The story of Forever & Company is a love story. It’s the story of a dynamic husband and wife team starting out, hand-in-hand, in a brand new industry together. It’s proof that two people really can accomplish more together than separately. It’s also the story of a strong, driven, talented couple who stayed the course, focused on their commitment to one another and to their community and persevered. But at the end of the day… It all started with a love story.
In 1995, Dominick (the business man) and Laura (the creative) brought their first wedding show to Raleigh, North Carolina. Their first wedding show was held in a little ballroom full of wedding vendors who were willing to give this irresistible couple a chance. It was nothing like the extravagant, state-of-the-art shows they would produce in the next 25 years, that would grow to draw thousands upon thousands of brides. But Laura and Dominick greeted their guests that day with equally as much enthusiasm. And the business grew exponentially and so did the wedding pros who partnered with them.
In North Carolina, you get the ring, answer the question, and then Google the date of the next Forever & Company wedding show. It’s been an honored tradition for over 25 years. Today, Forever & Company produces three annual wedding shows that host over 300 wedding professionals and attract the majority of engaged couples across North Carolina. Wedding pros and couples alike have come to turn to them for informational blogs, event calendars, educational events, and inspiration.
Their goal is simple… bring wedding pros and couples together. “We want to help excited couples plan the wedding of their dreams, and have fun doing it (let’s face it, it can be stressful). And we want to provide opportunities for our partners to build their businesses. And along the way, we strive to make a difference in our community.”
Forever & Company is also a story about the bonds of family. While growing their business, Dominick and Laura were growing their own family which consists of four children (they’re always thinking big). Now that their children are all grown up, they have four dogs. Laura jokes that each time a kid leaves for college, she replaces that child with another doodle dog. Each dog wears a color coordinated collar with flower accessories. (Once you get to know Laura – it will make sense to you – she’s all about the details.)
But even with the challenges of a large family at home, Dominick and Laura nurtured their bridal industry family as well. They built true friendships and relationships with the wedding industry. They listened to their challenges, and they provided resources to assist their partners in making their own businesses successful. As Dominick puts it, “We’ve created an atmosphere for our Raleighorsvendors that goes way beyond a traditional business relationship, we’ve created a family community.”
Throughout the history of their company, Dominick and Laura have evolved to meet the demands of their partners. The novel Coronavirus has brought unprecedented challenges to their shows and their partners and they have once again pivoted to change the way they deliver their product to wedding pros and brides, hosting virtual shows and providing inspiring and trendy online information and networking opportunities.
So, if you’re a wedding professional or are engaged, you’ve come to the right place. Forever & Company is the place to find the latest trends and inspiration, and the very best place to connect with professionals and partners…and of course, it’s where you’ll find almost every engaged couple at every touchpoint of their planning process.
Want to know more about Dominick & Laura? Keep reading.
They are inspiring both as a business model and as a couple. They are the true love story behind Forever & Company and you will love being a part of their Forever Story.
What inspired you to start your business?
Laura: An opportunity to work together! We wanted to start something meaningful that would allow us to work together and be self-employed so that we could team up and make it easier to raise our family. We had experience in the wedding industry and loved the idea of helping connect couples and businesses. We longed to return to my hometown of Raleigh, North Carolina, where the lifestyle was a little more laid back (compared to New Jersey where Dominick was from), and we felt NC was where we wanted to raise a family.
Dominick: Laura and I both have an entrepreneurial spirit and we wanted to find our path doing something we both enjoyed. When the opportunity presented itself, we recognized that the time was right for us to take the chance.
How did you come up with your business name?
We met at East Carolina University where Laura was an ECU Cheerleader and Dom was an ECU Baseball player. So how could we not choose purple? We also felt it was the color of royalty and would suit both brides and grooms. The name “Forever” was an idea from Dom’s sister who said the couples that we serve will be together forever. Putting a bridal show together is definitely a production, so Forever Bridal Productions seemed ideal for our company name.
As the business evolved, and the environment changed, we realized we were more than just a bridal business. We are a company that supports brides, and engaged couples and their families, but our largest accomplishment is what we have done in bringing wedding professionals together. As we pivoted to deal with the Coronavirus, our platform began to focus on more alternative ways to bring couples and wedding pros together, often virtually. Hence, Forever Bridal Productions graduated to Forever & Company. Dom and Laura’s partnership and commitment to the community reflects “Forever” and we feel the word “Company” embraces all the vendors and professionals that have formed partnerships with us over the years. We think of them as family and definitely part of our company. And boy, are we in good company!
What is your favorite part about working in the wedding industry?
Laura: Being surrounded by all these excited, newly engaged couples year after year is incredibly inspiring. The energy of this industry is exhilarating! As a creative person, I love that I get the chance to try new things. You never know which idea will stick, but when it does, it’s so rewarding to see a new idea become a trend or really make a difference. I remember what it was like planning our wedding and I love what we are able to offer to newly engaged couples. I get to share my knowledge with them to help inform them and hopefully inspire them!
Dominick: I enjoy watching the wedding professional’s passion for their businesses. I am blessed with the unique perspective of watching each of these companies grow and improve, knowing that I had a hand in helping that – there’s never a dull moment. We know our partners are the best in the business and when a couple chooses them – it’s going to benefit both sides. It feels good to be the catalyst that causes that connection time and time again. It is an amazing feeling to know that these couples are going to have the wedding they dreamed of because we put them in touch with the right business.
What makes your business unique?
Dominick: Our business is unique because we have two very distinct and different audiences: Wedding professionals and engaged couples. Each group has very different needs and we have had to become experts in both fields so that we are constantly meeting the ever-changing needs of both sides.
Laura: We have had to learn how to market and be compelling to engaged couples, while meeting the needs of wedding professionals who want to grow their business. We have become a sort of hub where these two distinct audiences connect. We have a unique symbiotic relationship with both.
Who is the team behind your business?
Dominick is the pacesetter who keeps everything running smoothly and manages all the behind-the-scenes logistics.
Laura is the visionary who creates and manages the Forever & Company brand and keeps everyone organized and on task.
Emily is our Business Manager who keeps production, operations and communications running smoothly.
Haley is our lead sales representative who is always on the lookout for businesses who want a quick path to growth via our offerings.
Our team manages hundreds of Wedding Professional profiles, show requirements, website listings and social media marketing and inquiries. Give us a call to learn more!
Fun Fact: in 1985 Dom and his high school football team created a hashtag before hashtags were even invented! #KATBTB – kick ass to be the best! No surprise there!