Tuesday 24 May 2011

The Future of Vintage Shoot


Well today I have a very exciting blog post to share with you, in fact it's definitely up there with one of the best days ever! You may have seen coverage of this already, as it was featured exclusively on the amazing English Wedding Blog recently with a beautiful write up by Claire herself. I thought I'd wait a while after the shoot itself to blog it myself so that I could re-live the experience again... and again. So here it is!

Uber talented wedding photographer Jonny Draper started talks with Georgie Higham from Cheshire wedding venue, Styal Lodge, a while back talking about doing a spring shoot with a difference... and after talking with other carefully chosen wedding experts, it became clear what kind of shoot this needed to be. It was never going to be a straight-laced kind of shoot, there was always going to be some sort of exciting twist...

That's when he knew he couldn't do this without Charlotte Balbier and The White Closet. Charlotte Balbier creates stunning vintage-inspired wedding dresses and The White Closet, a Charlotte Balbier stockist, is a gorgeous vintage-inspired bridal boutique in the boho suburb of West Didsbury, Manchester. They pride themselves on providing brides of today with something a bit different. They were the perfect fit for this shoot and it was clear that the vintage trend had to be the focal point of the day, and in keeping with their style, it also had to be that bit different.

Jonny's photography style is very unique and he works with his bride and grooms to capture the look they want from the day, with his very own stamp on it. All the amazing photography featured here is by Jonny himself - it's truly wow!

Styal Lodge was the perfect venue too as it is pretty much a blank canvas for brides to create the theme they want. Georgie Higham from Styal Lodge had decorated the Lodge beautifully for the shoot (and the decoration was so inspiring to their existing brides that they have been asked to do similar decoration for them too!) They created the floral displays themselves and sourced the amazing crockery from Pink Pepper.

No wedding is quite the same without some showstopping cakes and these were provided by none other than the widely acclaimed And The Dish Ran Away With The Spoon who are also tucked away in leafy West Didsbury. They create amazing cakes of all descriptions and even have cool pop-up shops in Topshop these days too!

Our "models" for the day were the beautiful Stacey McKenzie who I've worked with previously on a fashion show for The White Closet and also Poppy Higham whose parents own Styal Lodge and her sister Georgie runs it too! Here they are in hair and make-up getting prepped before the shoot started.

Hair on the day was by Eve Broadhurst, vintage hair expert and bridal stylist at The White Closet (amongst many other creative things - check out her blog!). It's not her day job but she's damn good at it and a gorgeous person to boot!!

“Vintage” is something which gets talked about a lot by brides of today, but it can mean different things to different people. For this shoot we wanted to move vintage on even further by taking cues from today’s fashion world and mashing this with vintage bridal trends. Current fashion is all all about colour clashing and lots of candy brights – take heritage fashion brands’ Vivienne Westwood and Betsey Johnson’s recent catwalks for example, where they were seen clashing clothing and make-up colours. Make-up brands have also been launching their new bright colour collections.

The rich bright candy make-up colours I used for this shoot worked so well with the overall theme and it worked because every element to the day had been carefully thought through, from how Styal Lodge had been decorated – with pops of colour everywhere, brightly coloured flowers, vintage crockery, colourful chinese lanterns, bright pink shoes and hair accessories. I layered and clashed eye, lip and nail colours – bright oranges, pinks and greens to work and clash with all of these things, using products from MAC and their Quite Cute range, Topshop’s new lipsticks and gorgeous Illamasqua brights.

Stacey wearing Charlotte Balbier's Tempany in nude

The bright decorations combined with great styling and bright make-up worked so well together.

It was all Stacey's idea to climb on to the beams (rather her than me!)

But what a fab shot..

Here's Poppy wearing Strawberry Sundae in pink

You can see a sneaky glimpse here in the mirror of Tom from Silk Wedding Videos who recorded the whole day's events... that's for another time though - it's truly fab and needs its very own post! Watch this space! I'm the one holding the light too!

Stacey in Marilyn

Then we moved outside into their beautiful gardens, which also have great lounge areas for wedding guests - what a truly beautiful setting for your wedding day!

Stacey in Sweetpea

Stacey wearing Camilla

Poppy wearing Agnes

Stacey wearing Tabitha

Poppy wearing Luccia

Poppy wearing Flo in ivory

Poppy wearing Ruby in pink

What a gorgeous day it was too - sunny and hot and a good day for our models to take posing to the limits rocking their sunnies on the new platform Styal Lodge have had built especially for their brides and grooms!

Our transport to the platform!

Poppy and Stacey in posing mode before we even got there!

We set up the platform with some amazing vintage props first.

Here's Poppy and Stacey looking amazing on the platform - the dresses look fab and how blue is that sky! Nice sunnies girls!


From left to right here's the lovely Georgie, Nicola (from Charlotte Balbier) and Charlotte Balbier herself at the shoot enjoying a glass of pink champagne!

A well deserved glass of bubbly for us hard workers ;o)

Last but not least I have to share this stunning picture  with you as it sums up the whole day as it could be a picture postcard from byegone times - I love it and am definitely getting it printed up for my walls!

Poppy in Fay and some incredible pink shoes

Brides these days are wanting to be much more individual and get much more out of their wedding day. Their overall theme and look has never been so important. They are asking much more of their suppliers to create a specific look. Their photography at the end of it all is like their very own fashion shoot! This just shows that when all elements of their planning is combined it is possible to achieve a fabulous look like this.

Hope you've enjoyed reading this as much as I did doing it!

Emma xo