ALTADENA - Miller- Hawkins Productions has moved the party to Altadena.
The five-year-old event-planning company has relocated from downtown Los Angeles to 871 E. Mariposa St., Altadena. The company is co-owned by Inger Miller and Jill Hawkins, both of whom are originally from the Pasadena area. Together, they decided to take the company back to their roots. "At first we thought Los Angeles would be a great place to start a company like this," Miller said. "But we realized there was a lack of presence in Altadena." And it seems the move was well worth it - business has tripled since the move in June.
Miller and Hawkins have 35 years of combined experience in party planning. Beginning in special-event planning in 1990 when she was a Tournament of Roses princess, Miller then began working with Hawkins on receptions for Rose Parade sponsors. Hawkins subsequently went on to work in Hollywood as a top-end party planner. The pair believes their reputation in the region will attract clientele. Miller, a former Olympic gold medalist for the relay, said she's ready to show that same determination for the business. "They already have a built-in clientele and customer base," said Doug Colliflower, president of the Altadena Chamber of Commerce. "I've met the ladies, and they seem professional. I'm sure they will do fine."
Miller-Hawkins has secured many clients already, and the pair figures many more are sure to follow. "This business is a referral business," Miller said. "We've been very lucky." When the company began, wedding planning made up a bigger percentage of the business. Currently, the breakdown is about 60 percent corporate events to 40 percent wedding planning. "We enjoy the variety," Miller said. Miller-Hawkins offers four packages for wedding clients to choose from. A consultation only is available for clients who want handson experience with their event. Assistance in scheduling and vendors is offered to help get events on track.
Partial wedding coordination is offered for clients who only need assistance in the coordination department but still want to do most of the leg work themselves. Complete wedding coordination is available for clients who want to kick back, relax and let Miller-Hawkins take over. The company's motto - "Don't worry. We will." - holds true with that package. The last package is day-only coordinating. This package is for the client who only wants direction on his/her big day. The company's include - but are not limited to - catering, decorating, music, photography/video, transportation, security and floral decor. Miller-Hawkins specializes in private parties, cocktail parties, weddings, religious celebrations, corporate functions and special events as well. Many of the company's corporate clients use Miller Hawkins' services for their personal social events or weddings as well, Miller said. Miller-Hawkins currently hires assistants as independent contractors for each event. But Miller said the need for a full-time employee is becoming a more pressing issue. The hardest part about starting the venture was developing the business itself. Attracting clients isn't easy, Miller said. A gala ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Aug. 9 to celebrate the opening of the new offices.