Charlotte Balbier

get down tonight. a 1970s disco wedding inspired styled shoot in manchester

August 10th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

Studio 54 Wedding Shoot by McAvoy Photography (38)

It might only be Monday but we have something that’s going to get you well and truly in the mood for a party! This ultra-glam Studio 54 disco wedding styled shoot, courtesy of Caroline from Words To Glow Light Up Letters & Venue Décor.

Caroline came up with the cool concept for the shoot whilst exhibiting at The Deaf Institute in the heart of Manchester’s city centre, and got some fabulous North West suppliers on board to bring her hip vision to fruition.

So join us as we enter this Boogie Wonderland, filled vibrant lights, retro décor and shiny disco balls!

With images by McAvoy Photography.

Studio 54 Wedding Shoot by McAvoy Photography (33)

caroline says: The shoot was entitled ‘Studio 54’ and was a Studio 54 1970s disco inspired concept, taking inspiration from the 1970s/80s style decor and musical roots of the shoot location: The Deaf Institute, which can be hired for weddings.

Studio 54 Wedding Shoot by McAvoy Photography (28)

I fell in love with the quirky decor and retro vibe of the venue whilst exhibiting at a wedding fair there and quickly saw the fabulous potential to create a styled shoot showcasing some great locally based wedding suppliers; whilst simultaneously highlighting the key retro focal points of this great city centre venue.

The overall look and aim was ultra-1970s glam, based on dance clubs of that era. Locating the shoot in the city’s Deaf Institute instantly provided the edgy, yet retro look we were looking to achieve. With theatrical style seating and balconies and individual booths tucked into the recesses of each room, the venue had an undeniable ‘dance club’ feel. Adding in the parquet dance floor, huge glitter balls, vintage wallpaper and a retro bar, featuring wall mounted vintage stereo speakers, and the scene was set for a disco!

Studio 54 Wedding Shoot by McAvoy Photography (25)

Understanding the overall look for the shoot, it was important to choose not only well respected North West wedding suppliers with complimentary styles, but those who had a previous history of professional collaborations to ensure a smooth and seamless feel to the whole day.

Studio 54 Wedding Shoot by McAvoy Photography (8)

With models handpicked by Nicole from Bridal Chic in the City and the theme agreed, the shoot was organised by Jenny from McAvoy Photography, who was key in leading the coordination of the chosen suppliers on the day and was responsible for determining an all-important photo shoot schedule and brief to work towards for all suppliers.

Jenny, who is based in North Manchester, seamlessly offers a unique blend of ultra-glamorous, fashion inspired photography; whilst expertly capturing what are undeniably beautiful and emotive images as they happen – making her the perfect lady for the shoot.

Studio 54 Wedding Shoot by McAvoy Photography (32)

Adding to its already cool interior, we decorated the venue with accents of gold and white, with large feather plumage in dramatic table centre vases, sparkly glitter balls, candles and large sparkly light up letters, to set the disco themed scene.

The ornate cakes were provided by Caroline’s Cake Company, based in South Manchester, who offer a bespoke cake design service and specialise in beautiful and unique celebration cakes that taste as good as they look.

The light up letters came from my business, Words To Glow Light Up Letters & Venue Décor. We have a vast range of beautiful light up letters, numbers and signage to hire, including options such as ‘DANCE’ letters seen in the shoot, as well as ‘PARTY’, ‘MR&MRS’ and ‘LOVE’, plus initials and ampersands (&), bringing that added sparkle to the dance floor!

Studio 54 Wedding Shoot by McAvoy Photography (29)

The theme took further inspiration from style icons of the era, such as Bianca Jagger and Farah Fawcett. This equalled big hair, smoky eye makeup with bold red lipsticks, floaty fabrics with sequins or satins in colours of cream, gold and chocolate brown, brown fur stoles and lace capes, as well as big sunglasses.

Studio 54 Wedding Shoot by McAvoy Photography (39)

Dresses were provided by Isla Jean Bridal from their lovely two-storey shop in the north of Manchester, which stocks the likes of Aire by Barcelona, Belle and Bunty, Cymbeline, Cabotine, Eliza Jane Howell, Maria Senvo, Stephanie Allin and Lou Lou.

The gorgeous gowns were complemented by gorgeous accessories from Dream Veils, who have been designing and making wedding veils for more than 20 years, footwear from the fabulous Charlotte Mills Shoes and additional accessories from Jo Barnes Couture, who creates hand crafted and bespoke vintage headdresses and accessories.

Studio 54 Wedding Shoot by McAvoy Photography (35)

Our models Tanya and Sam, had their made up done by Lorna Elizabeth, who trained at Manchester’s prestigious School of Make Up and has a genuine love and passion for the industry. She offers a specialist freelance make-up service for any event, from bridal and special occasions to make-up parties, fashion shows and tutorials.

Completing the team was Verdure Floral Design, a highly respected and award winning floral design team based in North Manchester, who created all the fabulous flower arrangements.

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rustic luxe: a styled country wedding shoot at the black swan, helmsley

July 27th, 2015 | Rachel Parry

A Rustic Luxe Styled Shoot at The Black Swan, Helmsley (c) Annemarie King (26)

If there’s one thing that makes me go weak at the knees, other than gorgeous weddings, it’s a cute dog.

Having grown up with canine companions a firm part of the family, there aren’t many mutts that don’t evoke a genuine ‘ahh’ from me. So when our fabulous Sponsor, The Black Swan hotel, sent over the results of a recent styled shoot at the venue, which featured a fine Irish Red Setter, it was a ‘yes’ from me.

The ‘groom’ isn’t bad either, is he?!

Located in the idyllic North Yorkshire village of Helmsley, the black swan is the perfect venue for a romantic country-inspired wedding (did you catch the beautiful celebration we shared on the wedding blog this morning?). With this in mind the hotel welcomed photographer Annemarie King and a talented bunch northern wedding suppliers, to use the venue as a stunning backdrop for a rustic luxe styled shoot, complete with dapper tweed, natural blooms and detailed dresses.

The setting of the hotel brings all elements to life for an incredibly well-executed shoot that will make you go ‘ooh’ and well as ‘ahh’ (and not just over that dog). So let’s handover to The Black Swan for those all important details…

With images by Annemarie King.

A Rustic Luxe Styled Shoot at The Black Swan, Helmsley (c) Annemarie King (14)

the black swan says: The well-loved country charm, welcoming atmosphere and quaint English gardens, overlooking the pretty churchyard next door, made The Black Swan the perfect venue for Annemarie King and her team to co-create a rustic-luxe themed photographic campaign.

A Rustic Luxe Styled Shoot at The Black Swan, Helmsley (c) Annemarie King (10)

Model James with his red-haired beauties, ‘bride’ Zara and Connor, the Irish Red Setter, are on location at the hotel and also at Helmsley Walled Gardens, which brings the theme to life with a touch of nostalgia. The evocative images are intimate, dream-like, and sometimes fun and light-hearted.

The timeless, informal elegance of the photography mirrors the essence of this historic hotel venue – the smartly-tailored handsome groom James, in his Yorkshire tweeds and smartly polished brogues, along with his bride’s sweet, ethereal beauty and swan-like elegance make for a beautiful pairing, and Connor certainly adds a special appeal to the ‘family shots’.

A Rustic Luxe Styled Shoot at The Black Swan, Helmsley (c) Annemarie King (11)

The various settings demonstrate the hotel’s oak beamed Tudor Lounge, the oldest part of the venue with its original inglenook, and the cosy stone-walled Crosland Lounge, as well as the pretty English walled gardens, in which The Black Swan’s new Oak Gazebo is located, which is now available for outdoor summer wedding ceremonies and celebrations. Helmsley Walled Gardens also plays a part, giving a super botanical backdrop to the shots.

A Rustic Luxe Styled Shoot at The Black Swan, Helmsley (c) Annemarie King (19)

A creative team led by York photographer Annemarie King, is responsible for the shoot with all those who offered their talents and goods on the day doing a fantastic job. Two of Annemarie’s passions are showcased within the shoot as she’s an award-winning photographer specialising in both country weddings and canine photography.

A Rustic Luxe Styled Shoot at The Black Swan, Helmsley (c) Annemarie King (8)

The shoot’s retro-inspired gowns, which include the Alan Hannah’s Tara long lace gown, White Rose’s 50s style R920 gown, Angel B’s peppermint bridesmaid dress Am 242, and the flamboyant Cymbeline Adele design, were kindly loaned by The Bridal Lounge in Northallerton, along with selected accessories.

A Rustic Luxe Styled Shoot at The Black Swan, Helmsley (c) Annemarie King (7)

Carters Country Wear provided the tweed tailored outfit sported by groom, James. Carters specialise in suits and country wear tailored with cloth from Saville Row and Yorkshire tweed mills, with a particular emphasis on country sportswear. They enjoy an international clientele who value their quality and highly personalised service.

Much of the jewellery was generously loaned by Libby Butler Jewellery, located in Helmsley.

A Rustic Luxe Styled Shoot at The Black Swan, Helmsley (c) Annemarie King (3)

The striking makeup and hairstyling of our bride Zara, is by award-winning hair and make-up artist Kate Pymm, who based in the North East and works throughout the UK on a wide portfolio of projects, including bridal hair and makeup.

The sweet bouquets and simple floral arrangements with home-grown ‘grandma’s cottage garden blooms’ inspired by the rural-luxe theme, were all created by Liz Wood at Busy Liz’s Floral Design, of Kirbymoorside.

A Rustic Luxe Styled Shoot at The Black Swan, Helmsley (c) Annemarie King (5)

To complete the stellar line-up, Celebrate Country Cake Design, located in Helmsley’s Walled Gardens, supplied the cake, Fabulously Finished, of Ampleforth, supplied the props and the chair covers were loaned by Chair Covers of Yorkshire, located in Easingwold.

For more information about weddings at The Black Swan, contact 01439 770466 and ask to speak to their Wedding Co-ordinator. Alternatively, visit their website

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it’s a northern disco revolution! a styled wedding shoot in manchester

July 24th, 2015 | Julia Braime

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (61)

Hey Brides Up North?  It’s Fridaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!

To celebrate, and maybe (just maybe) get you in the mood for letting your hair down a little, we’re featuring this fun styled wedding shoot which was directed and shot by Kristin and Mark Williamson, from events and photography company, Mr and Mrs W.  By blinding you with lights, neon, glitter and confetti their team are here to remind you just how much fun weddings can be!

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (14)

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (13)

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (17)

kristin says: We took inspiration from 90’s rave to 70’s disco and set it within the warehouse venue B’Eat Street Manchester

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (4)

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (3)

The sensational gowns and hair creations were supplied by Manchester based wonder team Jean Jackson Couture (a Brides Up North Sponsor no less)the UV hair styles were created by Claire at Harry Jon MUA and the ‘glittertastic’ make up was applied by Jody Ann Yates at Lynette Page Makeup Artistry.

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (40)

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (45)

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (42)

The neon backdrops with powerful flower statements were made by Manchester’s own Springbank Flowers; the marquee letters with a twist were supplied by The Word is Love and theundoubtedly amazing lighting, complete with glitter balls and confetti, was provided by Lightech Sound and Light.

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (53)

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (54)

Our inspiration for this shoot was to show that a wedding should be a fun, rather than stressful event, with the bride and groom plus all their friends and family have a raging good time. Our DJ, Flic made sure we did this on the day by playing us some great  music to get us all into the disco vibe.

The Northern Disco Revolution (c) Mr & Mrs W (59)

As a team we are really excited that the industrial look is coming to the wedding industry as it can be so diverse. We hope we have given everyone a real insight into this style and whilst we know that most weddings aren’t going to look like this, couples can take elements from the images and really turn their wedding party into something really memorable.  

Let’s be honest, who doesn’t love getting the music on and having a really good dance!

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glory days vintage: a styled vintage wedding shoot in yorkshire.

July 23rd, 2015 | Julia Braime

A Glory Days Vintage Styled Shoot in Yorkshire (c) Luke Bell  (27)

This afternoon on the wedding blog it’s all about the pretty with this stunning vintage wedding styled shoot set deep in the heart of Yorkshire. Put together by a small but very talented group of fantastic wedding industry professionals, headed up by creative photographer Luke Bell, we just love this set of inspirational images.  If you’re hoping that your wedding day look might have a hint of the vintage about it, be prepared to be inspired…

A Glory Days Vintage Styled Shoot in Yorkshire (c) Luke Bell  (29)

luke says: Towards the end of February I worked on a really fun location shoot in Leeds that had turned out really well considering I’d stepped in at the last minute to photograph it. So feeling inspired I decided that I wanted to produce a shoot myself and started to work on a number of ideas – but the problem was nothing was really coming together: I couldn’t find the right model, I’d been knocked back from a couple of locations I was keen on using, I was struggling to find a make up artist whose work would fit into the concepts I was thinking of and I was still in need of a designer. So it’s fair to say that I was getting nowhere fast… and then it happened. It’s not often that a model’s look provides the starting point for a photo shoot – but as soon as I saw Harriet‘s profile I knew that I not only had to work with her, but due to her obvious passion for all things vintage I also knew who I would approach to help me.

A Glory Days Vintage Styled Shoot in Yorkshire (c) Luke Bell  (25)

I’d always wanted to collaborate with Hayley from Glory Days Vintage Bridal again (since our previous shoot had ended up on the cover of the Yorkshire Post Magazine) and Hayley – being the awesome person that she is – was more than happy to get involved and provided two beautiful vintage wedding dresses and even hand made three headpieces for us to use too. It started to feel like things were coming together – now I just needed a make up artist and a suitable location to use.

A Glory Days Vintage Styled Shoot in Yorkshire (c) Luke Bell  (16)

I contacted the very talented Faye Robertson who I’ve worked with many times before to see if she could recommend anyone and luckily it turned out that her work on a TV show had finished just in time so she was available herself – now things were really looking up!

A Glory Days Vintage Styled Shoot in Yorkshire (c) Luke Bell  (15)

As for a suitable location, well sometimes these things are just staring you in the face. Being fortunate enough to live in a gorgeous rural village we actually have a wealth of beautiful backdrops and even a stunning little 12th Century church right here in Sheriff Hutton itself – perfect for photographing vintage bridal gowns.

A Glory Days Vintage Styled Shoot in Yorkshire (c) Luke Bell  (19)

Faye and I agreed that the styling for Harriet’s makeup and hair needed to work in harmony with Hayley’s dresses and headpieces and I made sure that the lighting I used was sympathetic to the look while adding a touch of glamour and mood too.

A Glory Days Vintage Styled Shoot in Yorkshire (c) Luke Bell  (13)

Once Faye and I met Harriet we instantly clicked and although we all knew that we were up against some pretty cold weather and changeable light the endless cups of tea, giggling fits, outbursts of swearing and general hilarity that took place ensured a fun and relaxed shoot that I feel produced some stunning results.

A Glory Days Vintage Styled Shoot in Yorkshire (c) Luke Bell  (11)

I’d like to thank Faye’s good friend Claire who came along and assisted me with my lighting setup and to my good friend Elaine who stepped in at the last minute to lend me her wedding bouquet. Cheers guys!

A Glory Days Vintage Styled Shoot in Yorkshire (c) Luke Bell  (21)

We’re always on the lookout for brides who’d love to recreate something like this on their wedding day – whether it be the dress, headpiece, makeup, hair or photos please don’t hesitate to get in touch, as we’d all love to help.

And I’m pretty sure that because each of us had so much fun on this styled shoot there’s always the chance we will organise another one very soon – so watch this space!

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dainty daisies. a spring wedding styled shoot in liverpool

April 30th, 2015 | Julia Braime

Pixsmiths Creative Photography Spring Wedding Styled Shoot (33)

Luxury wedding florists Katey and Edward Burke’s vision was to create a luxury one-stop-wedding-shop with like-minded and quality, high-end wedding suppliers all in one place.  At The Blue Orchid Wedding Boutique couples can relax in the knowledge that their suppliers know each other and work well together, offering quality products and services, coordinating their wedding seamlessly between them.

This, their first styled shoot took place at the very popular 30 James St – Home of the Titanic in Liverpool and was inspired by The Blue Orchid Boutique’s in-house stationer Cheryl of Pink Sherbet Stationery and her pretty ‘Ava’ collection in coral and ivory with touches of navy.

We think it’s perfectly pretty!

Pixsmiths Creative Photography Spring Wedding Styled Shoot (29)

cheryl says: My ‘Ava’ stationery collection is perfect for the spring season with it’s dainty daisy like floral pattern and contrasting bold stripes.  As soon as the team had chosen this design they went to work, each of us creating their own contribution and interpretation of the theme.

Pixsmiths Creative Photography Spring Wedding Styled Shoot (19)

Our boutique’s resident florist Katey put together a handheld posy of coral ‘Miss Piggy’ roses with lisianthus to highlight the colours of the design, and selected bouvardia, coral santini and wax flower to match the lovely little daisy flower shapes in the pattern work.

Katey created a beautiful tall table centre display and framed my luxury pearl embellished seating plan with floral loveliness!  Fresh flower framed seating plans are becoming a very popular wedding centrepiece; they really do have the wow factor!

Pixsmiths Creative Photography Spring Wedding Styled Shoot (36)

Katey is also lucky enough to have a very photogenic daughter who was more than willing to model a beautiful origami head circlet and flower girl posy by our talented in-house origamist Anne.  Again matching the colours beautifully and hand-finished with pearl and diamante embellishments, which made an appearance on everything from the stationery, cake, table centrepiece, bridal bouquet and the origami work.

Pixsmiths Creative Photography Spring Wedding Styled Shoot (21)

The exceptionally talented Sue from Bella’s Cake Pantry worked her magic with an outstanding coral cake with flowers to match the stationery design cascading down the tiers, also picking up the stripes with beautiful grosgrain ribbon as a way of adding some subtle navy detail.

The boutique’s venue dresser Melanie of Elegant Twist ensured the table and chairs were dressed to perfection with coral and ivory sashes and cute satin ribbon bows around the napkins to match the binding on the bridal bouquet.

Pixsmiths Creative Photography Spring Wedding Styled Shoot (17)

It is clear from the photographs that the team is passionate about attention to detail.  We believe it’s the finishing touches that make a wedding special and totally unique.  It’s the little details that photographers love to capture and who better to photograph them for the photo shoot than the wonderful husband and wife team Sandy and Dave of Pixsmiths Creative Photography!  They captured the beauty of the theme and grandeur of the venue with absolute perfection.

Pixsmiths Creative Photography Spring Wedding Styled Shoot (14)

It’s undeniable that having a group of suppliers who work so well together is invaluable when it comes to planning a wedding, especially if you want to ensure every aspect fits together seamlessly!  We are excited to share more themed photo shoots over the coming months.

Pixsmiths Creative Photography Spring Wedding Styled Shoot (11)

To book The Blue Orchid Boutique suppliers for your wedding visit www.blue-orchid.co.uk.

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