We had the good fortune of connecting with Ana Rodriquez and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Ana, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Ever since the movie “The Wedding Planner” came out, I dreamt of becoming a wedding planner myself. I was fascinated with the idea of planning a beautiful event and getting to be a part of someone’s most special day. Throughout my college years I was always the friend who volunteered to help with the planning and execution of any and all milestone events in my social circle. From weddings to surprise birthday parties, I was your girl! Although after college I took a career path in banking and finance, events were still a passion for me. In 2013 I felt it was time to begin shifting from a 9-5 into something I actually enjoyed doing and was good at. That summer, my husband and I met with a business consultant and friend, Levi Jennings, to get some advice on how to turn my passion for event planning into a reality. After that meeting, I got my paperwork in order, started working with clients, and Inspired by: was officially born! Fast forward to 2018, and my path crossed with Juliette Poland while planning a friend’s wedding. At that time, Juliette was starting out in the event industry as part of the Events department at a large church in DFW. Her calm and soothing personality along with her passion for events were an immediate match for Inspired by! She began working with me as a day-of coordinator in the fall of 2018, and hasn’t stopped since! Although I’ve always had on-site coordinators to assist with the execution of events, all the planning, designing, and meetings were strictly handled by myself because Inspired by: was me. At the beginning of 2021, I knew that in order to keep growing something needed to change. After much thought, prayer, and discussion, Juliette formally stepped up as my partner, which has been a game changer. We can’t wait to see where we grow from here!

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
At Inspired by: we don’t just focus on weddings. We are a full service event planning company providing event planning and styling to corporate clients as well as private individuals. We love a large scale production as much as an intimate baby shower. We focus on the details and what makes each client unique. The name “Inspired by:” is open ended because our inspiration comes from different sources. We love taking a Pinterest vision board and translating it into our own work of art inspired by the individuality of our clients. Our passion to see each event executed flawlessly drives us to be very involved in every aspect of the planning an execution process. Over the years we’ve learned that not every lead turns into a client, and that’s ok! Our growth has been 100% organic and referral based, which is why we understand the value of quality over quantity. Our desire is for every client to experience the level of attention they deserve, so we’ve learned to say “no” in order to provide a better service. We don’t just plan and execute events; we build life-long connections with clients that turn into friends.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
There is so much to see in the DFW Metroplex! We would definitely visit downtown Grapevine, which is rich with charm and quaint spots. Brunch at Main Street Cafe is a must! While in Grapevine, we would pick up a charcuterrie board from YaYa Yum Boards. They are simply the best! From there, we would spend some time at The Shops at Legacy for some shopping and dining. Bulla Gastrobar is a fave! When you visit Texas you have to try good Texas BBQ, so 409 BBQ would be on the list as well. Depending on the season, there might be some other fun activities we could do like picking tullips, or visiting the strawberry fields. Last, but not least, we would close out their visit with a nice steak dinner at Bob’s or The Capital Grille.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
SO many people have played a role in my success in the event planning industry. My husband, Nic Rodriquez, has been my biggest cheerleader and supporter since before day 1. He’s encouraged me to keep going, to overcome challenges, and to step outside my comfort zone. Our friends, Kiley and Levi Jennings who saw my potential before I even saw it myself. My mom, Felicia Calero, who was my right hand and back bone from the very beginning. She has pulled more all-nighters with me than I can count! Isabel Chavarria, who was my very first event assistant, and the hardest working person I know. A huge thanks to Pastors Jason Gabriel, Stokes Collins, and Wendell DePrang for encouraging my growth, giving me advise, and inspiring me to dig deeper and be bolder. Inspired by: wouldn’t be here without Madison Hebert, Mycah West, Liz Rincon, Larrika Wallace, and Tabitha Curtin whose event assistance have been a crucial part of the last 8 years. A shoutout to Juliette Poland who took a leap of faith and is up to every challenge that comes our way. I big thank you to the husbands, Nic Rodriquez, Dylan Hebert, and Chase Poland for supporting and encouraging us during crazy travel season. We know those traveling months are hard, but we get through them together! My kids, Melody and Liam, who are the most patient as they understand that mom has a crazy work schedule! And last, but definitely not least, a big heartfelt THANK YOU to each and every one of our clients. You are the real MVP. Your referrals, kind words, and loyalty have brought us to where we are today.

Juliette Poland

Ana Rodriquez

Website: https://www.inspiby.com/

Instagram: @events_inspired_by

Image Credits
Photography by: Kate Panza Photography, Lindsay Davenport Photos, Lacey Thrower, and Outland Weddings, Amanda Campbell Visuals

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