Photography: (chocolates, tray, brown tote) courtesy of vendors; (all others) Anna Knott
Tom Kehoe makes a living thinking big. For clients that include museums and betrothed couples and for events as big as Lollapalooza, he—with help from a staff of 226 at his event-planning firm, Kehoe Designs—regularly produces epic flower arrangements and settings that range from enchanted forests to ballparks.
And he doesn’t exactly leave his work at the office.
Recently, Kehoe, 45, who is single, threw a Great Gatsby–themed soiree at his Lincoln Park brownstone that could have rivaled Jay’s. The uber-host insists, however, that “a party is a gift for the guests, not a time to show off.”
To spoil friends at his own dinner table, Kehoe has hired a fashion illustrator to draw them on place cards. To mere mortals, he suggests naming drinks after attendees. “Everybody likes to see their name as a cocktail,” he says.
Kehoe’s home is an elaborately styled affair unto itself, filled with pieces both elegant and slightly eccentric (read: lots of taxidermy). Look below to see his favorites.
10 Things He Loves
ASIAN RIVER BOULDERS (Starting at $380, Pagoda Red, 1714 N. Damen Ave.)
“You can look at them forever and not get bored.”
1970S VINTAGE LIGHTERS ($475 for similar set, Revival, 2016 W. Armitage Ave.)
“I don’t even smoke—I just like the shapes and colors.”
PRADA JEANS ($350, Prada, 30 E. Oak St.)
“Jeans are my staple, and these fit me best.”
1930S FRENCH BAR CART ($5,300 for similar piece, The Golden Triangle, 330 N. Clark St.)
“The lines are so cool, masculine, and stately.”
JURLIQUE EYE CREAM ($40, Whole Foods, 1550 N. Kingsbury St.)
“I don’t use a lot of products, but this one really works after a long night.”
FANNIE MAY PIXIES ($10 for a box of 10, Fannie May, 343 N. Michigan Ave.)
“My mom used to serve them on simple white plates when I was a kid, and I do the same.”
OSTRICH-EMBOSSED LEATHER BELT
“It has no logos. A friend gave it to me. And the shade of yellow is perfect.”
MADELINE WEINRIB TRAY ($795 for similar style, Barneys New York, barneys.com)
“I like an accent piece that adds pattern without being overbearing.”
GAIA & GINO CANDLESTICK ($135 for similar style, I.D., 3337 N. Halsted St.)
“It is so simple and elegant—a way to make a statement without trying too hard.”
TOM FORD TOTE ($2,910, neimanmarcus.com)
“Even when I’m wearing a suit, this relaxed suede bag fits right in.”