Pictured are Founder, Lei Lydle and Membership Consultant, Nicole Dupree. Also pictured is Nikki Pappas who has taken leave to have a baby. We miss you! Hope you will be back one day! Photos were taken by Laura Leigh Photography. The final photo of Lei was taken by Lou Freeman Photography in Atlanta.
Lei Baldwin Lydle started her Internet consulting firm, IBS Design, LLC, in 1997. The company was
a side venture to help small businesses while Lei was employed full-time at Ernst & Young, LLC – a
“Big Six” firm that primarily consulted with larger corporations.
In February of 1998, Lei launched her first online wedding planning Web site, AtlantaBridal.com,
while planning her own wedding in Atlanta. At the time, few, if any, local wedding web sites
existed (anywhere) so Lei decided to create one for Atlanta. She wrote about her own wedding
planning experience and published her research on local wedding vendors – it was her hobby and
a blog of sorts before the term “blog” existed in the mainstream.
During this time, Lei left Ernst & Young to go and work as a Web Developer for a large agency,
iXL, Inc. While working at iXL, Lei worked as a consultant for BellSouth, Delta Airlines, Chase
Manhattan Bank, and WebMD to name a few. Lei developed an early expertise in information
architecture for the Web and mastered the online marketing techniques of the time.
AtlantaBridal.com gained popularity quickly as it was one of a kind. Hundreds of brides were using the site in the first year…
Over 20 years later, AtlantaBridal.com is highly popular in the Atlanta area. The Atlanta wedding site receives an
average of 40,000 visitors per month and is the most popular site for Atlanta area brides. In 2000, Lei
started expanding slowly into markets where her friends claimed they “needed an AtlantaBridal.com”.
ChicagoBridal, AlabamaBridal, and NewJerseyBridal were first followed by a national site,
WeddingBasics.com, and then more local sites. Lei travels all over the country and looks to the wedding
community in each local area to share their expertise.
In 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 Founder Lei Lydle served as Chairman of the Brides Against
Breast Cancer Charity Wedding Gown sale in Atlanta. The efforts of her staff and her team of volunteers
along with the Making Memories Foundation has resulted in over 600 gown donations from bridal stores
and individuals in Atlanta and over $200,000 in cash from the sale of previously donated gowns.
In November 2004, Lei spoke at the Association of Bridal Consultants National Convention
on the topic of marketing through the Internet to today’s technologically savvy brides. Her
breakout course was extremely popular and she has been asked to speak at various industry events
and meetings as a result of that class. Since then, Lei has been asked to speak at numerous wedding
industry events and educational seminars every year.
In February 2004, Lei was nominated for the Wedding Visionary of the Year award by the Professional
Wedding Guild of Atlanta. In addition, AtlantaBridal.com, Lei Lydle and her breast cancer gown sales
have been featured in the following news media: Kiss The Bride TV (2010), CBS TV’s Better Mornings
(January 2010, January 2008), LaGrange Daily News Wedding Supplement (January 2008), 11Alive TV’s
“Atlanta & Company” (March 2007), Star 94's Steve and Vicky Show: Alisa’s Deals (March 2007),
LaGrange Daily News (March 2007), 11Alive TV’s “Atlanta & Company” (September 2006), 11Alive TV’s
“Atlanta & Company” (April 2006), Atlanta Journal-Constitution (April 2006), LaGrange Daily News
(April 2006), WBTV12's “Living Life with Style” (March 2006), Georgia Trend Magazine (February 2006
Online Edition), Star 94's Cindy & Ray Show (July 2005), Atlanta Journal-Constitution (March 2005),
Georgia’s Good Life Magazine (January 2004), Atlanta Journal-Constitution “My Favorite Web Sites”
Column (November 2003), CNN Budget Wedding Feature (September 2002), LaGrange Daily News
(May 2002), Atlanta Journal-Constitution “Atlanta Tech” Column (January 2002), Atlanta
Journal-Constitution Wedding Supplement (February 2001).
Lei is currently a member of the Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC) and the National Association of
Catering Executives (NACE). Lei has also been involved with ISES, Professional Wedding Guild of Atlanta,
the Alabama Wedding & Event Professionals group and the Athens Wedding Professionals group.
Our mission is to provide engaged couples with no-nonsense wedding planning advice and extensive research on local wedding services without all of the annoying pop-up and banner ads that are found on other Web sites. We aim to work with only the best wedding vendors so that we can be assured we are providing our brides with the best resources possible.
In addition, our sites give brides and vendors a chance to interact with one another using the Internet. For a bride, AlabamaBridal saves time and money. For the participating vendors, AlabamaBridal generates increased interest in their products and services by being listed in our directories, photo galleries, articles and community.