Networking with Heart

Networking with Heart

The world is going through some big changes right now, and our lives have been put on hold for the most part. It’s the perfect time to do you – read that book that has been sitting on the shelf, unopened, for years, manifest your dreams + goals, call an old friend, and learn something new that can help you and your business thrive.

Here at Wedding Collective, we are all about learning from our wedding community, and we hope to do the same for all of you! In fact, our own founder/CEO, Shauna Pointer, recently shared some of her wisdom, alongside Amy Weir with Delineate Your Dwelling, at the community at the amazing “Love Your Community” event at the Hyatt Regency ABQ on February 7th, 2020. The event was created on behalf of a road trip with Natalie Franke with Rising Tide Society and hosted by our local lovelies: Kayla Kitts Photography and Julie Haider Photography. In case you missed it, we’re here to share her wise words about networking + fostering genuine connections.

Let’s start by imagining…

“Imagine the first time you were putting yourself and business out there at an event that involved people (real people in the flesh).
Were you nervous, anxious, excited? Did you try on like 5 different outfits, rehearse your so-called 30 second elevator pitch that so many hardcore networkers encourage? Did you feel you like didn’t belong? Weren’t good enough? Intimated by the thought of not knowing anyone in the room? Remember how you wanted to make a good impression and connection? We are in a small business community of working with real people. And networking with heart is about the people behind their passion and their purpose.”

Shauna Pointer, Founder/CEO of Wedding Collective NM

Many of you will have experienced these emotions and thoughts, and you’re not alone! It’s important to remember that we are all human, and our mental processes are very similar. Shauna explains that even if you are a veteran business owner, it’s never too early or too soon to put yourself out there in a networking setting.

She also emphasizes the importance of creating a “tribe” comprised of your fellow community members. These are the people who are always showing up for you, supporting you, and rooting for your success + happiness. This is key, because without each other, we have nothing. By encouraging support for each other, all things are possible for even the smallest of businesses – and hey, that might be you!

“I want to encourage you to seek out others that need shepherding, encouragement, and pull them into your tribe and genuinely connect them with other like-minded creatives. Networking is about real connections and getting to know the people behind the passion.”

Shauna Pointer, Founder/CEO of Wedding Collective NM

We love our vendors + our couples, which is why we are focused on cultivating relationships with creative crews and bride tribes. However, it is important to keep in mind that a genuine and lasting relationship with anyone doesn’t happen overnight – it takes time and authenticity. Here are Shauna’s “tactical tips” to keep in mind:

  1. Don’t shove a business card at someone that you’ve just met for the first time. Take genuine interest in their passion and services over yours.
  2. Be a Go Giver – And GIVE because you love to, not because it’s a strategy. But because it’s a way of life. Givers naturally
    attract others. Give guidance, give advice, give time and energy, and when an opportunity pops up – give good referrals.
  3. Focus on one person at a time – don’t try to “work the crowd”.
  4. Don’t just ask for business referrals, make friendships that turn into referrals.
  5. Seek out others that possibly came by themselves and pull them into your group. Shepherd them into your flock.
  6. Abundantly place other people’s interests over your own.
  7. The most valuable gift you have to offer is yourself. Be yourself, not what others expect you to be. Don’t be like me at my first event – trying to act older, dress older, say what others wanted to hear.
  8. Be someone else’s raving fan. Be their cheerleader – online as well as in person.
  9. Allow someone else to make a great connection with you. Think of referrals and others you can introduce them to + and they will be endeared to you when they have an opportunity to reciprocate.

We’re thankful that you are a member of our tribe. During these chaotic times, we all need a little help from our community, so reach out, support, and show up for the people around you. Nothing gets us through hard times more effectively than working together… from a distance, that is! #SocialDistancing

What is ‘Wedding Collective Cash’?

What is ‘Wedding Collective Cash’?

We are just days away from the one, the only, Diamond Dash Wedding Show! Before we head to the Hyatt Regency ABQ, though, we’re giving you the inside scoop on Wedding Collective Cash. We have to inform you before we go any further, we’re not handing out the real Benjamin’s. After all, we can’t all be as cool as The Oprah Winfrey Show. Instead, we’ve created these adorable little wedding service coupons, valued up to $500, that can be used toward participating vendors that you meet at the show.

How do you get your hands on these little gems, you ask? The early bird gets the worm! You must be one of the first 200 brides/grooms to sign in at registration to receive your five $100 dollar coupons, along with some other awesome goodies.

The first guests heading into the ballroom at the 2019 Diamond Dash Wedding Show | Photographic Perspectives

Each vendor gets to choose how much Wedding Collective Cash they accept. For example, a floral vendor might accept $100 toward a service, while a DJ might accept all $500 toward a service. It is important to check in with them and see what they’re willing to offer you because you might just get a sweet deal on your dream vendor! While perusing all of your options, and trust us, there are a lot, you’ll notice that participating vendors will have sign on their booth indicating that they accept Wedding Collective Cash. As we’ve said time and time again: if you see the sign, don’t be shy! 

Here’s a little tip: start thinking about the vendors you know you absolutely want to meet with before you head into the ballroom filled to the brim with experts and excitement. It can become overwhelming having so much wedding inspiration all around you, so make sure you prioritize your to-do list before you get sucked into the other fun stuff. This gives you the chance to make it to your vendors early, and they’ll be sure to let you know if they accept your Wedding Collective Cash so you can secure your spot with them.

Wedding Collective Cash expires the day of the show when all of the vendors leave, but sometimes our dedicated and oh, so loving vendors will let you use them up until a later date. It’s really up to their discretion, and we’d like to keep it that way. They’re there to help YOU create your most memorable wedding, and sometimes you need a little bit of extra time to decide. Wedding vendors totally understand and will have your back. Just make sure to ask them when they expire–communication is key! There’s a little marriage advice to you, too, free of Wedding Collective Cash charge. Hehe.

We can’t wait to see all of you this Sunday, the 23rd, at the Hyatt Regency ABQ!

12pm – 1pm – First Look Wedding Lounge | GET TICKETS HERE

1pm – 4pm – Diamond Dash Wedding Show | GET TICKETS HERE

Our Favorite 2020 Wedding Trends

Our Favorite 2020 Wedding Trends

Here at Perfect Wedding Guide, the end of the year means planning, preparing, and jumping for joy because we get to learn about all of the upcoming trends for next year! We would by lying if we told you that we aren’t a little sad to see 2019 go, though. This year was definitely one for the books, filled with the most beautiful weddings and exciting wedding shows & events. We loved hearing all of your perfect wedding stories and having the honor of sharing them with other brides and grooms that are looking for some inspiration.

As our pinky promise to you, we will continue to provide you with the most current and trendy tips and inspiration each and every year because we think you’re the best. We are so eager to share what is in store for next year that we are going to give you some insider knowledge right now that the Perfect Wedding Guide team picked up at this year’s Wedding MBA Conference in Las Vegas. Yesterday we hosted our annual Wedding MBA Recap Breakfast at The Event Center at Sandia Golf Club and got to hear some notable takeaways from our fellow local wedding professionals that also attended the conference.

We thought that we would have a little fun with this one and look back at some of the decade’s biggest wedding trends while introducing the future forecast for wedding trends in 2020.

First, the oldies, but goodies.

2019 | Private ceremony + elopement locations

Coryn Kiefer Photography

2019 | Animals in weddings

Coryn Kiefer Photography

2019 | White weddings

Briana Nicole Photography

2019 | Pastels, pinks, and blushes

Briana Nicole Photography

2019 | Pear-shaped rings

Maura Jane Photography

2019 | Romantic lighting rentals

Briana Nicole Photography

2019 | Unique venues

Lauren Cherie Photography

2019 | Specialty cakes

Maura Jane Photography

And now for the upcoming trends for 2020!

2020 | The “Roaring 20s” (of course)

Via todaysbride.com

2020 | Bright & bold pops of color

Al Gawlik Photography

2020 | Ceiling installations

Anna Jones Photography

2020 | Textures

Via HiMissPuff.com

2020 | Greens + grasses

Via Happywedd.com

2020 | Mirrored floors

Darin Images

2020 | Cake backdrops

Buffy Dekmar

2020 | Texture, minimalism, capes, and beyond

2020 | Donuts, mini cakes, & tall cakes

2020 | Sustainability

Via thegoodbeginning.com

So there you have it, a decade of trends and some new ones to welcome to the table. We’re ready for you, 2020!

Create & Cultivate: 2019 Speed Connecting Event at Four Seasons in Santa Fe

Create & Cultivate: 2019 Speed Connecting Event at Four Seasons in Santa Fe

We, your Perfect Wedding Guide team, want to give our vendors every opportunity possible to make connections with local couples. It’s our mission! However, we realize that the first step to any successful wedding business starts with a strong presence in the wedding community, which is why we host our speed connecting events. Speed connecting events allow local wedding businesses to have face-to-face conversations with other local wedding businesses– because the best connections are made when you’re willing to open up and share your story. Especially when scenic views, delicious eats, and good tunes are involved!

The event itself is different from other networking events because you won’t be waiting around for someone to come talk to you. Instead, we have carefully designed speed sessions where you are allotted a certain amount of time to introduce yourself and your business, share a brief history, and exchange business cards and contacts. The atmosphere is meant to be laid back and, we promise you, there’s no pressure involved. It’s simply your opportunity to spend some time with wedding professionals and watch the magic unfold in front of your eyes.

We hosted our annual Create & Cultivate: Speed Connecting Event at Los Poblanos over the summer, but we wanted to give our Santa Fe vendors an opportunity to meet each other as well, so we planned an October event at Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado. The more events the merrier! The New Mexico wedding community joined us at the venue and everyone got to chat over drinks and great food, such as Aji Chile Shrimp Ceviche and a piece of Candied Bacon from the Candied Bacon Wall– doesn’t that sound amazing?! The atmosphere was incredible and laughter filled the air as the soft evening light draped everything in gold. This event is not only about networking, but also about making lasting memories and friendships. We can’t emphasize this enough.

All of this would not be possible if it weren’t for our amazing venue and our sponsors! We would like to express our gratitude to Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado for being our generous venue host, because everything was so welcoming and just drop dead gorgeous. The centerpieces by Bosque Flower Studio were radiant and the music from Absolute Entertainment had everyone in the dancing mood. Thank you to Funky Olive, PSAV, and Colorado Party Rentals for your help bringing it all together.

Finally, we would like to give a huge shoutout to our lovely photographer for the event, Kayla Kitts Photography. We couldn’t have captured the beauty, the blossoming friendships, and all around good vibes radiating from the event without her incredible eye. For those of you who missed out this go round, Kayla’s photos will give you a sneak peak into what you missed! And no need to fret, we host the event every year in Albuquerque, so we will see ya next time.

2019 Vendor Appreciation Night Recap

2019 Vendor Appreciation Night Recap

If you didn’t know already, we, your Perfect Wedding Guide team, love to have fun. Both the team and our local wedding vendors work hard everyday to make sure that we are building the strongest and most stress-free bridges between couples and their perfect wedding. Even though we are extremely dedicated to our jobs and to our local wedding community, we definitely aren’t all work and no play. What is life without a little music, dancing, food, drinks, and great company? Psssst. The answer is boring!

Since we love our jobs, our wedding community, and a good party, we decided to create one very special night each year that celebrates our vendors and their hard work: the Vendor Appreciation Night! This exciting evening encourages wedding professionals from all around New Mexico to relax and engage in conversation with other like-minded individuals, all while enjoying some yummy food and drinks.

Did we mention that there is also a different theme every year? That’s right– we get to play dress up as adults, too! For this year’s Vendor Appreciation Night, the theme was “Siren’s Soiree & the Sailors Too”, fittingly hosted by the Albuquerque BioPark Aquarium and their Shark Reef Cafe. We cannot put into words how thrilled we were to see all of the sequins, sparkles, and sailor hats as they began to fill the halls and the dining room. Everyone really nailed it this year, it’s going to be hard to beat it next year! 

As our guests arrived at the entrance to the aquarium, they checked in and received a gift and then were free to experience the wonders of the underwater world. There were exciting options at every turn, from blue margaritas to seared ahi tuna on a bed of seaweed salad (it was amazing). Rockin’ Piano Party took requests for music and we jammed out all night long. The music didn’t stop until everyone was gone and we even started our own Perfect Wedding Guide Team karaoke session during clean-up!

It would behoove us to mention the incredible table decor from The Flower Co., the stunning cakes from Honey & Salt Cake Co., and the delicious seafood themed hors d’oeuvres from Taste Catering. We were so grateful to have Brad from King Mobile Music there to liven up the party and announce our Elite Award Winners, which you can read about here. T. Rayne Photography did us the honor of capturing the evening and we are absolutely in AWE of how the photos came out. Without these amazing vendors, the night would not have been as beautiful and well put together!

If you attended the evening or not, you’re in for a treat when you see the T. Rayne Photography‘s photo gallery from the evening. Check it out below and make sure to join us for next year’s event!

Announcing the 2019 PWG Elite Award Winners!

Announcing the 2019 PWG Elite Award Winners!

Sadly, the evening of our 2019 Vendor Appreciation Party has come and gone and we are left with remnants of glitter on our faces as we sit here thinking about the fun that we had hoped would never end. The evening was filled with the most wonderful surprises around every corner, from ocean water blue cocktails to seafood themed hors d’oeuvres and goodies! All of the sea creatures seemed to be enjoying all of the attention and excitement, too.

The night would not have been possible if it weren’t for our amazing venue, the ABQ BioPark Aquarium and the mouth-watering goodness provided by Taste Catering. We are so grateful to have such incredible sponsors for the event that provided the most stunning “under the sea” themed elements that simply brought the party to life, starting with our invitations by Funky Olive that made a splash! We adored the creative centerpieces by The Flower Co. and the beach-y tunes provided by King Mobile Music and Rockin’ Piano Party. We can’t forget to mention those phenomenal cakes from Honey & Salt Cake Co. because we all know we were dying to taste when we saw them placed on display.

These local wedding professionals, from wedding coordinators to wedding travel agencies, show exemplary performance in helping local brides and grooms make their wedding day dreams come true. Since we think that all of our vendors are shining stars every day, we ask locals to vote for their favorites to help make the process easier and more exciting. Now for the moment you’ve all been waiting for, and the moment we can’t wait to share with all of you, the winners of the PWG 2019 Elite Awards!

Drum roll please…

Coordinator | Black Bow Events
Bridal Beauty Expert | Vixen Looks by Vangie
Best Place to Order Wedding Cake/Dessert | The Cake Boutique
Best Catering or Restaurant | Eloisa Catering
Bachelorette/Bachelor Party | Bombshell Fitness
Reception | The View Event Center by Simply Décor & Events
Ceremony Location | Sandia Resort & Casino
Officiant | De Novo Concierge Pastors
Floral Designer | Desert Flowers Co.
Event Décor | My Beloved Vintage Rentals
Rental Company | Simply Décor Tents & Events
Bridal Gown Shop | Bridal Elegance by Darlene
Men’s Formalwear | Suits Unlimited
Invitations | Funky Olive Invitations + Stationery
Disc Jockey | Cutmaster Music
Ceremony Musician | Cello for Weddings
Photographer | Maura Jane Photography
Cinematographer | Photographic Perspectives
Photo Booth Rental | Complete Weddings + Events
Unique Wedding Service | Urban Balloons by Dawn
Best Hotel Accommodations | Sheraton Uptown Hotel
Best Travel Agency | Connect Thru Travel

A big and super special thank you to the lovely T. Rayne Photography for capturing the evening and also having a blast with us while doing it. We can’t wait to share the night with everyone through her lens!

Perfect Wedding Guide wedding planning design inspiration budget floral bouquet arrangement New Mexico Albuquerque greenery Santa Fe flowers natural organic local

2019 Wedding Gallery Recap

2019 Wedding Gallery Recap

It is hard to believe that there are only a few more months left in 2019 and suddenly preparations for all of next year’s weddings are in full swing. With so much to be done and seemingly so little time, finding time to explore your wedding vendor options can be a dreaded task. Here at Perfect Wedding Guide, we understand the natural instinct to feel loads of stress and anxiety about wedding planning, but it really shouldn’t be stressful at all. In fact, we think it should be a blast, and that is why we have created a very special and elevated wedding show specifically for you– The Wedding Gallery!

Wedding Gallery is specially curated for our New Mexico wedding community and prides itself on its unique approach to conventional wedding shows. This year’s show was an absolute blast filled with an abundance of marvelous vendors to chat with, food stations with mouthwatering options, specialty drinks– including, because I just HAVE to mention it, Cotton Candy Champagne, a couture fashion show and giveaways galore! Now if that hasn’t sold you yet, just wait, there’s more.

Every year, we, your dedicated hosts, try to incorporate a theme for the show that will inspire our vendors and inspire you for your own wedding. This year’s theme was something more close to home, because we are basically in love with New Mexico and think it possesses beauty beyond compare. Any idea of what the theme could be?

That’s right, you guessed it… the Southwest! There were lovely Southwestern vibes coming from Darling Clementine Crafts through their adorable succulent decor, the jaw-dropping hair and makeup by Blo Blow Dry Bar and the stunning wardrobe designs brought to life by Suits Unlimited & Bridal Elegance by Darlene. The essence of the Southwest was taken straight out of our backyards and placed at the heart of the show. Cacti, flowers, and free-flowing hairstyles took center stage at the couture fashion show for everyone to see.

We need to talk about the fact that there were SO many talented people involved with Wedding Gallery this year– it was really an all-star cast. With over 40 different vendors present, it was amazing to see the connections and relationships between local couples and local wedding professionals.

Our sponsors made sure that the show was even more elegant than we could imagine it to be! There were beautiful floral arrangements from Bosque Flower Studio, music from Cello for Weddings and King Mobile Music, incredible photos from Photographic Perspectives, magical decor by Simply Décor & Events, and last but not least, an incredible venue hosted by Embassy Suites Hotel & Spa.

I know, I know. You’re really bummed out that you missed this year’s show, but there’s no need to worry because we always have next year! There isn’t a better way to take the stress out of wedding planning and put the excitement in… plus, who doesn’t love fashion shows, food, and giveaways?

We would like to give a big thank you to our sponsors for this event, as well as Photographic Perspectives for capturing every moment. It wouldn’t be possible without all of you! You can check them out below:

Bosque Flower Studio
Blo Blow Dry Bar
Bridal Elegance by Darlene
Cello for Weddings
Darling Clementine Crafts
Embassy Suites Hotel & Spa
King Mobile Music
Photographic Perspectives
Simply Décor & Events
Suits Unlimited
Perfect Wedding Guide wedding planning design inspiration budget floral bouquet arrangement New Mexico Albuquerque greenery Santa Fe flowers natural organic local