Vendor Highlight | Collected & Co Rentals
Hospitality and the guest experience are at the forefront of what they do. Collected & Co's relaxed and personal approach to design, styling, and rentals transforms clients into friends. They approach design with an openness to new ideas, a fearlessness to try new things and a passion to create events as unique as their clients. Collected & Co is a Diamond Award Winner for Outstanding Event Decor.
Here is a little chat I had with Jacqueline, one of the two brains behind this triple threat of a duo.(you'll see what I mean).
COLLECTED & CO | Jacqueline + Russ
Ok, there has been some change up in the company lately, give me a brief description of what has been going to get us up to speed!
Yes, lots of change! Mari and I had met when were were styling people rather than events and hit it off! We were growing our wedding businesses, hers Collected Rentals and ours Birch Hill Barn, at the same time and did Birch Hill Barn’s first styled shoot together and you could say the rest was history! When Mari made the hard decision to move back west to be closer to family, she approached Russ and I to talk about what it would look like to purchase her business. Same company, same work ethic, same vision; just new owners to continue serving clients with beautifully curated events.
Tell me about the new Collected team!
We are Russ and Jacqueline Johannesson; about us - gosh I could write a book on that as we have been together since we were twelve! We are both from Chicago and transplanted ourselves to Minnesota after we moved out of our beloved Waco, Texas.
I have worked in the wedding industry since I was 15 when I was working at a bridal salon in my hometown. I planned luxury corporate events in Chicago and that is when I truly fell in love with wedding and events. I handle all our event planning, design and styling for Collected & Co.
Russ, he is that guy everyone wants to be friends with. Russ’s background is in marketing and operations, so he handles all of the behind the scenes aspects of our businesses. He also handles the rental side of the business to make sure collections are where they need to be and when. He really enjoys working on custom projects for our clients.
What services do you offer?
We offer full-service event planning, design, styling, rentals and custom installations and pieces for weddings, events, retail and so much more! The good and bad thing with us is we sometimes try to take on everything...ask us to build a house for you and I bet we would try and figure out how to do it :)
What if a client wants to create something from scratch (escort card display, dessert display,etc), is that something you can help with?
We have a two-year-old, so the Paw Patrol theme song comes to mind when I read this question and think “No jobs too large, no request too small, Collected & Co is on the roll.” If you have a child you get it :) But we can do most everything! I typically design everything with my clients and run it past Russ to make sure I’m not nuts and he can build it and then we go from there to make our client’s ideas and dreams come to life!
What other projects are you two part of?
We own Birch Hill Barn, a wedding barn right outside the cities in Glenwood City, Wi, and Simply Proposed; Minnesota’s premier wedding planning site that connects couples and vendors that share the same vision.
If you were given $100K, would you run your business any differently, and how so?
Absolutely NOT! Well I mean we would invest in new inventory and get an AMAZING warehouse, but we wouldn’t run our business differently. When we first jumped head first into the wedding industry we promised we would run everything like it was us getting married and honor Christ in everything we did. The way we answer questions from our clients to the way our businesses function is how we would want it if it were our wedding. Our decisions are not always the best business decisions and don’t make things easier on us, but we will hold true to our promise to ask ourselves what would we want to hear if it was us asking these questions.
What pieces of your business are you most proud of?
Our ability to provide customization to everything we do, so our clients' events are one of a kind. Custom displays, lighting, installations, furniture. We are also so proud that we have the ability to partner with so many other wonderful creatives in the cities. We cannot do what we do without the help of so many other small businesses!
What would you love to see more of in the wedding world this year (design, trends, etc)
Our hairpin leg tables ;)
I am so inspired by what is happening in Austin, Texas these days as it’s so out of my comfort zone! My personal style is more classic and feminine - think weddings in Style Me Pretty, but what is happening in Austin is so bohemian and moody! I want to work on that style more couples and bring it up north! Just think all the leather, metals, black, vintage rugs...oh gosh I want more of that! I would love to see vendors challenging themselves to push their creative minds beyond what they know they are good and try new things!
What is your favorite piece of your collection right now?
Can’t pick one so mine (Jacqueline's) is our Ellie Blush couch. It’s named after our ever-so-girly daughter and it’s just so soft and feminine and I LOVE IT! I cannot wait to see it at events this year, as it is brand spanking new.
Russ’s favorite piece is the hairpin leg farm tables. They are modern yet rustic and were a labor of love as we designed them together and worked so long to find the perfect stain. Is like nothing else that is out in the Minneapolis market and we cannot wait to see a full fleet of these tables at events!
Where have you always wanted to travel for work?
I know this is not the most common OR cool kid answer, but no. When we travel its for rest, relaxing and a time to reconnect with one another. Will we turn down a wedding in the Amalfi Coast...ABSOLUTELY NOT!
What's the first thing you do every morning to start your day off on the right foot?
Coffee, cannot function without it and snuggles from our Elle girl.
How can brides and grooms find you on the interwebs?