As a photographer who is new to the West Palm Beach, Florida area (I relocated from Southern California a bit over a year ago), I’m getting use to all the beauty and the unique feel of South Florida. My inspiration for this Deep Woods Styled shoot was two fold. One, I wanted to bring to life the idea of a love story in the woods. Being a wedding photographer, I’m constantly seeing new trends and ideas that my wonderful brides come up with, but I think that the ones I like the best in the end are the ones that reflect their own love story. When you’re planning a wedding, it can be easy to be bombarded with all the latest trends and Pinterest boards. Don’t get me wrong, those are great things. But in the midst of all that, you don’t want to lose who you are as a couple. When everything is based around your love story, it has a lasting classic feel to me.
So for this Deep Woods Wedding theme, I liked the idea of using nature to sort of frame or highlight this ‘love story’. A beautiful couple set in the midst of a dark, deep, ‘foresty’ location. I love seeing contrasting looks in wedding themes and particularly wedding images. I think if it’s done right, it can really bring to life what you want to highlight.
Reason number two is because I’m relatively new to the West Palm Beach area and I was extremely excited to get to know more fantastic vendors in the area. As a bride, having good vendors is SO key for a smooth wedding day and as a wedding photographer, having an extensive list of vendors I love and trust becomes extremely important in helping my brides as they plan their days.
I started with the gown. I mean, what’s a wedding (or wedding inspiration) without the perfect gown? I worked with my friends at Bacio Bacio Bridal on brainstorming the right look for our bride. Being in the middle of the woods, we wanted something dramatic, something that had substance to it. We decided on a Justin Alexander gown, but in the end, went with two looks not just one. I have long been a fan of switching up the gown on your wedding day, why not right?! So when Lenyce Boyd (owner of Bacio Bacio Bridal) suggested two different looks for our wedding I cannot tell you how very thrilled I was with that idea. I absolutely loved both of these looks on our bride. Our first ‘ceremony’ look was a beaded tulle ball gown, embellished with a sabrina neckline. This stunning Tulle Ball Gown is by Justin Alexander and is featured in a soothing nude tone with a delicately beaded bodice. We love the classic and timeless Sabrina neckline. Our second look was very different. Lenyce chose a Chantilly lace fit and flare with a spaghetti straps neckline for our bride. This was a much more form-fitting and showing off a totally different look on her this gown was also Justin Alexander.
For flowers, I worked with Flower and Fringe. Friends, this one is just brilliant. From my first glance on her web page, I just knew I needed to be friends with her! Her work is delightful and she was responsible for all the floral design in our shoot. F&F was inspired to create a bouquet that was not only pretty but a little rustic to match with the mood of the shoot. Inspired to blend delicate florals with more natural woodsy elements keeping the bridal bouquet feminine but still interesting and complementary to the setting. She used fern, pampa’s grass and tulips in her incredible design.
Our cake designer was the ever lovely Jennifer Johnson of Johnson’s Custom Cakes and more. You might remember her from TLC’s Cake Wars, Four Weddings or any of the other fantastic things she’s done. Jennifer is yet another absolute joy to work with! She wanted her cake to reflect the environment around our ‘wedding’ and decided to actually recreate the idea of a tree with in the cake. The attention to detail was unbelievable and I think we were all pretty thrilled with the final product.
All of our hand lettering pieces came from Corry Morrow of Ink Letter Love. This girl! She created such beautiful details! Hand-lettered invitations with a ‘woods’ backdrop, seating cards, table markers hand-lettered on small cuts of wood! Beautiful! Smore’s wedding favors, which I personally loved because they tied in so well with the idea of being ‘out in the woods’. And, of course, the hand-lettered windows. Those were so beautiful with the light streaming through them.
Our very DIY element of the day was our eclectic furniture collection. Although I chatted with some wonderful furniture and styling vendors I just couldn’t get the ‘feel’ I was looking for with this particular shoot. I ended up scavenging through thrift stores, boutiques, garages and living rooms to finally find the vision that was in my head!
I feel like when you have a team of wonderful, creative vendors working on a project together, it always becomes something worth doing. The day before our scheduled ‘wedding’, it rained and rained and rained. Apparently this is something to consider in south Florida, however, I’m still getting used to it! I stopped by the venue (which was a private property just north of West Palm Beach) to find about a foot of water blocking our pathway to the location. Backup location it was! The day of our shoot was gorgeous, not a cloud in the sky. Our location was at a regional park, a bit north of West Palm Beach.
I hope you enjoy these images as much as we enjoyed creating them. Shout out to an incredible team and fantastic models, full vendor list and media links below.
Venue | Halpatiokee Regional Park
Models | Annie Delva @anilaissa and Reif Mimms @reifmorgan