Wendy Daoud El-Khoury: Wedded Wonderland
Beautiful Wendy, was a Wedding Planner by trade and turned her business acumen and natural wedding whispering to establish Wedded Wonderland – the ultimate online wedding resource. This creative business opens up the opportunity for brides to find inspiration for their big day but also the very best and most unique suppliers from around the world in one place.
With her Instagram following sitting at 307,000 – it’s a testament to her knowledge on all things wedding and her bridal cult followers! Including us….
I am Founder and Director of Wedded Wonderland, I do what I do because to be honest I’ve never done something that has made so much sense and has had such impact on other people’s lives. From brides to the wedding industry, the wedding and fashion enthusiast, we are a sharing community and love all matters of love.
WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START A BUSINESS IN THE WEDDING INDUSTRY?
Once upon a time I was a very frustrated bride unable to find suppliers to cater to my creative wedding desires. I knew they were out there, I just couldn’t find them! Craving inspiration as a bride led me to believe others were experiencing the same desires, so Wedded Wonderland was born. A hub of inspiration and information for the budding fashion-forward a little eccentric and definitely gushing bride.
WHAT IS YOUR EDUCATION / STUDY BACKGROUND?
I am a high school teacher- Economics, Business, History and Theology. I went on to study Online Education. I am also a certified Project Manager, and went on to Wedding Planning after my family purchased a Wedding Venue and needed someone to run the show!
WHAT WERE SOME OF THE CHALLENGES YOU’VE FACED AS GROWING BUSINESS? HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THEM?
With an ever evolving business model in the creative industries, it is very difficult to remain focused. That has been a major challenge, there is so much we want to achieve with Wedded Wonderland. The main objective is always focusing on what the industry and brides are after, this is definitely what keeps on track in terms of the decision-making process. My staff actually have an ‘ideas book’ where they write down my million and one ideas a day, we park them until the time is right to action. You can do it all, just not all at the one time!
WHAT’S BEEN YOUR GREATEST ACHIEVEMENT?
Hearing from brides that they planned their entire wedding through Wedded Wonderland. We see snippets of our ideas and suggestions through today’s weddings, it makes us feel like we are part of so many peoples’ special day. I cannot think of a greater achievement than that.
WHAT IS THE WEDDING TIP FOR BRIDES YOU CAN GIVE?
Brace yourself and pace yourself. Stick to what you want and make it your own. The day is about celebrating your love with your partner with the ones you love, everything else comes second.
WHAT’S THE BIGGEST LESSON YOU’VE LEARNT FROM A MISTAKE YOU’VE MADE IN THE PAST?
Don’t get caught up in the small stuff. Not everyone is going to like you, especially those who see you as competition. Keep your guard up that’s for sure. In every industry there are always people who want a piece of your success, let them work for it, or pay for it!
REFLECTING ON YOUR CAREER TO DATE, WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE YOURSELF AT THE BEGINNING?
Hire staff that are NOT like you. I often like being around people who make me feel comfortable, and keep me in my comfort zone. You will never grow as a business if you don’t have a variety of skill sets and personalities to offer the market.
HOW DO YOU MANAGE STRESS / ANXIETY / WORK LIFE BALANCE?
This is a tough one. The honest truth is I don’t. I have two boys under two and I just have to learn to manage it all. One rule is putting the phone away (and I even fail at this at times) when the kids are around. They just want their mum. No matter what I achieve in life, I want to try to be a good mother and wife. My business grew as my family was growing, so I now have staff who can assist me otherwise I would go mad!
WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU / WEDDED WONDERLAND BUSINESS?
Let’s take it to the top baby. We have many contacts internationally, we would like to continue to service the local wedding market with a global focus as well as develop products that the international market are asking of us- we have an international presence and want to take WW global. Our Fairies (this is what we call our followers) are from all walks of the globe. Oh and a reality/documentary show for the National Geographic. That’s phase 50