A stone moon gate was the original inspiration behind today’s uber stylish shoot which brings those summer loving vibes to life in a swathe of bright hues and the cutest picnic spread we’ve ever seen.
It comes as no surprise to hear that the team behind today’s dose of pretty were going for whimsical Alice down the rabbit hole feels. And it works!
Led by Kerry of Wild Flowers – a boutique style flower shop located in Standish, Wigan – she teamed up with some top local suppliers who shared her vision for the day. There’s no blush palettes here – Kerry was keen to showcase a more imaginative look in everything from the vibrant bouquets to the chic texturised tablescapes and duck egg up-cylced furniture.
As for the ‘bride’, she’s sporting some gorgeous vintage style gowns – tea length and polka dots, complemented by an au naturel, boho beauty look. We’re in love – and think you will be too! Here’s Kerry to spill all the details…
With images by Bobtale Photography
Inspiration & location
Kerry says: The inspiration for the shoot came from a very simple idea. Good friends and clients of mine, Lisa and Andrew Clark, had moved house to a beautiful area of Parbold with lots of land and big gardens. In their garden stood a unique, vintage stone moon gate. These are a current trend in the floristry world, but they are usually built on a metal frame or of modern construction. When I saw it, I just had to give it the Wild Flowers treatment, using eco floristry techniques I had learned earlier this year on a Sabine Darryl course and going foam free. I asked the house owners if they would be game for a takeover of their garden for a day with a bribe that they get to keep all the flowers. That was back at the beginning of the year so we pencilled it in the diary for June, when the gardens would be at their best.
I then began whirling ideas around and spoke to Emma Jones from Love and Lace event styling. We work together regularly on weddings and Emma is great to bounce ideas off. She loved the concept and set up a Pinterest board that we could contribute to.
First up, photographer, without question we both agreed it had to be Robyn from Bobtale Photography. I had created the flowers for Robyn’s wedding years before, it’s how we first met, both Emma and I have worked with her on numerous weddings together and our styles complement each other and bring out the best in what each brings to the table.
From then the ideas just kept coming, I definitely wanted a brighter vibe as I’m trying to drive brides to be more individual and think outside the blush and nude box. I also wanted to go a bit retro with the sea grass beach style basket.
Sticking to local suppliers, The Little Green Platter Company came on board and Karen’s work complemented the theme, being so vibrant and expertly styled. From then the summer loving romantic picnic shoot developed. It had to be bright but pretty, flowing not fixed or formal. Whimsical in a bohemian, Alice-before-she-goes-down-the-rabbit-hole feel.
I also enlisted the help of Natasha, my senior florist from the shop by insisting she model for the shoot. Natasha recently married in May and I just knew she’d jump at the chance to wear her bridal gown again. What bride wouldn’t? Natasha had the most amazing experience with The Bridal Barn Boutique in Ormskirk, and suggested we use them for the bridal wear.
The LouLou Bridal collection is perfect for brides who love a vintage look. Their styles are classic with beautiful fabrics and quirky touches. All their gowns have the option to come short or tea length so brides can really show off their gorgeous wedding shoes! We featured three of their gowns on the day: the short polka dotted Nellie, the full-length Esme and tea length Nina, as well as Cece shoes by Charlotte Mills.
Sophie from Petite Beautique, on the same High Street in Standish as Wild Flowers, was Natasha’s makeup artist for her wedding and we just wouldn’t have asked anyone else. Sophie enlisted me, Robyn and Emma for her own wedding last year so she clearly champions our tribe and has definitely become one of the gang. Sophie even helped arrange Pip to do hair on the day.
For Natasha’s makeup, we wanted to go for an ‘au naturel’ look with a summer glow on the lid and a stronger but still neutral lip. Perfect for most brides who want to look an enhanced version of themselves on their wedding day.
For the model’s hair, we decided to go for a loose curl/bohemian look with a twist at the back for a little detail, but still nice and natural. Perfect for all seasons and a bride who wants a bit of detail without it being too much.
For the styling of the photo shoot we wanted to keep it vibrant and fresh to ultimately provide brides to be with lots of inspiration.
Natasha is not only one of my top team, she also makes weavings and dream catchers available at Natasha Emily Weavings online, which really fitted with the alternative vibe the shoot was taking, so it made sense to include them. The collection of beautiful boho inspired dreamcatchers are made with vintage doilies, lace, yarns and ribbons. For the shoot, she included a small selection of natural doily dream catchers, which were hung from the trees.
Natasha also bought her bridal ribbons, created from a range of naturally dyed fabrics using plants, foods and flowers, from The Natural Kitchen and was so impressed with the products we invited them to come on-board too.
To complement the grazing platter board from The Little Green Platter Company, Love and Lace added in a traditional picnic basket, crystal cut glassware, charger plates and vintage china trios to add that extra pop of colour. The dusky pink linen runner also added texture to the tablescape styling. A duck egg blue upcycled chair was used and provided an alternative to the traditional ‘wedding chair’, adding further vibrancy. Pink mercury votives and brass candlesticks with green tapered candlesticks were also used as part of the tablescape.
The rustic cart wheel was styled with a mixed garland by Wild Flowers. This prop was added into the shots with the moon gate to add further detailing.
My friend Tracey Turner who has a craft business, Birdie and Blossom and also runs courses at Wild Flowers, offered to help on the day with set up and take down as an extra pair of hands is always appreciated.
I visited the flower market in Manchester the day before the shoot as I know they get a fantastic variety delivered in from Holland overnight. I found it an absolute dream choosing the most beautiful flowers in my chosen colour palette, particularly the faded raspberry coloured poppies, watercolour lupins, dusty looking rice flowers and summery blue scabious. I spied a tray of two-tone Minerva dianthus plants too that were perfect for the vintage tins.
I returned to the shop and started to create the large heart wreath to set the mood. The large trailing bouquet I combined partial wired flowers into a hand tied design to create the look I wanted. After checking the to do list was completed, I went home and literally prayed that the sun I’d invited actually turned up!