One of the most fun things as a wedding industry professional is being involved in styled shoots. Most suppliers really enjoy them and relish the opportunity to get creative. I’ve been involved in various themed shoots (medieval, Club Tropicana, 1970’s Woodstock, sweetie seaside, etc) but one of my all time favourites was a colour pop shoot at Southlands Barn near Storrington. I’ve made a list of all the suppliers involved at end of post with links to their websites if you want to look at more of their work or get in contact but there’s various link throughout the post.
Back at beginning of February 2019, Sophie from IC Photographics approached me because she’d seen my website and loved my colourful ideas and wanted me to be involved in a photoshoot she was organising at Southlands Barn near West Chiltington. She sent me a really cool mood board using lots of bright strong rainbow colours. The moment I saw the board I was sold.
First look: Summer
I happened to have just finished a jumpsuit using bright colours Sophie featured on her mood board. The fabric had been the end of the bolt from Fabric Godmother. I spent ages thinking and thinking what to do with the lace. There wasn’t much of it, just enough for a bodice and I needed to make the most of the printing on the edges. I kept coming back to a 70s jumpsuit idea and with an off the shoulder design and bell sleeves which I felt made the most of the straight edge.
I opted for wide leg trousers made from georgette and crepe de chine to suit the free spirit nature of the look. I did attach a boned strapless bodice for the photoshoot but it was quite tricky to do up the concealed zip and as a jumpsuit has to be easily removed for toilet visits, I’ve now removed the bodice for future sale and the bride will have to wear a separate boob tube. When I showed Sophie the jumpsuit, she was beyond excited.
Summer will be going up in my Etsy shop once I’ve got the listing organised. Remember if this is your wedding outfit, this is a one off and once its gone its gone!
Second look: Tilly
Sophie wanted to have a couple of dresses so I said I would make another dress. Photoshoots are perfect opportunities to get new photos of dresses so it’s always worthwhile having a new dress. This dress didn’t start out with a design. Sometimes design ideas come from playing around with scraps on the mannequin and sometimes, like this dress, they grow organically over time. I’m a very firm recycler and I squirrel all sorts of things away when they get taken off other dresses. The petticoat was taken from another dress where a bride had wanted it to be less poofy. I just added my signature ribbon edge.
As I was thinking about using what stock I had, I found a full tulle skirt. I didn’t want the skirt to be all out bling but I do love sparkle so I bought some sequin fabric to put underneath. Its not hugely obvious but when the light catches it, the skirt it has a little twinkle.
For the bodice, I chose garden Octavia from Bridal Fabrics. With the lace, I started laying it over the mannequin and playing around. The appliques are a mix of sizes. I ended up cutting out one of the large appliques and laying that over the mannequin and an asymmetric idea started to develop. I liked the idea of the model looking like the lace was part of her skin. I used skin coloured tulle to make a full length sleeve bodice to go over the strapless bodice and onto the tulle I added the coloured lace. To finish I added Swarovski buttons because who doesn’t love sparkle?!
The talented suppliers involved
To Have and To Hire set up 3 main areas. A dining set up outside with hay bales as the back drop, another dining set up inside the barn and final set up with foliage arch and hanging sign. Kasserina cakes provided two cakes, one black with popping red flowers and the other creamy with delicate flowers. On the tables Charlotte Wilson had set up colourful menus, place cards and invitations.
For the bride, LadyLissy Floristry had provided bright colour popping bouquet and To be Adorned sent bright headdresses and earrings using pompoms and crochet flowers. Pinnies Hair and Kimberley Louise Make Up did the model Laura up to perfection.
As well as the areas mentioned above, we also took the model to be photographed by the lake and outside the barn. There was a funny moment when Sophie was a distance away from myself and Laura where I was organising her skirts. Sophie told me to get out the shot and I just laid down without paying attention to where I was and ended up lying in a bed of stinging nettles! Ouch! But the photos made the blistered skin worth it.