Indie Boho and Celebrities at the 2018 Oscars Gifting Suite
If you’re wondering what pet beds have to do with the Oscars, let me tell you! We were approached to participate in an exclusive event in honour of last weekend’s Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars. It was a special privilege and not one that we were going to pass up! And what a day it was. We only had 2 hours to set-up but it went without a hitch. Despite the torrential rain, the atmosphere and buzz in the room was unlike anything we’d experienced. So many conversations were had and hundreds of photos were taken but here is a small snapshot of our day.
A month ago we ran a giveaway to invite a local Los Angeles pup to this special event and our lucky winner was Sushi the cockapoo (@sushisaid). Sushi and mum Teresa spent the day with us at the event and they were sensational. Sushi with her gorgeous blue ears was amazingly well trained and laid calmly on our beds while the celebrities came up to pat and admire her. We didn’t quite realise how hectic the day would be so we’re fortunate that we immediately bonded with Teresa and that she fit right into our team.
Then came the celebrities. One after the other they all wanted to chat to us! Our pet beds were unique and vibrant, designs they hadn’t seen used for pets before. And almost every single actor, musician and social influencer that came to the event had either a cat or dog, or several of each. There were so many and they were all friendly and genuine.
Patrick’s highlight was meeting Shannon Elizabeth who starred as Nadia in all three American Pie movies, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, Thirteen Ghosts, Love Actually, Cursed and a recurring role in That '70s Show. She took a bed for her dog Peanut and has plans to move to Capetown, safe to say it will be the first Indie Boho pet bed in Africa! Shannon, an animal lover herself has been doing a lot of charity work, particularly around rhino conservation of late, having founded the charity Animal Avengers.
My highlight was meeting Luiz Guzman. I could recognise him from across the room and was ecstatic when he came over and chatted to us for quite a while. Luiz is a renowned Puerto Rican-born actor, writer and producer and has been in around 80 movies including Out of Sight, Traffic, Boogie Nights, Magnolia and Punch Drunk Love. He also stars in HBO series How to Make it in America and Netflix series Narcos.
Kellan Lutz and his gorgeous wife Brittany Gonzales were beaming about their aussie shepherd and were huge dog and animal lovers. Kellan best known for his role as Emmet in the Twilight series, has also starred in several movies such as Immortals, The Expendables 3 and The Legend of Hercules. They gave us some advice on areas to target for resellers in the local LA area. Tara and I were impressed at how down to earth they both were, we chatted to them for ages!
We were very excited to receive a visit from corgi JoJo @supercorgi_jojo and his friend Kilo @kilokilopower. JoJo is an instafamous surfing Corgi and both of these very fashionable LA dogs stole the limelight from Sushi while they were there! Over the next few days we received videos of both corgis snoozing on their new beds... we were given two paws up!
Another highlight was meeting 10 year old actress Mackenzie Hancsicsak who plays Kate in the US series This is Us, which is currently showing on Australian networks too. We feature on her Instagram page @mackenziehancsicsak 3rd March. And German born Stefan Kapicic @stefankapicic who starred as iconic X-men character Colossus in the movie Deadpool, has also been in 70+ films and series.
Very funny American Idol judge @miss_jalexander actually laid down on one of our beds and was smitten by Sushi. It was a real treat to meet actor and fitness model Nikki Leigh @nikkileighxo who later posted a video of her gorgeous pup Kodi on our bed (she has 5 million followers on Facebook!). And we also met body artist Jody Steel @artistjodysteel who has over 3 million followers on Facebook. All up, around 150 celebrities and influencers came to the event and I think we got to speak to every single one of them. There were also loads of media, I was interviewed twice for a TV network and Youtube channel (I think I need to work on my TV skills!).
Once we packed up, we all went out for delicious Mexican food. And over the weekend we got to fully appreciate the different areas in LA and even hiked to the lookout of the iconic Hollywood sign. And what impressed me the most about LA was how pet-obsessed the city is. Dogs wearing clothes and jewellery, dogs in restaurants, cafes, juice shops, clothes shops and bars (no, not tied up outside but actually inside the stores). And as California became the first state in the US to ban the selling of commercially bred dogs and cats in pet stores, there was a huge focus on rescue animals in the city, so we'd see a far higher proportion of mix-breeds rather than pure breeds, which I loved!
Thanks for having us LA and the Oscars 2018 Gifting Suite, we had the best time and we will be back, now that we’ve received such a phenomenal reception. We are aiming to distribute our product throughout the US in a few months time, so watch this space.
By Sora Caldwell