Updated: Jan 21
Featured on Bride and Tonic.
All images by the awesomely talented Chris Barber.
If you are looking for a stunning inspirational bridal shoot, then look no further. Back in March (and before you-know-what) Alex, from Wonderous Wedding, put together a gloriously alternative concept and sent it our way: she wanted to create a shoot which took the current love of big blooms and flouncy maximalistic chintz and give it a cool edginess by adding in dark Dutch Masters influences. The result: one absolutely STUNNING feast for the eyes.
This has all sorts of inspirational touches giving plenty of cool ideas for all modern couples whether you are looking for fashion styling, table decor or edgy contemporary stationery. Delve in and enjoy!
Table Styling and Decor
I wanted to create a table scape which was brought to life the rich opulence of the Dutch Masters paintings. I adore these works of art; particularly the way that they use rich palettes against dark and moody backgrounds. If you are having your wedding in a dark space such as a warehouse or somewhere sparse of natural light, this might be a really good way to bring light and colour to your design, especially for a winter wedding. I wanted to create the impression that any food was overflowing and generous without dominating the table design, but rather allowing it to be the main colour palette and a focal point: rich reds, dusky blues and pops of bright orange. I adore a juxtaposition in any styling I create and this time it was important to contrast the dark tones with pops of vintage chintz to create a sultry and vibrant ambiance. This was it's composition, like a painting: an intricate layering of objects, exotic fruit, flowers, fabrics and dinnerware. Don't be afraid of doing this, it creates a talking point and certainly helps to make any design unique and personal. I also handcrafted a banner in a tapestry style complete with decadent gold fringing to hang behind the cake and create a focal point.
To create a set of unique looks, we teamed a full skirt and camisole with a nude tulle cape and a black polka dot bow attached to the shoulder straps. The gorgeously embellished pearl and champagne veil completed this look. Hazaar also showcased a beautiful separate skirt and cropped silk top which created a more sleek look and we paired this with Ashley's pearl headpiece. But why have one dress when you can have 2...or 3? The final look was a bespoke midnight blue pegasus gown teamed with Ashley's gold sequinned headband for an alternative look.
Hair and Beauty
A warm nude palette was mixed with a smoky eye by Lauren from The ID and Meera's hair was styled by The Artful Hairstylist who kept the hair design simple and sleek and then into an on-trend relaxed up-do incorporating a fishtail plait.
One of my core viewpoints as a stylist is that all men deserve the same amount of attention as the girls, whether this be through tailoring, grooming or options. I am so pleased that Alex also shares this view and made some really great decisions with her choice of suppliers to ensure that our model, Basil, looked sharp and was able to share in the experience. The men's tailoring came from Brighton Based designers, Gresham Blake who offered their gorgeous green and hot pink checked suit. Male accessories and styling advice was provided my my boys, Jason and Rob from Dapper and Suave who teamed the suit with some of their amazing bespoke pieces to adorn and decorate our groom. Brighton based jewellers, Baroque Jewellery were on hand to adorn the fingers and necks of both our models in layers of semi-precious and exotic stones to give a edgy-gothic-luxe look.
A stunning variety of flower arrangements were made by Isabel from Portos Flowers
which used a variety of luxurious and velvety-textured blooms to really capture the colour, shape and form from the Dutch Masters images. Isabel worked closely with Becky from Haart Cakes and, combining their skills together, they used decadent florals to seemingly spill out of the cake. On the alter, adorning either side of the table and running up the stairwell, Phoebe from Phohm used an abundance of vibrant and contemporary dried grasses and flowers to juxtapose the delicate coloured blooms - giving an updated chintzy vibe.
The Cake and Feasting
Becky created a gorgeously decadent 3-tiered black cake. She handprinted florals representing elements of the oil paintings and added the opulent florals cascading down one side.
Gracefully Grazing added cold meats and cheeses, salad and fruits which added lavish colour and vibrancy to the table, allowing the feast to connect to the styling and decadent concept.
All the stationery, from the invites and table lay to the signage was created by Gemma from Dream Wild, a contemporary and forward-facing designer. The idea behind the design was to create modern-romantic-simplicity using a monochromatic palette to off-set the bold colours found elsewhere in order to keep the focus on the font and illustrative design.
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