Bonnie Walker was born to be an event designer and planner. Born in Washington, D.C. and raised in Bethesda, her father, Stanley, had a store called Harry’s, which provided wine and liquor to players and politicians all over D.C. In fact, it was Harry’s private-label champagne that was used to toast the landing on the moon. Bonnie’s mother, Clara, threw wonderful parties filled with exceptional style visions of Eames Chairs and a Paul Evans dining room table. In those days there were maybe 10 event planners working in the whole country, and Clara Walker worked with the best. “She would drag me as a child to every meeting,” Bonnie recalls.
In addition to growing up exposed to the business, Bonnie has a background in art that allows her to speak the language of the florists or decorators she hires — not to mention the ability to design something a client wants if it simply doesn’t exist outside of their imagination. For 25 years, Bonnie has been a top event designer and planner. Here’s why:
For Bonnie Walker, an event is much more than just a party. It’s a wonderful story to be shared and remembered — a tale with a beginning, a middle and end, the experience of a lifetime, A dream fulfilled, A wish come true. As Bonnie sees it, “if an event is a puzzle, it’s my job to put every piece together to create the perfectly finished picture. I never forget what so many event planners sometimes do: I am representing you. I have to make sure that every part of that event is going to make you shine, or is going to represent your family.” When the night is over? “The guests are going to walk away not saying it was a ‘Bonnie’ event, but that it was so personalized to you!”
What keeps it fun for Bonnie is that she states “I’ve never done an event the same way twice. I’ve never done a design twice. And that’s pretty difficult!” She takes ultimate pride in exceeding her clients’ expectations. “I’m rewarded by how happy everybody is,” she says. “When they’re at an event, walking around with the biggest smiles, oozing with enthusiasm and commenting to the client that they never want to leave? It’s the greatest feeling in the world.”