We have a very special shoot we’re sharing with you just in time for Halloween that features our more dramatic black gothic wedding dresses; perfect for brides looking for alternative gowns, gothic princess, stylish brides of Dracula & those who like all things spookily fabulous.
In England, after the Summer burns out, nature transitions as if by magic. Greens turn to yellow, to oranges & reds as the leaves flutter to the ground & the first frosts creep over grass & moss, dusting them with icy dew & the promise of Winter.
Summer, admittedly offers a long list of wedding season pros: long hot days, warm evenings & gardens with their beds brimming with colour among them. But if you love the sparkle of Autumn light, cooler days, rustic charm, warm fires as evening draws in & if you hanker after a darker, richer or even spooky colour scheme, Autumn is your girl.
Inspiration / Art Direction:
Earlier this month a small team of us headed to Rousham Gardens in Oxfordshire to shoot three of our more dramatic gowns. It is always fun to look outside of traditional weddings for inspiration & my friend Magic Owen, a very talented fashion photographer, is exceptionally good at ‘wow’ concepts. She suggested we look to the high fashion styling, where rich colours & black played against sumptuous florals, as seen at the amazing Dolce & Gabbana show at Lake Como earlier this Summer that had been dazzling us on Instagram over the last few months. In preparation for the shoot I designed a golden crown embellished with Swarovski fancy stones to complement the shoot & we paid homage to Frida Kahlo, who is currently the subject of an exhibition at the V&A, by styling it among statement blooms in the models hair. For art direction we looked to the king of whimsy Tim Walker to give the shoot it’s theatrical & romantic vibe to which dahlia flower beds & virginia creepers in the gardens of Rousham delivered a stage set of drama & beauty.
Dresses & Accessories:
We pulled three gowns from our collection to shoot. Lolita, our first look, is a short corseted gown with a high low skirt & deep pink underskirt. We paired her with a fabulous pair of boots available exclusively at House of Elliot & our new Tatiana crown which is embellished with amber coloured Swarovski stones.
Our second look, Elizabeth, features a strapless corset with scallop shell bust detail & full skirt in gold brocade with delicate, 3 strand pearl straps. We styled her with the Tatiana crown & a pair of matching earrings.
Our final look, Dolce Vita, is a very romantic & dramatic black tulle ballgown with a plunge, sweetheart neckline & bow detail at the decolletage. We created a new version of our Aurelia choker to style with this dress for the shoot in black pearls & crystals with a hand tinted & beaded lace motif worked in shades of red, pink & blackcurrent with highlights of orange.
Hallimah of H Beauty gave model Lita the classic look of a Flamenco dancer, with heavy black eye liner & a bold red lip. She styled Lita’s hair in a middle parting, swept into a low bun intertwined with braids, into which we set flowers tinted to match the dresses & the crown. For the last look I restyled the flowers into a stunning mohawk, set on a diagonal, to offset the lace motif on the choker I created to be worn with the black tulle ballgown.
Wedding Style Inspiration:
Whilst we shot, deliberately not thinking ‘weddings’, when we saw the edits we loved how this shoot offers up something very different & yet really captures a theme that brides can take & make their own & shows how brides can really rock dramatic coloured & black wedding gowns.
I would like to say thank you to my wonderful shoot team & our lovely hosts at Rousham Gardens. I don’t arrange shoots nearly enough, especially fun ones with gorgeous editorial style themes & when I see the results of working with such amazing, like minded creative teams, I am reminded that I really should do more & do them more often x
Gowns & Accessories/ Styling: Chantal Mallett www.chantalmallett.com
Photography / Art Direction: Magic Owen www.magicowen.co.uk
Hair & Make-up: Hallimah Abubacker of H Beauty www.hbeauty.co
Model: Lita Flores Garcia www.instagram.com/lita.flores.garcia
Boots: House of Elliot www.houseofelliotcollection.com