The very first BaB to be featured is actually someone I've written about before. When I discovered her blog, I knew I had to reach out to her and I am so grateful that she accepted my offer for an interview! Thank you so much, Tracy! And I hope you all will enjoy getting to know her!
I love the title of your blog, Tracy, “Everything She Wants”. What’s the inspiration behind the name?
For a year and a half I wrote a daily beauty and style blog called Hot Mama Daily for b5media. When that blog folded, I decided to start my own beauty and style blog. Over a weekend I brainstormed names with my husband and came up with Everything She Wants, which is the title of my favorite Wham! song. For those too young to remember Wham, it was an '80s pop duo that included George Michael. The name also signifies what the blog's content includes -- everything she wants in beauty, style, fitness, fashion, etc. What makes my blog different, however, is that I make an effort to spotlight products, designers, and trends that have a self-esteem or charitable benefit.
In addition to your blog, you’ve written for Essence, Upscale, The NY Daily News, and AM New York on fashion, travel, health and a myriad of other subjects. Is there one subject in particular that you are really passionate about?
I'm passionate about all those subjects. I love to shop. I love to travel. And I'm conscious about my health. The thread is all of my work is providing serviceable information to the reader and capturing a story whether I'm interviewing a fashion designer, health expert, or recording artist.
You are amazingly knowledgeable about fashion, and your blog definitely reflects this. What recent trends are you most excited about?
I'm excited about the African/ethnic/tribal trend that was hot this spring and is carrying over to the summer. I recently did a post on three African-and-African-inspired lines that have a charitable benefit.
My readers were first introduced to you when I posted the story of your 2008 wedding. Are many people astonished (as I admittedly was) that you managed to pull off such a beautiful wedding in N.Y.C for under $5000? Why do you think that there aren’t more budget brides out there?
I think most women have literally bought into the wedding industry hoopla about how much you have to spend on your dress and your wedding. I'm a budget shopper by nature, so that's how I approached my wedding. I know you don't have to spend a lot to look like you did. I went to several bridal events and the energy was so frenzied and geared towards selling brides an expensive and generic experience. I wanted an intimate, eclectic wedding that reflected my taste, and a sterile catering hall and a $2500 dress is not my style. I don't mean to knock other women if that's the experience they want. But once I decided that wasn't the type of wedding I wanted, I was able to create the wedding I did want.
We picked the Brooklyn Botanic Garden's Japanese Pond because of the sheer natural beauty, the minimal donation, and it's tucked away and private. Luckily we had a clear, sunny morning for the ceremony.
After going to the Running of the Brides sale at Filene's and a few other bridal boutiques, I didn't find a dress that I loved and wasn't willing to pay $250 or more for what I'd tried on. So with only two months left before the wedding, I decided to do a Google search for what I wanted. I'm on the computer all day but I'd forgotten how useful the internet can be in terms of shopping. From my search I found my dress on Ebay. I was the only bidder and I got it for $27. The seller had planned to wear the dress, which she bought at Saks Off the Rack, but couldn't fit it. So I got the dress brand new. Luckily it fit perfectly and I only had to make one slight alteration.
For the reception, I'd visited several catering halls and other outdoor venues where the catering cost would be separate. I wasn't sold on any of the food I'd tasted and the bill for catering alone would have been more than $5k. So after I talked to a co-worker who had her wedding reception at a restaurant, my wheels started turning. We picked Madiba, a South African restaurant in Fort Greene because of the open, light-filled space and the cultural atmosphere. The owner is also very personable and accommodating. I think it was the first wedding reception he'd hosted at the restaurant and he and his staff exceeded our expectations. By having the reception during brunch time, we saved money and Madiba was able to open for their regular dinner service.
What advice would you give to brides-to-be who want to plan a wedding without selling breaking the bank?
Do your wedding your way. Don't give into pressure from the wedding industry or even family and friends. You know best what you want. Be creative and find a way to execute the wedding you want without going into debt. It takes a little more thought, but you'll be happier with the outcome.
What’s next for you? Any scoop on what you are working on now?
I'm working on boosting readership for Everything She Wants and working on freelance articles for Juicy Magazine (a new beauty and hair magazine), amNewYork, and SheKnows.com. I'm also drafting a book proposal for a budget bride book. Other than that, I'm always in the market for lifestyle, fashion, and entertainment writing assignments and blogging opportunities. So if there are any editors out there reading this, I'd love to hear from you.
Be sure to visit Tracy at http://www.everythingshewants.net
*If you'd like to featured in a future BaBs posting, or want to suggest a BaB for me to profile, please click here to contact Miss Moon's Musings.