Florals, weddings and design are things all #Black Southern Belles love but Nadia Johnson-Beard does for a living. This Lousiana Bred belle is one of the premier wedding planners and floral designers in the South. Based in Houston and Nashville, her firms Studio 82 Events & Design can take care of you for next event or wedding. Not only is she an all star wedding planner, but she LOVES the South and all things Southern. Learn more about this creative belle today and be inspired to follow your creative dreams!
Studio 82 Events & Design
What You Provide:
Event planning & design and floral design
Where are you based?
Houston, TX & Nashville, TN
Why did you decide to start a business?
Though I’d been informally producing events since the age of 16, my big sister gave me the big push to turn what I loved into a business about 10 years after that. It’s a wonderful thing that be able to find your passion and make it a lifetime career.
What is your favorite client story?
My company had the pleasure of planning and designing the wedding of our lead planner’s younger brother. His wife loved us so much that she joined our team! She’s now our assistant designer and resident makeup artist.
What is your website?
Who are some of your business idols and why?
There are so many! Preston Bailey-We share the same love for over-the-top, luxurious designs, but more so for his unapologetic transparency. He’s an open book and doesn’t mind sharing his struggles in order to help others. It’s extremely admirable. Diddy! He’s a true mogul. He never accepts defeat or take no for an answer. I’ve always admired his business acumen. Amanda Miller LittleJohn-She’s a force to be reckoned within the PR/Branding industry, and she does it such grace.
Do you have any mentors and how have they helped you?
Yes! I’ve been blessed to be a part of a large network of wedding professionals of color from all over the country whom have all contributed to my growth and acted as a support system. More specifically, Jackie Nwobu & Chike Nwobu-Ikenga, the creators of MunaLuchi Bride Magazine, have served as great business mentors. Also, Diann Valentine, who I like to call my “fairy godmother”, has helped me tremendously throughout the years with business advice, words of encouragement, and most importantly prayer.
What is your favorite thing about being southern?
It’s hard to name just one! I’m from Louisiana and I LOVE everything about being from “the Boot”. But since I have to pick just one, I would say the ingrained sense of hospitality that we have. I love being met with smiles from strangers in passing, the “ma’ams” and “sirs” that follow every other sentence. We’re so gracious and warm, and I love it.
What is your favorite thing about Southern Brides?
Southern brides absolutely love a good party with great food that has to include all of their long lost cousins (lol) and friends. They hold tight to their family and cultural traditions, but always make them their own.
What is your favorite southern wedding dish and why?
I would have to say shrimp and grits. It never gets old. Minus the pork though. lol
What is the most important thing you have done to build your business?
Build real relationships with talented industry professionals. I’m a big believer in community over competition. Relationships are immensely important in this industry, and I love that I can be great friends with some of the best in the world. It’s for the best interest of the clients in our market, and it boosts (not hinder) our businesses.
What are some of your favorite color schemes to do florals and why?
I can never get enough of purple, so anything that includes purple makes my heart flutter. I love hues of purples, pinks, and reds together, because it’s such a rich and royal palette. Blush pink, gold, and black is another favorite. Besides, being my brand’s color palette, I think it can go so many ways depending on how it’s styled. It’s both bold and feminine.
How do you incorporate your southern roots into your work style?
I love to greet clients and vendors with good food and gifts. I believe it is a great gesture to let people know that they are appreciated. I am always so thankful for all of my encounters, and I like to make people feel like they are welcomed. Comfortable people are happy people.
What are some of the most southern things you have seen at a wedding?
I would have to say king cake favors and the infamous second-line band. It’s not over until the second-line music plays and the white napkins and decked out umbrellas are swinging in the air.
What are your favorite southern brands? Why?
Ok, none of these things are “good” for you, but I LOVE them. Lol. I’m a Louisiana girl so, most definitely Tony Chachere’s Seasoning, all Tabasco products (popcorn, hot sauces, etc.), and Cafe Du Monde (thank goodness they put their beignet mix in a box and their chicory coffee in a can. Lol). However, my favorite southern brand is Blue Bell Ice Cream (restock the shelves please!).
What are some of your favorite southern flowers and why?
There aren’t really a lot of cut flowers used in weddings that are indigenous to the South, but my all time favorite southern flower is the Magnolia. Every time I see them, I am reminded of home. There was a large magnolia tree in the front yard where I lived growing up, so they bring back great childhood memories.
What is your favorite item or piece of clothing to wear/use while doing business?
It really depends on the setting. If I’m in a business meeting, it’s my favorite gold link bracelet by Banana Republic. If I’m designing flowers or creating custom decor, it would be my black yoga pants. I’m sure my team (and my husband) are sick of seeing them, but they are sooo comfy! I need as much freedom. It’s manual labor for crying out loud.
Bride with bridal party – Studio Tran Photography
Flower halo photos – Emajelle Photography
Headshots – Tomayia Colvin Photography
Tablescape, bouquet, and couple – No Ceilingz Photography
Purple flowers -Priceless Photography