us and what made it so special?
It was so beautiful and poignant and I really enjoyed collaborating with Calirosa. The reception was just so grand and all of my friends were so taken back by the location and us just having a really fun night! It felt like a newer sensation. I haven't had an intimate moment with my loved ones in a long time. Everyone showed up and was dressed to the nines and understood the assignment. Big character energy! A lot of pinks and glitter for me. That’s my ultimate turnup. All my friends came with an open mind. All the colors merged with the tequila.
We had a beautiful meal that was created by Chef Danny Bowien from Mission Chinese who is a dear friend of mine. It felt like a 20 course meal. It just kept going and going! Everyone was so exhausted after. It was really great because it served as a lubricant to make people feel more euphoric and open and just made all the worries of the world dissipate. We were all basking in each other's company. Obviously I was wearing multiple hats as host and then taking snaps and posting so I was juggling a lot but I never made it apparent to my friends.
At the present moment I've really been expanding with the medium of photography. That’s been a very big arena of storytelling for me. It's been really vital and important with these times especially to document the experiences that I’ve been having, hence this magical dinner event with some of my nearest and dearest friends.
How did you orchestrate this night so seamlessly?
With spontaneity and that inherent chaos I think something really beautiful comes out of it. With everyone just showing up and the joy that they had with being with one another really made it a magical evening. For me it was already a success. What more could you ask for? Having an incredible lush meal, having beautiful cocktails, etc., I just wanted it to feel very true to my nature.
What did you want your guests to get out of the night?
Definitely having that beautiful diverse spectrum of femininity and having all the femme persons in my world being present that is like my ultimate fantasy. Mission accomplished! With the parameters of working in our COVID world it's very important for people to feel safe and be in an environment where they're being taken care of. For me, I always love being the hostess with the mostest and not have their guards up.
I want people to have fun, have a good time, we were playing music, people were taking shots, people were boppin’ along. It was just one of those nights that you dream of. I haven't been in a night club [since COVID started], I haven't gone out to a space where I could bust a move and feel the hedonistic pleasure and I had a little piece of it that evening.
What was the soundtrack of the night?
A lot of House, Dance, Top 40, Megan Thee Stallion, Dojo Cat, all the powerful women! We just let that Spotify playlist go.
Who came to the event? Close friends?
There were a lot of people I had not seen IRL in a long time. But time is moving and we need to make the effort to make those special moments happen. That’s why I have a lot of gratitude to Calirosa for letting us have that.
There were some great looks at this event. If tequila were a fashion trend what would it be?
For me I think specifically with Calirosa I think it would be something super bedazzled and sleek and sexy with pink and lavender. A lot of brands come to mind but something strong, powerful, and that gives off boss energy vibes.
You are a great traveler. Do you have any big travel plans and what do you bring when you travel?
I have a big travel schedule for the month of September. I have been learning how to pack the essentials. I have such a crazy eclectic wardrobe and I always have certain pieces in my essentials kit. My essentials consist of my makeup, my beautifying tools that I need to feed my face and make me feel competent wherever I am. Plus, I always have to bring my cameras and the film and equipment. I also bring so many pairs of underwear. You never know what's gonna happen!
So lots of undies, and like things that are malleable. A nice slip dress, a pair of boots. Obviously in our new normal we are wearing a lot of sweatpants, but maybe an oversized sweatshirt and styling it with cute accessories.
I am definitely learning how to pack and less is more so you can get a lot of wear out of them. Things that are also climate flexible.. Having a nice hoodie or a cute jacket.
Where are you hoping to go soon?
I'm really excited about just going to Europe in general. I hope to land in Europe [this fall] and see wherever the wind takes me.
Do you have a routine when you travel?
I definitely start the day with caffeine and I always like to source local coffee shops or get a Starbucks. It is super essential for combatting jet lag and just starting the day off wherever I am. I try not to oversleep. I love my sleep but I'm trying to be high functioning. Push the body as much as you can, but still listen to it and self-care. I always like a source of comfort and warmth. If I have friends I like to link up with them and just see the city through their lens. Obviously I love shopping so I want to go to the stores and see what they are giving out. I am such an active traveler! I love exploring!
I really would like to go to India. There are just so many places in Asia I want to go. Obviously I would like to visit these places when the world isn't in such utter shambles. There's just so many places I'd love to go to in a fantasy world.
What is your greatest passion right now?
I’m currently putting together a book of imagery I’ve created in the past few years. I’m centering it on a lot of self portraits I’ve done during the pandemic. It's the idea of being in isolation versus how does one conquer the vast nature of their imagination. I really want to continue to build upon that and push the many ideas in my brain and bring them to fruition.
I hope to create imagery with brands that I love and build out more clients that are unexpected and just really pushing the envelope. I think it's being a queer and a person of color and creator and artist and a lot of the landscape I’ve been so fortunate to work in has been sort of unprecedented and I want to continue to ride on that wave. People ask ‘what’s your trajectory?’ and I never thought I could do any of this in the first place because I had never seen anyone like myself do it. I give 150% to whatever I do. I like thinking big and I like to really challenge myself. I hope to do more with Calirosa and do more things with this incredible brand. I really admire it and the potential of it.