Happy Thanksgiving from the Calluna Crew!

Happy Thanksgiving to our clients, vendors, friends, and community! We are incredibly appreciative and honored for your love, support, partnership, and trust over the years!

We happily embrace the holiday as an opportunity to create space to gather with loved ones, to nourish our bodies with good food and drink, to rest, to set intentions for the coming chapters, and reflect on everything that helped us arrive to this moment.

This year our team took a moment of purposeful pause to reflect on the year behind us and share what we are wholeheartedly grateful for. We hope you join us in celebration this season and we wish you a very happy Thanksgiving from our family at Calluna Events to yours! 

Photographer | Alp & Isle


Heather Dwight

“It’s that time of year when we pause and reflect on where we’ve been in our annual Thanksgiving blog post. I am so honored and humbled to be writing about gratitude once again. We are so fortunate to do what we do and create what we create for our clients alongside this wonderful wedding community. We are wrapping up our 19th season in business! I am ever-so inspired by the Calluna Community – our clients who choose Calluna, the creative partners and venues we are fortunate to work so closely with and who continually entrust their clients with us. I continue to be grateful to be able to go to work each day and do something I love and am passionate about. I am particularly grateful for our clients from this year. Witnessing your weddings is a great honor! Once again, this year brought some incredible weddings and visions, where we were able to collaborate and be creative in ways we never have. I am grateful for our clients’ trust in us and our ability to constantly grow and expand our offerings.

I am always in awe of and humbled by our team. They are the heart and soul of Calluna, my right hands, who work tirelessly and who have such positive enthusiasm for our couples. At the end of our second full season post COVID, I reflect back on what we navigated and the persistence and grit of our team. Wedding planning is sometimes a thankless job, a job behind the scenes and the cog that makes the entire wheel of the wedding turn. Our team makes our couples vision come to life and their wedding dreams happen. And their work allows me to expand Calluna in exciting projects. I consider them all friends and love the impact they’ve had on my life and my business.

I’m also so grateful for travel – it’s one of my greatest joys in life – to travel to inspiring places and experience new things – this past year I was fortunate to travel to Greece, Morocco, weddings across Colorado and Wyoming as well as Missouri, and took several road trips with my family in the southwest of Colorado and Utah.

I am forever grateful for the love and support of my family and my friends, especially my husband, Brandon, our daughter Maggie and son Grey. I’m grateful for where we live in Colorado – for fresh air, sunshine, being outside in the mountains. I’m grateful for my health and any time I can ride my bike or do a little yoga.”

Photographer | Ashley Sawtelle


Melanie Robertz

“It’s my very favorite season – a season for pause, reflection, celebration, and (hopefully!) a little bit of rest. As we mark the festive conclusion of this calendar year, delighted to share a sprinkling of what brings me joy, thanks and a full heart in a seemingly unending list of gratitude.

I’m so grateful for the opportunity to do what I love with the people of love; in helping create moments of joyous celebration that will be remembered for generations to come. I’m grateful to spend my days surrounded in the company of strong, creative, interesting people – colleagues, clients, vendors, entrepreneurs, (many of which are female founded and operated!) – who continue to inspire me to be the best version of myself each day. I’m immeasurably grateful for my health and the health and well-being of those around me, something we know not to take lightly in today’s time. I’m grateful for the everyday joys that come with being a new puppy parent (read: a very full camera roll), to watching my dear friends and family embark on big chapters (weddings! homes! jobs! babies!), to small moments of levity and laughter that go along with a life well-lived. We don’t know what’s to come, but we’ve gotten this far and that’s cause for celebration. Clinking my glass in spirit to all of you – Happy Thanksgiving and holiday season!”

Photographer | Alp & Isle


Lindsay Hayden

“Wow – it’s hard to believe that it’s already time to write this post again, the year has just flown by!

2022 has been one of the best years of my life and this year, I am most grateful for my husband (EEK! Still love saying that)! This year Ken and I got married in our favorite places in the world and pledged to spend the rest of our lives together. Planning your own wedding in the midst of planning weddings for all the amazing Calluna Couples was no small feat and I truly could not have pulled off the wedding of our dreams without his support! He might not have been picking out linens or negotiating a catering contract but I couldn’t have made it through this season without him.

To my friends and family – those who showed up and supported us over the last year of planning and celebrating. From engagement parties to bachelorette weekends (and so many matching theme outfits!) and bridal showers – 0ur wedding day wouldn’t have been the same without them! Coming in from all over the country to Aspen, Colorado was no easy feat and it was truly so humbling to look out and see all our loved ones in the same place. I often tell my couples that there are so few times in your life that all your people are in the same place together and to live that experience first hand was truly something that I’ll never forget.

And to our vendor partners – the support and creativity you brought to this season but especially to my wedding weekend is something that I’ll never truly be able to thank you all for. I feel so thankful and blessed to work alongside such creatives in this industry who dedicate everything they have to their couples and to be on the receiving end of that creativity and dedication was so special.

All in all – it was such a special year filled with so much love! It’s hard to imagine that 2023 will be able to top this year but the best is yet to come.”

Photographer | Vanessa Tierney


Jenna Frum

“At the beginning of this year, I set my intention to embody what I call the ’empowered manifester’ – someone who is fearless in following their heart. I had an inkling this would be the year of growth + change and it sure was! I moved from California to Colorado to pursue my dream career and reunite with my boyfriend Troy of five years after two years of long distance, we welcomed home our sweet Marigold who’s our fluffy golden retriever puppy ~ adding to our furry family with our two kitties Leo + Roo, I joined the Calluna Crew when wedding season began and have been loving it ever since, I have found ways to foster deep connection with my family despite the distance between us, and I just became an Auntie a couple weeks ago!

Change inspires growth and I’m incredibly grateful that I fiercely followed my heart when these opportunities arose, acknowledging the fear of the unknown while simultaneously finding centeredness around my aspirations and taking the leap of faith. As I embarked on this new chapter of my life, I’ve been so fortunate to have my loved ones by my side and am sending them so much love and gratitude for their unwavering support + encouragement through it all. I’m so grateful to be part of the Calluna Crew, a team of women who constantly inspire me as they pour their hearts into everything they do. Thank you for showing this California girl what Colorado is all about! I’m grateful for Troy who’s been there for me every step of the way ~ you have always inspired me to speak my truth, embrace my authenticity, and let my free spirit run wild! I’m grateful for our wonderful group of friendors we have here in Colorado and beyond ~ as planners with creative visions it’s entirely special to see it all come to life and we truly wouldn’t be able to do it without you!

My heart is also incredibly grateful for all the in between moments in life, the small things such as laughing so hard my dimples start to hurt, our furry friends Marigold, Leo, + Roo finding and choosing friendship with one another with all the purrs, cuddles, and kisses nose to snout ~ what a beautiful sign from nature of loving + kindness! ~ the golden yellow trees filling the slopes during the fall, butterflies that flutter toward me are like kisses from my angels in heaven, I could go on for days celebrating what fills my heart with joy and gratitude but I’ll save some for next year’s reflection! Sending all my love and gratitude to you on this Thanksgiving! Wishing you a lovely celebration full of joy!”

Photographer | Meredith Diamond


Kristen Kennedy

“This year I’m grateful for:

  1. The opportunity to travel for weddings and for personal fun. My wedding in Cabo was definitely a professional highlight (love you Rebecca & Brian!) and my trip to Mallora, Spain was a personal favorite.
  2. My family – always. I’ve spent a lot of time with them over the past few years and even crashed my parents anniversary trip to Jackson Hole.
  3. Coffee. Specifically the Japanese Iced Coffee from Blue Sparrow and Cappuccinos from Crema.
  4. My squad of amazing friends. You know who you are!
  5. All of my amazing clients, many who became friends after planning together for 1+ years!

And of course my Calluna Crew. Love love love learning from this team of amazing ladies.”

Photographer | Rebecca Haley Photography


Gina Yeon

“Suffice it to say, there have been some monumental joys this year: getting engaged (!!!), building a home with my fiance, and celebrating love. Both in the form of our couples and weddings with Calluna, and also the smaller everyday celebrations of love with friends and family. While it’s so easy to focus on the big joys – the ones that come to the mind first when thinking about what I’m most grateful for, the tiny treasures also come to the surface when I think about why I am grateful for that thing.

I’ve been keeping a journal (sporadically), where I write down the top 3 things I am thankful for that day. While the big and consistent ones have been my health, my relationships, and more recently, a house to call our home, the tiny treasures that I also am grateful for no matter how silly also allows me to reflect on how much I have to be thankful for. Some of the entries: coffee, fresh flowers, seeing Enzo get the zoomies, the sun on an incredibly cold day in January, visiting a berry farm and picking all of the fruit, a magical sunset, clean socks, finding $5 dollars in a zipped pocket in an old purse, etc.

This year, I am so grateful for both the big joys and the smaller ones that fill up our day to day lives. Wishing everyone all of the joys – both big and small as they celebrate Thanksgiving this year!”

Photographer for Image One | Alp & Isle
Photographer for Image Two | Holly Hursley Photography

Kira Reed

“This year I am so thankful for being able to have the wedding of our dreams. We were married this September in Laguna Beach, CA. It was truly the best day of our lives and I am still riding high from it. We were surrounded by our family and friends and the outpouring of love was like nothing I have ever experienced. I felt such immense gratitude for those who traveled both near and far to be with us on our special day. I am thankful for the health of our family which allowed them all to be there and I look forward to celebrating Thanksgiving all together this year as a married couple!”

Photographer | Katrina Jayne


Taylor Sicko

“This year I am most grateful for friendship. After moving to a state where I knew virtually no one, I feel so grateful to have gradually found the people that make Colorado feel like home.”

Photographer | Alp & Isle


A few Thanksgiving reflections over the year!

20212020 | 2019 | 2018

Introducing our Newest Event Planner + Marketing Specialist, Jenna Leigh Frum!

We’re so excited to welcome Jenna Leigh Frum to the Calluna Events team as our newest Event Planner + Marketing Specialist!

Born and raised in sunny Southern California, Jenna graduated from UCLA with a degree in Communications and Entrepreneurship and launched her career in finance as a marketing specialist for a wealth management group in Los Angeles. She fell in love with the events industry after her sister’s wedding in Santa Barbara and quickly found her calling when she landed a job as an event coordinator at Annie Campbell, a full-service catering and party planning boutique in Hollywood known for planning events for Goop, Ralph Lauren, Glow Recipe and more! Driven by her desire to be closer to the wedding industry, Jenna took a role as a bridal stylist and marketing specialist for Casablanca Bridal in Newport Beach and most recently served as an event planner at Amorology Weddings in San Diego, a luxury full-service event coordination and styling company, prior to moving to Colorado!

Jenna is very excited to bring all her creative energy and passion for storytelling through events and marketing to the Calluna Crew!

More about Jenna!

Okay – now for some good ole’ fashioned rapid fire:

Photography | Kristin Karkoska at Blue Sky Studio

Friday Introduction: Meet Our Interns

We couldn’t be more excited to introduce everyone to our hard-working interns! Gina & Megan started with us in February, and we can’t thank them enough for the behind-the-scenes work they put in assisting with wedding planning, marketing, and more!

xo, Calluna


Meet Gina:

I’m a Colorado native, but started event planning in New York City working as an intern at a company specializing in South Asian weddings. It was such a unique and fun experience that it only bolstered my love of weddings. I have a background in design, and love creating, drawing a lot of inspiration from the outdoors. When I’m not working, I like to spend time in the mountains – whether it be snowboarding, hiking, or fly fishing! 

Intern Calluna Events

What is your favorite reception song?

90’s – 00’s Hip-Hop or R&B – the nostalgia is real!

Favorite flower?

Give me all the flowers! It’s so hard to choose just one, so if I had to pick my favorites, they would be tulips, ranunculuses, and garden roses.

Favorite dress designer?

I really like Vera Wang, Monique Lhullier, and more recently Samuelle Couture.

Favorite wedding movie?

The Wedding Planner was the first movie that made me fall in love with the planning process, but I’ve seen The Proposal too many times to count so it would probably be that one!


Meet Megan:

I’m graduating from Colorado State University in May with my degree in Hospitality Management. I was born and raised in Colorado with a big country girl heart, but a city girl attitude. My love for weddings probably started when I was a kid, watching any and all movies with a romantic love story, and then only grew when Say Yes To the Dress was the only show I watched!

Intern Calluna Events

 

What is your favorite reception song?

If I’m going to dance to anything at a wedding, you can bet it’s Shania Twain!

Favorite flower?

I love peonies and ranunculuses! But everyone who knows me, knows I’m a sucker for all things floral.

Favorite dress designer?

Hands down Hayley Paige! I love her unique designs and that she designs the most beautiful gowns.

Favorite wedding movie?

Father of the Bride 1&2! I’ve seen the movie more times than acceptable and still love them both!


Photography | Ashley Sawtelle

Friday Introduction: Meet Francesca

Today we’d love for you to get to know Francesca! Francesca DeOrio is a native New Yorker who has worked in the hospitality industry for over a decade. Her background in hospitality management, restaurant operations and events coordination has honed her ability to multi-task her way through just about any project. Francesca and Calluna owner, Heather Dwight, first worked together when they collaborated on an event at The Kitchen Next Door. At the time, Francesca was the general manager and events planner. It was immediately evident that events managed by Francesca balanced good humor and positive thinking with innate problem-solving skills and a thorough eye for detail. Her extensive experience at The Kitchen restaurant group combined with her passionate enthusiasm for event and wedding planning makes Francesca a perfect addition to the Calluna Events team.

xo, Calluna


Calluna Events Francesca DeOrio Lead Planner

Photography | James and Schulze 

What do you do to relax after a wedding is over? 

Glass of wine and an Epson Salt Bath 😉

What is your favorite part of the planning process?

Floral Mock Up/Consult — its always when the vision truly comes alive!

What is your favorite reception song?

Can’t Stop The Feeling by Justin Timberlake

Favorite flower?

Ouuu … peonies and dahlia

One trend you are over seeing?

Rustic Chic …..


Photography (feature image) | Ashley Sawtelle

Friday Introduction: Meet Jean

This week as a part of our Friday Introduction series, we are hearing from Jean! Jean Ellison began her career in weddings while working for a historic home located on the banks of the Mississippi River. Over the past nine years, Jean has built her career by managing weddings for Five Star resorts, luxury hotels, and country clubs across the South. Jean most recently comes from the Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts where she worked as the Social Catering Sales & Events Manager for both the Houston and Denver properties. While clients and colleagues appreciate Jean’s warm personality and quirky one-liners, it is her knowledge of food and wine, passion for service, and ability to effectively guide her clients that brings her to the Calluna Events team.

xo, Calluna


Colorado wedding planner Calluna Events team Jean

What do you do to relax after a wedding is over?  

I take a hot bath then my hubby rubs my feet 🙂

What do you like to do when you’re not planning weddings?

I love long walks and yard work – any excuse to get outside!

What is your favorite reception song?

Anything from the classics! Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, etc.

Favorite flower?

White French Tulips

Favorite dress designer?

I don’t have one, but I’m currently loving what I’ve seen from Robert Bullock and Haley Paige

Favorite wedding movie?

Father of the Bride, of course!

What is some advice you would give couples planning their own wedding?  

Enjoy the process and don’t get too caught up on the details if they’re stressing you out – sometimes simplicity is key!


Photography | Ashley Sawtelle

Friday Introduction: Meet Kristen

This week as a part of our Friday Introduction series, we are hearing from Kristen! Kristen Kennedy is a San Francisco native, but Colorado lover. She is a graduate of the University of Colorado and an event enthusiast. Her love for weddings began with her favorite movie, “The Father of the Bride”. Kristen has been a part of the Calluna team for many years, and handles weddings and a variety of other events. She loves the energy and excitement of any event, and thrives off of the happiness and satisfaction of the guests. She believes no detail is too small, and will go the extra mile to make everybody comfortable.

xo, Calluna


Calluna Events staff Kristen

A little more about Kristen…

What do you do to relax after a wedding is over?  

At the end of the night on a wedding day I usually just have a huge glass of water, take a hot shower and hop into bed and sleep for at least nine hours!

What do you like to do when you’re not planning weddings?

I love exploring new restaurants and bars in Denver and new cities. I also do a lot of baking and write all about it on my blog KristenSarahK.com.

What is something you have seen at a wedding that you absolutely loved?

This actually just happened this past weekend but our couple had breakfast just them two on the morning of the wedding. I loved that they had some time together alone on the biggest day of their lives.

Favorite dress designer?

Pronovias!

Favorite wedding movie?

Father of the Bride of course!

What is some advice you would give couples planning their own wedding?  

1 – Hire a wedding planner 🙂 2 – You get to marry your best friend, don’t forget that!

Follow along with Kristen this season on Instagram!


Photography | Ashley Sawtelle

New York City Wedding Planning Recap

Calluna Events just returned from a whirlwind week in NYC, and we are feeling so inspired and grateful for the opportunity to plan Lily and Stephen’s October wedding! Their wedding is literally a dream working with iconic venues and vendors we’ve only hoped to work with someday!

We started off at Kleinfeld Bridal (thanks to Samantha Roberts) which was an incredible experience with Lily’s mom and sister Maddie, a past Calluna Events bride! Next stop, florals and design with David Beahm Experiences. They chose the iconic The Frick Collection for their reception, and we feel so lucky to work there! Lily tried on dresses at the iconic Carolina Herrera. Then onto catering meetings with Abigail Kirsch Catering Relationships and tasting with Marcia Selden Catering & Events!

In addition to reconnecting with some old and new friends in the industry, our owner Heather met with our friends at BRIDES, The KnotEditor’s Edge and the iconic Ron of Ron Ben-Israel Cakes.

And in big news, Calluna Lead Planner Francesca DeOrio moved to NYC! We are able to do more weddings there now that we have feet on the ground. Let us know if you have friends getting married in New York, we’d love to help!

        

 

FRIDAY INTRODUCTION: MEET JEAN

Today as a Friday Introduction, we’d love to introduce you to Jean, our new lead planner at Calluna Events!

xo, Calluna


MEET JEAN (LEAD PLANNER)

Jean Ellison began her career in weddings while working for a historic home located on the banks of the Mississippi River. Over the past nine years, Jean has built her career by managing weddings for Five Star resorts, luxury hotels, and country clubs across the South. Jean most recently comes from the Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts where she worked as the Social Catering Sales & Events Manager for both the Houston and Denver properties. While clients and colleagues appreciate Jean’s warm personality and quirky one-liners, it is her knowledge of food and wine, passion for service, and ability to effectively guide her clients that brings her to the Calluna Events team.

My favorite part of a wedding is…? The quiet moment right before a couple is introduced into the wedding reception. By this point in the evening, all of the ‘wedding jitters’ have escaped and are replaced with pure joy and elation. I love that I get to have a front-row seat as they’re announced into the room for the first time!

When not planning weddings you can find me… Outside. Whether I’m on a walk in my neighborhood, in the mountains, or on the coast, my absolute favorite place to be is outdoors.

 If I wasn’t a wedding planner I would be…? An opera singer! I have a background in classical vocal performance, which was actually my major at LSU before I switched to marketing and events.

My dream place to plan a wedding is…? The sweeping coastal countryside of Northern Ireland! My Irish roots are deep and I love the scenery, the history, and the people. Not to mention, it’s a part of the United Kingdom and I would get to incorporate proper British wedding traditions and etiquette.

My guilty pleasure is…? Walking aimlessly around craft stores. I could spend hours roaming the aisles while fantasizing about becoming the next Martha Stewart. If only I had the time or patience to master needlepoint or scrapbooking!

My favorite movie is…? Little Women. I love the strong female characters and they often remind me of my own family (sans the civil war and scarlet fever).


To read more about Jean go here!

Photo | Bridget Burnett Photography

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