Why Every Bride Should do a Boudoir Shoot

Boudoir shoots are nothing new. Hell, I had one when I was engaged in 2007 (and no I’m not going to show you them!) While lots of brides might consider doing them, I’d have to hasten a guess that a lot of you reading this might have dismissed the idea as something silly, vein and super embarrassing. While in 2007 the main marketing push for boudoir photos was an “a gift for your man” (vom) ten years later and I’d still like to encourage you to consider doing one, but as a gift for YOURSELF.

A boudoir shoot is a great way to celebrate what a gorgeous bad ass you are and to create some amazing photographs to reflect that. It’s often easy to get swept up with work, life and current insecurities and not celebrate who we are. It’s a cliche, but when you’re much older I guarantee you’ll look back at photos of yourself now and think “Wow what a babe I was back then!” This is your chance to take some photos for you, but also for future you!

I was submitted this gorgeous set of images by Italian wedding photographer Ludovica Lanzafami recently, and I thought as well as sharing them, I’d use this post to share some things to think about if you’re considering your own boudoir shoot.

Choose the right photographer

This is obviously really important. You want to find a photographer you feel happy with, who will make you feel comfortable. You also want someone who’s on the same wavelength, who understands the style of imagery you want to produce.

Meet them in advance

If possible, I think its always a good idea to meet any photographer before you hire them (whatever the shoot) but especially if you’re doing a boudoir session. It doesn’t matter if the shoot is going to be tame or risque, you’re going to be in a potentially vulnerable situation so you need to be sure you feel good about who you’re hiring.

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Modern & Minimal Wedding with Pops of Orange & a Jumpsuit Wearing Bride!

Célie and Jonathan’s French wedding is so damn stylish I don’t even know where to begin! The were hitched in Strasbourg at the city hall, followed by a reception at Le Villa Mathis.

“We were inspired by industrial style and the idea that we wanted to keep it simple”, began the bride. “I also loved looking at Pinterest and Solange Knowles’ wedding really inspired my outfit!”

The bride’s jumpsuit came from ASOS and she wore it with orange shoes to match their modern colour scheme. All the reception decor was homemade. “All the industrial details that we handmade by ourselves. The fact that I wore a jumpsuit was pretty unique. Also, we got dressed and prepared in front of each other and did everything together. It was also really special that we were able to have our son with us. We got married after eight years together and, above all, we wanted to celebrate our love story.”

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Modern Community Art Wedding in Savannah

Artists Stephanie and Nick wanted a modern wedding that was influenced by their love of art and the community. The couple live in New York, but were marred in Savannah. They hired wedding planners Ivory & Beau to make sure the day went off without a hitch.

“Having wedding planners was a pretty crucial expense for us as we were planning a Savannah wedding from NYC and have really crazy schedules ourselves being freelance artists”, Stephanie began. “They helped keep us on schedule and roughly close to our budget ha! Plus they let us be creative and didn’t shoehorn us into a wedding style we didn’t want which can be difficult in the wedding industry where every vendor tries to push you into what THEY think you want.”

The day was held at Eden Village Church in Savannah, GA. They loved that it was a church, but not a traditional wedding venue. “The church building is actually in an old motor factory. I believe we were only the 3rd wedding to ever take place there. Also a good friend of ours built the wooden altar at the church, which was very special for us as well.”

The bride designed her own dress with help from her friend, Kourtney Wilson. She wanted to feel like herself and that meant nothing too girly. “I always knew I wanted to design my own dress but the possibilities were endless. As an androgynous girl wedding dresses have never felt like my style, so we decided to bring menswear elements into the dress. A high collar and my favourite part, suspenders in the back, all with a super form fitted bodice. If you’ve got it flaunt it, especially on your wedding day. I also made my own headpiece.”

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Your Size Has Nothing to do with How Happy You’ll be on Your Wedding Day

Many brides-to-be spend months obsessing about losing weight for their weddings. But size 24 fashion blogger, Callie Thorpe, has an inspirational message for us all.

On the 6th of August last year I married my boy. We shared our day with 45 close friends and family in a London warehouse venue. The sun shone bright, we ate ice cream sandwiches for dessert and danced the night away. My dress was a champagne, lace, trumpet gown from Oleg Cassini and (at size 24) I felt more beautiful than ever.

Our wedding ended up going viral, from one important statement I made about my decision to not lose weight for my wedding. The likes of Cosmopolitan, Instyle, Marie Claire and many others featured my story and today I want to share it with you.

The reality is I am a rarity, the wedding industry doesn’t often cater for women that look like me, women with lumps and bumps and thighs that touch. The women on the front of bridal magazines are visions of perfection, perfectly slender, skin so flawless, hair so soft. When you are a plus size bride the idea is that you don’t stay plus size for long because rule number one when planning a wedding: Lose weight.

It’s just the thing you do, almost like a rite of passage, you have one day to look your absolute best and weight loss is deemed the way to get that. You only have to click on Pinterest to see the many wedding diet plans plastered all over the page. ‘Become the woman you want to be for your wedding’ ‘How to lose 14 stone in day’ (well maybe not quite that much but you get my drift).

But what if you are the woman you want to be? What if you and your significant other love you for exactly who you already are?

Early on into planning I began to search for my dream dress, I had no idea what style I wanted so I looked online and called a few boutiques in London to try and find somewhere to try on some dresses. Whilst most were lovely, many told me that they just didn’t stock samples in my size. The only way to try on a dress would be to pin it to me meaning I would simply have to imagine how a dress would look on me instead of seeing it for myself. My heart broke a little, my wedding dreams were crushed, I wanted to experience the trying on of dresses, I wanted to see what it felt like to feel like an actual bride. Annoyed that in one of the best places for shopping in the world I couldn’t get a dress in my size, I asked on Twitter if other plus size women had experienced the same issues. So many people responded with equal disappointment. Some spoke of bad treatment in stores by staff, some described being pinned into dresses much too small for them, some refused to even subject themselves to the experience at all in fear of feeling bad about their bodies. It really shocked me. How could something which is meant to be about celebrating love contribute to making people feel low?

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Insanely Colourful & Macabre Fiesta Wedding

There are so many things to be obsessed with in Britani and Matt’s wedding. The bride’s black dress/ rainbow petticoat combo, the Dia de los Muertos masks, the mixed gender bridal parties, the colourful wedding cake and flowers and ALL THAT AMAZING DECOR. It’s enough to make even the most hardened of us well up and get really over excited all at the same time.

The Denver natives wanted a wedding that was colourful, fun and a little bit dark. “Our theme was ‘Rainbow Vintage Macabre Fiesta'”, explained the bride. “My dress started it all but also we both both really like macabre things, Halloween and skulls but I also absolutely adore vibrant colours”

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Low Key High Happiness Budget Friendly Wedding

Bex and Keith wanted wedding without the fuss. They wanted it to feel like them. They had a budget of £4000 (and spent just under that!) and we were married on a Monday in Newport.

“We met through a mutual friend”, began Bex. “It was our love of movies that attracted us together, since we were both avid movie lovers with crazy, ridiculously huge DVD collections.”

“Their register office ceremony was small, low key and at 11am on a Monday morning. “Having our ceremony at an unconventional time saved money, it also felt really fun. Some of our friends took the time off work and it felt like the same kind of naughty when you go to the pub during the day on a bank holiday. We aren’t religious so we decided from the beginning that we would get married in a registry office. The ceremony was very low key, but rammed to the rafters with our friends and family. My best friend and future sister-in-law was my bridesmaid and my younger brother gave me away. Our son wanted to be Doctor Who so he couldn’t come without his sonic screw driver, while our daughter had to be a pink fairy so obviously she needed her pink wings and wand.”

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