Since I launched my business in 2017, I’ve always made it a priority to invest in education within the wedding industry. In 2017 I went to Wedding MBA, a large wedding and event conference that takes place in Vegas. I enjoyed the keynote speakers and breakout sessions, but longed for a creative workshop where I felt like more than a face in the crowd. Insert Creative at Heart. I’ve followed creator Kat Schmoyer for several years and was drawn to her warmth and authenticity. I knew I had to be a part of this community that whole-heartedly cheered one another on. So, in November of 2018, I traveled to Bermuda Run, North Carolina for the Round 8 Creative at Heart Conference. The conference took place at the gorgeous Winmock at Kinderton, a local barn wedding venue.
To say that the conference surpassed my expectations, would be an understatement. From the moment I arrived (with fellow Indy creative entrepreneur Andrea Carroll, of Bella Sorella Floral Designs), each detail was planned with the most intentional touches. Perfectly branded swag bags, cozy lounge vignettes, sweet treats and caffeinated beverages to fuel the long days and even longer nights.
My favorite speakers included Shay Cochrane of SC Stockshop and Social Squares, Graham Cochrane, Kelly and Andra of With Grace & Gold, Ashlyn Carter of Ashlyn Writes, Shunta Grant, of Because of Zoe, and Megan Martin of Megan Martin Creative, to name a few. All creative entrepreneurs I have followed and admired for years. Their talks left me laughing and crying and breathed new life into my business.
One of my favorite parts of the conference was the time spent with panel groups during meals. I was able to make connections with fellow planners from around the country and hear from Industry leaders on topics like social media, pricing, hiring, and branding. I walked away with a wealth of information, and also some lifelong friends (Hi, Jenkins and Co Events!). With the long days, and even longer nights, this time was appropriately fueled by sweet treats and caffeinated beverages!
As if the conference wasn’t great enough, I won a new website template from Davey & Krista!
I left with a renewed energy for planning beautiful events, ready to pour into my new business ventures, which resulted in a brand refresh, new website, and new workshop offerings. I can say wholeheartedly that this experience was one I will never forget. It equipped me with the know-how and confidence to move my business to the next level and for that I am truly grateful.
All conference images by Bethanne Arthur Photography.