We’ve been so excited watching the WeddingLovely Blog grow in pageviews and uniques — we love working on this blog and it’s so great you think so too!
We’re running a winter super duper sale for advertising — sidebar advertising starts at just $5/month and we also have a special deal on running partnered posts! Interested? Email [email protected] for our media kit with traffic stats and rates!
It’s been nearly 4 months since Luis and I got engaged.
The time has really flown by, and since Luis was teaching this summer and preparing to finish his dissertation and I have been so heads down building awesome features for WeddingLovely, I have to admit (somewhat embarrassingly) that we haven’t done much wedding planning.
We have decided two things: it will be next summer, 2013, and it will be in California. Details: TBD.
However, our lack of planning is slowly contributing to more family inquisitiveness. My parents have started sending me wedding invitations that they have received, and they have written out what they like and/or don’t like about them. My sister text-messaged me last week to ask if I was changing my name (I’m not).
The engagement shoot briefly satisfied my parents that we were making progress, and Luis was happy that his parents could finally have a better photo to put up in their home on the wall with the rest of the family (the previous photo they hung up after we announced we were engaged we were both wearing Pajamas and Luis had horrible bed head and looked like Egon from Ghostbusters.)
But, alas, another month went by with no progress and I recently got a rude awakening that we need to start seriously planning. This happened when: (1) My hairdresser reminded me that her availability for next summer is quickly filling up, and (2) a close friend who got engaged after me already has her venue booked and her save-the-date cards in the mail! Then, (3) a cousin of mine who also lives in California got engaged and my parents emailed me asking us to coordinate so that we wouldn’t get married on the same weekend.
This all made me realize that if we don’t get this process rolling, then all the venues and dates might be gone, and I’ll be coordinating with more and more people in my family as more cousins get engaged (I have many, many cousins).
So, of course, I’ve been using WeddingLovely and our first task was to determine our wedding style. I used the quick links to sort out where we fit in. We’re definitely a “casual” pair but we’ll see if we slowly creep into formal…(casual is more “budget friendly” than formal). I would also describe us as wanting a “Garden Style” wedding. Next up we will start tackling the budget. Speaking of which, have you seen the sample budget breakdown in WeddingLovely? It’s fabulous and very useful! Once we’re done with that we’ll get a venue booked…(baby steps, baby steps).
We’ve decided to spend a few hours every weekend on wedding planning, so I promise more exciting details to come!
WeddingLovely.com, our online planning and wedding website web app, is doing something a bit different in the world of weddings — we’re charging up front (starting at $14.99 per month) rather than creating revenue through advertisements. It’s always been my biggest pet peeve with wedding companies, where so many websites are chock full of advertisement and spam — we wanted to give our best, most useful, and unbiased advice and information about planning your wedding, without worrying about promoting advertisers!
This system also makes it easy for us to reward referrals, and I’m happy to announce the launch of our referral program today! Quite simply, if you sign up for a unique referral link:
Every person you refer receives a 33% off coupon to WeddingLovely.com
And you get 10% of what they paid. So if someone pays $79 in our pay once tier, you get $7.90. For our monthly subscriptions, you’ll receive 10% for every month for 12 months — up to $18 per referral!
If engaged and using WeddingLovely.com already, even better — if you refer 5 new accounts to us, we’ll refund your account, so you’ll get WeddingLovely for free as well!
If you haven’t used WeddingLovely.com and want to check it out before referring, just let me know at [email protected] and I can set you up with a test account for free.
Check out what’s happening this Saturday in San Francisco! The Unveiled Bridal Style Revealed show will be at the Metreon from 11am to 3:30pm, featuring a Vera Wang Bridal runway show and vendors from all over Northern California.
Tracy will be heading to the event with her camera and documenting the amazing vendors for posts next week, but you should come see the show in person too! Tickets are $30, buy them here. Hope to see you there!
A few weeks ago, the WeddingLovely team went on an adventure. Not just ANY adventure, but a real live engagement shoot. Not just ANY engagement, but the one of our lovely and talented Julia! Josh Gruetzmacher Photography was kind enough to let us tag along to Half Moon Bay and share in the excitement of Julia and Luis. The photos in this post were taken with our iPhones, thanks to a camera battery mishap. But, that’s okay because tomorrow we’ll be sharing Josh’s photos – which are all kinds of awesome. Thanks Josh!
Can you believe that this is practically in our backyard? This is the spot where Julia said “yes.” If you missed it, you can read her engagement story here. Half Moon Bay is such a beautiful place.
“Since you work at a wedding startup, does that mean that you’re going to get married soon?”
Welcome, readers, to my life. When I decided to join Tracy full-time in a co-founder/CTO role at WeddingLovely, the decision had certain implications. My friends and family, of course, thought that Luis and I would be getting engaged soon. I would kindly smile and laugh when they would mention this to me, and say something along the lines of “we’ll see.”
But we are getting ahead of ourselves.
Our First Date
Our story starts back on Saturday, August 22, 2009 in Palo Alto, CA (and like all stories of this type, of course, it was a beautiful, warm, sunny California day). Luis and I had our first date planned to get wine at a local wine tasting room, but found the streets shut down and sleepy in preparation for an arts festival happening the next day. We awkwardly wandered around downtown Palo Alto together while trying to figure out what to do, each trying to be polite and flexible given that we barely knew each other. As it happens, we ended up at a small, well-known wine bar a few blocks away (this is northern California you know!). When the waiter came to take our drink order we asked if he had any recommendations. He said: “Describe to me what kind of wine you like.” I’m not at all reserved about this so I gave a description and asked him to please bring me a “robust, intense red wine, maybe something from Italy.” The waiter then turned and asked Luis what kind of wine he liked and Luis responded simply with: “I want the exact opposite of what she just said.”
At the time, I thought to myself something like: “Hum, I don’t think this is going very well.”
Seated and awaiting our wine, cheeses, and other whatnots, our conversation started as unmemorably as most. You know, “tell me more about what you do,” that sort of thing. When it came to our careers, we had almost nothing in common. I was at IBM Research, where I had started after finishing graduate school in computer science. Luis studied economics and then worked as an investment banker in New York City. He then spent time in London getting his MA in Philosophy. Since that little test passed, as far as he could tell, he decided that Philosophy was worth pursuing. So he gave up banking when he was offered a spot to earn his PhD in Philosophy from Stanford. I, on the other hand, promptly left graduate school with my MS and never wanted to return to academia again.
To sum up, our initial conversation didn’t seem to leave us with much to build on. But of course, things got a little better. We ended up walking around downtown, joking and bantering while admiring the street art that had already been prepared for the next day’s festival. There were all kinds of beautiful drawings in chalk on the street that we got to see before the festival even began. And so it turns out, things ended better than they had begun. To be quite honest though, despite the fact that we had a nice time and he was very polite, well-spoken and exotically attractive (Mexican and Asian heritage with striking green eyes!), I didn’t think Luis would ever call me again. I might have called him, but ultimately I just kind of figured that he wasn’t that into me.
I was wrong.
See how their relationship turned into something more after the jump…
We are thrilled to be a group of three! Tracy called upon her lovely friend and awesome photographer, Karly, to take some official team pictures of us. The rain that’s been pretty regular over the last few weeks decided to cooperate with us on Friday, so we took full advantage and headed to a local garden. We had so much fun, here are some of my favorites from the day…along with a few silly ones. Thank you so much, Karly!
Happy Monday everyone, from the WeddingLovely team! :)
Team WeddingLovely spent our Valentine’s Day with a great group of women at Women 2.0’s PITCH Conference. There were close to one thousand female tech entrepreneurs, engineers, designers, investors and supporters, how awesome is that? We listened to many great speakers, had inspiring conversations and met some truly talented and intelligent women. It was a long day, but Tracy and I were able to talk to so many people about WeddingLovely. We received so much wonderful feedback and some really great suggestions that we hope to start implementing over the next few months. Yay!
We want to give a shout out and an extra-big thank you to the team at Locally Grown Weddings (also a group of female entrepreneurs!). They were nice enough to provide a beautiful bouquet of organic daffodils and mini cupcakes (gluten-free lemon with Grand Marnier buttercream… yum!) for our table. We were so proud to feature one of our vendors at our table. After all, that’s what we are all about: spreading our vendor love!
We are passionate about WeddingLovely, so it was a fitting way to spend our Valentine’s Day. Thank you to everyone who stopped by to learn more about us!