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Creative Shoots

Chapter 01. A Styled Wedding Shoot at The Oakwood at Ryther

13th October 2020 | Sarah Symonds

The story goes that, once upon a time a group of talented wedding industry creatives came together and something beautiful was born. Styled and stylish, today’s shoot is an ode to all things juxtaposing and bold.

With a focus on the texture, depth and tones of the styling, this shoot is a bold, clashing masterpiece.

When wedding curator Lianne of Blonde Army set out to create the first installment of her new workshop concept, CHAPTERS, she knew she wanted to make an elegant yet playful statement. Planning to have a different brief every time, Lianne says “Just like the chapters of a book, each workshop has a different story to tell”.

New venue, The Oakwood at Ryther plays host to today’s tale and provides the perfect backdrop to the wild, unstructured, contrasting decor and florals used. You’ll see a palette of monochrome black and white accented with strong pops of raspberry and deep merlot.

We already can’t wait for the story to continue…

With images by UNVEILED Network Member Emma Ryan Photography


Lianne says: This shoot was the first concept I designed for my new workshops, CHAPTERS. These are style-led workshops for wedding photographers and videographers.

Understated yet bold, clean lines clash with colour, texture and shape. An elegant affair that is chic, playful and makes a statement.

When I design my editorials I always have a couple in mind to design for. I think this helps create realistic inspiration. For this concept the couple were Freya and Jack.

Freya and Jack are effortless in their style and they love to entertain. They care for quality and meaningful moments and don’t want to rush over details. Each design element has space and a moment of its own. No additional fuss. They like elegance but playfulness, colour, life and luxury.


I wanted a new venue so the content would be fresh and unique for the attendees. The Oakwood at Ryther was the perfect setting as it’s a brand new, luxury venue with various spaces of beauty and interest. The ceremony barn is stunning with huge oak arches and I wanted to create a real statement with my new diamond backdrop which is available to hire.


The styling is my signature style; modern and elegant but with an edge. I chose to go bold and playful, using colours of raspberry and merlot with lots of blush and white, and then a clash of red against a base of monochrome for a classy finish. The rest of the styling was kept clean and minimal as the floral design was the focus. Bloom and Bridal created statement floral structures to complement the backdrop and plinths using luxurious, high-end florals such as orchids, smoke bush, dried hydrangeas, preserved bleached ruscus, preserved amaranthus and a whole load of roses. There was so much colour, depth and texture.

Unstructured table florals kept the look contemporary as I always recommend creating focal points with your styling, rather than doing lots of little bits here and there. It is much more impactful and feels more modern. Practically speaking, it gives you more space and feels cleaner for your guests.

The cake, created by Two Forms, was a minimal three tier cake with a raspberry tier and floral topper. Displayed on acrylic plinths with floral installations for a contemporary and refined aesthetic.

The stationary was designed and created by Paper Grace. We chose merlot arched menus to create interest on the tables and to contrast against the linen provided by 88 events. Finishing the look I used black matt cutlery and ribbed glassware available from Whitehouse Crockery, and a mix of coloured pillar and taper candles to add depth and warmth. As my styling is very clean and minimal, I always use a range of textures, tones and shapes to create interest. I like to give each detail space and believe this gives a greater sense of quality and elegance – something my clients really value.


For the bride, I wanted a modern, effortless look but that makes a statement. Dresses were provided by Jessica Bennett Bespoke as she is known for garments of classic silhouettes with a contemporary touch inspired by high-end fashion. To complement the statement ceremony area, I opted for a fuller gown and finished the look with an effortless ponytail (by Hair & Makeup by Saskia) and Marina earrings made by Lilley Studio. The second look for the reception was a more fitted gown with detachable puff sleeves and finished with a cathedral pearl veil. A contemporary look for a fashion-forward bride. The final look for the evening was a statement mini dress with a bow train, finished with white ankle boots and the Emilia headband from Lilley Studio.

For the groom’s first look he wore a navy tweed herringbone three piece suit provided by Mr Munro. I wanted something classic with a heritage feel to reflect the barn setting. His second look was a navy tux – the ultimate classic yet contemporary look for a groom. I love how the velvet blazer gave this look a real high-end quality feel.


Hair and makeup was kept effortless and natural. Soft and glowing and an enhancement of the bride’s natural beauty.


The shoot went amazingly. The models, Phoebe and Mark, worked so hard as it was a long day! They were so natural and took direction well which allowed the attendees to each direct them and capture the content they came for. Jen, of My Pretties was my right hand woman helping me dress the models and move decor to provide content options. Styled shoots are not an easy task so having Jen assist me on the day helped everything run smoothly and on time. The team at Oakwood were super relaxed and lovely. And finally, my creative team were just wonderful. A real collaboration and team effort which is what these days are about and they’re all amazingly talented.

If you’re a photographer or videographer looking for chic content to capture, you can sign up for Chapter 02 by visiting my website.

If you’re engaged and are looking for any planning, design or styling help or would like to receive my hire catalogue you can contact me via my website. I’d be delighted to hear from you and help you in any way I can.

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