When you first walk into the LA-home of Aisling Mittman, you are greeted with a big warm welcome from the host and her mini golden doodle, Goldie. Aisling is one of those mamas you immediately feel connected to and you get the feeling that you’ve known each other forever. We immediately hit it off talking about her gorgeous home which she has lovingly created with her hubby and son and how she has parlayed her passion for interior design into a rewarding career. Now, as the Vice President of brand and design for Hutch, a shoppable interior design app, Aisling is curious about how people shop, what they look for when decorating their home and what connects people to one another. It’s no surprise that this curiosity is what fuels her knack for hosting in her sunny backyard and we got to see the hostess in action as she set up for a late afternoon gathering with some girlfriends.
We were thrilled to introduce Aisling to Birdies, the most adorable slippers designed for the love of hosting at home. They are perfect for entertaining and even popping out to the garden to pick fresh citrus from the trees. Read on for all of Aisling’s hosting hacks, we can’t wait to return for another gathering.
Aisling, we love that you are the VP, Brand and Design for Hutch, a virtual decorating site. What aspect of start-up life do you find most rewarding?
Seeing results. I am a super passionate person and pour so much of myself into my work. I feel great when an idea I had comes to life, and then to see the benefits of that idea is the cherry on top.
Did you have a mentor or someone who helped you during the early days of your career?
Yes! I started my career off at One Kings Lane when the company was in its early stages. I had three amazing mentors, Susan Feldman and Alison Pincus, who were the co-founders and both ambitious, strong women. My direct boss was Andrea Stanford, who had three young kids at the time and was always present when at work. All of these women thrived in their career, marriages, social lives and of course, parenthood. I saw from my first real job that you can have it all, as I had 3 stellar examples.
Community is so important both personally and professionally for you. Tell us more about your tribe and how your mamas have rallied around you.
I have a lot of friends who are moms and have the coolest careers. I am inspired and constantly learning new things from these women. We will share ideas from basic marketing or tech talk to discussing politics. I find myself drawn to people that motivate me.
You also have a passion to bring women together and you love entertaining in your home. What lessons have you learned through hosting others?
I have learned a lot over the years from trial and error. It is important to think about dietary restrictions since a good percentage of LA is gluten-free. It is also important to have plenty of beverage options as you want your guest to feel at home. Lastly, taking the time prior to entertaining to reflect on what the occasion is, and having a cocktail to help relax and enjoy the evening.
What are your 3 “must-haves” for a successful get together at home?
- Fresh flowers
- An un-cluttered space
- Good music
Potluck or do you prepare it all?
Depends on the occasion and how many people. If it is a summer BBQ with more than 8, I would ask to have people bring a dish or drink. If less than 8, I will do it all, from appetizers to dessert. If it’s a big get-together for a special occasion, I will hire a bartender and potentially a chef and server.
What is your favorite hosting hack (a quick tip or trick)?
Clean up as you go! There is nothing worse than facing a dirty kitchen after a long, fun night. I usually pick up as the evening goes on, and load the dishwasher when the night is wrapping up.
Does your son like to get involved in the hosting action?
Yes, he loves to help! He feels like a pro because I let him use one of our professional grade knives to slice vegetables.
There are so many different options for networking these days. What kind of groups are you a part of? (book club, dinner club, girls club etc.) How has this group enriched your life?
I recently joined Doyenne and attended their conference, which was amazing! I look forward to more women’s clubs opening in Los Angeles. It is truly a shift in time where women are really working together and supporting each other. I can’t get enough of it!
We love to say lean on is the new lean in! Who is your rock?? Can you share a moment that a mama has really given you a leg up?
I am an only child and oddly attract other only-children friends. One of those friends lives in New York, but we have regular calls to talk about our kids or bounce off business strategy ideas. She is someone who I have leaned on when making big career decisions and vise versa- which lead both of us to our current fulfilling jobs.
How do you get the most out of your network? Are you a connector or love to be connected?
I love to connect people! If I meet two people who are meant to be friends or work together, I will make that connection. It truly brings me happiness to help people.
Which Birdies slipper is your fave and why do you love them?
The Songbird! They are so chic and make me think of Palm Springs. Plus they are beyond comfortable and look so rich.