This one's for the boys! We are so excited to introduce you to our inaugural Hype Guys, Anthony Rosen (our CFO!) and his husband, event planner Robert Fowler. Recently married and moved from bustling NYC to Connecticut, we had LOTS to catch up on. ;)
Anthony, you’ve had quite a career serving as CFO for some of our favorite start-ups (including Weezie!). What tips do you have for those with an entrepreneurial itch? What is one piece of advice you wish all your clients would follow?
Always keep a close eye on your cash and have a cash forecast! It’s easy to spend cash on things like people, inventory, and many other things and you always want to know how much cash you have and if/when you will run out so you know when you will need to fundraise again. Fundraising can take a lot longer than expected so you need to be prepared!
Your interesting career path is coupled with an equally interesting trail of places you’ve called home! How has living in London, Sydney, then NYC influenced your taste? Will we find remnants of these places in your new home in Connecticut?
I would say all of those places that I have lived are major cities so my style is pretty modern, however during my time in Sydney I lived right on the beach so started to really get in to the relaxed beach style. I always love collecting art from all the cities that I’ve lived in so you will definitely see that, as well as small momentos (aka “tchotchke”) which I love to do display on my “tchotchke shelf” at home in CT.
Robert, you started CatalystCreativ in 2013 and have since planned events for the likes of Coca-Cola, Google, and more. What does the event world look like in our current times? How are you and your team adjusting to our socially-distanced world?
Whew- what a year for our company - 65% of our revenue was from live, in person events. The week in March that so many things were cancelled, we started making changes. We started Coffee Chats, a place where our community could come together each week to learn, discuss and grow. We are focusing more on digital and online engagement, continuing to help brands build community and are gearing up to hit the ground running with small, curated events and experiences when it is safe to do so.
As someone who works in events, it’s no surprise your and Anthony’s wedding was a stunner. Any pro-tips you’d like to share post-planning your own wedding?
There are so many cliches when it comes to planning your wedding, and most of them are true. The one that made me the most anxious, and was the most accurate, was “it goes by so quickly, enjoy every minute!” My top three tips are:
- Splurge on the best vendors your budget will allow. The more professional and the more experienced they are, the less hand holding they will need. Let the experts do their thing.
- Put your guests first. So many people will tell you that the day is all about you, and it is, but in your planning if you put your guests first, then they are taken care of and you really can make the day all about you. We anticipated all of our guests needs and desires ahead of time and did our best to accommodate them. Once our weekend arrived, everything was taken care of and we were present and able to enjoy all of our hard work and spend time with those who had traveled to be with us.
- Do not go on your honeymoon right away. We took a few days at Blackberry Farm right after our wedding to just relax and recharge and took our honeymoon a few weeks later. It gave us something to look forward to and we were able to rest up between the wedding and our trip!
You two recently made the move from NYC to Connecticut, congrats! Weezie loves a renovation, and we have loved watching yours unfold. What’s been the biggest surprise while renovating your Connecticut home?
It’s something no one likes to talk about, but our biggest surprise has been the budget. Anthony, as a CFO, does not like surprises when it comes to budgets but houses are expensive and come with lots of unexpected surprises! New generator? Water softener, new boiler, a generator? There just went our next vacation!
Paint a picture for us. Where have you gotten your inspo for your renovation?
We love to travel, and try to pick up a little something every time we visit a new country, a new hotel, or a friend’s home. We chose marble from Italy, antiques from our summer trip to Maine, linens from Portugal and our floor color from the old French oak styles of France. Our home is a collection of pieces, old and new, and a mixture of styles. Our apartment in NYC was very modern and all glass. We wanted the opposite of that in the country.
We’ve got plenty of wonderful recs from our Hype Girls over the years, but could use some brushing up on go-to's for the guys. Tell us, where are you two finding your favorite things?
As we mentioned before, we love to entertain. I get lots of inspiration from my dear friend Gigi Grimstad who is the best host and cook (@gigigrimstad), for our wedding we registered with event planner @jungleeny store @slowdance in NYC. They have the most unique finds as well as the staples like Match, Hermes and Christofle. I love placecards, and @mrpsplacecards takes your table to the next level. Their IG offers so much inspiration, beyond just the place cards. Lastly, our go to for all things is @mrporter. We were huge Barney’s fans, and mourn their loss, but Mr. Porter is a great replacement.
How did you #enjoythestay as you’re settling into the burbs?
We never pass up an opportunity to celebrate with a cocktail, a bottle of wine or a time to use the “fancy stuff.” Our friends were incredibly generous and gave us the most beautiful wedding gifts and we use them every day. Our Baccarat cocktail glasses and our Kim Seybert napkins get used almost every night with dinner. They do not do anyone any good sitting in the cabinet!
Thank you so much Anthony and Robert. You can shop their soft and fluffy robes here.