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Fabulous Female :: COUTURE colorado

Wedding Photographer in Denver

Meet Laura Dombrowski, today’s Fabulous Female. Not only does she have a history of being an extremely successful wedding photographer in Colorado, but she has created another successful business called COUTUREcolorado.

In her twenties, she poured her heart into photography.  She loved shooting everything. Weddings somehow stuck with her through the years. She loved the fashion, the decor, the style, and all the love and emotions happening in one day.  In the last ten years, she has been a bridesmaid 9 times, photographed over 100 weddings, and finally was a bride in October of 2009.  She has seen it all from the backyard celebrations to the black-tie classic weddings.

Now freshly in her thirties, she needed a new challenge in life.  COUTUREcolorado was born on Feburary 14, 2010 –  just a few months after her own wedding.  She thought there were a lot of incredible weddings happening right here in Colorado going unnoticed.  She wanted to shine some light on these Colorado weddings and on the wedding professionals that help to create these incredible events. COUTUREcolorado’s goal is to not only inspire but to guide Colorado brides with their wedding planning.

Wedding Photographer in Denver, Colorado

wedding photography in Denver, Colorado Photography for weddings in Denver, Colorado Wedding Photographer - Laura Gravelle

1. How did your vision to start Couture Colorado begin? 

COUTUREcolorado began as a wedding blog. My vision was simple. I not only wanted to inspire the Colorado bride to have an one-of-a-kind wedding, but to guide her in the wedding planning process. I wanted to show off all the fabulous weddings that were happening here and the talented local professionals who created them. I also wanted to give small local businesses a place they could have a voice and to educate the bride. And the site had to have style! It had to be chic, modern , and “couture” like your favorite boutique.

 2. Now that you just had your 2 year business anniversary and are exploding with popularity, what would you say have been some of the biggest factors contributing to your fast business growth?  

We launched on February 14, 2010. I saw a niche here in Colorado that wasn’t being served. Having been a wedding photographer for 8 years and recently a bride, I knew what the bride wanted and what the advertising vendor wanted. This wasn’t being served on a local basis. As a bride, I wanted something stylish, informational, user-friendly and online. I wanted ideas that I could actually do and wanted to know more about the local vendors who created these ideas. As a wedding photographer, I wanted a place to advertise that was my target market. I didn’t want to waste my advertising dollars on a national focused publication. Also as a local business, I wanted to surround myself with similar businesses and wanted to network with that small community.

I think our readers keep coming back to us for our consist stylish content. We post twice a day on both WEDDING and LIFE & STYLE.

I thought COUTUREcolorado would be a good idea but I had no idea it would grow so fast. On my photography blog, I posted an announcement that COUTUREcolorado was launching and within 45 minutes two vendors had emailed me asking about advertising. COUTUREcolorado was in business! We have now grown and launched a sister site on August 1, 2011: LIFE & STYLE.

Most recently, COUTUREcolorado partnered up with Kelle McCarter of designsgirls and created paperswell, an annual art magazine specialty art magazine featuring modern ideas for paper goods & weddings. Our debut issue just has released last week. It features modern wedding invitation design. It is full of photos and info of the current trends in wedding invitation design, letterpress, and paper goods. Sixty pages of ad-free content for you to swoon over. Buy here.

3. Part of your motto is, Be An Inspiration.  Who are some people in your life who have inspired you the most?

My clients {the LISTmembers} are always inspiring me. They just get it. They have followed their passion, they are successful, and somehow manage to balance it all.

But overall, my parents have inspired me the most. Both of my parents are entrepreneurs. My parents led by example that running your own business is hard work but also rewarding. They taught me that you do things not just because of the money. Having a mom that “killed it” in the business world gave me confidence and taught me that women are a force to be reckoned with. My parents also never told me no. I have had some crazy ideas in the past and they are always told me to think about it but ultimately it is my decision. They allowed me to learn from my mistakes and give advice when needed.

4. In a culture where busyness tends to overtake us, how do you find balance between running a thriving business and being a new wife?

My mid-life crisis came early for me at 30. In my twenties, I was a complete workaholic. I thought if you work harder and longer then I am productive and successful. I have now learned to work smarter and more efficiently.

With retiring from wedding photography at the age of 30 and creating COUTUREcolorado, I promised myself to lead a balanced life. I have to consciously make myself stop working. I try to take two days off a week. They may not come in a row but I get my days off now. I say yes to more to invites to happy hours and walks with friends. I try to work out 3 – 4 times a week even if it is just a cruiser ride around Wash Park. I cook now. Before, I would work until I was starving and would have to grab something quick. I make time for me now. I make time for my husband and my friends. And best of all, I travel a lot more now for fun! I feel happy and complete. It is important to do this. Life is so merry when you have balance.

5. Do you still do wedding photography? 

Over 8 years I photographed well over 100 weddings. I am pleased to say, I have officially retired from wedding photography. I haven’t photographed a wedding in 2 years. I do not intend to ever go back to it. Maybe I will second shoot a wedding with a friend for fun in the future but that is it.

6. Do you have a favorite wedding location in Colorado? 

After shooting the same venue a few times, I was bored of it. So I would have to say anywhere that is new for me. I do have a soft spot for outdoor mountain weddings. After visiting Telluride a few times this year, I would have loved to shoot a wedding there. It is so beautiful.

7.  When you are not investing your time in Couture Colorado, how do you enjoy spending your spare time?

Skiing, hiking, golfing, tennis, playing with my dogs, pilates …..  but traveling is #1 for me. Can’t get enough of exploring new areas of the world.

8. I’ll list your many awards and publications that you have listed on your website.  Just let me know if there is anything else you would like me to add!

- Named the Top of the Town Best Blog by 5280

9. What is one fact that people might not know about you?

Here are a few:

I am a shy and a private person.

I absolutely hate being the center of attention. This probably made me a good photographer.

I am a good observer and love to people watch.

I have ridden an ostrich. It was a scary minute and a half. Those suckers can run fast!

While visiting Cuba in college, I saw Fidel Castro speak. He is known for his long speeches. It is true. He spoke for 6 hours straight.



COUTUREcolorado website

COUTUREcolorado on Facebook

COUTUREcolorado on Twitter

COUTUREcolorado on Pinterest

{Laura Gravelle is a wedding photographer in Denver, Colorado. Still booking weddings in Colorado and worldwide for 2012 and 2013. Connect on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest}