Imagine if....every bride's dreams were accessible, no matter her budget
Cali Brutz is co-founder of (Once Like a Spark) Photography and Borrowing Magnolia.
Both businesses serve the needs of brides and families as they prepare for their big day. And each started with simple, yet innovative ways to make fairy tale weddings accessible to more people.
Cali took great interest in photography right after undergrad and eventually found her way into the world of engagement and wedding photography. As she learned more about the industry, she realized that there were unmet needs that could help talented photographers dramatically improve product and service delivery. In 2008, she partnered with her sister Ashley Steele to launch (Once Like a Spark) Photography, a collaborative of fresh, artistic, and creative wedding photographers. (Once Like a Spark) allows artists to maximize their focus on the craft by coordinating the end-to-end business needs that deliver the best photographers for life’s special moments. Cali says, “our approach has always been to do what you love, and make sure you’re really amazing at it”. The pool of affiliated photographers now spans the nation and the number of satisfied customers is growing quickly.
The time spent building (Once Like a Spark) also revealed another opportunity to make the dream wedding accessible for more brides. Cali and Ashley partnered with Stephanie Olvey to put a new spin on wedding gown shopping. In 2014 Borrowing Magnolia launched as a wedding dress consignment with something to offer both soon-to-be brides and women who already own dresses. Borrowing Magnolia is an online marketplace where brides can buy or borrow their dream gown for a fraction of the cost of purchasing new. Likewise, women can choose to do more than stash used gowns in the attic, without the hassle of trying to find someone interested in their dresses. Borrowing Magnolia already has 400 dresses in their offering, and is on pace to reach 1,400 by years end.
(Once Like a Spark) Photography and Borrowing Magnolia are each expanding rapidly. Yet Cali is clear that the principles of the businesses remain unchanged. She says, “we believe in doing our part to make every bride’s dream wedding a reality”. Cali is especially proud of the commitment both businesses have to empowering women entrepreneurs and consumers. Cali shares, “we are closing in on a milestone revenue goal for (Once Like a Spark) and are finalizing our largest round of funding for Borrowing Magnolia. Once those things happen we are looking forward to celebrating a bit!” It is clear that there will be plenty more to be proud of in the future as Cali and the team do their part to make wedding dreams come true for their customers.
Stay connected to Cali, (Once Like a Spark) and Borrowing Magnolia: