Earlier this year I was asked to take part in a styled wedding shoot at the stunning Somerley House in Ringwood.
If you’re reading this and aren’t involved in the wedding industry, the term ‘styled shoot’ might be a little alien to you – what on earth is it?!
Styled shoots are common practice amongst wedding suppliers, essentially we get together as a team to create wedding inspiration that we can share across social media, websites and blogs.
Why do we do it? For a number of reasons;
It’s an excellent opportunity to help our audiences with content that speaks to and inspires you. We want to create imagery that shows you what’s possible and how we can help turn your wedding dreams into reality.
Lots of my couples say to me that they struggle with ‘the vision’, they think they know what they want but are having difficulty seeing it, and/or working out how to make it happen. Shoots are a great way of helping with this, perhaps you’re newly engaged and just starting to think about your wedding plans, you stumble across a gallery on Instagram or a pin on Pinterest that immediately jumps out and inspires you.
Working as a wedding supplier can be a lonely old place, we’re often off doing our own wedding-y thing and might only get to meet each other briefly on the big day itself, so getting out to network and spend time with each other is so lovely.
We all have a little black book of fellow suppliers we’ve worked with and our couples often ask for recommendations of other wedding creatives they’re looking to hire. We can make honest suggestions based on the experiences we’ve had at shoots and having worked closely with someone, know whether their work will be a good fit for your vibe.
So, in a nutshell that’s styled shoots and a few reasons we do them, now let’s jump in to the specific one I want to talk to you about today.
This shoot was the brainchild of the fantastic Melissa from Melissa Megan Photography. I’d been fan-girling over her work on Instagram for some time so when she asked me to be involved it was an easy ‘yes please’!
Melissa wanted to bring modern monochrome to the stunning and ever so traditional Somerley House in Ringwood, Hampshire. At first glance you might think that a modern wedding wouldn’t work in such a space, but actually the juxtaposition is perfect, again this demonstrates how a shoot can help with a vision you might not otherwise have had.
Somerley is beyond beautiful, it’s easy to see why TV shows such as Bridgerton have chosen to film there. With sweeping views of the English countryside in every direction you look, the house and its grounds are perfect for holding a celebration to remember.
Making the most of the outside space, we opted to style the table on a patio adorned with vintage urns. However traditional the surroundings, the tablescape design was full-on modernity. I chose to incorporate clear acrylic chairs when the obvious choice would’ve been a more classic option, but the contrast of old vs new worked perfectly (insert chefs kiss).
The focus was on luxurious place settings – textured napkins tied with black silk ribbon, matte black cutlery and charger plates created a stunning visual experience. And rather than have a typical centrepiece, a show stopping floral installation cascaded from the end of the table to the floor. The stationery was also kept within the monochrome styling, including a fabric welcome sign hanging from a sleek black metal frame.
The wedding cake was an absolute showstopper! We displayed it on an acrylic plinth with a further floral statement piece ensuring a cohesive feel with the table styling. I’m forever campaigning to get cakes off the sad 3ft table alone in the corner!
Carrying a long stemmed bouquet of ruffly white roses, our beautiful bride wore a long sleeved wedding dress adorned with pearls. Changing into a sparkly two piece for the evening celebrations which were kicked off with a champagne tower and spray. Her handsome groom was in classic black tie, a trend that’s becoming more and more popular for UK weddings, and I’m here for it!
So, if you love the idea of a super modern wedding but worry you need some colour, I hope this shoot goes to show that black and white can be just as perfect a choice as a colourful soiree.
I’ve got lots more styled shoot inspiration to share across The Journal, so keep your eyes peeled!
The full team behind this incredible shoot:
Photographer – Melissa Megan Photography
Stylist – By Hannah Baskett
Hair & Make up – Shannon Belle
Venue – Somerley House
Models – Christine and Ross
Cake – Anna Lewis Cake design
Dresses – Lauren Francis Bridal
Florist – Blush and Bloom Floral Design
Accessories – Rachel Sokhal Bridal
Suit – Charles Gale Formal Wear
Bridal Shoes – Charlotte Mills Shoes
Furniture Academy Furniture Hire
Tableware – Black Saucers Tableware
Stationery – Love Flora Studio Co.
Ribbons – The Silk Studio UK
Linen – Just4linen