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About: SJ Soirée

Recent Posts by SJ Soirée

Let’s Be the Change

It’s been almost 3 weeks since the world watched George Floyd’s precious life be taken away. It’s been almost 3 weeks since, and stated also by his daughter, that George Floyd changed the world.

I’ve been taking the last couple of weeks to truly reflect – to reflect on my own upbringing as a South Asian woman of an immigrant family and how I can be an ally for the Black community. And upon my reflection, I came across two thoughts that never crossed my mind in the past:

1) Even as a person of colour, I too have privilege and;

2) As much as the discussion begins with our youth, it’s not too late to educate our elderly

Even as a person of colour, I too have privilege.

“I’m unarmed, and I have nothing that will hurt you.”

Don’t wear a hoodie.

Don’t talk back to cops.

Tell the cops your exact actions before acting.

Does this sound familiar to you? If it does, then I am deeply sorry that you’ve had to either teach your children and/or had to learn from your parents on how to deal with the police. When I watched this powerful video, I couldn’t familiarize myself with it. And that’s because my parents never echoed these phrases to me. And this was when, upon my reflection, I realized I too have privilege. I have privilege because my parents never had a discussion with me about the police. I have privilege because when I was stopped by a police officer, I was thinking of ways to sweet talk myself out of a speeding ticket as opposed to feeling fear about how the police officer could hurt me.

As much as the discussion begins with our youth, it’s not too late to educate our elderly.

There could be certain ideologies that our grandparents and parents may have instilled that we don’t agree with. And I truly believe it’s our job to educate our elderly on the meaning of systemic racism and how our Black community has been oppressed for hundreds of years. For many of us, our grandparents and/or parents are likely immigrants and simply may not have been educated on the history. During the past couple of weeks, my family and I decided to watch some of the brilliant work created by Ava DuVernay: 13th and When They See Us (both available on Netflix). Although our families may be aware of the inequality, the injustice and the police brutality that our Black community faces on a daily basis, they may not truly understand where it all stems from and why the system is built the way it is. 13th, for this reason, was immensely eye-opening. As much as it’s important to teach our youth about equality, it’s just as important to teach our elderly on the history of why this injustice exists in the first place. It’s important to educate ourselves as well. And this for me, is a step forward in becoming an ally – being informed and being educated.

I’m a wedding and event planner. Why am I writing this blog post you may ask? It’s simple. We can’t be silent. No matter your title and no matter your background. We have to take it upon ourselves to solve the inequality and injustices for our Black community. And because I am a wedding and event planner, the events industry can definitely improve and it starts with us. With that said, I’ve made a list of very talented Black-owned wedding businesses that I know of, worked with or have come across here in Toronto:

Planners

Exquisite Occasions

Beth Jacobs Weddings & Events 

Celebration Events Management

Officiants

Weddings by Wade

Garry Francis Wedding Officiant

My Wedding Officiant 

Photographers

F10 Studio

Samantha Clarke

Jevonna Wynter Photography

Floral & Decor

BLUUMBLVD Floral & Events

Coordinate This Design & Decor Inc.

mmmdecors

Stationery

Paper Decorum

Paper Bag Prints

Cakes & Desserts

Fruitilicious Cakes

Cakes by Mavis

AfroCoco Cakes

Hair & Makeup

Afia Beauty

Hair By Estylez

Trop Belle Makeup Artistry

Let’s Be the Change is the name of this blog post. You may ask how we can begin the change? You can begin by reflecting. You can begin by educating yourself. You can begin by talking. Don’t be silent. You can begin by educating others. You can begin by signing petitions, providing donations, safely protesting, showing activism and calling out the injustices. You can begin by calling or messaging your friends in the Black community and asking them how they are doing. Below are a few resources you can begin the change with here in Toronto:

Afri-can Foodbasket

Black Lives Matter Toronto

Black Women in Motion

CEE Centre For Young Black Professionals

Taibu Community Health Centre

Tropicana 

As we’ve seen online through social culture, the year 2020 should not be ‘canceled’. Instead, this year has given us the opportunity to sit, reflect and educate with nothing but time on our hands. The time for self-reflection, education and change is most important right now. There will be a time where our children and grandchildren will study the events that took place this year and ask us what we did to move change forward. And I definitely want them to be proud of the actions I took.

Stay safe, stay healthy and let’s change the world.

Jyoti Saini | SJ Soirée 

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Love is Not Cancelled! Here’s How You Can Celebrate Your Original Wedding Date If You’ve Had to Postpone

We feel incredibly devastated for our clients and all the couples who have had to postpone or cancel their wedding due to COVID-19 this year. If you’ve had to put your plans on hold, we’re here to remind you that love is not cancelled! We want you to celebrate your original wedding date because it still holds importance. You chose the date for a reason and although the celebrations are happening at a later date, it’s important to celebrate the love between you and your partner. With that said, here are 5 ways you can still celebrate your original wedding date during this pandemic:

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When To Book Your Wedding Vendors

Congratulations on this exciting time of your lives! The proposal has been planned, the jitters of popping the question have disappeared and the engagement ring is shining bright as ever. With feelings of excitement, joy and love, this time can also make you feel a bit overwhelmed as you’re now beginning to realize you have to start planning for the big day. When do you have to book a venue? When should you book your beauty vendor? How far out do you have to book your florist? Photographer? Caterer? The list goes on!

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10 Wedding Projects You Can Complete During Quarantine

It may seem that life is on a standstill from this pandemic, but our stories in this beautiful world are still continuing. This is just another challenge in that journey. And what do challenges teach us? They teach us how to become stronger. We may be quarantined at home, but that doesn’t mean we can’t work on our careers, our self-care and our relationships. This also means you don’t need to stop planning for your wedding!

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Wedding Planning Amongst COVID-19

These last 4 days have been a whirlwind for the world as the number of cases for COVID-19 continues to climb and social gatherings hit a halt. The events industry has been affected greatly and for many brides and grooms, the idea of postponing their wedding is becoming very real. As couples are confused, stressed and anxious, I’ve decided to create this blog post to help you take a few steps forward if you are finding yourself in this tricky situation.

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20 Unique Proposal Ideas for 2020

1. Eco-Friendly

Enjoy bike riding, long walks on the beach or hiking? Then choose a local park, beach or trail! Make sure to pick a spot with a scenic background especially if you are thinking of hiring a photographer to capture the moment.

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A Rustic & Minimalist Holiday Tablescape

Red comes alive during the holidays, don’t you agree? Red stockings, red ribbons, red nails and even red coffee cups. And of course, we can’t forget the jolly, white-bearded man in his red suit!

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Wedding Cake Trends for 2020!

1. Textures

Although we discuss the hand-painted cakes trend in our 5 Wedding Trends We Predict for 2020 blog, we are seeing the emergence of textured wedding cakes overall. And a lot of these textures are created by using a palette knife painting technique that many cake artists are loving.

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Wedding Dress Trends for 2020!

1. Glamorous Feathers

Once considered overused and overdone, feathers have made a chic and glamorous comeback to wedding gowns. And designers are not shying away from this luxury trend. Feathers are being used for bold sleeves, elegant trims or simply for the entire wedding gown.

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5 Wedding Trends We Predict for 2020!

1. A Green Wedding

With climate change on the rise, we all want to do what we can to help the earth. And a lot of people are doing just that by beginning with their big day. We’re not saying brides are choosing to wear biodegradable paper dresses or choosing toilet-less receptions. There are many ways couples are choosing to be green and sustainable on their wedding day without having to sacrifice their vision or budget.

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