Winter Stylized Shoot | Alto Vineyards | Champaign

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A while back I collaborated on a stylized wedding shoot with florist Kristine Evanson. We put our heads together and came up with what we hope is a fresh, unique take on wedding design. The inspiration for this stylized shoot was an idea of a fair-skinned woodland princess with a lot of earthy neutral colors (creams, silver, brown and white were used) and greens with the faintest hint of blush. We knew the shoot would take place in December, so we really wanted to put into play the stark winter and bare vineyard branches we knew we’d have in abundance. The feel of the shoot from the models to the clothing to the sweetheart table was intimate and organic. We found the juxtaposition of the rough, raw, and stark natural elements with the soft, feminine, delicate and refined elements very unique. We decided early on that the primary model (the bride) should be a long-haired redhead with fair skin, so she was the puzzle piece we chose first, and then everything else fell into place. We wanted her to wear a floral hairpiece and a slightly messy, long fishtail braid. We love how her hair matches the color of the fallen pine needles.

The Ysa Makino gown had a blush pink underlay with a full beaded bodice that complemented the bride’s fair skin tone perfectly. The groom wore a tan three-piece suit with white Windsor tie and brown shoes. The bridesmaid wore a beige chiffon strapless dress with a natural waist.

The antique sweetheart table was decorated with a white chandelier centerpiece that served as a pedestal for the greenery that draped beyond the edge of the table. Kristine was especially inspired by the bare, twisted and tangled grapevines, and we loved the images of the bride gazing out from among the vines. She also wanted to show a different take on rustic elegance and focus on designing with textures.

The bride’s bouquet consisted of white hellebore, white waxflower, seeded eucalyptus, gunni eucalyptus, israeli ruscus, olive, rosemary and hypericum berry. The centerpiece contained seeded eucalyptus, gunni eucalyptus, israeli ruscus, Italian ruscus, olive, rosemary and hypericum berry. Kristine kept the use of actual floral components to a minimum. She only used white hellebore (late winter/early spring seasonal) and white waxflower. Rose gold fit the theme perfectly, so an engagement ring of rose gold, complemented by a rose gold bracelet with pink pearls adorned the bride. This also tied in with the blush undertones of the dress and the waxflower buds. A light dusting of snow fell the morning of the shoot, which further emphasized the stark winter feel we were going for. The couple and bridesmaid were photographed around the grounds of Alto Vineyard, a local venue that hosts small wedding celebrations and live music in the summer, including the Christmas-light adorned ceremony deck and a nice dormant row of grapevines. Alto also provided one of their white wines and one of their rose wines for the table setting.

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Amazing vendor team: Venue: Alto Vineyards Hair & Makeup: Studio 9 Design Gowns & suit: Elite Bridal Bridal gown designer: Ysa Makino Bridesmaid designer: Bari Jay Florist: Flowers by Kristine Jewelry: Champaign Jewelers Print suite: Feathered Arrow Designs Photographer: Holly Birch Photography