A soft yet strong bridal shoot in Devon

29 Aug 2018

For ethereal boho bridal style that exudes strength and unity, look no further than this enchanting shoot held at Bickleigh Castle in Tiverton, Devon

Natasha Smith of Turquoise Bay Beauty styled this shoot in Devon, assisted by a host of local suppliers each eager to showcase their talent. We find out more...

What was the inspiration behind the shoot?

I wanted the photo shoot to have a soft, ethereal and beautiful feel but with a powerful, united femininity - quite a contradiction. I felt this would encapsulate the feel of the venue, Bickliegh Castle: solid, strong, timeless but surrounded by wild beauty.

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Tell us a little bit about the venue and why it was chosen.

I love Bickliegh Castle; it has such a beauty to it, a natural almost-wild English beauty. As you step into the grounds it almost takes you back in time. Bickleigh dates back as far as 600 AD; there is so much history there and you really feel it as you walk through the little wild lane and stand in front of it. When planning the shoot I spoke to a lovely girl who works there who is studying women through the history of Bickliegh. The fact it is used as a wedding venue also tied everything together perfectly.

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What did you choose for the flower arrangements?

Debbie of Florialities is such a talented lady. We spoke and we discussed the kind of style I imagined - wild but beautiful and not too neat. I was blown away as she interpreted my ideas beautifully. Everything was so beautiful; I wanted three crowns for the girls - beautiful statement crowns. I really liked the idea of having some pieces that would drape down from the crown around the face, again using that ethereal look as inspiration and a nod to vintage too. I was inspired by images of garden fairies in the '30s.

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What kind of look did you want to achieve with the make-up, hair and outfits for the bride and bridesmaids?

I wanted the bridal look to complement the backdrop of the castle, strong and wild but with softness to it using wild flowers and beautiful grounds. I wanted the girls to have very soft make-up, but a slightly rosy glow. With the hair, again, we wanted to maintain natural texture and keep it not too structured. We also had the beautiful flower crowns, so Kyrelle was amazing at just making the hair look ethereal and not too constructed.

For the dresses I wanted something floaty and soft but a little different. A local designer and dressmaker, Kim of Abide Maids, makes the most beautiful pieces with such a lovely soft colour palette. My plan was three girls: one of them the bride and the two as bridesmaids, in the grounds before the groom arrives. Nowadays the bride doesn't have to wear an ivory dress, so I decided go for something different. I also think sometimes it is nice to see a story that is not too obvious; the girls are each so different and looked stunning together, so I wanted whoever saw this shoot to come to their own conclusion on who was the bride.

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Get the look:

Styling and make-up artist: Turquoise Bay Beauty, www.turquoisebaybeauty.co.uk
Photography: James A Photography, www.jamesaphotography.co.uk
Dresses: Abide Maids, www.abidemaids.co.uk
Floristry: Floralities, www.floralities.co.uk
Hair Devon Wedding Hair, www.devonweddinghair.co.uk
Venue: Bickleigh Castle, www.bickleighcastle.com

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