Love Story: From Emails to Elopement
Meeting and Getting to Know Each Other
When Jason Daniel Mercado first met Kristen Virginia Bateman in August 2013 at the HôM Store, a trinket shop that also serves brunch in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, he asked for her phone number. “I saw her and her purple hair and struck up a conversation,” Mr. Mercado said. She had another idea: “Let’s exchange emails instead.”
Building a Connection
Mr. Mercado emailed her the next day. “We started a lengthy discourse,” he said. “We hashed out questions and got to know one other.”
Becoming Friends First
They spent three months emailing before meeting again in person. “I wanted to become friends first,” Ms. Bateman said.
From Emailing to Dating
An Unconventional Approach
But even after they started dating, they continued to email regularly. “Things that she wasn’t comfortable asking in person, she asked in email,” Mr. Mercado said. “Like, after going to MoMA on our second date, she emailed and asked, ‘Why didn’t you hold my hand?’”
But it wasn’t long after that second date that the two became official. On New Year’s Eve 2013, “I said I love you for the first time,” Mr. Mercado said.
Traveling and Building a Life Together
Adventures around the World
In 2014, they spent a lot of time traveling together, visiting Montreal, London, Stockholm, and Paris. And over the years, they visited even more countries in Europe and Asia on vacations and work trips.
Professions and Background
Ms. Bateman, 30, is a fashion writer and author of the recently published “Little Book of New York Style.” She also works as a consultant for beauty and fashion brands, and she designs and sells jewelry for her brand Dollchunk.
She has dual bachelor’s degree in liberal arts and design from the Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts and the Parsons School of Design through the New School.
Mr. Mercado, 39, is a director at Citigroup, specializing in funding and liquidity management. He has a bachelor’s degree in finance from Baruch College.
A Proposal and Two-Part Elopement
A Romantic Proposal
Inspired by their love of travel and the date when they became official, Mr. Mercado proposed on New Year’s Eve 2020 on a trip to Niagara Falls.
An Unforgettable Elopement
The couple were married on Aug. 12 by Annie Lawrence, an interfaith minister who is ordained by the New Seminary, at the Ladies Pavilion in Central Park. “A couple of people riding bikes shouted out to congratulate us,” Ms. Bateman said. “It felt very much like a New York City moment.”
A Symbolic Celebration in France
In early July, the two had traveled to the Brittany region of France to have a symbolic elopement. Ms. Bateman said, “I wore two very extreme dresses from the designer Noir Kei Ninomiya’s runway collections and an equally extreme Simone Rocha veil.”
A Unique Wedding Style
For the wedding in New York, Ms. Bateman wore a Noir Kei Ninomiya dress in black with 3-D pink roses. Underneath the Noir Kei Ninomiya dress, she layered a silver Simone Rocha mini dress with puff sleeves and carried a Gucci anatomical heart bag covered in rose-colored crystals with her vows stored inside. “When it was time to say my vows, I took the paper out and handed the heart bag to Jason, representing giving him my heart,” she said.
A Quirky Ceremony and Celebration
During their ceremony, the officiant quoted Dr. Seuss: “We’re all a little weird, and life’s a little weird,” Ms. Lawrence said. “And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love.”
Afterward, they all took a yellow cab to the Empire Hotel on the Upper West Side for the cake, designed by Yip.Studio, to match Ms. Bateman’s ceremony dress. They then headed downtown for lunch at Blue Ribbon Sushi Izakaya, where Ms. Bateman wore a red Comme des Garçons dress and a Miu Miu tiara.
A Unique and Unconventional Celebration of Love
Ms. Bateman said everything about their elopement-style union was all about “breaking and questioning tradition.”