I've spent so long in the darkness, I'd almost forgotten how beautiful the moonlight is” Emily The Corpse Bride

Gothic Bride Outside

Styled wedding shoots over the last few years have become more and more popular, which is wonderful as they’re a great way for us creative suppliers to showcase our talents and appeal to a  much wider audience. 

As well as organising my own shoots, I’m often asked by others to either provide products that I stock in the shop or come on board to lead the styling side of things. Admittedly these are the ones I enjoy the most because I love to help bring a concept to life! 

Gothic Bride

Take this shoot for example…

MUA Gemma Ryder and Hairstylist April Wagner are no stranger to a styled shoot. They’re extremely talented ladies and both have great reputations for their “pretty bridal”, however they wanted to showcase another side to their work and create a shoot that would let you see just how versatile they can be.

Gothic Bride
Gothic Bride Hair

Now, as you know I’m always up for doing something a little edgy so this was right up my street. It’s fun to get asked to style something that isn’t necessarily traditional bridal, or expected of certain suppliers. So, I was really excited to be asked to get involved with this small team and head to the grounds of Pentillie Castle in Cornwall to create a gothic inspired bridal shoot. 

Gothic Cake

Located a little distance from the castle you’ll discover The Victorian Bathing Hut which is set on the edge of the River Tamar. On shoot day the venue and river was covered with a really eerie mist. The surrounding wooded areas coupled with the river made the perfect setting for this darker styled bridal shoot.

The Bathing Hut

With both the stationery and the styling for this shoot I wanted to create something that although dark could still feel romantic. It was about trying to show how you can take inspiration from the Gothic realms and it still be as beautifully bridal as something that is light, bright and airy. 

Gothic Styling
Gothic Skull
Gothic Stationery

The venue itself needed very little styling, it’s history and decor lent itself to the theme brilliantly. We loaned a couple of pieces from well know Exeter based Prop Factory, had a cake made by Edible Essence and I raided my ever growing props cupboard for the smaller styling details. 

Gothic Wedding
Gothic Styled Shoot
Gothic Invite

Over the last couple of years bridal separates are growing in popularity. The model wore a long sleeved black lace top with a floor length black and red layered tulle skirt which were actually from our in house collection of Atypical Bridalwear.

Gothic Bride

Here’s what the team had to say about the shoot…..

“It was so exciting to create a really strong makeup look for this styled shoot. It gave me the opportunity to stretch myself creatively and that is every makeup artist’s dream. Not all brides are the same but a lot do prefer a natural, romantic makeup look, so to work on something darker and edgier was fun. This look of course can be paired back to a simple dark, smokey eye and nude lip which may appeal to many brides looking for a more dramatic look for their BIG day.” Gemma Ryder - MUA

Gothic Bride In Veil

“From the very first moment Gem Ryder MUA invited me to be a part of this project, I knew it was going to be special. Her vision and this collaboration was a great opportunity to showcase everyone’s unique skills, and show our audience a different take on a bridal editorial. Weddings these days are so versatile and creative, there’s a lot more room for new influences and inspiration. I loved how instead of bright, light and airy, we got to present a darker, raw and moody look for those brides who are not afraid to make a little statement, go against the current and be who they really want to be on one of the most important days of their lives. I hope this shoot will inspire future brides to play with styles and themes and just have fun creating their own vision for their wedding day.” Photography – UpArt Photography

The Bathing Hut

“What a fantastic look! I absolutely loved being part of this dramatic wedding styled shoot. It’s always an amazing feeling to reach out from the normal classic bridal looks and create something spectacular. As a group I think we smashed it! I was inspired by the ‘Game of Thrones’ look, soft curls and plaits… Then with my own imagination, a few tweaks and changes I created this more dramatic, Gothic and eye-catching look. This could easily be adapted to bridal hair, there is no right or wrong when creating your bridal style. If you love it, DO IT!!! Hair Stylist – April Wagner

Gothic Masked Bride

What do you think to a black wedding… would you risk going to the dark side for your big day? 

Gothic Wedding

The Team

Makeup – Gem Ryder Makeup Artist 

Hair – April Wagner Hair 

Photography – UpArt Photography 

Stationery & Styling – Faithful Designs at The Wedding Hub 

Top & Skirt – Atypical Bridalwear

Cake – Edible Essence – Edible Essence Cake Art 

Props – The Prop Factory 

Venue – The Bathing Hut Pentillie Castle

Model – Livi Bassett




Living in ‘The Ocean City” better known as Plymouth, gives us plenty of opportunities to hang out by the seaside.

So, what better way to spend a cool spring evening than head down to the seafront for some fun near the water?

The lovely bubbly Louise of Mrs Jutson Photography is always up for my little impromptu styled shoots, and thankfully so are some of my friends. I’ve been known to think of a shoot in the morning and be styling it by tea time… this one being a prime example!

Devil’s Point is a well known location and one that I love to visit with my children several times a month, especially when the weather is nice. There’s a small outside pool that fills and empties with the tide, and a cute pebble beach area either side of it. 

We had planned to take a few more images down on the jetty, but we were taken by surprise when the water decided to come in a little to thick and fast… poor Lauren may have got a teeny bit wet! 

Like I said before, this was an off the cuff mini shoot so our team was a small one, literally just the three of us! 

Lauren did her own hair and makeup and for the first part of the shoot wore Aria by Vintage Atelier from our concession of Rock the Frock Bridal wedding dresses, teamed it up with a Leather Jacket and some kick ass boots from Charla Tedrick (which I actually won via an Instagram comp from my lovely pal over at Way out Weddings). The handmade golden Fabric Bouquet was from our very own in house sewing queen Magenta Rose Designs. Cute golden Bird Cage Veil from Crown & Glory.

“Love is like the sea. It's a moving thing, but still and all, it takes its shape from the shore it meets, and it's different with every shore.” - Zora Neale Hurston




Just a stone’s throw away from the water you can find Devil’s Point Park, also know as Western Kings which is an iconic part of Plymouth. For many years families including my own have shed a tear or two as we’ve waved off or cheered home our loved ones on Royal Navy ships leaving or returning to Devonport Dockyard. 


This part of the park has quite an urban feel to it, with a mixture of overgrown foliage and graffiti  wall art which worked well for the second part of our impromptu shoot and outfit change…the 80’s Madonna inspired vibe! Oh how I remember prancing around the living room as a child with wildly untamed crimped hair to “Like a Virgin”… actually I may have also done this as an adult! 

Channelling her inner Cyndi Lauper, Lauren totally rocked the 80’s retro look! 


Wearing “Epic” by Tobi Hannah, also from our Rock the Frock Bridal concession, the funky “Carrie” veil by designer Karen Dornellie,  as before those awesome boots by Charla Tedrick and second Fabric Bouquet from Magenta Rose Designs. Strutting her stuff up and down an uneven ground, battling a little bit of wind and balancing on a wall, all whilst wearing those insane heels… I don’t think we were asking too much in the name of art! 

Ahh I bloody love so much about the 80’s, not that I was old enough to remember too much ( I’d just like to point out that I was only born in ’83 and am a mere 36 years young). 


My head is now spinning with ideas for a much bigger styled shoot! 

Flipping heck, “It's All Coming Back To Me Now”,  to quote the 1989 by Pandora's Box and not the Celine Dion 1996 version!

Come on, who else remembers wasting hours playing video games like Pac Man, falling off of Skateboards, throwing your Rubiks Cube across the room because you could do it, (funny enough I actually have a tattoo of a rubrics cube, fun fact for you right there), speeding around the Roller Disco’s and lets not forget the fashion… good old sweaty Shellsuits and Dynasty style shoulder pads! 

Hmm actually, on second thoughts maybe we’ll just leave it there for now before I get distracted on Pinterest for the rest of the day looking at all things 80’s! 

Until next time…. lots of love Dx



When I met C & J way back at the beginning of the year I knew they were going to be fun!

From designing the invitations, recommending the right suppliers, arranging a seamstress to alter two beautiful (but way too big) wedding dresses and providing on the day styling I really enjoyed the whole experience.

Both C & J are very active people so it was no surprise to me that they’d want to incorporate their love of surfing and Acroyoga in to their wedding day schedule somewhere!

The day began with an 8am surf on a very very rainy morning…. poor Louise got drenched taking that first lot of images and had to dry herself off whilst bridal prep was underway!

Ready to hit the waves

Ready to hit the waves

Friends who surf together….

Friends who surf together….

Getting in the dress

Getting in the dress

Mrs Jutson Got a little wet on the early moring beach walk!

Mrs Jutson Got a little wet on the early moring beach walk!

Amazingly after watching the weather forecast every hour for the last 24 we were delighted when the sun came out just in time for everyone to hit the beach for the ceremony….admittedly Kirsty and I were very dubious of the almighty winds still swooshing around, so roped a couple of willing guests in to holding down the floral arch whilst we headed back to finish up at Retorrick.

i do … i do too!

i do … i do too!

Time to reflect

Time to reflect

sandy toes

sandy toes

beach acroyoga

beach acroyoga

They managed to throw in a little Acroyoga and a woodland walk before heading to the venue for their wedding breakfast and an evening full to the brim of entertainment… karaoke, tattoo stations, team Acroyoga and of course dancing in to the early hours!

Congratulations to C & J on their wedding x

wedding flowers

wedding flowers

Fantastic entertainment idea for your guests - Temporary tattoo station from Doris Loves

Fantastic entertainment idea for your guests - Temporary tattoo station from Doris Loves

cake and cake pops from edible essence

cake and cake pops from edible essence

it’s fun to use areas of your venue to display your wedding decor.

it’s fun to use areas of your venue to display your wedding decor.

wedding cake goals! edible essence

wedding cake goals! edible essence

acroyoga with your wedding guests

acroyoga with your wedding guests

post box available to hire from  the wedding hub . floral arrangement from escential blooms

post box available to hire from the wedding hub. floral arrangement from escential blooms

wedding cake information sign - cake from edible essence

wedding cake information sign - cake from edible essence

order of the day signage from  faithful designs

order of the day signage from faithful designs

Wedding Welcome Sign from  Faithful designs

Wedding Welcome Sign from Faithful designs

bride and a rodeo….why not?

bride and a rodeo….why not?

C & J decided against a first dance in favour of a first song!

C & J decided against a first dance in favour of a first song!

Supplier Love to all these wonderful people….

Stationery/Signage/Styling - Me!

Venue - Retorrick Mill

Photographer - Mrs Jutson Photography & Margo R Photography

Florist - Escential Blooms

Cake - Edible Essence

Grooms Suit - The Vintage Suit Hire Company

Heart Guest Book - Made for You Gifts

Temporary Tattoo Station - Doris Loves


Sometimes I shrug them off because they’re just too way out there and other times I run with them…The Get Your Freak On Wedding Showcase concept was one I am so glad I decided to embrace!

After hearing lots about all the work that Toby & Jo from Street Factory have done and continue to do for our children, young people and their families in and around the city I was totally inspired by them and knew that I wanted to help in some way. 

I made contact and then arranged to visit Toby at the Street Factory. I instantly fell in love with the space! No the makeover hasn’t begun yet, yes it is totally industrial and in a raw state but that’s what I loved! My head was buzzing listening to the plans for the Hip Hop Kingdom project and everywhere I looked I could imagine something cool. Head filled with ideas and a plan I headed home to start the preparation for the event. The following week I was back there accompanied with my small but wonderful team creating the styled shoot to start promoting the event. 

I was thrilled when both Toby and Jo said yes to me using their venue for the showcase and even more pleased when I had wonderful exhibitors embrace the concept and agree to come on board with it even though it was the first one. That’s dedication to the cause, that’s a real show of trust to say yes to someones “idea” without any promise that it’ll actually work….

I believe with all my heart that everyone deserves to be loved, to get married if it’s their choice to do so and have the wedding that they truly want! 

"Get Your Freak On” in my head was a bit of a two fingers up to the “norm” that can be the wedding industry. A sod you to those who think you have to do things a certain way. Who says that models have to be professional and look like they just stepped out the pages of a bridal magazine? Who declared that all wedding fairs should be in a posh hotel? Who ruled that there had to be rules? 

There are no rules!! Not one wedding should be the same because not one person is (not even your doppelgänger would want the same things as you). 

So in the words of Missy Elliot “Gimme some new shit”. I’ve decided to begin a revolution joined by some rebels with a cause! We aim to shake things up and show the sleepy, safe and samey Southwest that we really can provide whatever is needed to make your day perfect for you! Now this isn't a new concept, I've always liked to do things differently... ask my mum! I also do not proclaim to be the first to try giving things a little wobble. There's some awesome examples amongst the industry of creative geniuses, blogging, providing products and putting on events up the line and beyond (Way Out Wedding, Rock The Frock, Most Curious, EWE, Rock n Roll Bride to name a few). But, they're not here, we are! Therefore it's our job to move things forward here! 

Our first event may not have been huge but we needed to start somewhere! I can honestly say I am so super proud of everyone who exhibited, helped, supported and attended…. you are all wonderful! Thank you for joining me on a whim, I promise it was the right decision! 

With Special Thanks to...

Venue - Street Factory  Prop Hire - The Prop Factory & Rustic Love  Exhibitors -  Verity Westcott Photography - MargoR Photography - Urban Disco - Pole Fitness Plymouth - Ashleigh Jay Embroidery - Mimosa Mobile Bar - The Beautiful South Photobooth Company - Made For You Gifts - Magenta Rose Designs - No 4 Hair Boutique - Chloe Jane Makeup Artist - Ezzicakes - Inky & Grace - ID Fashion On The Day Event Photography Miss Imagination Photography & Martha Fitzpatrick Photography MUA's for the Catwalk Models Katy Short Makeup Magic Gemma Ryder MUA & Chloe Jane Makeup Artist and Hair Stylists for Catwalk No 4 Hair Boutique Last but not least, thank you to all the wonderful ladies who modelled on the day for me...you are amazing! 




We all know how good a new outfit can make us feel right? How wearing the right clothes can either lift your spirits, filling you with confidence or drown them and make you feel crap. 

So shouldn't your choice of wedding dress be given the same consideration? Shouldn't it be YOUR decision based on how it makes YOU feel?

Recently one of my lovely friends came by the shop for a mini photoshoot with Mrs Jutson  Photography and the dresses from one of the awesome designers Rock the Frock have on board. Sadly the Chantel Lauren Trunk Show couldn't stay for long and had to head back after just a couple of days but we did get to see them up close and can honestly say they were breathtaking! 

After seeing Jo in these beautiful dresses it really made me think and inspired me to write this little blog post.

I believe each dress has a story and can make you feel different, like you're stepping in the role of a character. A dress can stir up emotion, feelings..

Not only does a dress have to fit your body perfectly it should feel perfect. It should feel like you, your style, personality and your character! 

I asked Jo afterwards how each dress made her feel, because to us it was such a visible transformation with every dress she tried on. We had regal, sexy, feminine and woodland fairy...can you guess which dress made her feel these emotions?

How would you like your dress to make you feel? 

Although we no longer have these dresses here we do have 15 super lovely gowns for you to come and try on. Rock the Frock pride themselves on finding dresses for the alternative, boho, vintage inspired and retro lovers amongst us....so if that's the FEEL you're going for give us a call and book an appointment.

Later D x