North West Wedding

70s obsession. a retro wedding styled shoot at pimhill barn

29th May 2017 | Alexis Forsyth

A Retro Bridal Shoot by Sophie Kerr Photography (51)

We’re turning back the clock today with an uber cool 1970s retro wedding shoot that’s got us falling head over heels for folk-inspired trends.

Floaty wedding gowns and cute floral head crowns are paired with a demure makeup palette and loose waves to create a carefree and youthful bridal look. But it’s the props in this shoot that really bring the era to life. You know that rusty orange shade that’s come to epitomise 70s pop culture? You’ll find pops of this tone on the cake, stationery and vintage crockery – and we have to admit, we just adore the modern take on this 70s hue. And then there’s the Ford Capri – runaway brides at the ready!

Photographer Sophie led on the brief for the shoot and based it around her passion for all things 1970s-related. Here, she tells us more about her fascination with the era and introduces us to the suppliers she collaborated with on the day. So, grab your bean bag, get comfy and read on…

With images by Sophie Kerr Photography.

Models: Elise Lynn and Ella Ruth Copperthwaite.

A Retro Bridal Shoot by Sophie Kerr Photography (95)

sophie says:

The title of the shoot is ’70s obsession’, named so because I have, for as long as I can remember, had a strange fascination with that era. My parents married in 1973 so I grew up to a soundtrack of Pink Floyd, Fleetwood Mac, Carole King, and Led Zeppelin to name but a few. The music and fashion of the past always moved me far more than what my friends were interested in as a teenager, and this passion has heavily influenced my style and tastes ever since. I always try, through my work, to evoke that warmth and charm I feel when I look through old photographs, that kind of hazy rose-tinted innocence of a time gone by that you wish you could have been a part of. I guess that was the key to this shoot; a modern tribute to my lifelong 1970s fantasy world in my head.

I chose Pimhill Barn in Shrewsbury, as the location for the shoot because, having shot many weddings at this venue, I knew it had ample space with many different settings and textures for our backgrounds. It has everything – from formal kept gardens, industrial farm buildings, wild forest wilderness – to rustic old-world wooden beams. I knew it would give us plenty of options to work with should we need a change of scenery, all of which are totally gorgeous. We were all completely blown away on the day when we headed up the drive to the barn through an incredible sea of daffodils!

A Retro Bridal Shoot by Sophie Kerr Photography (66)

Our two bridal styles were based around offshoots of the hippy theme. The first a more ethereal, folklore outfit with a floor length sleeved chiffon gown, flower crown, wild looking bouquet and soft make up. For me that kind of look is synonymous with the very early British 70s, when the English folk revival was in full swing.

The second was a more mainstream pop look, using striking heavy eye makeup, statement jewellery, a double layered lace maxi dress, and long flowing locks as a throwback to those stunning pin-ups of the time.

A Retro Bridal Shoot by Sophie Kerr Photography (46)

Bridal Reloved Rowton, an adorable little shop on a farm opposite the famous Rowton Castle that sell secondhand designer wedding dresses, supplied the gowns for the shoot. I wanted to use Bridal Reloved Rowton for two reasons; the first was I thought with the dresses being ‘re-loved’, there might be more chance of finding something a little more retro to fit the theme, and the second reason was I knew Jenny would put her all into the project and be just as enthusiastic about it as I was.

For the jewellery and headpieces, I used Shropshire-based Julieann Bird, who makes truly unique hand-made wedding accessories that I spotted being used on other styled shoots. I fell in love with her beaded lace brow bands and cuffs because they were perfect for the theme; they are a modern take on a very distinct 60s/70s look.

A Retro Bridal Shoot by Sophie Kerr Photography (1)

Elly at Dolly Rockers Beauty was an obvious choice for the shoot, as she is incredibly skilled and has earned a reputation locally for specialising in vintage makeup. She’s also amazing when it comes to more conventional softer wedding make-up.

To complement the look, mother and daughter team Gill and Molly Smith from Hair at the Coach House styled our models’ hair. Their combined skills and experience were key to creating the retro look we needed, as well as keeping it fresh and modern.

A Retro Bridal Shoot by Sophie Kerr Photography (3)

Shrewsbury-based Julie Nicholas is quite simply one of the best florists around. There was no other local florist I would have chosen to work with as her name speaks high quality and perfection. The addition of a flower ring as well as the crown and bouquets was such a unique and special thing that she brought to the table for this project, which proves she always goes that extra mile.

A Retro Bridal Shoot by Sophie Kerr Photography (55)

Our tea party set up was meant to look as 1970s as we could possibly muster, with the exception of the naked cake (created by Annie at The Sugar Cart), which is obviously a modern-day trend. Everything matched – from the genuine 70’s vintage china and wicker chair – to the stationery and fresh flowers. Sarah at Street Party Vintage supplied the crockery and tableware on the day. When I think of that era I imagine a sea of insane clashing orange and brown, so with that in mind we put elements of that colour scheme into a vintage wedding afternoon tea scene.

Our beautiful bespoke stationery was supplied by Anna from Evelyn and Elliot  – Stationery. Every detail – from the orange jewels she decorated it with – to the speed at which she made any changes needed, was all taken care of ultra-professionally.

A Retro Bridal Shoot by Sophie Kerr Photography (39)

The Ford Capri, if I’m honest, was really just for me and it was kindly supplied by owner Bryn Jones after I put a call out via social media. I love alternative wedding transport and I wanted to see a genuine vintage Ford in the flesh! We got some great and unexpected fun shots of the models inside the car, which led to many jokes about runaway brides – that might be why they are laughing so much!

A Retro Bridal Shoot by Sophie Kerr Photography (79)

The day went better than I ever expected. This was actually the first styled shoot I had organised and it was so much fun! Everything went perfectly smoothly and ran on time, and we were blessed with the most glorious spring sunshine that nobody could have predicted.

Not only did the team come together to create beautiful images, we also all got on really well and made some great connections for future collaborations. Big thanks to Harry Fisher Film and Photography for the behind the scenes videography and to Birgitta Zoutman for the behind the scenes photography too. There was a real sense of joy in the air during the morning preparations while we all got to know one another with a 70s playlist on in the background.

A Retro Bridal Shoot by Sophie Kerr Photography (69)

I would love to do more styled shoots in future. Music is such an enormous part of my life and I have no doubt that it would follow along those lines; something colourful with dancing and movement would be wonderful. Watch this space!

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