In generations past, there was a common practice of frequently hosting and attending dinner parties where friends, families, co-workers, and communities would all come together. It would be an evening where both strangers and close friends alike would congregate and share a meal, bonding over conversation and mutual appreciation of delicious food. Today, this once act of gracious hosting has become a rarity, generally reserved for special occasions such as holidays or weddings. Now, such dinners more common between close friends and family, never with strangers. The idea of people coming together over a meal, sharing and expressing their individual ideas and opinions, whether they have been friends for years or acquaintances for five minutes, became the driving inspiration behind the latest facet of the #DarlingMovement: Darling Dinners.

Our very first Darling Dinner centered on the Darling mission from the décor, with our mission statement used as props for the photo booth, to conversation, where we discussed topics that forced us to think and ponder throughout the evening. A true hostess embodied, Theresa Pollard, hosted the night in her gorgeous loft nestled in the heart of the Arts District in downtown Los Angeles. Theresa delighted our taste buds from the moment we entered — greeting with a tangy citrus cocktail (recipe included below) and a delectable appetizer of gourmet grilled cheese — all the way to end of the evening, finishing off her culinary genius with a lemon pound cake topped with fresh seasonal citrus and a dollop of freshly whipped cream.

Cocktail in hand, guests mixed and mingled amongst each other and posed for a quick polaroid in the photo booth with their favorite part of the mission statement, while a special playlist curated for the night played in the background. With the announcement of dinner, all the ladies gathered around the table where handmade name cards personalized by HoneyHoney Calligraphy welcomed them to their seat. The cozy, family style serving added to the communal atmosphere and conversation flowed as Darling Editor-in Chief Sarah Dubbeldam, Market Editor Mercedes Curran and Online Managing Editor Ziza Bauer led with questions derived from our very own mission statement on the definition of femininity and in what areas we might be settling for “good enough” in our own lives. This spark of starting a conversation deeper then the normal small talk reveled the uniqueness and intellect of every woman present. From college student to successful business woman, each woman offered insight so uniquely their own that, while there was a general consensus on some points, there was individuality in how each woman interpreted the topics. We were all lead to think from a different perspective and learn from the ideas and experiences shared. 

The very first Darling Dinner was such a success and resulted in so much more then simply sharing a meal. We are thrilled to have met such a unique variety of amazing women and we look forward to the next. May the second Darling Dinner only lead us upward and onward in our movement to inspire women, shape culture, and promote the art of being a woman.

Bitterstreet Cocktail | Courtesy of Theresa Pollard
2 oz blanco tequila (preferably Espolón Blanco)
1 oz freshly squeezed ruby grapefruit juice
1/2 oz Campari

Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously with ice for 15 seconds. Strain into a coupe. Garnish with grapefruit peel.


Stay tuned for how you can be involved with our next Darling Dinner.
Images via Sarah Shreeves


  1. Wow this is such a great idea. Being only 17 I have never experienced a time when dinner get togethers were the norm, but I would love to bring it back! Sounds like such a great get together and I cant wait to hear about the next one! Perhaps you could give some of the topics of which you lovely ladies discussed so I can get pased the trivial small talk with my friends as well! Thanks for all you do Darling Magazine!

    1. Elizabeth,
      We discussed “what does femininity means to you? and do you think it need to be reshaped in our society?” and the other topic was “In what areas in life are you settling for ‘good enough’? Do you believe in the exceptional and if so do you feel that you are deserving of it?”

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