I graduated from Longwood University in 2016 with a Bachelor's Degree in Communication Studies and Public Relations. During college, I interned with a wedding venue, a concert venue, a wedding and event rental company, a radio station, and temporarily worked for Borrowed and Blue. Leading up to graduation, I constantly applied to Wedding and Event Planning jobs. Did I ever get an interview? Nope. So, then I started applying to Public Relations and Social Media Management positions. Did I get an interview? Yes. Did I get the job? Nope. I was desperate for a job. I love to work.. I know, weird. But I also wanted a job to be able to support myself, my husband, and our two fur babies (Banjo and Jasper). What in the world am I going to do? I had applied to over 150 jobs.
So, I literally started reaching out to new wedding venues local to my area. I started managing and marketing on the social media accounts for four wedding venues and also became the exclusive Wedding Coordinator at two venues. Sadly, these positions did not last long--not because I wasn't great at my job, but a couple venues closed, one decided for financial reasons that they would take over everything, and the other brought on a family member to handle the social media. I lost all my "clients" (p.s. I hate that word).
However, during that time, I gained more experience with wedding and event planning and social media marketing and management. So, I decided to make things more official for myself and for the business I always dreamed of having. I went on Fiverr.com and had an artist design me a logo. I ordered business cards. I developed a Facebook page. I created an Instagram account. I bought and designed my own website. I took a huge risk. I started my own dream.
Over the course of a year with TSM&E, I have over 30 weddings on my calendar. Yay! I love all my past couples and I can't wait to meet my future couples! I have been published numerous (as of right now) 12 times on Borrowed & Blue! I also have a styled shoot that is being printed in an issue of The Wedding Planner of Charlottesville and Central Virginia. I never expected my dream to take off as it did, but I am thrilled to be able to do what I love. I owe it to my team! Without my team of Lead Coordinators/Assistants, Shadowers, and now Interns, I wouldn't be as successful as I am. They are rockstars and deserve praise, too!
Q: What advice do you have for people who aspire to have their own wedding planning business?
A: From experience and knowledge, I would say... network! Do venue tours. Get to know people. Work hard and dream big. I still have dreams for my business and I hope one day to achieve them.
Q: What is the most difficult thing you encounter when planning a wedding?
A: In all honesty, I don't find it difficult...but there are challenges, but I think challenges are fun (which doesn't make them difficult to me). I think one thing that is tough for me is that people see how young I am and are taken back. I feel like sometimes they think, "She's so young, does she really know what she's doing?" Not in a mean way, of course, but more in a concerned manner. I'm 22 years old and will be 23 in November.
Q: What is your favorite thing about a wedding?
A: I absolutely love setting up tablescapes. I like to see everything come together. I also love seeing the Father see his Daughter for the first time and the Bride walk down the aisle because I like seeing everyone's faces, including the Groom's face.