JULY 7TH 2019
MINT ROOM STUDIOS, TORONTO, ON
Photo Courtesy of Magnolia Studios
I can't remember exactly when I first had the idea to do a shoot centred around honey bees. I fell in love with mustard yellow and warm rich golds and soft flax as a palette several years ago, and the general inspiration lived in my head for so long, waiting for the right time, the right place - and most importantly, the right team who would enthusiastically join me in bringing it to life.
This shoot was always rooted in the idea of highlighting bee conservation and working with as many local artists and locally grown and produced items as possible. I wanted to lean into the bee theme in a really elegant way, with the principal elements being wildflowers, honey, and warm rich colours, with minimal decorative elements that actually depicted bees so it wouldn't be too obvious or overstated.
This is the way I tend to approach all wedding design motifs - it's less of a theme than a nod to the core inspiration, and an undercurrent of that core idea that runs through all of the design elements to make the design really buzz-worthy as a whole.
I started to really consider the idea in earnest after the Wedding Co Show, when I met the incredible Antonia of The Loved One and saw her delicate but powerful bee-themed accessories, and knew that the time was right.
Suddenly the inspiration was everywhere - from the delicate pattern on the shoes to the hand-dyed natural linens, to the botanical cocktails, I was ready to find the right people to join me in making vision reality.
See the full inspiration on our Pinterest page!
From there, I began to build the team for the shoot. I was so lucky to find myself connecting with a lot of awesome female entrepreneurs; some new, some established, who quickly became the team of queen bees who would work together seamlessly to share ideas and inspiration and bring their own creative energy and spin to the theme. What was the most magical was that we truly worked together in harmony - everyone had creative control over their own contribution, with guidance from the design proposal I'd created that shaped the focus and overall vision for everyone to relate back to.
This is a dream scenario for both shoots and weddings - the right planner knows how to find and inspire the right talent in a way that gets you what you want, while also allowing your vendor team to maximize their creative drive in making something uniquely yours from your inspiration. You never want to micro-manage your vendors - when allowed to spread their creative wings, you'll be blown away by what they give you!
With this dream team in place and rentals secured and styling tools packed, we gathered together on a warm and sunny summer day and brought all of the elements of the shoot together. For the first time, together in one room, we saw all the pieces fall into place.
Photos Courtesy of Magnolia Studios
The day of the shoot arrived and we busy bees got right down to work making this creative moment happen. This was our model Riley's first bridal assignment and she as excited as we were - we got really lucky to find her through our photographer, and that our up-cycled thrifted satin gown fit her like a dream!
In the moment, you don't often really have the time to take in how beautiful the wedding or shoot you're working on is - I'm usually running around putting out proverbial fires or styling or steaming something or taking something out or putting it away. This day was no exception around all of those tasks, but there was a palatable energy in the room - one of fun, excitement, true collaboration - new friendships were formed, creative ideas flowed like honey, and just to show you how much we nailed the assignment, an actual honey bee flew in the window and settled in for awhile to pay tribute to our homage to his work (he wasn't a great model or fan of having his picture taken, so as soon as we started paying attention, he decided to leave).
Later on when I saw the photos, I couldn't stop sharing them with anyone who would look at them - I was obsessed with how perfectly it had all come together - it was the first shoot I had led and and I was blown away by the gorgeous inspiration we had all made together. So was Today's Bride, evidently, as they scooped up the shoot for print in the Spring/Summer 2020 edition within days!
Who says a hive only has room for one queen?
The right vendor squad is so key to ensuring your wedding day is beautiful, seamless, and relaxed - and an an experienced planner, I'm basically on contract as your talent scout! Let me know what type of vendors you want on your dream team and I'll help you find the cream of the crop!