It was very early on that I realized that the art of celebrations elicited an excitement in me like none other. I always loved special occasions and the joy parties would bring to those in attendance. This love for celebrations combined with the later discovery of having a keen eye for design and details, would lead me to where I am today - creating celebrations and making memories for others that last a lifetime. I'm so thankful to be able to do something that I enjoy so much, to help create special moments for others that turn into life long memories.
The events that we have the honor of producing embody a modern style with a heightened element of customization and design details, which are curated for each individual client's unique vision. In order to achieve this, we have developed a one-of-a-kind planning and design strategy that brings your vision to life, and to ensure that your celebration is a truly unforgettable experience.
Janel Mone’t is the creative force behind the magic that takes place at a Virginia Ray Designs and Events experience. For years family and friends have relied on Janel for special occasions to help bring their ideas to life. However, it was a gala that she helped plan and host for her sorority almost ten years ago that solidified event planning and design was for her.
At this gala she witnessed a room overflowing with several generations of powerful women, some born as early as the 1930’s and some as late as the 90’s, all sharing bonds, memories, and their own reflections of sisterhood with one another. This moment resonated with her. There was something special about being able to bring people together to celebrate, foster love, and create memories.
She has since transformed her passion and gift for bringing people together, and creating beautiful and seamlessly executed events into a service for others, with the birth of Virginia Ray Designs and Events. Through passion and purpose, Janel helps others create memorable experiences by designing elegant and modern events for clients throughout the city of Chicago and surrounding areas. Since its formation, Janel has had the pleasure of servicing well-known clients such as Emmy Award-Winning ABC7 Weekend Morning Anchor, Samantha Chatman and Emmy-Award Winning ABC7 Weekday Morning Anchor, Val Warner.
Janel believes that guiding clients through the journey of planning their most precious milestones takes love, patience, and experience, and she is dedicated to making sure this commitment is met at every step of the journey.
In addition to planning and designing events, Janel loves fashion, enjoys traveling, and collects shot glasses from around the world.
After years of planning and designing events for family and friends, I decided to take a leap of faith and launch my own business! It was by far the most intimidating thing that I've ever done. Literally a week later the global pandemic hit, and stopped all of the plans I had for the business in its tracks.
Despite the uncertainty the pandemic brought to the event industry, just seven months after launching, we were fortunate enough to service our first celebrity client! We absolutely had SO much fun celebrating Jobba Maxey's 50th Birthday celebration with ABC 7's Weekday Morning Anchor, Val Warner.
The first client that we booked after launch in 2020, was for a wedding to take place a year later, for the most amazing and gracious couple. I was so grateful to have had such a wonderful couple to work with for my first official wedding design under Virginia Ray Designs!
In December of 2022, we had the pleasure of planning and designing a celebration for the lovely Samantha Chatman, ABC7 Weekend Morning Anchor. This event was SO much fun and so well deserved as this celebration was in honor of her promotion within ABC 7, Chicago's #1 News Station.
More recently, we had the pleasure of planning and designing a Doljanchi Celebration for a handsome baby boy. A Doljanchi is a Korean tradition that celebrates the 1st birthday of a baby. The primary purpose of the ceremony is to bless the baby with a prosperous future.
As we continue to grow, streamline our offerings, and flex our creative muscles, we are so excited to continue to develop professionally, creatively, and curate wonderful memories for our clients. We are so excited and can't wait to share what 2023 has in store!
- MAYA H.
"Janel did an excellent job at planning my wedding! I hired her for partial planning service, and she went above and beyond my expectations. She was very responsive, attentive, and made sure my vision came to life. During the planning process, Janel kept us on track with timelines and helped keep stress to a minimum. Her team also handled the decor in-house and everything was absolutely beautiful! On wedding day, she made sure the day flowed smoothly and everything went off without a hitch. My husband and I received so many compliments about how beautiful our wedding was, and none of that would be possible without Janel working her magic behind the scenes. Thank you, Janel!"
"JANEL DID AN EXCELLENT JOB AT PLANNING MY WEDDING!"
- Alex W.
"Everything was absolutely beautiful! I was so blown away at how amazing everything looked. So many of our family and friends kept coming up to me and saying how amazing everything looked. We can't thank you enough! I'm so sorry I didn't get a chance to really thank you, or tell you how great of a job you guys did at the actual wedding, but it was perfect. Thank you so much for everything!"
"EVERYTHING WAS ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL!"
- MEOSHA M.
"An Exceptional Experience! Working Janel and the Virginia Ray Designs and Events team was an amazing experience. Janel, and her team were professional, friendly, organized and paid attention to all the details big and small. Janel, helped me coordinate my birthday party concept and take it to the next level. It was truly a wonderful experience. I can’t Thank her and her team enough!"
"An exceptional experience!"
- reginald C.
"My wife and I used Janel as our event planner for our brunch baby shower. Janel did an amazing job prior to, during, and after the baby shower. She exceeded all of our expectations. Janel will be our event planner going forward."
"She exceeded all of our expectations!"
- MIKKIA G.
"I had such an amazing experience with working with Virginia Ray Designs for a surprise birthday party for my mother! When I say EVERY detail was taken into consideration, from the table arrangements, room decor, and even the music selection! I couldn’t have asked for a better event coordinator. I loved that she went above and beyond by taking the time to really understand what this celebration meant for my mother and helped comes up with a theme and all the details to make this a night to remember. Thank you so much for making my mom’s special day absolutely perfect! Definitely would recommend."
"Every detail was taken into consideration!"