What exactly is your business?
OKOTA is a wedding design and photography company. Brides trust OKOTA with all the aesthetic aspects of their wedding day, such as photography, floral design, dessert bar design, invitation design, and day of coordination to help everything come together on the big day.
How did you come up with your business idea?
After earning degrees in graphic design and photography from Xavier University, as well as a certification as a wedding planner, I created OKOTA. It became the perfect way to combine all of my passions. Since then, OKOTA has grown to offer even more wedding design services, making it one place brides feel they can really trust to bring their vision to life across multiple aspects of their wedding day.
How did you find out about Aviatra?
I learned about Aviatra through Cincinnati’s chapter of SCORE business education and mentoring.
What is your inspiration?
I’m inspired by meeting each engaged couple and hearing about their wedding day dreams. Every couple, every love story, every wedding day is different and special in its own way. Seeing the wedding details come together from our first consultation brainstorming to a gorgeous wedding day is so rewarding. The look on the couples’ faces is enough inspiration and motivation to keep me designing weddings for a very very long time.
What has been your biggest accomplishment with your business so far?
I have an overwhelming sense of accomplishment after I hear from each couple after their wedding day. Hearing how their day was the happiest day of their lives, and how they felt that OKOTA was there for them throughout the entire day and process is so rewarding. My goal has always been to provide brides with more than just wedding services, but piece of mind that someone who truly cares is taking care of things for them on their wedding day. Testimonials of how they felt OKOTA was really invested in their happiness makes me feel like my team and I have delivered on our promises of dedication and love for each and every one of our couples.
What was the most valuable thing you gained from your experience with Aviatra?
The most valuable things I’ve gained from my experience with Aviatra are the wonderful relationships I’ve developed with other female entrepreneurs in the tri-state area. It’s awesome to be part of such an encouraging community with never-ending resources and support.
What was the biggest challenge you faced when starting your business?
Making the jump to owning my own business full time was a bit scary at first. I knew it was what I really needed to do to be able to give 110% to each and every one of OKOTA’s wonderful couples. Thankfully I have an outstanding support system that made the jump possible, and I could not be happier with my career. I’m doing what I love to do every day.
Where do you hope to be in 5 years?
I hope the OKOTA brand grows to reach even more engaged couples, providing even more wedding design services, and making lots of wedding dreams come true every weekend.
Any advice for future Aviatras?
Work hard so that you can love what you do. Owning your own business is really really hard, but the pay off is immeasurable. You just have to stay dedicated and never give up.