Note From The Editor | Why Did I Start Moxie Brides Magazine?

Logo Design: Kristin Joiner

The website is more than 50% done, with the exception of 2 more pages that I am hoping to have finished by the end of this weekend. I have teaser content scheduled to publish starting next Tuesday until we start receiving more submissions for Fall/Winter 2017. I'm so excited at the submissions I've received thus far, they literally have me shook. 
By the way, the blog post that's below is one that I did last month on my personal website and I decided it should be published here too. I also revised it just a bit. To answer a general question, why did I decide to start a wedding inspiration blog when there's PLENTY of them out there for creatives to submit content to along with engaged couples to use as an inspiration resource for planning their wedding. 
 

Anybody that knows me know that I had already decided that I was going to pursue a career in wedding planning way before I even got to my senior year in high school. Life took me through the makeup artist path instead while I’m still attending school and as much as I love being one (& do plan on continuing this career path post-graduation), event & wedding planning is where it’s at for me. It’s the perfect career path for type A personalities such as myself whose lives revolved around being organized, making checklists, to-do lists, etc. 

My ideal wedding planning business was gonna cater to the high end, luxury clients. I'm pretty sure watching a lot of wedding shows on WeTV and wanting to be like David Tutera influenced that decision. As I've gotten older and my own personal style has changed, I had an epiphany and realized that is NOT the primary target market I wanna aim for. I've always noticed with the mainstream wedding industry, they showcase a specific type of wedding aesthetic. I rarely see brides of colors featured (with the exception of Munaluchi Bride), brides who step out of the norm & away from traditional wedding customs, etc., being featured anywhere. I'm drawn to alternative, non-traditional, offbeat weddings. I know here in my local market, there are no wedding planners who cater to that niche. Trust me if there were, I would have been asked to do an internship with them like yesterday.

None of the local wedding publications cater to that niche/aesthetic, so I thought it would be a good idea to go against the status quo and do my own digital indie publication/blog of wedding inspiration for my target market until I get enough coins to turn it into a print publication, cause print is not dead. I’m in a Facebook group of creative professionals called the Rising Tide Society. I occasionally see creatives posting gorgeous photos of tattooed couples, dark and moody photo shoots, brides wearing another color other than white for their wedding, etc. and that they would love to submit it to a blog/publication, but options are VERY very limited.

So the question is, how did I choose the name Moxie? I'm not sure where I've seen this word at, but it caught my attention & decided to look up what MOXIE means. One definition of Moxie from the Merriam-Webster dictionary is courage, determination. That is the PERFECT definition to describe the type of couples/brides I want to be featured in this publication. When you're unapologetic and have a wedding that authentically represents your own style, you definitely have the moxie to do your own thing regardless of what others think. You understand that a wedding is to showcase your love with your partner, spouse, etc. and nobody else can't define that love/happiness yall have for each other except the both of you. So why did I decide to pursue this project?
 


1. We need more diversity showcased throughout the wedding industry, that includes couples of all races, shapes, sizes, sexual orientation, disabled, etc., and wedding vendors who do not cater to the niche of traditional weddings.

Just recently, another discussion was brought up in the Rising Tide Society group regarding the wedding industry not being inclusive. As somebody who is black, you would think we were not getting married when you don't see our weddings being showcased. Plus, do you know how disappointing it is when black women can't find bridal hair/makeup inspiration on Pinterest? It comes off as if you're not a certain skin color, size, and/or do not have a wedding aesthetic that is considered acceptable, the chances of your wedding being showcased are slim. When was the last time you've seen a goth, alternative wedding published here in a mainstream publication or different races/cultures being published on a consistent basis?

2. I’m sure it would be a refreshing feeling to see REAL couples in magazines who they can relate to. 

Shallow people, in general, can be assholes and have their own idea of who deserves love/who should be celebrating their love. Just look at how the LGBT community is treated because of who they wanna marry. Trust me I’ve seen plenty of memes with an overweight woman getting affection from a man and the caption says “& I can’t even get a text back”. Oh my god Shawnee, you're seriously bringing up a meme to make a point? Trust me, most problematic memes that people post on social media, usually do it because it's something they can relate to. So if you're shaming people's physical appearances on social media, chances are you'll do it in real life too. I've always been a full figured woman ranging in sizes 12-20 growing up. I rarely see plus size brides/couples being featured. I don't get what people can't comprehend that not everybody is meant to be a size 2. Some of us have boobs, hips, and/or thighs (like myself). I would like to see a body type I can relate to and not a woman who loves having a thigh gap. 

Plus, I just came across this article AGAIN about a woman being fat-shamed when she posted her engagement photos on social media. Furthermore, her health and weight is nobody's business. It's always people who don't have the range or intellect of a doctor that like to act fake concern and project their unsolicited opinions regarding somebody's health. When you go out of your way to degrade a person based on how they look, you're basically implying if you're not conventionally beautiful, you're not worthy of love and affection. You're basically questioning how can anybody that doesn't fit YOUR ideal beauty standards get attention? 

3. We should showcase couples who have an authentic vision for their wedding that is truly their own, regardless of what other family members think.

We can’t front and act like there aren’t parents/future in-laws who have to give their opinion on everything when it comes to planning your wedding. Weddings that truly reflect the couple’s values (& not somebody else’s) are the best weddings to attend.
 

4. I'm tired of seeing as a makeup artist is brides asking us to cover up their expensive as hell ink to please their more conservative family member(s) who are attending.

If Grandma Betty or Aunt Sally doesn’t like tattoos, she can do everyone a favor and  just not attend. I plan on having at least a half sleeve of tattoos on my right arm before I turn 30 (& thigh tattoos). I wish I would cover up ink on my wedding day just to please another person and make them “comfortable”, you tried it. Plus, covering up tattoos is a pain in the ass along with it being time-consuming. 
 

5. Lastly, the word moxie is perfect to describe people who go against the status quo compared to what mainstream magazines deem as acceptable.

There’s nothing better than living an unapologetic life on your own terms and put your happiness first, that includes what you want for your wedding. I've repeated this at least 2-3 times in this post because I wanted to emphasize on that, plus it's that important. 

I'm so excited to see what submissions come through in my inbox and also looking forward to developing relationships with vendors and creative professionals galore. Feel free to reach out to me just to say hello via email along with checking out my amazing editorial board

xo,
Shawnee

Editor in Chief | Moxie Brides Magazine

makeup artist, emerging wedding planning, creative director, & college student residing in Dallas, Texas.
shawneeleonard.com