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IVillage Puts a Bride in a Box

Wedding Promotes Site's New Section, Manhattan's Diamond District

By Published on .

Event: Wedding in a Box
Date: July 10
Marketer: iVillage
Venue: 47th Street & Fifth Avenue

NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- You've heard of jack-in-the-box, wine in a box and even Justin Timberlake ringing in the holidays by putting something in a box. But a wedding in a box?

Photo: Gregory Palmer
IVillage created a 'Wedding in a Box' on the corner of 47th Street and Fifth Avenue in New York City.

Friends, family and passers-by
On the southwest corner of 47th Street and Fifth Avenue, iVillage created a life-size "Wedding in a Box" for a Brooklyn Heights, N.Y., couple. Complete with multitiered chocolate cake, champagne and flowers, the wedding brought together the couple's friends, family -- and passers-by on their lunch breaks. IVillage "bridesmaids" passed out blue-and-white-trimmed garters that invited people to the website and offered a chance to win an all-expenses-paid vacation to a Sandals resort.

The event helped draw attention not only to the official launch of the site's wedding section but also to Midtown's Diamond District.

"We wanted to have some fun with this," said Linda Boff, chief marketing officer of iVillage. "We wanted to do something that would cut through the clutter. We wanted to be seen by thousands of couples that had weddings on the mind."

By logging on to the site's weddings channel, a bride-to-be can find a reception venue, shop for a fashionable dress and plan a bachelorette party on a budget. The site is not just for the bride and groom but for their family and friends as well.

Photo: Gregory Palmer
Jessica Stern and Kenneth Haim of Brooklyn Heights, N.Y., couldn't decide whether to have a big or small wedding -- so they had both.

"We really see iVillage Weddings not just for the bride and groom but for the wedding party," Ms. Boff said. "It's a great way to stay connected. People can stay in touch [and] talk about the gifts they got, their honeymoon stories."

'Fun people'
When bride Jessica Stern, 29, and groom Kenneth Haim, 30, couldn't decide whether to have a big or small wedding, iVillage helped the couple out and provided them with an intimate ceremony for family and friends in a setting for the world to see. "We love New York," Mr. Haim said. "We met in New York and now we're getting married in this cool box. We're fun people, and this was a fun idea."

Ms. Stern, who's an iVillage member, wasn't as worried about the wedding itself as she was about crying in front of all the guests -- invited or not. "It's very memorable," she said. "As we were walking here, everyone was congratulating us. There's something so universal about weddings no matter where they are."

And when the two walked into the wedding box, everyone started to wipe their faces dry of tears -- or sweat, thanks to a July heat wave. Even the scorching sun and the symphony of traffic couldn't stop the ceremony from being a memorable one.

Photo: Gregory Palmer
'Bridesmaids' from iVillage passed out garters that invited people to the website and offered a chance to win an all-expenses-paid vacation to a Sandals resort.

Traffic on iVillage tripled after the couple made an appearance on NBC's "Today" before the ceremony, Ms. Boff said.

Aileen Fang, who had visited iVillage before, thought the wedding was a good way to get the word out about the site.

'Only in New York'
"This happens only in New York," the 27-year-old said. "But it gives [iVillage] good publicity."

Karen Keenan of Pennsylvania, who happened to find the event while she was walking along Fifth Avenue, said iVillage could've helped her when she planned her wedding.

"I was married before the internet," Ms. Keenan said. "I had to look at magazines for help."
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