The Launch Issue

Rethinking the Norm


Jenna Ushkowitz

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For the Love of It photography

Letter from the Editors

Brides Digital Issue 1

Design by Cristina Cianci

The idea of a Brides digital issue came about when Dotdash, our parent company, acquired the storied glossy in 2019. Until then, the brand had lived its 87 years mainly as a print product, showcasing the glamorous weddings of couples like Serena Williams and Alexis Ohanian, plus Chanel Iman and Sterling Shepard. Reinventing it in an all-digital format in 2020 made perfect sense. Until, that is, it didn’t.

Tabling our vision doesn’t come close to the planning and replanning roller coaster so many of you have been on these last 18 months. But, there are silver linings, Jenna Ushkowitz being the biggest. Her intimate COVID-friendly nuptials will have you screenshotting for days of inspo to come. (PSA: the Frenchie content is too good.) And one of my favorite stories, wedding trends from TikTok—a platform that was way less wedding-y just a short time ago— wouldn’t have been seen the light of day.

So here we are, September 15, 2021, still unsure of the future, but feeling proud and privileged to be Rethinking the Norm with you. So glad you’re here.

— Leah Wyar, SVP & GM

In July, I booked my first work trip in recent memory for a wedding in L.A.…in some twist of fate, the exact trip I had cancelled the week the pandemic began. The lucky couple? Our cover star, Glee actress Jenna Ushkowitz, and her partner David Stanley.

It truly felt like the world was coming back. And it honestly was, in such a profound way that it almost felt serendipitous. Case in point: My first morning in L.A., just hours before I was scheduled to meet Jenna and David’s photographer, I looked up from my club sandwich at the Sunset Tower Hotel, only to see Jenna, David, and their families at the table across from me. After months of emails and Zooms, I hugged Jenna like a friend. We gushed over the wedding details. And, like a true Brides editor, I left her with a bit of advice: Be present—it’ll fly by! And, for Jenna and David, it did.

Now, just a few short weeks later, we’re sharing their (beautiful) wedding photos in the first-ever digital issue of Brides, the Launch Issue. Our theme is Rethinking the Norm, an idea that felt not only appropriate for the time, as we’re beginning to look beyond the pandemic and imagine what the future holds, but also for this next chapter of Brides—a new beginning for a legacy brand. 

It's officially a new age of weddings! Let’s rethink the norm, together.

— Anna Price Olson, associate editorial director

Cover Story

Jenna Ushkowitz wedding

Jenna Ushkowitz and David Stanley’s Romantic Wedding

“Planning during Covid-19 was incredibly difficult with the climate changing by the day,” admits bride Jenna Ushkowitz, now Stanley, who got engaged to fiancé David Stanley in July 2020. “There were times we thought we wouldn’t be able to do it at all or would only be allowed to have 20 guests.”...

Read More

Coming Together

The New Normal

One Size (Does Not) Fit All

Background Image Bubbles

The Moment

Jenna and David share a private kiss in their reception hall

"Cynthia, our planner, took us into the dining room before it opened; she said, ‘I want you to see it before everyone gets inside.’ No one had advised us to do this before the wedding but I’m so glad we did. Those little moments of us getting away for a second were really great and are vivid in my mind."

—Jenna Ushkowitz