Thursday, April 28, 2005

Strike a Bargain

Women suck at negotiating. This has been proven time and time again, in study after study. They tend to be afraid to ask for what they want, unsure of their own value and lacking in confidence. I can speak for myself and say that this has definitely been one of my weak points in the past. Business Week magazine recently came out with an article that hypothesizes that this lack of savvy with negotiating is a chief cause in the disparity vs. men and women's salaries.

I can also say from experience that it helps to be aware of this weakness...and challenge yourself to get past it every opportunity you can. I stopped on my way home from work at a printer that was doing my sign for the National Stationery Show. This sign was actually supposed to be ready yesterday, however, it was promised to me by this evening at the latest. Of course, when I arrived to pick it up, it had not been done. After much hemming and hawing and back and forth, I was asked if it would be "ok" if I picked up the sign tomorrow. I calmly looked over and said "it would absolutely be long as you don't charge me for mounting the sign on the foamcore." Without missing a beat, they agreed and I got $35 knocked off my bill. Granted, this wasn't a huge chunk of money, but I was proud of myself for sensing an opportunity, acting on it, maintaining my cool, and actually getting what I asked for. Wow, is this all I needed to be doing all along?

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Blogs Will Change Your Business

According to this Business Week article you best get blogging asap, because you can bet that all your competitors are doing it.

This is really a hot discussion right now amongst business owners: to blog or not to blog. Seems to be a boon for some and a bust for others. For me, as a free, fun, and easy way to get the word out about my company and all my silly ideas, it's more of a "why not!?" question.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

CD's as Wedding Favors

The New York Times ran an amusing article today "With This CD I Thee Wed" about the rampant popularity of giving out a mix cd of a couple's song favorites as a wedding favor. One wedding coordinator quoted in the article estimated that a full 75% of her clients now give out CD favors. There were pros and cons on both sides regarding whether or not it was a good gift idea, though I must confess I remain on the con side. I've yet to be tempted to replay any cd's that I've ever received as a wedding favor and don't imagine I'll be dusting them off any time soon.

I was pretty darn happy, however, to see this fun, wedding related story on the front of the NYT Styles section!

Veiled Conceit

I recently came across a fantastico blog called Veiled Conceit billed as "A glimpse into that haven of superficial, pretentious, pseudo-aristocratic vanity: The NY Times' Wedding & Celebration Announcements. There are some rather fabulously snarky commentaries on the nuptuals of a whole host of NY couples. I caught myself laughing out loud during my maiden read-through.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Here Comes the Sun

After moving here to NYC from LA almost five years ago (gasp), I quickly fell into the groove of urban living. Traffic jams!? No thanks, I'll take the subway. Wraps!? Nah, I'll have a bagel. However, there was one thing about living in LA that truly brought me scads of pleasure: wearing flip flops every day. Practical urban dwellers are simply not able to carry off the flip flop footwear phenomenon for good chunks of the year as snow, wind, rain and sleet don't mix well with em'. But Spring is in the air, birds are a' chirpin and bees are a' buzzin and I was pretty darn pleased to dust off my flips this evening and take them out for a much deserved spin. One of my fave places online to replenish my collection is Flip Flop Trunkshow

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Daily Candy Weddings Bonanza

Upon opening my email inbox this morn, I came upon "My Big Fat Chaotic Wedding," "Marry, Marry quite Contrary," "Married and the Mob," and I knew "Daily Candy must have their annual case of wedding Spring Fever. It seems like this year they've featured a number of lesser known vendors, which was definitely nice to see. There actually is a good deal of variation from each city edition, so its worth clicking through them all. I'm crossing my fingers and clicking my heals (anyone have a lamp I can rub?) in the hopes that Paper Bride will make it into their next installment!

Monday, April 11, 2005

Colors of the rainbow

Here's a great site to check out if you are looking for some color inspiration Warning, I just spent approximately an hour and a half playing with the "spin the wheel" option. Its intended as a tool to help you with developing your online web color schemes, but I actually think its really excellent for helping you come up with any sort of color scheme: for invitations, interior decorating projects, anything.

Speaking of color, I just won an ebay auction for my new pantone Color Bridge book. We're about to take our beautiful PMS cards and have them printed process...I'm very scared. Particularly after checking out a few side by side comparisons on the screenshot for this book. Hopefully my new swatch book will make this a smidge less scary the next time around.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Wedding Industry: IN THE NEWS roundup

Some recent good reads about the Wedding Industry:

Here's an interesting article about how the boards on have become such a powerful and important source of information for brides, negative reviews can actually send businesses into a tailspin.

Yet another article on the constantly rising price of weddings. There's also some interesting insight into the idea of why brides are able to justify the expense and the psychology of creating a "dream day."

Have you been to Here's an article about how the knot pretty cleverly figured out a way to continue marketing and speaking to their bridal fan base AFTER they say "i do."

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Bag Lady

I got a fantastico recommendation at the event I went to today for a website that has a collection of the most fab canvas and nylon bags (props, yet again, to Rima Suqi), I should confess that I have a full blown, twelve step, shop till ya drop bag obsession. Sure Jimmy Choos are pretty and who wouldn't love another soft and cuddly cashmere sweater, but I would likely give up food for a week for the perfect bag. This website has all your classic bag shapes and sizes in a rainbow of colors the likes of which you haven't seen since you last opened up a Lucky Charms box. They look and feel just as gorgeous as they appear to be in their pics (I test drove one today). Though they do not do their own embroidery, they can turn you onto those who do, allowing you to make these into the some of the cutest/smartest gifts a girl could ever hope for (or a guy..they have some dude-ly looking bags too!). I've got my credit card in hand as I type ready to place my first order.

My First Weddings Showcase

I attended the New York Magazine Weddings Showcase today here in NYC and it was definitely an interesting day. I was undecided before I got there whether I should pretend to be a bride (who just happened to accidentally leave her 5 ct diamond engagement ring on the sink counter this morning, OOPS!) or whether I should use this as an opportunity to SELL, SELL, SELL Paper Bride as much as I could. Does anyone out there know of a class called: How to tell everyone in the world how fabulous your products are and not look like an idiot while doing it? or perhaps a course entitled: My stuff rocks and if you don't buy it/write an article about it in your magazine/or sell it in your store, you're dumb. If you find one, tell me pronto....I need it. Luckily, due to the unforseen circumstance of running into a former colleage fo mine from my publishing industry days, I actually managed to get some Paper Bride whoring time in...though, I'm not due any credit since it was an unintentional drive by promotional moment (baby steps, right?). The marketplace area of the show was peppered with an interesting vendor here or there, but the most fun I had was at the seminars.

Flower & Event Impresario Preston Bailey spoke about making your day special (though he failed to mention how most clients of his spend more on their flower budgets alone than most brides do on an entire wedding), but he was funny and fabulous and is insanely talented. Sylvia Weinstock everyone's favorite black-rimmed glasses wearing cake diva did a seminar as did Marc Friedland, whose company Creative Intelligence has done invites for virtually every celebrity on the planet. My hands down fave seminar, however, was given by New York Magazine's Best Bets editor Rima Suqi. I must admit that the spy in me was there to simply find out how she chooses products (in the hopes that one day we would get into her column), but the shopper in me (who already subscribes to her Best Bets Daily email) was lovin all the ideas and resources she was giving for bridesmaids and groomsmen gifts. Mind you, I don't yet have bridesmaids or groomsmen, but I loved the info anyway. She was also so smart and sassy, you just couldn't help but smile whenever she was talking. In a colossal blown opportunity, I did not introduce myself. But rest assured that Rima will be getting a cute little Paper Bride package in a month or so to make up for my scardey-cat moment of panic.

So, here's what I came away with (nothing too earth shattering): Brides still love to spend money on everything and anything; NY brides, in particular, probably spend at least double what the average American bride spends (Rima Suqi even mentioned this in her seminar "$20 dollars for a NY bride is probably like $5 dollars for any other bride."); Mothers still seem to have a significant influence on their daughter's weddings and decision making (though I also suspect this is magnified here in NY); I still don't like meringue, and brown is still v. hot. OH, and I also came away with one of the heaviest most crap filled gift bags I've ever received...the strangest inclustion: a bottle of bar-b-que sauce. Brides and bar-b-ques...this one will keep me up all night.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Don't forget about the Grooms!

Brides, let's face it, are the chief focus of the wedding industry: the chief focus of those who advertise and market and the chief focus of most people who who want to sell...well, anything at all that's remotely wedding related. It seems, however, that more and more grooms are getting their due and showing up as an important piece of this wedding industry puzzle. Check out this article, A Groom with a View which recently appeared in a local Kansas newspaper. If they're talkin about it in Kansas, you know its already a trend in most other parts of the country (apologies, in advance, to Dorothy, Toto and all the other Kansas residents). Case in point is The Groom Guide, an online planning resource targeted squarely at the broad shoulders of the oft forgotten grooms. Though it does not quite offer as in depth information as The Knot, there's lots to be found, including information on proposals, making your bachelor parties "bride friendly," and even some grooming techniques. If this trend is any indication, as the grooms get more and more involved, I'm anxious to see how the industry shifts and makes changes in order to include and capitalize off of all of these wedding crazy guys. Of course, for those who are not quite ready for "groomhood," I also came across, which I and several of my girlfriends have already spent some time browsing. It's a website for all of the women out there who happen to find themselves with a guy who may not be as anxious to march down the aisle as she is. Always a bridesmaid??

Monday, April 04, 2005

Soda POP!

As a fierce diet coke addict, I don't often stray from the mother ship and try out other brands of soda. But I came across this amazing article from Fast Company about Jones Soda and I love what their company founder has to say so much I just may grab myself a bottle. He's way on top of the importance of branding and marketing and seriously put a fresh perspective on the whole thing for me. I've noticed their labels before, but never really had any idea what it was all about; well every month they take photos that they've collected from their customers and use em' for the labeling of their soda. cool is that?!

Saturday, April 02, 2005


Last week, I was feeling completed overwhelmed. With the National Stationery Show coming up quicker than I ever imagined, a million things left to do to get Paper Bride up and running, my packaging stuck on a boat in a port in Indonesia and my full time job more annoying than ever. My boyfriend greg suggested that we get organized and spend all day Saturday working like it was a regular day during the week. He made us get up, get dressed and though I was lounging on the couch rather than my uncomfortable chair at the office, I actually got a ton accomplished. Today was day 2 of my saturday Paper Bride immersion and, I have to say, its been pretty fantastico. I make myself up a to do list, get through as much as I can, take breaks here and there and really get focused. The best part of all is that I have a ton of fun doing it. Very rarely have I experienced having a job that I am so excited to get up for in the morning (except when I was working at job that ruined me for life!...until now).