This GBK Lounge honoring the Golden Globes was full of interesting celebs. The actual suites at W Hollywood, where it was held, were abuzz the whole week-end.

Viola Davis.  Photo by Alice Farinas.

Viola Davis. Photo by Alice Farinas.

I bumped into nominee Viola Davis, with whom I share a mutual dear friend in Providence, Rhode Island. He always insists that I say hi to Viola for him, and this time, her adorable husband, Julius, spent a few minutes giving me the updates on our old acting professor. What a lovely bonding experience that was!

I also spied the cute guy from Jane The Virgin, and Cheech Marin, although minus his comedy partner Chong, who was totally missing out on all the fun!

But, let’s face it, we were all there to discover the fabulous gifts, so let’s get to our favorites already. (As usual, my co-writer Alice was doing half the work.)

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Brave Chick Jewelry–This lovely jewelry designer, Lejoi Reese-Kinsey, (who went to RISD, so you know she’s good!,) was gifting her beautiful jewelry, which is all made to give positive energy, and always includes a little gold bar with the word “brave” stamped on it. I was impressed with her beautiful table presentation, and even moreso with what all her pieces stand for. Each one has its own story, and Alice noted that “every one of the pieces has significance to a different struggle that women go through, such as domestic abuse to breast cancer.” Alice also suggested that “all recipients of jewelry from this line should wear their choice with honor.” Lejoi told me that the ones with agate promote mental health; so I’d like to send some to my family! (Wouldn’t we all?)

Barry’s Gourmet Brownies—I’ve loved these brownies since I discovered them at a previous GBK suite in the summer! I later brought a sampler box (featuring four delicious flavors,) to a showbiz barbecue, and let me tell you, I become the most popular person there! But you really don’t ever have to share with others; each delicious brownie is wrapped in plastic, so you can open the whole box and take out one or two whenever you like, without the rest going bad!

Photo by Alice Farinas.

Photo by Alice Farinas.

Pilot Pen—This favorite-of-mine pen company had a beautiful spacious display, where we could make wishes on paper cranes. I guess I got my wish because I received a gift bag with colored pens, which you know I love! But not just any colored pens; it was the FriXion Clicker Erasable Gel Pen 7-Pack, which I’ve used before, and love. (Though why I would ever want to erase such pretty colors is beyond me.) In the bags were also a classic Vanishing Point Ball Point Pen, and a leather-bound journal, so we have someplace to use our new writing utensils! What better bunch of gifts could a writer such as myself ask for?!

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Creeper Crawlers—This clothing for babies is genius! They’re delightful cotton togs that feature pretty patterns on the legs; the patterns are made of “easy-grip” material to make it safer for your baby to crawl with no slipping!!! It took an Irish lass to think of these. (But after all, she is a mother of two, not to mention a neurological development therapist!)

Bare Mixers–Of this company’s many different flavor drink mixers, Alice observed, “A low calorie mixer? Yes! Drinking with no guilt. Hooray!” As a non-drinker, I was glad to see that one of their suggested recipes (that are listed on the bottles’ labels) is to mix them with sparkling water. What a great idea for people such as myself, who enjoy the taste of the drink, but not the taste of alcohol!

How much was I dying for that mouth-watering blue and pink cutlery holder?!  Photo by Alice Farinas.

How much was I dying for that mouth-watering blue and pink cutlery holder?! Photo by Alice Farinas.

The Artisan Group—They were once again gifting their famous bags filled with all kinds of items from their team of independent artists. As always, they were kind enough to share one with moi. Since it was my birthday just four days later, I waited to open the dozen or so gifts on that day, to make them all feel like little birthday presents! And what fun it was! My bag contained some jewelry, home-made soap, and interesting stationery, with my favorites this time being a blue druzy quartz 14kt gold-filled necklace from Starletta Designs, an Ophelia Jaine bracelet with pink and white stones (that reminded me of my favorite piece of my mother’s jewelry when I was little,) and something that’s still boggling my mind—beautiful blue home-made nail polish from Ellison’s Organics! How does one make nail polish at home?! Good thing, with companies like the ones in The Artisan Group, I’ll never have to find-out for myself!

Some of the things you can buy at Beyond The Rack. Photo by Alice Farinas.

Some of the things you can buy at Beyond The Rack. Photo by Alice Farinas.

Beyond the Rack—This online shopping club was handing-out gift cards so that the guests could just go on their computers and choose their own gifts. Great idea, especially if someone can snag one of the interesting items they were featuring in the suite! I’d love me some of those Louboutins!

Samiah Fine Clothing—This clothing company, who was gifting roomy, hand-made, corduroy shoulder bags, had one of the best displays I’ve ever seen in a suite. I felt like I was in my grandmother’s parlour!

Some of the food. Photo by Karen Salkin.

Some of the food. Photo by Karen Salkin.

Nuvino Wines—This is really smart packaging for wine drinkers; they’re single servings in unbreakable pouches that are easy to open. Which means you can take them just about any place! I don’t imbibe myself, but I was totally attracted to the colorful pouches.

You know how much I love a lounge that feeds us (to keep up our strength to meet, greet, and collect,) and GBK always does that, bless their hearts! Once again, the lovely family from Corazon’s Custom Catering, did the honors. Sadly for me, they were serving a duo of delights that I don’t eat, but Alice was happy to eat for both of us! She said the duck potstickers topped with sweet pomegranate sauce were “very delish,” and the puffed pastry filled with taro and feta was “really flavorful and yummy.” I was happy with the chocolate bark they handed out as a little treat for later, which, trust me, I was grateful for!

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Photo by Karen Salkin.

As always, GBK chose several charities to benefit from the event. They were:

Say Yes To Hope—I’ve known this charity for a long time. When they first started, it was all about fighting liver tumors. But they’ve expanded to include all kinds of cancers. Let’s beat this deadly disease already!

World Vision, which has focused on helping children since 1950.

Lambda Legal, which is always working on the civil rights of the LBGT community.



  1. Thank you so much for featuring Starletta Designs, as well as other talented members of The Artisan Group!
    Happy to hear that you love the necklace.

    All the best,


  3. Pingback: GBK GOLDEN GLOBES 2015 LOUNGE - Brave Chick

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