Category Archives: Giveaway

We Have a Winner!

We’re excited to announce the winner of our Brandy Mars Design greeting card giveaway is Hettie, who wrote:

Screen Shot 2017-02-15 at 8.14.50 PMAs a fellow long-distance-relationship couple, Ashley and I were simply delighted to give Hettie the opportunity to send one of Brandy’s beautiful cards to her girlfriend. They met in school, and have since gone off to different universities in England, and although she says, “we are not very far apart, compared to American or international long distance couples, but it has still been a struggle trying to visit each other during busy term times!”

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Some of their favorite activities include going to concerts and art exhibitions, baking, and “lazing around in front of Netflix (we are currently working our way through Black Sails).” Hettie also sent the photo below, in which they are “dancing (badly) at Manchester Pride.”

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Many thanks to all who entered the giveaway—we wish we could send every single one of you a card! Although Valentine’s Day has now passed, you can still head over to Brandy’s store to get a little something for your next card-giving occasion—or plan wayyyy in advance for next year’s Valentine’s Day!

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Giveaway: Brandy Mars Designs!

When Brandy got in touch to tell us about her line of hilarious and adorable LBTQ greeting cards, we couldn’t have been more excited! We here at A Bicycle Built for Two are all about romance via old-fashioned mail, and Brandy’s cards are the perfect medium, designed specially for queer folks.

Then, Brandy offered to send over some cards for free, and we decided that—as much as we’d like to keep them all for ourselves—this was the perfect time for a giveaway! Read more about Brandy and her amazing cards, then scroll all the way down for instructions on how to win a selection of these cuties.

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Tell us your story! How did you come to be a card designer/entrepreneur/Etsy genius?

I began my card company in October 2016. My fiancée and I were doing long distance, and I saw there was not much available for LGBTQ cards. A few years ago when I came out I had a popular funny lesbian blog, and the card line branched off from there. Sales have really taken off in the past few months, and the Etsy shop has a five-star customer rating! Customer service is super important to me. I studied fashion design at the Fashion Institute of Design And Merchandising and have done fine art my whole life. I love merging humour and design in my card making!

What are a few adjectives you would use to describe your style?

Modern/classic, cute, funny!


What’s your design process like?

Whenever I have an idea I write it down on whatever I have nearby. Inspiration comes from all over, but mostly my beautiful fiancée! The “I want to whisper sexy things in your ear. Like “Grilled Cheese.”” is an actual quote from something I texted to my fiancée when we first started dating. It’s now my most popular card!

Why is it important to you to design cards specifically for the LBTQ community?

There isn’t a huge selection of cards out there for us, and I think it’s important to represent your community if you live in a safe enough environment to do so. Many parts of the world are still dangerous for LGBTQ people. I like meeting the customers and hearing how happy they are when they get the cards!


Are you married or engaged? Tell us about your proposal/partner/wedding day!

I’m engaged! She proposed to me, and it was a big surprise. We took a gondola up to the top of a beautiful mountain. There was a part of the lodge blocked by a curtain and when we walked around the corner there were photos of us and quotes on this wall. And then we walked around that and there was a wooden sign that said, “Will you marry me?” I went, “YES YES!” And then she said, laughing, “Let me ask!” It was pretty hilarious!

A photographer took photos of us! It was raining so we ended up drenched, but it was fun. She got me the exact ring I wanted: small and super sparkly. I wouldn’t change a thing. I got her wedding ring and planned to give it to her this New Year’s Eve. All the plans went sideways due to a crazy snowstorm, the custom ring I ordered couldn’t get made, etc., but I still managed to make some new last-minute plans and got a beautiful ring and gave it to her right at the midnight countdown. I was nervous and couldn’t get the box open, and then I slammed it down on the table. Such a spaz! We laughed a lot about that after. (She’s asking me why I’m smirking while I type this.) 


Proposal planned by Stephanie Reitsma.//Engagement photos courtesy of Christine Pienaar.

What do you envision for your wedding? Will you design your own invitations?

Definitely I will make the invitations! I want it to be warm (so probably summer), and she wants the colour grey. And not toooo huge. I like smaller weddings… more personal. 

What’s your favorite song to dance to at a wedding?

I love Ed Sheeran music!

What else would you like readers to know about you?

I also paint portraits of people and pets! You can check out all my artwork on my Instagram/Etsy/Facebook


In other news, Brandy’s selfie game is on point.


We’re keeping it nice and simple! To enter the giveaway, just leave a comment on this post telling us which of Brandy’s cards is your favorite AND/OR who you’d be sending your greeting cards to! One lucky person will win five cards (including the famous “grilled cheese” one!) to send to friends & lovers.

(If you can’t wait to see whether or not you won, head over to Brandy’s Etsy store to place your Valentine’s Day orders!)


The giveaway is now closed, and we’ll be announcing a winner shortly!

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Giveaway Results & A Movie!

Congratulations to Heather, winner of The Wedding Book, by Mindy Weiss!

In her comment, Heather shared:

I am most looking forward to the decor! I have a minimalist earthy vision and am soooo excited to start planning!

With The Wedding Book in hand, we know Heather will be ready to hit the ground running—and we can’t wait to see pictures of her beautiful decorations on A Bicycle Built for Two sometime in the future!


fall-lovePhoto courtesy of Alex Bee Photo.

In other news, it’s October, which means scary movie season. While Ashley & I are both too easily frightened to watch anything more intense than “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown,” when filmmaker Lindy Boustedt got in touch with us about her lesbian-wedding-centric romance/thriller Brides to Be, we were intrigued. Luckily, Taylor volunteered to watch the movie! Here’s what she had to say:

If you’ve spent time browsing YouTube’s collection of lesbian and queer short films, you’ve likely stumbled upon Together Forever and Practical Things, both produced by First Sight Productions. These short films stand out for their honest and sweet portrayal of intimate moments.

First Sight Productions has now produced its first full-length film. A mix of romance and thriller, Brides to Be continues Together Forever’s story line as the couple prepares for marriage. On the day before their wedding, Jenna and Robin find themselves facing forces, both internal and external, that threaten their relationship. As these forces build, Bride to Be succeeds in creating a film of sustained suspense and longing. Is Jenna and Robin’s love strong enough to survive?
It’s not quite *Halloween* scary, but if you’re looking for a movie to cuddle up with this fall, the filmmakers are offering A Bicycle Built for Two readers a special discount: 50% a rental or download on their website when you use the code BICYCLE. Use the code to watch the movie, and share some of your other LBTQ-centric films in the comments!
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Giveaway: The Wedding Book by Mindy Weiss


The first thing you need to know about Mindy Weiss is that she planned Ellen and Portia’s wedding, and if that doesn’t impress you, well then, you probably shouldn’t keep reading!

Seriously, Mindy Weiss knows her stuff, and if that weren’t clear from her celebrity wedding credits, it would be obvious from the 484-page opus that is the revised and updated Wedding Book.

After perusing our review copy, I can assure you that it contains pretty much anything you could ever need to know about planning a wedding: from the different kinds of tents you might rent to the different kinds of lace you might find on your wedding gown (should you choose to wear one!).


There’s information galore here, but the thing that really seduced me was the organizational resources. If you’re the sort of person who loves three-ring binders, you will swoon over the charts, checklists, and calendars in The Wedding Book: from a full-page list of shots you might request from your photographer to a budget breakdown and guide for estimating tips for everyone from your hairstylist to the catering staff. The back of the book includes not one, but two wedding-planning calendars—one for a one-year planning process, and another for if you’re working with less time.

This isn’t a book that focuses particularly on LBTQ weddings (maybe one day we’ll write that one for you!), but a free book is a free book, and this one covers nearly every aspect of wedding planning—from old-school concerns like picking out china patterns to decidedly modern tips on wedding hashtags and elegant ways to ban cellphones from your ceremony. There are a few notes on same-sex ceremonies sprinkled throughout the book, but the real value here is in the breadth and depth of information that applies to all kinds of unions. And although some of us here at A Bicycle Built for Two may be setting out to break traditions rather than uphold them, this book provides useful information to help you navigate conversations with family members who bring certain expectations to the wedding planning process.  


Today, we’re giving away a copy of Mindy Weiss’s new and improved The Wedding Book to one lovely reader. To enter the giveaway, just leave a comment on this post telling us about the part of wedding planning you look forward to the most—or the least (or, if you’ve already tied the knot and plan on gifting the book to a friend, tell us what parts of your planning were the easiest and hardest). We’ll accept comments through this Friday at noon EST, then pick a winner.

Finally, if you want even more of The Wedding Book (or if you like looking at gorgeous photos of alpine venues!), stroll on over to Mountainside Bride, the next step on the book’s blog tour. We’ll be back on Wednesday with more LBTQ beauty here! 

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Giveaway: We have a winner!

Congratulations to Sarah, the winner of our League of Kitchens giveaway, who commented:

Every couple should have a go-to recipe that is simple and tasty! Ours is chicken thighs with vegetables and potatoes. Put it all in one 13×9 pan, then top with a stick of melted butter and a packet of dry Italian dressing mix. Bake for an hour at 350 and enjoy! 

Anything that involves a stick of butter sounds pretty darn good to me! Make sure to check out the other comments for some more delicious cooking inspiration: key lime pie, sweet potato gnocchi, and more.


Sarah graciously agreed to let us do a mini-interview in celebration of her win!

What is the very first thing you learned how to cook?

Something I would never make today! My godfather and I made a recipe for “squirrel” sandwiches with peanut butter & shaved carrots from a kids’ cookbook he gave me.

What food could you never live without?

Dark chocolate. I love it plain or with sea salt and almonds.

Who do you plan to take to the workshop?

My girlfriend. I called her right after I read that I won! We are moving to NYC from Philly this summer, and this class will be a great introduction to the city and a new cuisine!

What do you love about A Bicycle Built for Two?

It increases the amount of positive media representation of queer women! I love reading the couples’ stories and seeing everyone’s unique approach to wedding planning. I hope to use the site as inspiration for my own wedding some day—and maybe that will get featured in another post!


Thanks to all who entered the giveaway! If you didn’t win, you can still check out League of Kitchens‘ many workshop offerings—we hear their gift certificates make great wedding/anniversary gifts.

P.S. While we’re on the topic of food, Happy Donut Day! Remember this amazing “cake” from Michele & Betty’s wedding last year?

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Photos courtesy of Albert Pamies (from Etain & Michelle’s wedding!) & Tara Beth Photography.

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Giveaway: League of Kitchens Cooking Workshop!

UPDATE: We have a winner! Congrats to Sarah & thanks to all who entered! 

On an average night behind the scenes here at A Bicycle Built for Two, you can find Ashley & I in the kitchen, singing along to the Hamilton soundtrack while we stir, chop, and sauté. Although I am the primary cook in our household, we both love eating—and today, we have something particularly tasty to share with you!

tori & kateTori & Kate had one of our all-time favorite engagement shoots in their home kitchen! 

The League of Kitchens is a unique cooking school in New York City which offers an immersive culinary experience to beginning and experienced cooks. 

Today, we’re excited to be giving away two free spots in one of their “Taste of…” workshops!

Each workshop is taught by a New York City immigrant in her own home, using family recipes to immerse the participants in Japanese, Uzbek, Argentinian, Trinidadian, Indian, Lebanese, Bengali, Afghan or Greek cuisines.

Here's the Argentinian workshop in progress!Here’s the Argentinian workshop in progress!

While we usually focus on wedding-specific businesses, we are excited to partner with League of Kitchens because they offer something for all of our readers: their workshops make for great wedding gifts, bridal shower/bachelorette activities, and simply delicious dates! They’ve gotten great press from The New York Times, Saveur, and elsewhere—and, like so many of our favorite vendors, their business is woman-owned and operated & focused on social engagement.

We could definitely go for some of this delicious-looking Bangladeshi cuisine! We could definitely go for some of this Bangladeshi cuisine!

If you live in the New York City area (or are planning a trip to NYC any time in the next year), then you don’t want to miss out on this giveaway! One winner will be awarded a FREE workshop experience for you and a spouse/partner/significant other/best friend/mom/child etc. 

To enter: leave a comment on this post & tell us about one recipe you think every couple should know!

Your comment may take a few minutes to pop up, but don’t panic! We will approve comments as quickly as we can. Once you’ve commented, make sure that you officially enter using the fancy little box below—that’s how we’ll pick the winners! 

Please note that by entering, you are agreeing to join the League of Kitchens mailing list; however, we promise your email address will go ONLY to our friends at League of Kitchens—no funny business here. The giveaway will be open until midnight EST next Thursday, June 2nd, and we’ll announce the winners on the site shortly thereafter!

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Spartan Race Giveaway!

Do you enjoy running up mountains, traversing obstacle courses, and getting extremely muddy in the pursuit of physical fitness? If so, then you are about 100 times more hardcore than Ashley or I– and this is the post for you!

Spartan Races is looking for competitors for their (televised!) Fittest Bride Challenge this October, and although I would never (ever ever ever) consider competing in this event myself, I would be extremely excited to watch one of our darling readers wow the world with their daring and intensity. Best of all, the grand champion will receive a FREE wedding reception at the Riverside Farm in Pittsfield, Vermont– a lovely venue that has actually been featured in a previous Bicycle Built for Two giveaway!

For details on how to apply to be a competitor in the Fittest Bride Challenge, check out the website here (and if you do compete, let us know so we can follow your athletic accomplishments!). Ashley has pointed out that a two-bride couple means that you potentially have TWO chances to win the grand prize here… 


The Giveaway!

Maybe you’re not interested in appearing on television, but you’ve always wanted to try a Spartan Race? Well, we’ve got good news for you too, because we’re holding a GIVEAWAY!

One winner will receive a free registration for any Spartan Race in the continental U.S.– I just checked the map, and it looks like there are upcoming events everywhere from South Carolina to Oregon.

To enter the giveaway, leave a comment on this post telling us about the most hardcore thing you’ve every done (or just saying hello!) before Tuesday, September 22nd at 9 PM EST. We’ll use the magic of random numbers to select a winner by the end of that week, so make sure to check back for results soon!

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