When I moved to Tampa in August I had a hefty goal of really putting myself out there and making new friends. In Jacksonville I had a hand full of wedding professionals that I considered to be close friends and I didn't ever know how I was going to replace that (you can't). See I am naturally very introverted and this big goal of mine was enough to make my heart skip beats with anxiety. Just in time with my move Kelly Hancock of Kelly Hancock Events started Rising Tide Society Tampa. Yay!
The Rising Tide Society is a national group created to get creative entrepreneurs together. It's not a networking group but a group that cultivates encouragement, support, friendship and community over competition in the crazy journey that is owning a creative business. Most days we are in our home offices alone with little interaction (other than pets and little ones). Knowing that we aren't alone in this journey and we have support makes you want to keep going and reminds you why you started this journey in the first place.
Thinking back to the first ever meeting of our sweet Tampa group actually makes me cry happy tears. I was the new kid in town, about three people had "heard of my from instagram" but you know what, that didn't matter. The group was full of so many incredibly talented creatives that I looked up to. They asked me to sit with them, they asked me questions that allowed them to truly get to know me and most of all they genuinely cared. Now I have great friendships with these people. From simply leaving sweet comments on my Instagram to tell me how much they love my work to asking me out for lunch, collaborating on projects or referring potential business to me. These people are my tribe and it makes the move here that much more worth while and justified.
That being said, I wanted to host our holiday party as a thank you to this group. So after just being in Tampa for a few weeks I reached out to some incredibly talented event professionals and without even knowing me they jumped at the idea of working together. To all of you, thank you, that meant the world to me and I am still so thankful! I wanted to thank this group by creating a fun event to celebrate or successes from the year. My design was a spin on Christmas with deep merlot and blush with sparkly gold and silver accents. The party was held at CL Space, the exposed brick and industrial vibe it gives is one of my favorite event spaces hands down. Andrea Layne Floral Design created the most beautiful garland of my dreams along with other arrangements and beautiful candles that she arranged around the space. Kate Ryan Linens provided the stunning sequin linens and they completely stole the show! The chairs were provided by Wish Vintage Rentals and they were the perfect touch to the industrial chic design. The food and drink was provided by Elite Events Tampa and it was delicious! The desserts by Hands On Sweets were just amazing and we could not get enough. The open air photo booth by Photogenica was so much fun and the backdrop was the perfect sparkly addition to the room. Set Event Rentals provided the tables, chargers, and bar. DJ Jacob and Courtney Towe drove all the way from Jacksonville to provide lighting and music and they will never know how much that meant to me and everyone else. Jacob put up with my needy request of lots of Taylor Swift and boy band music and while I am sure he eye rolled when I wasn't looking he is always so accomodating and professionsal. Last but certainly not least Evan of Caroline & Evan provided these lovely images and I am so thankful!
So to all of my Rising Tide Tampa friendors thank you for all you do and I hope you had just as much fun as I did at the party!