A styled wedding photo shoot put together in 10 days - wedding photography shoot at Lauderdale House

Wedding planning minimal time - Lauderdale House

Planning a styled wedding

The year of 2020 has been a very alternative year for the wedding industry, and to all of us in many different ways. Who would have anticipated weddings would be withheld due to a full-blown global pandemic, or severely limited in guest sizes?

Spinning the situation with positive energy, I decided that it was a good time to organise some creative projects and put together a themed styled wedding shoot with a number of creative talents, given we all have a bit more time on hand compared to a normal year.

Immediately I knew the venue I would like to photograph in – Lauderdale House in Highgate, North London. For those who are looking into booking a venue in Central London with easy access, this is a hidden germ. It is within walking distance to Highgate Village and London underground, yet it feels like it belongs to a different world. Once you step behind the gates and face its peaceful and serene private garden, you feel like you are away from the hustle and buzzles. The garden is also connected to the breathtaking Waterlow Park. The house itself has multiple rooms for events, the ground floor level also serves as an art gallery. My eyes were set on the first floor function room which was bright and airy with tall windows and ornate ceiling.

When I heard back from the venue that a wedding photography shoot was welcomed, I was delighted. Co-ordinating between the venue and my diaries meant we had a very short timeframe to put the shoot together – a period of 10 days. Was it feasible? Yes, with a bit of persistence, and recruitment of help! It gave me the insight that it was not impossible to pull together a wedding in a limited time span. Read on for my tips!

Wedding preparation photo - Lauderdale House Highgate

Tips for planning a wedding with short time frame

Immediately I reached out to suppliers that I knew, and spread the news in the wedding suppliers’ circle. Within a couple of days we had most of the suppliers coming on-board confirmed, all inspired by the opportunity to put something creative together. Another pivotal event for me was to enlist the help of our wedding stylist / planner. Amelia of Amelia Thompson Weddings was of great help. Once I had shared the mood board and we had agreed on the underlying concepts, we split the organisations and communications with the crew members. Hence tips for the couples planning their wedding with very short turnaround time were:

  1. Don’t be shy about asking for help, whether it is from your best mates, families or a professional planner, especially if you know that person is very organised!
  2. Ask for recommendations. If you have already found your ideal venue / photographer / dress shop, ask them about the other suppliers they have worked with that they think are brilliant.
  3. Decide on the theme upfront. Whether you would like an elegant / classic / rustic / colourful wedding, it is much easier to communicate that theme simultaneously to the different suppliers if you don’t have a lot of time to string things together.
  4. Plan the items that mean most to you first, and come back to the smaller details later.
Wedding registration ceremony celebrant flower arc altar arrangement

So what was the outcome? I would love to hear your thoughts on the resulting images! The images and story was also feature on Want that Wedding, a premium UK wedding blog. Please click here to read more about it.

Wedding breakfast couples looking lovingly into each other flower arc bright table cloth

Inspiration for wedding styling

We decided on a theme of vibrant autumnal tone, with the shoot taking place in early October. The underlying colour theme was orange, teal and gold, and we showcased the flowers of the season like dahlias and chrysanthemums. For the wedding dress we had a romantic lace gown by designer Maggie Sottero, handpicked by Gillian Roberts Bridal for our bride. And we were delighted to showcase real life love birds Seffy and Chris in our feature. Connections and emotions would not be the same if they were not so in love with each other!

Wedding portrait in the rain private garden london photographer

Wedding photography in the rain

The autumn of 2020 turned out to be one of the wettest autumns in years. On the day of the photo shoot we were not spared from the continuous rain. But we were prepared! Not only with big white umbrellas, but the mind-set that we could have just as romantic pictures in the rain.

Wedding cake cutting first dance photos - north london photo

A wedding photo shoot experience

I asked Seffy and Chris what they felt about the photo shoot experience, and this is what they said:

"It was a wonderful experience at the photoshoot, especially as a real couple. All our joy and love felt so natural and authentic. Every step of getting ready and reciting our vows was very exciting to be a part of together. We feel like the rain on the day added a little sparkle to a cosy autumn themed wedding. It was cold and rainy outside but with our coats and holding each other we were warm and very content. It was a special day and the moments were captured beautifully"

Wedding ceremony setting piano flower arc altar transparent gold chairs

Wedding suppliers

Here I would like to applaud my amazing and talented crew who made all these possible with the very limited turnaround time:

Photographer & Concept:
Bridal wear & headpiece:
Cake designer:
Chairs rental:
Decorations & backdrop:
Hair and makeup artist:
Female model:
Persephone Hulewicz
Male model:
Chris Timpson
If you are interested in seeing the footage of me working in the shoot, please click here on my wedding photography page, filmed by Angie and Matt Films.
Wedding stationery cake flowers place setting bright colours