We handpicked the best of the best entrepreneurs in our industry to join us for Bliss & Bespoke. We are excited to offer you the opportunity to learn from each of these incredibly talented speakers & special guests!
Calder Clark | Owner + Creative Director, Calder Clark

Named a top planner by Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar as well as one of the best planners in the country by Martha Stewart Weddings, Calder Clark has garnered a devoted following for her exquisite weddings and flawless logistics. Calder infuses events with her trademark Southern flair and warmth, developing a sensory experience by layering lush florals, nuanced colors, dressmaker details, and ambient lighting throughout her parties.

Nearly two decades of event design have established Clark and her firm as classicists. “Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should”, she says. “A curator’s approach, an editor’s eye, and a near-reverence for refinement are the hallmarks of great design.” The best parties are intricate behind the scenes, but effortless in their rollout: “ . . . leaving guests to wonder just how such a night came to be.”

From offices in Charleston, South Carolina and Raleigh, North Carolina, the Calder Clark team plans a limited annual number of exclusive destination affairs on both a domestic and international level. Her work has been featured in numerous publications such as Veranda, Coastal Living, Town & Country, Elle Decor, and Southern Living. She is a regular contributor to Flower Magazine and Real Simple, as well as a national speaker and mentor.
At home in Charleston, Calder loves spending time with her husband and two babies, playing tennis, eating way too much ice cream, and re-learning the piano.

Visit Calder / Calder Clark

Valerie Gernhauser | Owner + Designer, Sapphire Events

I am a recovering attorney, Yale grad, pug lover, Springsteen fanatic, and Florida native. Calm, cool, and collected is my mantra. I’m a natural-born leader that takes pride in moving people, creating memorable milestones, and maintaining poise under pressure.

As a thought leader and industry expert in the event space, I’m grateful to share my knowledge on national platforms such as the Engage! Luxury Wedding Business Summit, Trouvaille Workshop, Cultivate Retreat, Munaluchi’s Coterie Retreat, and honored to present as a keynote speaker at SEPA, ILEA, NACE, and and WIPA events across the country. I’m very proud of the success of my Sapphire Sessions speaking tour, a specialized program for wedding planners and event designers aimed at elevating event industry best practices for the benefit of the greater good.

I like getting lost in Anthropologie, spontaneous road trips, mixing metals and prints, kitchen dance parties with my daughters, and getting my hands dirty in a flower bucket or two. I’m a consummate over-achiever and a habitual mover-and-shaker. I consider myself very fortunate to bear witness to unfettered, intrepid, veracious love stories on Saturdays. I’m living the life I’ve imagined.

Visit Valerie / Sapphire Events

Anna Richardson | Founder + Creative Director, Anna Lucia Events

Anna brings a ceaseless love and passion to planning and designing, for any type of event imaginable.  She has more than twelve years of experience in event planning and design and team management.  Her scope of work ranges from Weddings to Corporate Events and any type of Social Event one can dream of. Because each client is unique, she has strived to create a custom team of experienced professionals to best meet our client’s specific planning and design needs.  Everyone on the ANNA LUCIA EVENTS team is dedicated to one goal — a successful event or spectacular wedding designed just for you.

In addition to being an event planner, designer and coordinator for multiple firms conducting more than $100 Million in annual sales, Anna holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Stetson University with a major in Marketing.  She has learned to truly put her degree to work in a unique way and with an unending love to create a one of a kind “brand” for each of our client’s event experiences.  She has found that the same way you go about “creating” a corporate or company brand is the best way to go about “creating” a customized, one-of-a-kind “brand” for each and every one of our client’s events, but on a much more personal and emotional level.
Anna and her team have recently been named as one of the Top Planners by Martha Stewart Weddings, in the United States.

Visit Anna / Anna Lucia Events

Shanna Skidmore | Founder + Business Strategist, Shanna Skidmore Consulting

Shanna Skidmore is a business strategist and financial coach. Nicknamed the “dream-releaser” by her clients, she helps entrepreneurs make money doing what they love by building profitable & sustainable businesses. For the past 10 years she has been immersed in the world of small business development and finance. By studying patterns of success, she now coaches and consults with creative entrepreneurs on business principles she found to be key indicators of success. Her background in finance, psychology and art, have allowed her to marry the world of business and creativity. Her greatest joy is watching others transform their stories and build businesses & lives they love!

Visit Shanna / Shanna Skidmore

Lisa Thomas | Founder + Owner, Ooh! Events + Out of Hand

Lisa Thomas moved to Charleston close to 20 years ago to fulfill the role of director for Family Circle Cup tennis tournament when it relocated to Charleston. From there, she decided to follow her heart and passion and turned her attention back to event planning. Today, Lisa is the owner and creative director of Ooh! Events & Out of Hand. Ooh! Events is a unique combination of event planning and full service floral shop. Ooh! Events also carries a large selection of one-of-a kind rentals. Her charming retail boutique, Out of Hand, is located in the heart of the historic Old Village in Mt. Pleasant.

Lisa is a lover of champagne, Netflix and travel. She is a conduit in connecting people, ideas, art, places, beautiful things and concepts. She thrives on bringing daydream ideas to life with the help her passionate and creative team and finds true joy in making her clients happy.

Visit Lisa / The Art of Creating


Along with our headline speakers + workshop hosts, we’ll be meeting up with some other exciting special guests throughout the retreat!