A happy whirlwind of energy, enthusiasm, and a keen eye for improving on what the next new thing might be, Lori Davis is bringing the party. Her images/2016/Basket1.JPG And there’s no need to look elsewhere for unique party paraphernalia because Lori’s inspired party favors and one-of-a-kind baskets are just some of the amenities JustaBasketcase offers.
So who is this lady with the popular new shop and reputation as event planner extraordinaire? Please take a look below for an insight into Sarasota’s own Lori Davis and JustaBasketcase Events. With the holidays coming up, you might be in need of a revamp of your office or home party. Sometimes it takes a basket case!
You recently had your grand opening, how did that go? Can you tell us the products and services you offer at JustaBasketcase and also about your partnership with Jennifer?
Beyond what we could have expected and with that being said, we will NEVER do that again! A full week of GRAND OPENING events, but so glad we did. We blew it out of the water with a week of parties, free food, bar, giveaways, raffles, goody bags, promotions of our product lines, special upcoming events, meet and greets, showcasing our gift basket line, etc.
As to us being a true one-stop-shoppe; we hold that phrase as a real caliber. We literally are a means to an end for any type of party, function or media event you may have a need for. From event/wedding planning, staffing, linens, basic to vintage rental furniture, onsite venue for parties up to 100 people with full party packages, custom design, set party, wedding favors, tablescapes, decor and centerpieces, draping and lighting as well as our very own chandeliers. We also have our own JustaBasketCase branding of BabyBasketCase by Tulle and we also offer PR, and marketing services as well.
Our shoppe & showroom can be your go-to for all your event, party and planning needs for any and all types of events. We have you covered, literally, because did I mention we can help with the tent as well? No worries. Jennifer Matteo Event Planning and I met in business five years ago then became friends, and partnered up for she is my chosen wedding planner locally. She is the key fit for our company. She has her own amazing company and is an epic fit for us and vice versa. In both family and business, we both say we are “ying to each other’s yang or yangs to yings,” you get the jest! She is not afraid to tell me to shut the hell up and I am surely not afraid to tell her when she is being snobby. HAHA
I understand you use Trader Joe’s products frequently in your baskets. Are there any other local shops that you purchase your stock from and particularly love?
Being we have partnered with Trader Joe’s and will venture something BIG with them – TO BE RELEASED SOON! We love local and certain businesses that are unique and of high quality that represent what we, ourselves, are representing at JustaBasketCase, which is uniqueness. Chef Craig Chasky with all his EVOO and seasonings; Tasa Kvistad with Tulle who works hard to mainstream and help sign my baby product line “Baby BasketCase”, Beads & Dangles jewelry with custom design for JustaBasketCase or your custom design logo, Jana Stall with “Events in Bloom” who is not only one of our florists from Tampa but also doe our in-house glass etching for glassware or framed personal logo or name etching. And lil old me! I design my own personal wedding bags now, that I hope take off soon, customized for any type of bride, or signature fun and wacky statement, that is not for the faint of heart, or traditional., and even out of the box.
Online review rave about how unique your baskets and party planning ideas are, what do you do to make sure you’re exceeding the client’s expectations?
I could lie and say I don’t keep up with current trends but then I like to be a trend setter. So I see what is new out there and go the extra mile and even sometimes do the complete opposite. Even go as far out as I can, and bring it all back around. I love vintage, even old school works but you must pick your moments. We all have our own style, but I become tired of the same old same old. I see everyone doing the how to’s and the 123s, and the pales, golds and silvers, when it is OK to go bold crazy and even BASKETCASE is the new normal! So instead of a basket, try a toolbox. Instead of a shoebox try a hatbox, instead of a baby gift basket try a potty as the container instead. Or I could go real crazy as you can read about in my blogs… Fed up with all the blah blah how-to’s, and how the number of wedding or event planners who all act and look the same? I hear nobody can tell them apart anymore. Well, here I am. And I have been doing this for over 25 yrs. so I know what I speak of…
Can you tell me a little about your background, coming from Texas and moving to Sarasota, your family, and your years spent as a respected wedding planner?
Well, raised in the military taught me respect and discipline and being the only girl taught me my toughness likely. I grew up with pilots and chefs, so there lies my love of flying as well as food. I have a degree from OSU Oklahoma in Marketing minor PR then Associates in Applied Science, as well as Culinary Arts as a chef in party design. I have always been an over achiever and never satisfied which has also been an issue in my life. I was a certified wedding planner in the state of Texas but my true passion is being an entrepreneur and in public relations or business related actually. And during all that, I have two amazing kids, both grown, one daughter who is married with a beautiful granddaughter and a son who is in college. So yes, I’m a grandmother, I KNOW I KNOW it is shocking!! Being a planner in Texas then in Florida is very different, for things move way faster, harsher, and louder in Texas, as opposed to the more relaxed version here. But I can do both and or all the above. That’s what planners are meant to be, versatile, and able to multi task and be objective about any situation and inject themselves into any circumstance at a given notice. It is NOT meant for everyone for I was born for this lifestyle. And I am truly blessed to be here and allowed the life handed down to me.
I saw your daughter was recently married, congratulations! Can you describe some of the more unique or lavish weddings you’ve been asked to plan and manage? How do you handle a bridezilla situation?
Thank you, and different when it is very personal and you are constantly reminded you ARE NOT the planner but it went beautifully and all is over. I wish them the best with many years of love and happiness.
I have done many ethnic and foreign weddings and in Texas, mainly Dallas, multimillion dollar weddings were the custom. From one extreme to another, I do well in crisis moments for some reason. Likely has to do with my personality and for whatever reason glad for it, as it comes to great use. “With great power comes great responsibility,” said a wise wedding planner many million years ago. I also believe in the great powerful wedding OZ! And I have done about 2300 weddings with just a rare account of bridezilla – and the one I AM NOT ALLOWED to mention, so I won’t, but feel free to read my blogs at www.justabasketcaseevents.com, they will be updated next week Anyways, it is usually more so the in-laws or groomzilla’s or extended family, not the bride. Not sure if it is a new trend but I take the humorist route by blogging about it and entertaining people on my insight or there lack of.
Now on a serious note, how do I handle it? With many years’ practice, biting my tongue, letting said person pretend to have his/her say, blank looks, keep all emails and all texts (this will always come in handy) and PLENTY OF WINE!
What events do you have planned through the holidays at your store? You’re probably booked solid in the coming months, are there some events that you’re particularly excited about?
Well, being newly on the Gulf Gate Board, we are helping to revamp this area so we’re starting the 1st Annual Fall Festival for 2017, in plenty of time for next year. We also have several Christmas and Fall events, wine tastings, weddings, local, St Petersburg and Tampa events, magazine editorials and some reality shows looming so we shall see! But, we are always booking and still have dates open, as well as in house and on site availability for holiday parties as well as Halloween!
What else would you like people to know about JustaBasketcase and Lori Davis?
That as a cancer survivor I would love Sarasota to get more involved with children’s cancer. Being Sept is kid’s cancer awareness, it could use more support shown to it. We do loads for breast cancer and heart awareness and all the colors of the rainbow but let’s see what we can do on this.
I’d also like people to know we love what we do and will always use humor as often as we can, mainly now when our world so badly needs it. Lighten up and give satire a try! Also, left lane is for faster cars, use blinkers please and JustaBasketCase is one LONGGGGG word. No need for any edit department to keep separating it.
Can you tell us some of your favorite restaurants, beaches and fun places around Sarasota? What do you like about the area your shop is situated in? What are some of your favorite Sarasota locations for weddings, parties, etc.?
Well, we love Cafe Barbobossa – Joe Dimaggio, Table CreekSide, Phillippe Creek Oyster Bar which is a family place. We have a boat so we love to boat, fish and tube, and we are big shoppers who are also Michael Kors fans and spoil our grandbaby, work on our house all the time, entertain a lot, cook and bake. For events: Bakers Ranch, Selby Gardens, Crosley Powell, and private homes for locations away from the water. Any place is truly what you make of it, even locations like the airport, old-school 40’s museum, or a vintage car show.
Thank you, Lori, and JustaBasketcase Events for speaking with the Sarasota Post. We wish you continued success! If you’d like more information about JustaBasketcase Events, please visit www.justabasketcaseevents.com.
photos from Lori Davis and Facebook, Katelyn Prisco Photography