We're Elevate

What started as a side hustle for two creative, driven sisters has now become one of the Midwest’s premier event planning and design firms. At Elevate, we find pure, unbridled joy in celebrating all aspects of life - big moments, small gatherings and anything in between.

2023: Year in Review

Well, 2023, you were definitely a bit of a mixed bag of a year, weren’t you!?

In the most basic of summaries, you:

  • Provided with some of our sweetest memories yet, but also some of our greatest business challenges – including some projects and moments we had never yet experienced in our nine years of operation;
  • Reminded us that pure grit, determination and hard work will always be our most prized company value, no matter how much adversity we may face;
  • Kept us on our toes – remembering that each moment is precious, new and delicate; and
  • Cautioned us to pause and remember not to take one single moment of our precious lives for granted, for tomorrow is never promised.

2023, you kept us humble and scrappier than ever, and most importantly; amid the trials, the heartache, and the triumphs, you continued to usher in growth, individually and collectively — the kind of growth, in fact, that will repeatedly stretch us to new heights. As fruitful as 2023 was for us, it was equally full of questions, bewilderment, growth in a way we’ve never known, and thankfully (and as always), SO much love. We are overwhelmingly thankful to have the chance to do what we do.

Below, we are recapping some of the highs, lows, and major moments the year brought us.

Firstly, we continued to plan, design and execute more of the challenging, intimate, beautiful and highly personalized events that bring us so much passion. It is always such an honor to do so. The trust our clients showed us this year was unparalleled, and allowed us to achieve some ideas and visions that were previously only big dreams and sketches on paper. From the big memories: pulling off some of our most customized weddings to date (the escort boards and displays this year were beyond!), down to those more simple moments: jaw-dropping room reveals, deep conversations with the team while driving around the Midwest, and quite literally chasing bats out of venues all so that the “show could go on” – all of it was so memorable and SO rewarding. Bats and all, we couldn’t envision doing anything else!

This year, we made the gutsy decision toward significantly overhauling our collections, which in turn led to some majorly rewarding custom builds, go-getter brides, and highly personalized events in general – truly our specialty! (We chose the tagline “Weaving Stories from Beginning to End” for a reason, fam. 😉)

We also continue to strive toward our goal of educating and inspiring other planners and couples in need. After the completion of our signature course for planners, we just knew our work was not over – our mission to fill others up with wisdom and learnings in this industry is only just beginning, and we cannot wait to continue to grow and expand the education sphere of our business – more of that coming really, really soon if you’re interested!

We also experienced some pretty exciting personal highlights, too!

  • Kirstie and Jesse hosted an incredible wedding week in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico! It still boggles our mind that they were married only this year, because between their fire tribulations and planning a destination event, March already feels like a bit of a lifetime ago! Nevertheless, it was THE most incredible week, and we will look upon it fondly for a long time to come. We also brought a few industry friends down with us! (Holler, Jake Anderson, Olson Film, and Nuage Designs! That’s right, we hauled 3 extra suitcases of linens because… whatever it takes, right?!)
  • A couple of months AFTER the wedding, K&J finally got to move back home – it truly felt like another big milestone after nearly one year displaced!!
  • Some of us got engaged (congrats, Katie and Lucas!) and had babies (hooray, Chloe & Kelsie and your families!) and a few of us enjoyed some pretty epic travels (Paige and Lily to Thailand, Kirstie to Greece) to round out one heck of a year.

Another little career highlight – seeing Kirstie’s wedding featured on a blog we often use for our own inspiration – The Wed!

Throughout the year, as always, we continued to execute stunning and memorable events all around the state. From all shore cities of Lake Michigan (truly, our team spanned pretty much every one from Door to Kenosha) to Western Wisconsin and basically every venue in between, we had the immense privilege of creating at some of our favorite venues, and also getting to know brand new spaces we hadn’t worked in before. Whether it was a fresh design at a familiar venue or a cutting edge creation at a space new to us, we thoroughly enjoyed every experience and wonderful client. Cheers to some EPIC room reveals captured by our photographer friends, too! We LOVE seeing their joy!

We also executed some of our most detailed and memorable corporate contracts to date – from a few highly successful fundraising events to a highly detailed Christmas kickoff – we enjoyed every minute of it all!

Last but most certainly not least – everything we did, we did with one incredible group of women. Year after year, we count our blessings for having the privilege of recruiting some of THE most amazing teammates in the state, and this year was just another confirmation of that. It isn’t lost on us just how spectacular and impressive it is to show up at a space, see our event team for the first time in a couple of weeks (sometimes, even months!), and jumping right in to production with not a stone unturned or moment to lose.

Kelsie, Katie, April, Chloe, Amber, Lily, Kallie, Paige, Leah, Annika, Marlena, Jenna, Nikki, Evelyn, Shay and Delaney: THANK YOU. There is absolutely NO way we could have gotten through this year without each and every single one of you. We love you so, so much!

Finally – McKenna & Ryan’s spunky wedding was very recently featured online – CHECK IT OUT! Another highlight to be sure.