Coming Soon: The Knot Ones to Watch 2024

Get ready to discover our list of notable emerging wedding professionals.
Hannah Nowack The Knot Senior Weddings Editor
by
Hannah Nowack
Hannah Nowack The Knot Senior Weddings Editor
Hannah Nowack
Senior Editor, Weddings
  • Hannah writes and edits articles for The Knot Worldwide, with a focus on real wedding coverage.
  • Hannah has a passion for DE&I and plays an integral role in ensuring The Knot content highlights all voices and all love stories.
  • Prior to The Knot Worldwide, Hannah was the Social Media Editor at Martha Stewart Weddings.
Updated Mar 26, 2024

Wondering how to find wedding vendors near you? Sourcing the perfect team to bring your wedding vision to life is no small task. According to our internal research, couples book an average of 14 different vendors to make their celebration happen (Psst: Here's a wedding vendor checklist of every type of pro you could book). But how do you find the right pros to help you plan a wedding that's uniquely your own?

That's where we come in. Among the many talented pros across the country, we've scouted a cohort of especially outstanding businesses we know will inspire your wedding planning. The Knot Ones to Watch is our list of 2024's most notable emerging wedding pros.

Check back on April 30th for the grand reveal!

In this story:

What Is The Knot One to Watch?

Given that there are thousands of wedding professionals across the US, you might wonder how we landed on these specific standout businesses. These parameters guided us in our search for rising talent across all categories. Notably, we sought values-driven wedding pros who are pushing the industry forward through their commitment to advocacy, innovation and connection. Our honorees are the future of weddings.

One of the most fulfilling parts of researching this year's honorees was seeing how many of them founded their businesses during the peak of the pandemic. The innovation and beauty they were able to foster is nothing short of astounding.

Requirements for consideration:

  • Fewer than eight years in business in the wedding industry.
  • Have a cutting-edge, authentic and creative approach to their field.
  • Further vetted through reviews from industry peers and colleagues.
  • Vetted by a nine-person committee made up of six folks from The Knot and three esteemed industry experts.
  • Well-respected and aligned with the editorial policy (and core values) of The Knot.

The Knot Ones to Watch Categories

All of the top wedding vendors honored in The Knot Ones to Watch fall into one of three categories based on the characteristics they possess.

The Advocate

Honorees who demonstrate a commitment to pushing diversity forward through inclusivity. These pros are uniters and amplifiers. They're motivated by a desire to invite people in while creating work that authentically reflects a couple's roots.

The Innovator

Honorees who demonstrate a commitment to pushing design forward through creativity. These pros are trailblazers and visionaries. They're trendsetters and tastemakers who think outside the box to dream up new and inventive wedding ideas.

The Connector

Honorees who demonstrate a commitment to pushing community forward through networking. These pros are bridge-builders, cheerleaders and mentors. They're supportive team players who care about creating space for everyone to thrive.

2023 The Knot Ones to Watch Honorees

2023 was the inaugural year of Ones to Watch. Here is a look back at the cohort of unique wedding vendors we honored.

  • Afrik Armando: Beyond photographing couples, the ability to coach couples motivates Afrik Armando. Based in Pennsylvania, Afrik is an expert photographer and owner of an eponymous company, founded in May 2017.
  • Alternative Standards: As her company's name suggests, Erica "Gem" Benson is motivated to alter the standards. Based in California, Benson is a photographer and owner of Alternative Standards, founded in August 2016. Erica is all about "romanticizing real life."
  • Angelica & Co. Weddings: Angelica Laws is the Maryland-based expert wedding planner at the helm of her eponymous company, which she founded in August 2017. She is motivated to build human connections beyond just planning beautiful events.
  • Blue Box Bakery: Christina Kim Mathis is a Washington-based wedding cake baker motivated by high-quality customization. The pro founded Blue Box Bakery in April 2016.
  • Bo Shim Photography: Capturing photographs that are timeless and honor a couple's heritage is core to what motivates Bo Shim. The photographer, who owns an eponymous company founded in May 2016, is based in New York, but looks to the past to inform her approach to the here and now.
  • East Made Co.: The ability to create art is what motivates wedding planner Elizabeth Gopal each day. The pro is the owner of Maryland-based East Made Co., founded in September 2015.
  • Emerson James Rental: Elisa Bricker is on a mission to create innovative designs. The wedding pro owns specialty rental company Emerson James Rental, founded in November 2017, with offices in Virginia and South Carolina.
  • Everbloom Floral Design: In December 2017 Erice McNeff founded Everbloom Floral Design based in California. The expert wedding florist finds motivation in the mission to provide polished professionalism to all she connects with.
  • Fulton Events: Caitlin Fulton Kuchemba of Fulton Events is motivated by the endless possibilities she sees all around her. Notably, the Pennsylvania-based wedding planner loves the peaks her business, founded in May 2015, is able to reach.
  • Hannah Forsberg: This pro finds herself enamored with the ability to create visual narratives that her role provides her. Hannah Forsberg is an expert wedding photographer based in Georgia who founded her business, which bears her name, in January 2016.
  • HauteFêtes Fine Weddings & Events: For Dani Blasena, wedding planning is all about balancing discernment and details. The pro is the genius wedding planner behind California-based HauteFêtes Fine Weddings & Events, founded in June 2016. Dani's ethos is that you shouldn't compromise seamless execution for the sake of impeccable design.
  • House of Joy: Samantha Leenheer believes in the importance of embracing flexibility and founded her company in June 2016 to do just that. Based in Ohio, the wedding planner is the genius behind House of Joy.
  • IntriCakes: The pursuit of innovation drives Jenny Vu-Tran. The expert cake baker owns California-based IntriCakes. It's not easy to reinvent something as timeless as the wedding cake, but Jenny is doing just that.
  • Jordan Jeanty Studios: The things that motivate Jordan Jeanty are as simple as they are profound: he wants to care and grow. The expert videographer owns Jordan Jeanty Studios, which was founded in February 2017, and is based in Texas.
  • Julian Leaver Events: The ability to offer a unique perspective to couples is what motivates Texas-based planner Julian Leaver of Julian Leaver Events, founded in May 2016. Julian, his right-hand Sarah Kane, and their team come from a wide range of backgrounds, allowing them to bring complicated events together.
  • K. Hancock Design: Kiara Hancock loves that her role as a wedding floral designer affords her the opportunity to create designs that evoke emotion. Based in Washington, the expert founded K. Hancock Design in October 2015.
  • K. LaFleur Films: - Kelly LaFleur The chance to empower female filmmakers motivates and inspires much of Kelly LaFleur's work. The wedding pro is a Nebraska-based videographer and owner of K. LaFleur Films, founded in June 2016.
  • Le Petit Privé: Xin Huang is a wedding planner in New York who is motivated by the importance of fostering mutual respect during the wedding journey. Huang has made a name for herself as the owner of Le Petite Privé, founded in September 2016.
  • Megan Pettus Films: Wedding expert Megan Pettus is inspired by creating stories with soul. The owner of Megan Pettus Films is an Alabama-based videographer who founded her company in June 2016.
  • Modern Rebel: Amy Shack Egan, who founded Modern Rebel in August 2015, is a New York-based "love party" planner. The pro is motivated to disrupt the status quo.
  • Pop & Drop: Wedding decor expert Kelsey Butler Harrison is motivated to balance design with sustainability. The pro founded Pop & Drop, based in Texas, in August 2019 and has been making waves ever since.
  • Roots Floral Design: Kentucky-based floral designer Kaytee Stice is all about creating space for relationships. The pro founded Roots Floral Design in February 2016 and has been making waves ever since.
  • Rudney Novaes Photography: Rudney Novaes is motivated by the mission to create with purpose. Novaes, who founded his namesake company in February 2016, is a photographer based in Washington, DC.
  • Shean Strong Design: Shean Strong is a wedding floral designer who founded his eponymous company in March 2017. At the core, Georgia-based Strong is grateful for his ability to educate for growth.
  • Sok Vision: For husband-and-wife duo Erin and Steve Sok it's all about creating space for all. The videographer couple owns Sok Vision, founded in June 2017, in the Washington, DC, area.
  • XO Moreau: Alex Moreau is a Texas-based wedding planner. The owner of XO Moreau, founded in January 2018, she is motivated to push creative boundaries. "You know what would be weird?" That's the question Alex asks herself each time she starts planning a new wedding.
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