A whimsical Welsh woodland wedding shoot

02 Jun 2016

Shot at Monk Haven Manor in Pembrokeshire, this bridal shoot features inspiration aplenty for a woodland wedding.

Capturing the magic of a woodland wedding, photographer Nic Ford offers insight into the creation of this captivating bridal shoot.

What was the inspiration behind the shoot?

After choosing the location of Monk Haven Manor, the inspiration behind this shoot came from its  surroundings. Pembrokeshire, where we shot, is all about the coast and countryside. The Manor House is set in a beautiful landscape of trees, flowers and elegant walled gardens. This inspired our team to create the subtle, cool and modern looks which stood out from the classic wedding shoots.


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

The venue is based in Monk Haven, just outside a small village in Pembrokeshire. It's a beautiful manor house and grounds located right next to the Pembrokeshire coast path and two seconds walk from the local church, which makes it the perfect location for a wedding. Its grounds are idyllic.

Having only hosted a small amount of weddings for close friends and family in the past, we thought this venue would be perfect for inspiration for brides-to-be. Since opening a B&B business in 2015, Monk Haven has attracted many people to stay and the interest in the venue for weddings has grown. It is now undergoing extensive work of the grounds, which is set on 20 acres of wooded valley, in preparation for weddings in spring 2017.


What did you choose for the flower arrangements?

We used a tropical mix of flowers with matching headpieces to make a statement in our theme. We also used the astilbe and eucalyptus, which was bound with an ivory and hessian ribbon. The flowers we used included: coral roses, cerise astilbe, red amaranthus, orange celosia, pink wax flower, eucalyptus, pink protia and purple lizianthus.


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

The look and atmosphere of the shoot was key. We wanted a modern country feel so the dresses were relaxed (Charlie Brear), beaded (Eliza Jane Howell) and lace (AnnasulY) all creating different feels throughout the day. We deliberately chose more urban gowns in the beautiful green settings.

With hair and make-up we wanted to achieve a soft and textured look, almost universal. Bridal hair is becoming more relaxed and casual with many brides opting for their hair to be down - less is more. We complemented the styles with embellished accessories and amazing flower crowns. We predict that flower crowns will be a main bridal hair trend for 2016.

What was the thinking behind the décor for the shoot? How did you tie it all together?

Most of the shoot was outside, so nature was the decor - green and bamboo. In this case, less was more; the main thing we wanted to stand out was the brides. We used the surroundings of the Manor House and the woodlands to create a scene.  


What kind of accessories were used to create these looks and why?

With the accessories we wanted to create a modern bridal theme by using lots of hair vines, halos and floral headpieces that worked beautifully.


Get the look: 

Venue: Monk Haven Manor House, Pembrokeshire

Photography: Nic Ford

Hair and Make-Up: Salt Boutique

Dresses: Sally White Boutique, Pembrokeshire

Flowers: Moria O'Sullivan

Models: Eveie Procter and Bryony Thomas 

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