What is A Lovely Universe all about?
A Lovely Universe, sometimes known as ALU, is a day brightening retail experience. With an online shop filled with so many individual cheerful items by small makers from around the country (95% female owned) and our collection of both curated custom and ready to ship gift boxes, ALU has something for everyone.
Who owns ALU?
A Lovely Universe is a female owned brand by Sarah Cunningham Mastriano. A proud SCAD graduate, boy mom, wife and NJ based entrepreneur.
Do you have a storefront or is A Lovely Universe online only?
After having a storefront since 2013, A Lovely Universe is now e-commerce only. We have such amazing memories first calling Brooklyn, NY home and then growing for six wonderful summers in Beach Haven, NJ. However, it is time to move forward and blossom in a different direction year round.
Who designed your logo and helped with web photos?
Both the original logo and new rebranding was designed by NJ based graphic designer Jordan Wannemacher.
Photography credit on our website -Veronica Lola Photography.
Will ALU still sell clothing?
As of October 2020, ALU will only be selling gifts, jewelry, paper goods, items for little ones and custom gift boxes.
Will you ever open another location?
Never say never but really excited to take a step back and focus on growing the e-commerce business out of my Red Bank based studio.
Will my order look exactly as pictured?
Each and every order will have its' own personality. Our ready to ship gift box collection is photographed in a way to represent the overall vibe that we aim to accomplish. In general, most of these gift boxes will ship out as pictured unless we are sold out or discontinue a specific item.
Due to the constantly changing nature of many of the products we carry, we reserve the right to make substitutions of items of equal or greater value as necessary to fulfill the order and ensure the timely delivery of your gift.
How can I place a custom order?
How do I add a gift note to my order?
On the product page under the description, please check the box that asks "is this a gift?". This will allow you to fill out a personalized gift message that we will then include in the gift order.
Can I specify the delivery date that I'd like my gift order to arrive?
You can. Please look for this option on the product page right under where you are able to input a personalized gift message.
Once this date is provided, we will do whatever we can on our end to ensure that it arrives in a timely manner. Please know that once the package is in USPS or UPS' hands, we cannot control much except provide the tracking number.
The safest option for a gift order is to allow yourself time before ordering to ensure it arrives in the right timeframe. All of our orders take no more than 2-3 business days processing, packing and then shipping out.
Will you help me put together 'welcome boxes' for my wedding guests?
Yes. Please see above. This is considered a custom order. Whether you're in need of 5 gifts or 50, we can help!
Can I buy a gift certificate?
Yes! Head over here to purchase.
How do I start a return?
Any returns on non-gift box items from the shop are eligible for a return after 7 days of purchase. Within 7 days of receiving your order, you must immediately notify ALU through email if you will need to return. Items must be in original condition, unused and unopened.
Returns after the 7 day mark will be available for store credit only. Any returns after 30 days will not be accepted.
Custom orders and gift boxes are not eligible for return unless an item is missing or damaged.
Our customers happiness is incredibly important so we will always find a way to work with you within reason.
Who pays for the return shipment cost?
Return shipping cost will be the customers' responsibility unless otherwise discussed.
All orders are shipped anywhere in the U.S using USPS 2 Day Priority, USPS First Class or UPS Ground.
How fast do these orders ship?
Orders are processed within 2-3 business days and shipped out USPS 2 Day Priority.
Do any orders ship for free?
Only orders over $75 ship for free. Otherwise, there is a $6 flat fee per order - a cost that we try to keep as affordable and realistic as possible.
Any custom gift orders/projects will be determined by how large the order is, where it's headed, etc. and will be invoiced along with the order itself individually.
If there are multiple addresses included in one order (ie: you purchase 5 gift boxes going to 5 different addresses), one of those addresses' gift order will ship for free but any extra address will be charged a $6 fee and invoiced separately.
When will I receive a tracking number?
All ALU orders are shipped with a tracking number that should automatically be emailed to the customer once the order has been processed and is in transit.
The mail carrier said a package was delivered but we havent received it. What do I do?
Once the shipment leaves our studio and is in the hands of either USPS or UPS, it is essentially out of ALU's control. Please contact your local post master or UPS driver first to make sure they didn't misplace it. We will always work with the customer and the mail carrier provider to find the best solution.
Do you offer doorstep delivery for gift baskets?
Yes. If you are in the Monmouth County, NJ area, contact free doorstep delivery for gift orders can be arranged. Please email email@example.com directly before you place your order.
I'm a designer and would love for you to carry my line. How can I submit my work?
First, take a look at the overall aesthetic and feel of the merchandise we carry. The process of buying for the store is very selective but always open to new exciting makers that fit the ALU brand. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with a bit about your company, along with a line sheet with your products, pricing, etc.
What is your 'event styling' service?
You already use ALU for your gifting needs but why not step it up and let us help make your next big (or small!) event seamless and beautiful? Whether that's searching for the perfect venue, creating the most delicious menu, bringing in gorgeous flowers, designing invitations or laying out a floor plan so all of your guests fit comfortably, we are here to help you.
Taking on only a few select events per year. If this is something that sounds interesting to you, please click here to discuss.
"we worked together to send a gift box to my best friend for her engagement since COVID19 kept us from being able to be with then. ALU was amazing and so helpful as I went back and forth on things. the final product was perfect!"
— sarah p.
"every experience I have had shopping with a lovely universe has been stress free and enjoyable. sarah, the owner, is extremely knowledgeable and promptly responds to all questions from pricing to styling"
— leslie m.
"ALU has the most adorable and customizable gift options. super easy, especially when you're in a pinch but still want to gift someone something special. love, love, love!"
— jessica r.