A tropical shoot in Worcestershire using flamingos
04 Dec 2020
This flamboyant and fun shoot was the idea of Lydia McPherson from Floral Roundabout. Set at Arley House and Gardens in Worcestershire, Lydia tells us how they did it
Photography: Photography: Amy Taylor Imaging
What was the inspiration behind the shoot?
I have always loved bright and colourful weddings with bold styling, and after learning that a flock of flamingos is called a flamboyance, I knew immediately that ‘flamboyance’ was the perfect inspiration for a bright and tropical styled shoot. Plus, everyone loves a flamingo right?
Tell us a little bit about the venue and why it was chosen
Arley House and Gardens is a gorgeous venue set in the Worcestershire countryside. It’s the perfect venue for couples looking for a fabulous country house style wedding, while still providing a bright and modern setting. Having worked at the venue before, The Valentina Suite immediately sprung to mind as the perfect setting for a bold and colourful shoot. It’s a perfect blank canvas with ivory walls, floor and ceiling and is flooded with natural light on three sides. I knew that the bright colours and tropical vibe would really ‘pop’ here. When I shared my vision with Amy, the wedding and events co-ordinator at Arley House and Gardens, she was immediately on board.
What did you choose for the flower arrangements?
As I’m a florist and I was organising the styled shoot, I knew that I wanted the flowers to play an integral part of the look we were to create. I chose a palette of bright pink and rich cerise with pops of candyfloss pink and orange to create a tropical look. The flowers themselves were a mixture of tropical blooms including orchids and anthuriums together with more ‘traditional’ wedding flowers including carnations and roses.
While Arley House and Gardens do offer several fabulous outdoor spaces to get married, as the shoot took place in October, we decided to style the venue for an indoor ceremony. The Valencia Suite’s bi-fold doors open out on to the lawns creating a fabulous backdrop to an indoor ceremony, but I wanted to create a modern and striking focal point. I created a large statement ceremony back drop on a gold mesh moon arch dressed with bright flowers and a gorgeous neon sign provided by Wendy at Secret Garden Wedding Services. A flamingo was added to tie in with the theme and to keep the styling bold and fun.
What kind of look did you want to achieve with the make-up, hair and outfits for the bride?
The dresses for both models were from TDR and while they represented two very different styles, they each worked really well with the overall theme.
We wanted to create a flawless and timeless look for both bride models. The fabulous Michelle G Make Up Artist kept the make-up natural with pink and gold undertones to tie in with the theme, while still achieving a gorgeous bridal look.
The model’s hair was styled by Elaine Cooper. She created two very different but equally gorgeous relaxed and flirty hair styles to fit in with the fun vibe that I was trying to creating. Model Charlotte’s hair was styled around a half head flower crown of brightly coloured roses, whereas model Meg’s hair was styled into a side bun with a gorgeous single orchid added for a splash of colour and to tie everything together.
What was the thinking behind the décor for the shoot? How did you tie it all together?
Wendy from Secret Garden Wedding Services provided much of the décor for the shoot. Aside from a cerise pink tablecloth and napkins, we kept all of the venue styling gold to create a fun and frivolous look. The gold sequined table runner and gold sequin chair dressings worked really well against the bright florals and reflected the light and the colours of the flowers perfectly.
Stationery was provided by Charlotte Arntzen Designs and also helped to pull the whole look together. Everyone involved in the shoot especially loved the laser cut acrylic Monsteria leaf name cards for the wedding breakfast table which she kept as a surprise from everyone all of us until the morning of the shoot.
However, it was probably the cake which stole the show. When is a flamingo not a flamingo… when it’s a cake. It was created by the lovely Laura from The Nut House Bakery, who explained that when she heard the brief, she immediately wanted to create her very own life-sized flamingo cake, dressed with flowers to create a textured feathered effect. The result was incredible – everyone involved could hardly believe it was cake at all. We were even lucky enough to take some cake home from the shoot - and it was divine.
Steal Their Style
Photography: Amy Taylor Imaging
Venue: Arley House and Gardens
Hair: Elaine Cooper
Make-up: Michelle G Make Up Artist
Bridal dresses/wedding outfits: TDR Bridal
Flowers: Floral Roundabout
Cake: The Nut House Bakery
Stationery: Charlotte Arntzen Designs
Venue Dressing: Secret Garden Wedding Services
Models: Charlotte Arntzen Designs and Meg Cross