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An elegant gothic wedding inspiration shoot from Browsholme Hall

Achieving the opulence of a rich gothic style for your wedding is a challenge; it’s a look which I’d have thought would need an extravagant wedding budget – gothic being indulgent, artistic and lush.
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The great thing about English wedding venues is their history; finding a venue with a gothic style, ornate picture frames and decorative features means you’re already halfway there. And with a few special touches from creative wedding suppliers, you can create a gothic theme for your wedding without breaking the bank!

Laura from Perfect Choice Planning submitted this moody gothic wedding inspiration shoot for English Wedding Blog – along with words to introduce you to some fabulous wedding suppliers (several already great friends of the blog!) so I’ll hand over the reins to her now. Enjoy – and I hope this gives you some ideas for your own gothic inspired wedding!

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The suppliers for this shoot, and their links (in no particular order) are:

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When Joanne from Simply Bows & Chair Covers Lancashire contacted me earlier this year and asked me to do a photoshoot to launch the new black flock design, I was so excited. When she told me the vision she wanted to achieve to promote this launch, it just sealed the deal!

Together we decided the best way to launch this beautiful flock design was a monochrome gothic theme with deep, strong reds to enhance the images conjured by the black flock, but keep it with a classic edge to give it a strong dark feeling without overdoing the dark colours.

Joanne says: “The idea for the shoot was inspired by some gorgeous black and champagne handmade flock organza I found and decided to get creative and make them in to fabulous sashes and elaborate chair veils. I often get brides who come to Simply Bows and Chair Covers as they want something a bit different so I wanted to show brides how they can put the wow factor into their big day by using different fabrics, putting colours together and using alternative styles.”

We both had suppliers we wanted to work with, but both completely agreed that Alex Davies Photography would capture the perfect images that would promote all products within the shoot. I’d personally wanted to work with Alex for ages after meeting her a business network last year – and she most definitely didn’t disappoint! Alex is such a lovely, talented person and an incredibly hard worker who produced the perfect images for this shoot

As we were promoting the chair covers and table runners in the shoot, we needed a table set up with gorgeous products to complete it. Cakes By Beth have an amazing Gothic Birdcage cake in their 2012 collection and new that it would be perfect for the shoot. Beth has an amazing talent for taking your idea and creating the perfect, delicious cake to go better than you even imagined. In addition, she created her take on the black forest gateau mini cakes with figs, biscuits that matched the detail on the stunning birdcage cake, and wonderful cake pops – we couldn’t have asked for more.

Joanne mentions, “Ok, so the gothic style may be a bit unconventional, but brides can still relate to it and they get to see a different edge to wedding suppliers that they wouldn’t normally see. For example, Beth from Cakes by Beth made individual mini black forest gateau’s filled with jam and topped with figs, that not only tasted delicious and fitted the shoot to a tee but could also be used as an alternative to cupcakes and wedding cakes.”

The beautiful heirloom bouquets, buttonholes and amazing centerpieces were created by the incredible Mat at Red Floral Architecture and, again, fitted perfectly with the theme. Whether it was the towering table centerpiece, glittering bouquet or impressive fireplace display, the flowers and products only added to the overall impact of the shoot.
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In addition to the sweet and floral table decorations, Deborah from Grafted & Crafted created fabulous stationery that perfectly reflected the theme and matched the black flock of the linen. Displaying a brilliant range from different table numbers and favours, to place names and a table plan idea, Grafted & Crafted met all the requirements and did a perfect job capturing the theme in her products.

Our beautiful real-life couple models, Sam and Katie were dressed in stunning dresses and sharp suits from Brides Gallery in Eccleston, Lancashire. With such a wide variety and extensive range of dresses and suits, including cravats and waistcoats, Joanne and I spent hours shortlisting and choosing the perfect dresses to suit the theme and the venue, which I hope you agree we did.

Browsholme Hall was the superb venue and backdrop for our gothic themed shoot. With the ceremony room, tithe barn and gorgeous surrounding landscape, we were spoilt for choice on the number of scenes and images we could capture and definitely ran out of time, even though we were shooting for the whole day. The beautiful venue was very accommodating, allowing us to roam around the estate and locations throughout the day; it was just a shame it rained on and off all day, limiting the outdoor exposure in images.

The talented hair & make-up artist was Nita from Silk Make Up, who came highly recommended and certainly didn’t disappoint! After many emails, ideas and chats about how to fit the style & theme together, Nita got to work on the day and effortlessly transformed our models with each dress, almost creating a new person with each dress. Her work speaks for itself, as I’m sure you will all agree!

Finally, all the fabulous headpiece creations, including the gorgeous wired masks and delicate birdcage veils were the handiwork of the ever-talented Laurel Weddings. I have worked with Laura from Laurel Weddings on a couple of my previous shoots and, after she lent her creations to one particular shoot, I knew immediately that her accessories would enhance the feel and style of the shoot.

I couldn’t have been happier with the suppliers, model and venue used on this shoot but here’s what Joanne had to say: “Having witnessed Laura’s work first hand before, I knew instantly that I wanted her involved with the shoot due to her long list of amazing contacts and her strong organisational skills. She managed to round a rowdy bunch of local suppliers up to be in the same place at one time and put together a shoot straight out of my imagination with results that were beyond my wildest dreams.”

Everyone worked really well together, all the products were stunning and perfect for the theme, not forgetting to mention those suppliers who stayed for the whole day to dress the models, style the models, pose, touch up and as general helping hands. Just a personal thank you to my lovely other half, who sacrificed his Bank Holiday Monday being the perfect right hand man that I needed.

Finally, I would like to say thank you to everyone who helped out on the day, all the wonderful suppliers and venue who produced the fabulous products you see in these images, Alex Davies Photography for making it possible to share it with you, and finally Joanne from Simply Bows & Chair Covers Lancashire for the opportunity to style this brilliant shoot.
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gothic wedding blog ideas shoot (41)Laura asked me to mention that she is always looking for collaborators for photoshoots so if anyone is interested, or has a great idea for shoot then she would be more than happy to have them contact her! Getting involved with collaborative shoots is a fabulous way to launch a new business, network with local wedding suppliers and get gorgeous lifestyle images of your products for your website and blog. Don’t miss this opportunity if you’re in the Cheshire area – you can see from this shoot that Laura is a great person to work with!
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Claire Gould

Claire spends her days writing - either in beautiful calligraphy or online. She lives on the edge of the English Lake District only minutes away from the beach, where she loves to escape and unwind. Claire's calligraphy can be found at www.byMoonandTide.com. Claire launched the English Wedding Blog in November 2009 - it's been a top 10 UK wedding blog ever since, with a regional focus we hope you LOVE.

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8 COMMENTS
  • Kay McEllin
    7 years ago

    Wow, what a stunning shoot, I love the black and red colour scheme, everything looks fabulous together. Another stunning creation by Cakes by Beth as always x

  • Tola
    7 years ago

    When I read Gothic I was expecting dark and dull. I really like it actually. The touch of red is very imaginative and the whole scene is so full of light and the sparkles. I really like those cake pops. My favourite piece is the black lace chair cover – very appropriate and definitely inspiring.

  • Johnny G
    7 years ago

    Very classy shoot. Adore the cake, love the stationery and the venue… the bouquet is special.

  • Laura
    7 years ago

    Thank you for all your lovely comments – they have shown that the imagery and style I wanted to show has come across to you all beautifully. It was a brilliant day working with some of the loveliest suppliers in the North West wedding industry. I just want to say thank you to everyone who was involved for making it a successful and enjoyable day, and to the wonderful Claire for featuring it xx

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