I love learning how people met their significant others, especially in the age of social media, online dating, and missed connections. After mentioning it a couple times in past blog posts, I finally sat down to write the little story of how Will and I met. This is one of my most requested posts on Design Darling and it’s more personal than I tend to get on here so please be kind! It’s nothing crazy but it still feels a little daring to put it all out there. Here goes nothing…!
design darling how we met
{At my cousin Pete’s wedding in Portland last summer}
Will and I met in New York in February 2013, through — drumroll, please — Tinder! I had just moved to the city in January and was newly single. All my girlfriends were obsessed with Tinder, which was still pretty new at the time, and Will was the first Tinder date I went on. He actually called me to make plans for our first date which totally set him apart! I was like, “Who is this weird Texas number calling me?! Who calls anyone anymore?!” but it was really sweet.
design darling how we met 1
{At our friends Jane and Scottie’s wedding in Lyford Cay two summers ago}
He suggested a wine bar on the Upper East Side and I neglected to mention on the phone that I wasn’t a huge wine drinker at the time (I’ve since discovered rosé and realized what I’d been missing). Anyway, when we met at the restaurant, I was planning to defer to Will’s wine preference but he insisted we find something I’d actually like. So he asked the waitress if they served anything besides wine and she looked pretty confused before suggesting a non-alcoholic beer. Realizing the misunderstanding, Will asked if they had a full bar, we ordered gin and tonics, and spent the next several hours chatting and laughing. I found him brilliantly smart, extremely polite, interested (which always makes a person more interesting!) and loved his wide smile and ready laugh — all things I love about him to this day. 🙂
design darling sailing nantucket
{Our happy place: sailing on Nantucket}
There was definitely a spark, but I wasn’t looking for anything serious and continued to go on more (good, bad, and seriously awful) first dates throughout most of my first year in New York. Eventually, Will grew tired of these dating escapades and we fell out of touch over the summer. Apparently we both dated other people during that time and I was feeling pretty excited about someone else until that guy dumped me out of the blue… in a text message. I went into that fall determined to spend the rest of the year on a dating hiatus, focused on work, taking care of myself, and seeing more of my girlfriends. I still thought about that cute boy from Texas from time to time, but I was so determined to be truly single!
design darling how we met 2
{Best buds in our new home in Dallas}
As fate would have it, it was a couple months into this very determined dating hiatus that Will reached out to me again. I ignored a number of emails and texts (#sohardtoget) until he sent me an article about F. Scott Fitzgerald and I fired off a quick response. A minute later, Will’s number was lighting up my phone. I picked up… and we spent more than four hours on the phone that night. A few weeks later, I agreed to meet him for a drink — at that first wine bar, of course — and it was pretty clear right off the bat that that spark we’d had in the spring was still there and we’d both just needed some time to realize how rare and special it was. Looking back, I wouldn’t change a thing. We started officially dating in November 2013 and the rest is history!
design darling how we met 3
{The day after we got engaged in Maine!}
P.S. Will’s fantasy football team is called Swipe Right. You never know… 🙂
You can read more about the proposal here and here. Thank you for reading!


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  1. I got to this post from your Instagram Story last night and honestly – SO ADORABLE! I adore your blog and Will seems like quite the catch and such a great guy (and now dad!) I met my husband before dating apps existed but I also enjoy reading about how people met their spouses! So glad you finally responded to his texts! 🙂

  2. I love this post so much, and I love that you two are so happy! I met my boyfriend online as well (twitter!), and I’m happy it’s becoming so much less of a “taboo”!
    If you don’t mind me asking, were you hesitant to tell your parents/friends how you met? I know I am!

    1. I love that you guys met on Twitter! I was pretty open with family and friends about how we met, though I initially asked Will if we should come up with a different story to tell. In the end we decided to just own it, which is how I finally got comfortable enough to write this post! I like to think our story (and yours!) gives a little hope to other people who are skeptical to try online dating (especially since there are now WAY more apps to choose from!). I say own it! 🙂

  3. Weeks behind on reading blogs, but I’m so happy this post caught my eye in feedly just now. Thanks for sharing this very important piece of your and Will’s story. You two seem to make a great couple! And the last photo reminded me of how excited I am that your engagement happened in Maine – hopefully you’re able to make it back here over the years to celebrate!

  4. OMG this is the sweetest story! It’s funny how life (or fate, whatever) works; if two people are meant to be together, they’ll be together no matter who wants to be single 😉 hahaha so cute! Again, congratulations and I hope you guys are very very happy for many years more! 🙂 <3

  5. I am crying so hard right now. That is the sweetest story and the fact that you met on Tinder is honestly fabulous. Gives all of us girls hope 😉 Congratulations!


  6. I LOVE this! My long-term boyfriend of 2.5 years and I met on Tinder! We now live together and it’s so funny every time I tell people about how we met. When we first got together it was still a little taboo to tell people you met online (even though so many people were using Tinder or Match or OkCupid) but now I feel like it’s so common and everyone is much more upfront about it (which is awesome). Congrats to both of you and I’m so happy you’ve found each other, no matter how you found each other!

    Laura | Laura Aime Vous

  7. I also met my boyfriend on Tinder and he was my first Tinder date too 🙂 Our first date was at an unmarked coffee shop (his choice) and I legit could not find it . He thought I stood him up! He even introduced himself to another Lauren thinking it was me! It all worked out in the end 🙂

  8. Thank you so much for sharing this story. As someone struggling with dating both online and IRL, it is always so refreshing to hear a success story and know there is hope! I know that I struggle with admitting my stories even to my close friends so I can’t imagine how nervous you must have been to share here, but I wanted to thank you for taking that risk and helping us all out so much!

  9. I absolutely love this, Mackenzie! You are taking me back to my NYC days and how I met my husband, too. 🙂 So happy for you and can’t wait to see what your wedding journey brings!

  10. Thank you SO much for posting this Mackenzie! I have recently been through a series of crappy relationships and today I was feeling especially hopeless, even though I truly do enjoy my single life. Your openess and honesty are very much appreciated and have given me the faith I needed to believe that things will work out. Best wishes to you on your wedding!!

  11. This is such a cute story!
    I think people are so unnecessarily ashamed of online dating these days.
    My grand parents met once, wrote letters back and forth for a year, and then met up again-got engaged! and were happily married forever since. I mean, in all sincerity, online dating –whatever form it takes–is not dramatically different from getting to know one another through letters before meeting. It’s just been helped on with technology. So, I’m happy you shared the real story! It’s absolutely lovely! Best to you in the planning process and in marriage!!

  12. I really, really enjoy these more personal posts – you are a talented writer and you perfectly conveyed your excitement! Congratulations on your engagement!

  13. I am going on a “second” first date tomorrow with a guy I met on tinder…at a wine bar on the ues no less! Love your story 🙂

  14. This is a great story! So fun to learn how other couples met. I pseudo-stalked Stephen at the Bison at Bucknell (my meal plan was only at “the caf” so I spent tons of money on overpriced quesadillas that semester when I knew he’d be there)… now that we’re engaged, I guess it was worth it!

  15. Thank you so much for posting this. Gives me so much encouragement as someone navigating the rocky world of app dating! Stories like this make me feel like there could be light at the end of the tunnel. Congrats on your engagement! xo

  16. I love this story. 🙂 it took awhile for my husband and I to start dating too. We met at a mutual friend’s party in March (many years ago!) and hit it off – spent the next 2 hours talking. He didn’t ask me out (because he knew his friend was into me – I was not interested in his friend!). I started seeing someone else, but thought about him from time to time, always hoping we’d run into each other. We ended up seeing each other in November after breaking it off with another guy. He asked me out and the rest is history. We’re still so in love, 8 years later. I wish all the best of luck and love to you and Will!

  17. Love this story. Love all of those smiles! Love that you met on Tinder. Love you!

    ps: does anyone ever tell you guys that you kind of look alike? So so cute.

  18. I met my current boyfriend on Tinder too! SO happy you shared this!

    PS. I found a bakery that made “Swipe Right” cookies last Valentine’s Day….I bought a whole bunch because it was just too great!

  19. Mackenzie, your story is so so so sweet! People tend to discount dating apps like Tinder, but there are so many success stories out there- and yours is one of them! You two are adorable together and I wish you the best in terms of your wedding planning, special day, and rest of your marriage. Thank you for sharing something so personal and honest with the world- it’s rare to see that nowadays in blogging.

    x Leda

  20. Between you and my other friend who just got engaged to a guy from Tinder, it makes me want to reactivate my tinder account again!

  21. Love the story, Mackenzie! congrats on your engagement! I summer in Nantucket too and look forward to learning more details about the wedding planning 🙂

  22. I’ve definitely had my share of good (and bad) Tinder dates, although my boyfriend I am with now and I actually met skiing. I think it is so great you opened up and shared this intimate look into your relationship, Tinder gets a bad rep but I think in a lot of ways online dating/dating apps are really cool, they help introduce you to people you may have never met otherwise. Congratulations on your engagement once again, you two really are adorable together!

  23. I am so so happy you shared this!! I recently met my boyfriend on Tinder and have been a little embarrassed to tell anyone where we met. Congrats to you two! SO fun and so exciting!!

  24. Not gonna lie, I teared up. This is so perfect 🙂 My sister met her boyfriend on Tinder and they are two peas in a pod. I met my fiance in a bar, which is not the most glamorous of stories, but it’s ours!

  25. Such a cute story and I love the little adventures that led you both back to each other and where you are now! No shame in meeting via social media— I feel like that’s how so many of my friends are dating now!

  26. So so sweet! My fiance called me to set up our first date too. I had just been dating guys in college (he’s a little older than me) and was so not used to this so it really made an amazing first impression.

    So excited to hear about your wedding!

    Alyssa | Glitter and Grey

  27. I love hearing stories about how a couple meets each other! Thanks for opening up and sharing a special part of your life. I haven’t been a huge fan of tinder, but now I may have to install the app 🙂 hehe

  28. Met my husband on OKCupid (Tinder wasn’t popular in my city at the time)! When we first dated, we were almost ashamed to admit how we met. Now we own it! I’m glad you put it out there and I hope it encourages some readers to try online dating (or try it again). Online dating tips and tricks may make a good blog post. It was the best thing that ever happened to me, although there were a lot of dud dates along the way.

    It was really lovely to read the story of you and Will meeting! I especially love that you are able to describe him as smart, polite, and interested. Those are some of the best things to be able to say about your partner. Thanks for the very personal post!

  29. HA! Love this and met my boyfriend in a similar way – Tinder in Feb 2015, but we never went out. We were both seeing other people / traveling / time didn’t work, but we had bonded over our favorite band and he kept reaching out here and there as I dated a slew of terrible people. I had had a particularly boring date in early November and on the same day he reached out to see if I wanted to go out. I said yes, yes I will, and after a comedy of errors (but so cute!) first date we began dating for real and the rest is history 🙂

    Best wishes on your engaement, excited for ALL the great navy to follow 🙂


  30. Hi there, I never comment, but this little story struck a chord with me. My fiance and I also had to date other people on and off (for a whole year!) to realize just how great we were together and to find each other again 🙂 I love that we slooowly came to the realization that what we had (easy, comfortable, laughter-filled talking) was “rare and special,” as you say. But I’m glad we took the time to figure it out 🙂 Congratulations, and thanks for sharing.

  31. Love your story! My boyfriend and I met on Tinder in September 2014. He had just moved to Chicago from Virginia and we live only a few buildings away from each other. When people ask how we met, I always end up laughing about it, because it seems like a lifetime ago. I’m grateful for that crazy app – even though we live so close, I doubt we would have ever met otherwise.

  32. Love this lady!!!! So awesome to post something so private on here and so happy for you! You two give online dating a good name!

  33. Loving these wedding Wednesday posts! Love this story too- proof that everything happens for a reason and what’s meant to be will always find a way! Thanks so much for sharing!
    -Angela & Amy

  34. I love this. My husband and I met on eHarmony…which was only in solidarity with my roommate at the time who was having some seriously bad dating luck. It’s always weird to tell but its really sort of funny. I love that you shared this and were so open!

  35. Such a cute post! I love it when you do those personal posts (even though I can really understand not wanting to share everyhing on the Internet) and really enjoyed reading it. I wish you and Will all the best and am looking forward to more wedding related posts.

  36. Such a sweet, sweet story! So fantastic to have met one another, liked one another, then liked another and alas returned to find you were both THE one for each other!

    p.s. I love the Fantasy Football team name too! 🙂

  37. I love your story! I met my boyfriend on OKCupid 2.5 years ago. We dated for a summer, and I broke it off because I was used to being single. After some time, I was willing to give it a second go. It doesn’t matter where you find the man, as long as he’s the right one for you. So excited for you!

  38. LOVE this!!! And I love your more “personal” posts behind the blogger veil 😉 Every couple has their own unique love story, and the best ones are just like yours! I told my husband that I never saw anything happening between us after we “hung out” for a month… and two weeks later I found myself crawling back asking to be friends, and he asked me to give him one more chance, and promised that if it didn’t work out, we could still be friends. HA! Sometimes it takes that time apart to really evaluate things! Can’t wait to watch this beautiful wedding unfold!


  39. I love everything about this!! I love reading blog posts that are more personal – especially ones about dating/Tinder. I’ve had two hoooorrible experiences on there, but I’m so glad to know that the good can really outweigh the bad! xoxo

  40. Mackenzie, I absolutely LOVED reading this post! Thank you so much for sharing how you and Will met…I’m a sucker for love stories! xoxo, Alyssa

  41. This is the second Tinder engagement I’ve heard about this month. It makes me want to give it a try as a newly single 30 year old (AHH.. typing that was scary). It’s amazing how when things are meant to be, they just happen.

    Christina :: Simple and Delish