My goal with this shoot was to create a fairy tale winter wedding inspiration, without it being a Christmas cliché. In order to do this, I listed all the seasonal elements that I love and incorporated them on top of a neutral palette of creams, light pinks and greys: these colour choices ensured that the festive reds and greens stood out against the lighter background.
There was also extra attention paid to finishes (opting for rose gold and matte yellow gold as a warmer alternative to silver) and textures, from faux fur and velvet to silk and feathers. It was paramount for me to put a twist on so-called ‘classic’ wedding elements, such as the cake, bouquet, table numbers, place card holders, etc.
Speaking of the cake, I was determined from the start to showcase a fabulous tiered gingerbread house. This iced showstopper was displayed on a vintage dresser, accompanied by smaller models under glass domes, which added to the whimsical nature of the shoot and elevated simple gingerbread to a hand-crafted luxury piece.
Surrounding the ‘cake’, flowers and foliage spilling out of drawers. Throughout the floral arrangements, we kept the red and green shades, making sure to break them up with cream blooms, as with the bouquet for example. We also incorporated feathers in the bride’s bouquet in order to make it stand out from the other arrangements. Finally, we made sure to tie in Coco the French bulldog to the shoot by dressing her in a custom floral collar.
Berries were a wonderful feature in a hanging decoration above the table, which replaced the traditional centrepiece. The table was such fun to put together from the custom faux fur backed chairs, snow globe table numbers, snowflake place settings and log tealight holders. The stationery included was meticulously chosen and designed: the fonts and paper stock used were quite traditional, but the grey blue font accompanied with a delicate snowflake and stag design slotted into the winter theme perfectly. The mitten-shaped place cards were a particular favourite of mine, as they’re guaranteed to bring a smile to your guests!
When it came to the bride and groom’s look, I wanted the groom to remain traditional with his outfit but include a dark red tie and a feathered buttonhole as a reminder of the shoot’s colour scheme and the bride’s bouquet. As for the bride, more than going for a warm dress or a sleeved design, I opted for a romantic look with a backless silk fitted gown with a cameo-style detail on her lower back, and a fairy tale style tulle design with a fuller skirt. In order to protect our bride from the cold, I matched her gowns with a pink faux fur cropped jacket, adding colour and brightness in the cold winter light. With regards to hair and makeup, the key words were ‘natural’ and ‘ethereal’. While dramatic looks can work well in winter, such as a dark lip or heavier eye, I wanted to keep her looking like herself, just an airbrushed version. And for the hairstyle, even though it is an updo, it flows and seamlessly wraps around her fresh floral comb, without being a conventional updo choice. No look would be complete without shoes and opting for a dusky pink style embellished with a gold metallic flower design is both luxurious yet season-appropriate (not to mention coordinated with the faux fur jacket).
A photobooth is a staple of any wedding today and my idea was to rework the traditional pod with backdrop to a vintage sledge, complete with decorated taxidermy. The wreath around the young stag’s head was one of my favourite elements of the shoot as we had lit it with fairy lights for extra twinkle.
Looking at it in hindsight, this shoot is a celebration of childhood winter favourites, from mittens and sledges, to hot chocolate, marshmallows and gingerbread. The truth is that they’re not just for children: they’re classics, and as seen here, they can definitely be luxurious.