What little girl doesn’t want to channel her inner supermodel? It’s a niche in the market that was spotted by Louise Shrigley and Kim Jefferson, the multi-talented duo behind Luminous Photography who have created a complete ‘Supermodel Party’ package for the city’s future queens (and kings, too!) of fashion. ‘We’ve always been in this industry, and it’s our combined experience that makes it work,’ explains Kim, a make-up artist, photographer and former model, who also coaches deportment. ‘It’s not a beauty pageant style of party,’ adds Louise, a professional photographer, who is also an experienced primary school teacher and award-winning children’s book designer. ‘Our parties are all about the kids having fun, building their confidence and having an all round great experience.’
Aimed at girls and boys from aged five and up, Louise and Kim organise every aspect of the party, with the exception of the catering (‘The parents bring the food and the birthday cake, but we’ll clean up the mess!’ jokes Kim). The parties take place at a specially adapted venue in Jumeirah, complete with catwalk, backstage dressing up area, tables and chairs and a full-on disco.
When you book a party, the process begins with a consultation with the party girl or boy and their parents to decide on a theme and package for the big day. ‘There’s normally two outfit changes based around themes, whether it’s party wear, jeans and t-shirts, fancy dress or sundresses, for example,’ explains Kim. ‘The themes will be on the invitations, and the kids bring their own clothes from home to fit in with them. That way the kids and their parents are completely comfortable with what they’ll be wearing.’
‘Kim’s got a huge cupboard full of accessories, so we’ll style them up and add bits and pieces to their chosen outfits to make them feel really special,’ says Louise. ‘Tiaras, feather boas, sunglasses, bags, sarongs – it all comes together for a finished look.’
Pre-party, Kim and Louise create unique party invitations for all of the guests (both of the packages cater for 10 guests with the option of four additional kids), and parents can choose from two party packages: the Runway Party at Dhs2,800, or the Top Model Party, which costs Dhs3,800. Both include everything to make the day go with a bang – from the latest tunes for kids to strut their stuff down the catwalk, to customised invitations, styling and model training and a catwalk show for everyone to enjoy, while the Top Model Party also includes the option of a DVD of the experience. ‘For both packages, we have these very cute sparkly clutch bags for party favours. For Runway parties, the mums can fill it themselves, but for the Top Model Parties we’ll also fill them with girly treats such as lipgloss, shades, and nail polishes to take away,’ says Louise.
On the day itself, it’s all about the VIP treatment – kids arrive to walk the red carpet and are handed a flute of bubbly apple juice, then they’re prepped by Kim on how to pose in front of the camera and walk the catwalk.
‘It’s lovely to see the shy children really come out of themselves, and how they grow in confidence,’ she says. The preparation for the catwalk show finale takes around two hours, with practice and plenty of fun pampering and preening in the backstage area by the Supermodel Parties team. After mums, dads and friends watch the catwalk show, it’s time for the disco lights to come on and the music to begin.
Along the way, the day is recorded for posterity by professional snapper Louise: all of the kids get to take home a photo of themselves looking picture perfect on the catwalk, while the birthday girl or boy also receive their very own ‘Catwalk’ magazine cover as a memory of the occasion (Top Model party girls and boys get a framed version as part of the package). Louise also takes plenty of backstage and party pictures, too, which are uploaded onto a password-protected area on the Model Parties website, and can then be ordered by those who want to purchase any extra images.
The Supermodel Parties can also be combined with one of Kim and Louise’s ‘Model for a Day’ shoots, where the birthday boy or girl will have a full professional shoot and star treatment, including 10 of the best pictures to take home at the end of the session.
‘It is a little girl’s dream,’ says Kim. ‘It will be such a wonderful memory to look back on, and they’ll have their own magazine cover shoot to remember it by too.’ Sounds good to us: strike a pose!
Visit www.luminousphotography.me and click on the model for a day tab, or call Louise (050 143 9610) or Kim (050 889 2781) for more information and bookings.