Cedar Hall Farms Styled Shoot

One of my favorite things to do, outside of coordinating beautiful wedding days for my clients, is helping my vendor pals put together shoots and workshops. I have some friends in this industry that have such a heart for education and I always have the best time watching them spill their knowledge and experience onto others. There's a lot of emphasis on community in the wedding industry, and I love watching my people really be about that life.

My #vendorsoulmate Liz, from Elizabeth Henson Photos, put together an invitational photography workshop last month and asked that I put together a small styled shoot for the attendees to practice on. For it being about 25 degrees all day, this was easily one of my favorite shoots ever.

You might recognize that super gorgeous couple as JDE bride and groom Julia & Justin. They just got married in October and Julia was so pumped for the opportunity to get back in her dress already!

I also got to try my hand at bouquet making. While I don't hate how it turned out, I definitely think I'll be sticking to the planning and leaving the flowers to my friends with greener thumbs.

Special thanks so the awesome vendors that helped bring all this together. You guys are amazing!!

Venue: Cedar Hall Farms  //  Cupcakes: Rachel Bakes  //  Signage & Invitations: HyHopes Natural Creations  //  Makeup: Dhalia Edwards - Elizabeth  //  Hair: Hair by Stephanie B

Fall-Inspired Styled Shoot with elovephotos

Hi friends!!  I'm so stinking excited to be able to share more of the fall-inspired styled shoot I put together with elovephotos and a group of some incredible vendors last fall!!  This shoot definitely goes down in history as one of my very favorites I've ever worked on.  The models were adorable {the groom is a friend of mine from high school}, the details were gorgeous, and did I mention we had a DONKEY that wore a FLOWER CROWN?!

Sorry, I didn't mean to yell at you.  But COME ON....Gus is just the most adorable donkey I've ever seen and I've now spent the last year trying to convince Wes that we should get Wyatt a donkey brother.  Sadly, he hasn't gone for it...yet.

Anyways, Emily reached out to me about putting a shoot together and I was so pumped to work with her!  She's one of the funniest and sweetest photographers I know and I loved getting to put our heads together to bring this vision to life.  The shoot was just featured on Burnett's Boards last month and I'm so excited to share some of my favorite images with you!

Our vision definitely wouldn't have come together the way it did without the help of our incredible vendor team.  Thank you all so much for all your creative magic!!

Photography: elovephotos  //  Coordination: Just Dandy Events  //  Gown: House of Maya Bridal  //  Hair: Bonnie Dreyer  //  Makeup: Stacey Williamson  //  Jewelry: Adele Diamond  //  Furniture: Paisley & Jade  //  Sweets: Whipped Up By Mimi  //  Linens and Chargers: Waterford Event Rentals  // Paper Goods: Ro & Co Designs  //  Florals & Styling: Ester Roberts  // Hand Lettering: House of Flourish  //  Models: Drew Shortt & Jessica Skeeter

A Kate Spade Inspired Thanksgiving Styled Shoot

Hey ya'll!  I'm so excited to share this shoot with you!  I tasked JDE Intern Lauren with putting together a styled shoot on her own as a sort of "senior project" before her internship wrapped up.  To say she made me proud would be a huge understatement.  She totally knocked it out of the park!  Read on to hear all about her process and to see the incredible pictures from Heather Papineau Photography.

"My very first event with Just Dandy Events was a styled shoot at the gorgeous Lee Hall Mansion, so it's only fitting that my last event with Holly was another styled shoot.  Only this time, it was my OWN!  I spent three-ish months planning and let me tell you....it was something!  My planning process was a little confusing and a little stressful but a whole lot of fun.  It was certainly more difficult than I'd anticipated but one of the most rewarding learning experiences I've had!

From the very start, I knew what vision I wanted to bring to life - the holidays!  If you know me at all, you know that Thanksgiving and Christmas are my very favorite times of the year.  I wanted to bring to life all of the things I love about it - going to my parents' home for dinner, listening to Kenny G's Christmas CD with my mom, being surrounded by my favorite people in the world, and eating my little heart out.  Another detail that was important to me was the thought of tradition.  In my family, you can count on a few things: One, there will always be collard greens in my Nan Nan's ceramic turkey.  Two, we always put the rolls in a big ice cream bucket.  It's just what we do.  And three, there will always always always be pie!  Since my Nan Nan's passing two years ago, we've made sure to continue her tradition of homemade chocolate, coconut, and pumpkin pies.  Pie isn't my favorite dessert...but I just knew I had to incorporate it somehow!

The other thing I love most in this world is Kate Spade.  I've always said she is my spirit animal!  I wanted to put a modern twist on Thanksgiving - to bring together the feeling of "home" and tradition, but in a modern way.  I thought to myself, "If I was having a friendsgiving, what would I want it to look like?"  The answer?  Polka dots and pretty fall colors and flowers everywhere!  I wanted a metallic color - like copper - mized with cranberry and ivory.  A little neutral with a little sparkle.  And so my "modern Kate Spade inspired Thanksgiving" styled shoot was conceptualized.

From there, I had to decide on a venue, models {or no models}, vendors, and more.  Holly let me tag along on a site visit to Hollyfield Manor in Manquin, Virginia.  As soon as I saw the fireplace and chandeliers, I knew I had to have my shoot here.  It was pretty much the easiest decision I made the entire shoot!  I still wasn't sure about using models....as Holly mentioned, it can make things complicated.  I decided to take her advice and plan a details-only shoot and I am SO glad I did!  I'm super detail oriented so I loved getting to make sure everything looked just right.  I think it made my first styled shoot a little simpler and was a good way to get experience with doing a shoot.

When it came to vendors, the decisions got more difficult.  I'm thankful that Holly had already lined up the lovely Heather Papineau to photograph the shoot.  I struggled, though, and felt stressed over getting vendors booked right this minute.  Holly helped me compile a list of potential vendors and I sent e-mail after e-mail in hopes they'd be on board.  I'd been following a few of them on Instagram, like Rachel of Rachel Bakes and Waterford Event Rentals and had already fallen in love with their work.  I'm glad I was able to use a few vendors I was already familiar with or had worked with via Holly before.  I had no clue about the paper products or flowers, so I went with Holly's suggestions {which were perfect}.  Rentals took a little longer to decide on, so I went and visited Sharon with Chic Unique Rentals & Events.  She showed me her dark wood farm table and it was love at first sight!  It was such a relief when I'd booked all of my vendors....all that was left were the little details!

Perhaps the most complicated part of the shoot was that I had to purchase some items myself.  I knew this happened sometimes, as it did with my first event with Holly.  I felt like a lot of the pressure was on me to not only make sure the color scheme and shoot looked good, but that the details fit in perfectly.  For a few weeks, I hunted for the perfect plates, wine glasses, and other items.  I spent an entire afternoon hunting down those darn mini pumpkins {seriously, why does no one carry those?!}.  My husband can tell you that I was stressed out.  Like, really stressed.  What would I do without the perfect silverware?  Why was the ribbon I bought so stiff?  These worries worried me for weeks on end until it finally came to be the day of the shoot....

By the time the shoot rolled around, I was feeling pretty anxious.  Everything was done, now just came the part where we had to put it all together!  Holly and I arrived at Hollyfield and were greeted by the sweetest little puppy, so I knew it was going to be a good day!  Holly and I started the day by getting stickers off wine glasses {which I completely forgot to do beforehand}, so that was a little nerve wracking.  I had to remind myself to breathe!  Thanks to Tracy at Hollyfiend, we got it done and got everything set up in under an hour.  After the last place setting was set, the candles lit, and the fireplace turned on, I stepped back to admire it.  It. Was. Perfect.  I was so impressed by how well everything came together.  I literally wanted to sit down at that table and have Thanksgiving dinner!  It was that moment that I knew my vision had come to life.

My styled shoot was absolutely perfect.  All of the time spent gathering items, booking vendors, and worrying {as I so often do} was worth it.  Heather gave us a sneak peak of some of the photos and all I could think was "We did that.  I did that!"  I am so thankful to have gotten the opportunity to experience planning a styled shoot with such an incredible group of ladies.  This process showed me that I need to have a little more faith in myself and learn to relinquish the control sometimes.  I also learned that relationships are incredibly important in the wedding industry; I'm blessed to have built relationships with each of the women I worked with.  Finally, the process reminded me how much I love doing this.  I am so excited to see where this new career path takes me!

As you look through these photos, I hope you'll feel the same warm and fuzzy feeling that I did.  I hope it'll bring a little bit of "home" into your office or wherever you are.  I hope that you have the happiest of Thanksgivings - thank you for following me on this journey with Just Dandy Events!"

Thank you to our incredible team of vendors!!
Photography: Heather Papineau Photography  //  Coordination: Lauren with Just Dandy Events  //  Venue: Hollyfield Manor  //  Linens: Waterford Event Rentals  //  Florals: C&J Floral Design  //  Sweets: Rachel Bakes  //  Paper Products: Paperdolls Design Inc  //  Rentals: Chic Unique Vintage Rentals

LuLaRoe Carnival Styled Shoot

One of the very best parts about my job is that it usually doesn't feel much like a job.  Sure, there's usually work involved.  But generally the fun far outweighs that work.  For example, a couple weeks ago, I got the opportunity to tag along on a photo shoot with Elizabeth Henson Photos.  Off we went to the carnival at Mt. Trashmore where we met up with LuLaRoe consultants Tatiana & Morgan, along with their ridiculously adorable daughters, Ruby & Lily.

All four ladies were dressed in LuLaRoe and I was crazy jealous of how insanely cute they looked!  We got cotton candy and popcorn, the girls played games and smiled their best smiles for some pictures, and we even rode the ferris wheel {I really am not made for these types of rides}.  I had the best time tagging along, helping to carry bags and come up with poses, and of course eat carnival food without feeling guilty {I was working after all}.

Thanks Liz for letting me tag along with ya'll!  And for snapping this hilariously embarrassing picture of me on the ferris wheel.  I don't enjoy heights and it seems that laughing till I cry is my defense mechanism.


Bridesmaid Luncheon Styled Shoot: Let’s Wed Hampton Roads

First of all, big huge congratulations and lots of confetti throwing are in order.  My incredibly talented friend Angie of Angie McPherson Photography has launched a wedding website!!!  Let’s Wed Hampton Roads is such a fun & dynamic site for the everyday bride.  There’s a vendor guide showcasing the area’s most talented vendors in every price category.  There are tons of inspiration boards to get your wheels turning.  And brides can even create a login to organize all their favorite things!  I’m so crazy happy to see all Angie’s hard work paying off and I’m even more excited to see how Let’s Wed is going to change the Hampton Roads wedding industry.  Go Angie Go!!

Before the big day, Angie asked me to help her put together a styled shoot to showcase for the Let’s Wed launch.  She wanted something fun and colorful, and she wanted to collaborate with some really amazing local vendors.  I couldn’t be happier with how it all turned out.  It was such a fun day and I’m so delighted that I got to play a part in it!

Here are some of my favorite images from the day!  Be sure to head over to Let’s Wed Hampton Roads to check out a bit more.

And a HUGE thank you to all our talented vendors that helped make this happen!
Photographer: Angie McPherson Photography  //  Event Coordination: Just Dandy Events  //  Venue & Catering: Lesner Inn Catering Club  //  Makeup: Dhalia Edwards  //  Hair: Anywhere Beauty by Shae  //  Flowers: Fluttering Flowers  //  Rentals: Mad Hatter Vintage Rentals & Styling  //  Linens: Waterford Event Rentals  //  Cupcakes: Rachel Bakes  //  Invitation Suite: Ro & Co Designs  //  Dresses & Accessories: Blue Green Aqua

Bohemian Inspired Styled Shoot for Aisle Society

Oh friends!  Life has gotten away from me lately and I’ve totally fallen behind on posting!  But now I’m back and so excited to finally share this gorgeous styled shoot with you!  When I was asked to come on board to help put together this shoot back in September, I was beyond humbled.  This was the chance to work with so many incredible vendors at one of my favorite venues.  Oh and did I mention that we would be collaborating with the national brand David’s Bridal?!  It was like a dream come true for me and my little business.

My sweet, talented pal Chelsea Anderson Photography took some of the most amazing shots at this shoot and I’m so excited to share them with you!  Here are a few of my favorites.

Concept Design: Aisle Society  //  Event Production: Tidewater & Tulle  //  Bridalwear & Bridesmaid Gowns: David’s Bridal  //  Photography: Chelsea Anderson Photography  //  Event Coordination: Just Dandy Events  //  Florals & Styling: Isha Foss Events  //  Hair & Makeup: Behind the Veil Studio  //  Cake: Everything Emma  //  Stationery: Sue Corral Ink  //  Venue: Norfolk Botanical Garden  //  Menswear: Men’s Wearhouse  //  Tableware: Sweetwater Cuisine  //  Furniture Rentals: Distinctive Event Rentals

Elizabeth Henson Photos: Winter 2016 Portrait Workshop

Oh I just LOVE helping my pal Liz with these portrait workshops!  It’s always great to meet and work with some new faces.  And we just have the best time doing it!  Check out the previous workshops here and here!

In January, we hopped over to the Signature at West Neck and brought along a whole group of photographers that were eager to learn some of Liz’s tips & tricks.  We had the most amazing weather for a day in January and it was so great to hang around outside with all these talented ladies!

Special thank you to our beautiful models Angie, Chynna, and Alexis!  And Shaun too!

Venue: Signature at West Neck  //  Lead Photographer: Elizabeth Henson Photos  //  Coordination: Just Dandy Events  //  Hair: Hair by Stephanie B  //  Makeup: Dhalia Edwards  //  Floral Wreath: Courtney Inghram Events  //  Jewelry: Stella & Dot by Katelyn Hadder  //  Styling: Lindsay Clauer

First Anniversary Shoot at Hermitage Museum & Gardens

Way back in July 2014, I had the pleasure of coordinating Steve & Nicole's wedding at the Cavalier Golf & Yacht Club in Virginia Beach.  I’ll never forget each time I met with Nicole leading up to the wedding.  She was so organized and descriptive about the vision she had for their day.  Working with her to plan their wedding was seriously a dream.  There were so many personal and sentimental details woven throughout the whole day and I loved every bit of it.

Fast forward a year later and Nicole decided to put together a first anniversary shoot to celebrate their first year of marriage. To say I was excited when she asked me to coordinate the shoot would be a total understatement.  It was a chance to work with one of my favorite JDE couples alongside some really incredible vendors at one of the prettiest venues in Hampton Roads.

Just as with their wedding day, Nicole incorporated so many special touches throughout the anniversary shoot.  Read on to hear a bit more about the shoot from Nicole and to see the stunning images!

“Paper is the traditional gift for a first anniversary and as my husband and I thought about our first we loved the idea of photo paper.  We wanted to celebrate by capturing our first year together as husband and wife but to also honor what would have been my parents’ 35th wedding anniversary.  We share the same anniversary and we initially picked our wedding date, which is July 12th, without realizing it.  After picking the date and telling my mom, she reminded me that it was the same day her and my father were married.  I lost my dad 8 years prior to the time we were planning our wedding and that date became so special to us because although he couldn’t be there physically, I felt his presence all along the way.

We combined sentimental details to highlight both weddings.  Coral is the traditional 35th anniversary gift so as a nod to my parents we were inspired by the color, from the florals to the buttercream frosting on the cake.  I repurposed wood script table numbers to emphasize the date and included a ribbon garland and lace runner from our wedding decor.

Also, we had the opportunity to work together with two of our wedding vendors turned friends, Holly with Just Dandy Events and Mary from Bluebird’s Garage.  In fact, Mary provided the same table and chairs that were used in our wedding!

My mom had previously given me her wedding dress to wear for our rehearsal and I chose to wear both her and my dress again for our anniversary session.  I love that her dress is more a sundress than a traditional bridal gown and it was a bit nostalgic to have the chance to wear both again.

The only images my mom has from their wedding are a handful of Polaroid pictures and I knew I wanted to include them to help tie everything together.

 I couldn’t have imagined a more perfect tribute to my parents, our love, and marriage.  Ultimately, it has always been important to us to have a marriage more beautiful than our wedding day.  Jodi and Kurt truly captured that beauty for us.  Like the Polaroid pictures and my mom’s dress, these photos will be heirlooms that symbolize the strength of love for a lifetime.”

Photographer: Jodi Miller Photography  //  Venue: Hermitage Museum & Gardens  //  Coordination: Just Dandy Events  //  Florals: Roost Flowers  //  Cake: Everything Emma  //  Rentals: Bluebird’s Garage  //  Signs: Water’s Edge Design  //  Makeup: Dhalia Edwards

If you're thinking of doing an anniversary shoot, I'd love to chat with you!  First, fiftieth, and every one in between is something to celebrate.

Just Dandy Events' Branding Shoot

I realized about 6 months ago that, when I looked at my website, none of the images reflected my brand.  They were all absolutely stunning images from insanely talented photographers of some of my favorite weddings and styled shoots.  But none of them spoke for JDE’s brand.  So I decided to try and put together a styled shoot designed completely around my colors and style.

When bringing vendors on board for the shoot, I was so choosy about who I wanted to involve.  I’ve met so many incredible vendors in the almost 5 years I’ve been in the industry.  So I knew exactly who would really see my vision for the shoot and help me bring it to life.  Thank you to each and every one of the special people that put in time and effort to make this shoot come to life.  I love you all so much!

Photography: Elizabeth Henson Photos  //  Makeup: Dhalia Edwards  //  Furniture: Water's Edge Designs  //  Sweets: Everything Emma  //  Florals: Courtney Inghram Events  //  Graphic Design: Ro & Co Designs  //  Linens & Chairs: Waterford Event Rentals  //  Handlettering: House of Flourish

Chelsea Anderson Photography - Boho Styled Shoot

First of all, I love this industry so much it’s crazy.  The people that have been brought into my life over the last four and a half years just blows me away.  I’ll write a whole post soon on my “tribe” and how thankful I am for all of them.  But for now, I’ll say that this shoot brought me a very special friend and I’m so happy I have Chelsea of Chelsea Anderson Photography in my life now.  She’s the kindest soul I think I’ve ever met and she’s going to make the best momma to a sweet little boy at the end of the year.  I couldn’t be more excited for Chelsea and her hubby!
Ok back to the shoot…back in the spring, Chelsea and I met at a Starbucks and chatted for a solid two hours about a styled shoot we wanted to put together.  Chelsea had a vision of a woodland fairytale-esque wedding shoot and, the more she talked about it, the more I knew I needed to be involved.  Our ideas were so in sync and I couldn’t be happier with how the whole thing came together.
I’m so excited to finally be able to share some of these incredible images with you and gush about all the amazing vendors we had on our team.  We’ve had to hold off on sharing the past two months because…..we were waiting on RUFFLED to publish it on their blog!!!  Is this real life?!  Be sure to check out their feature when you get a minute.  But here are a few of my favorites.  Enjoy!



A big huge thank you to our amazing team for the day!  We couldn’t have done it without each and every one of you!  <3

Photography: Chelsea Anderson Photography  //  Venue: Adam Thoroughgood House  //  Styling: Everything_Emma  //  Bridal Gown: Ava Clara Bridal Boutique  //  Jewelry: Worth The Wait  //  Linens: Waterford Event Rentals  //  Invitation Suite: Ro & Co Designs  //  Hair: High Voltage Hair by Crystal Casey  //  Makeup: Beauty + Baubles by Jenn Brosch  //  Cake: Gourmet Bake Shoppe  //  Florals: Fluttering Flowers  //  Models: Kevin & Tatiana Hill

Elizabeth Henson Photos' Summer Portrait Shoot

Well folks, Elizabeth Henson is at it again!!  A few weeks ago, Liz hosted another portrait shoot and rocked everyone's socks off.  You might remember when we put together the winter portrait shoot back in January and had the best time ever.  Well this one was no different!  We met new friends, gushed over the gorgeous models, and had lots of laughs together.  I'm so fortunate I have a #vendorsoulmate that includes me in these super fun events.  Thanks for letting me join ya'll Liz!  <3

Ok so here are a few of my favorite images from the shoot, courtesy of Elizabeth Henson Photos.

These ladies were seriously so much fun!

A huge thank you to the incredible vendors involved!
Venue: Adam Thoroughgood House  //  Styling: Emma from Worth the Wait  //  Make Up: Dhalia Edwards  //  Hair: Amanda & Nicole from Mystique Salon & Day Spa  //  Nails: Manis with Monica  //  Sunflowers & Watermelon: The Flip Flop Farmer

And just for fun, here are a couple behind-the-scene shots I grabbed on my phone.  This group is such a blast to hang out with and watch work.  So many talented ladies!

And of course, I love any chance I get to kick it with this sweet sweet friend of mine!  HI EMMA!!!

Coastal Simplicity Styled Shoot - Heidi Calma Photography

Do you have any idea how hard it is to not just let the pictures speak for themselves with this shoot?  AHH!

Ok let me start at the beginning.  Heidi of Heidi Calma Photography asked if I would be interested in helping her set up a shoot that really represented her brand.  I jumped at the chance because I adore Heidi so much and love any opportunity I get to work with her.  If you haven't met her yet, you need to get on that.  Because she's awesome.  Seriously.  This was her first styled shoot on her own and, ya'll, she totally knocked it out of the park!

If you take a look at Heidi's website, you'll see this girl is all about the beach!  And I love it.  So we decided to host a very beachy feeling shoot, but we really wanted to keep it as simple and organic as possible.  We chose The Water Table at Rudee Inlet as our venue and, folks, we could not have chosen better.  The bridal suite, the natural light, the docks....it was all just perfect!

We also chose our contributing vendors very carefully and they were all so exceptional.  Thanks to everyone's efforts, the Coastal Simplicity Shoot, as we've been calling it, has been published on Artfully Wed!!!  We're so excited!

Oh, I have to be a bit biased here and admit that my very favorite aspect of this entire shoot was the models.  The "groom" Sean has been one of my very best friends since the second grade.  And his girlfriend Emma is, hands down, one of my most favorite people in the whole world {you've likely seen her mentioned in some of my other posts....she is a stylist on many of the shoots I've coordinated}.  To see these two all polished up did my heart a whole lot of good.  Somehow I managed to keep from bawling my eyes out through the whole thing.  It's a miracle.  Love you guys!

Check out some of my very favorite images from the shoot and be sure to leave some lovin' for all the awesome vendors while you're at it! 

Photographer: Heidi Calma Photography  //  Venue: The Water Table  //  Dress: Maya Couture  //  Cake: La Dolce Vita Cakery  //  Florals: Marlene Events Floral Design  //  Hair & Makeup: Salon Mosaic  //  Jewelry: All Washed Up Jewelry  //  Invitations: Ro & Co Designs  //  Tie: HoBoTies  //  Sweetheart Table: Mimi's Front Porch Swing  //  Cake Table: Water's Edge Designs  //  Models: Emma Hering & Sean Tosloskie

Live & Learn - Styled Shoots

The past year has been full of styled shoots for me.  And I'm loving it.  Don't get me wrong, they take A LOT of work.  And time.  And work.  But every single second of labor has been worth it and SO MUCH FUN!  I've met some amazing vendors and had the best time working with them.
Elizabeth Henson Photos
In the process of putting together a total of 10 shoots over the last year, I've learned a thing or two.  I've learned the things that work best {for me} while planning, and what does not.  I've learned the best ways for me to execute things on the day of, and the worst ways to go about it all.  So I figured I'd share a little bit of this with all of you!

Put together a vision & a purpose:
When putting together a styled shoot, you need to have a vision of what you want the end result to look like.  In my experience, I'm usually planning the shoot around a vision that the photographer has in mind.  So I ask that photographer what words they would use to describe the shoot they see in their head.

You also need to know what purpose you and the photographer have for the shoot.  Are you putting the whole thing together to submit it for publishing to a national blog?  Are you putting together a "branding shoot" to serve as the backbone of a vendor's new website?  Make sure that the decisions you make in regards to the shoot coincide with the intention of the shoot as a whole.

Pick a date & a venue:
 Without picking a date and reserving a venue for the shoot, booking vendors will be difficult.  When signing on to such a project, people like to know when and where before they commit.  Do they already have 3 weddings that weekend?  Will they be traveling over an hour to the venue?  These things definitely make a difference and it's easiest to take care of them at the beginning. 

Andrew & Tianna Photography
Create a checklist:
If you know me at all, you know that pretty much my whole life revolves around checklists.  I operate best having my thoughts organized into tidy lists that I can tame.  When I create these lists for styled shoots, I make sure to have EVERYTHING on them.

Every single element that the photographer and I want to be incorporated into the shoot goes on that list so that I can make sure to have everything under control on shoot day.  Otherwise, I run the risk of getting really excited about the sweetheart table, showing up to shoot day, and realizing we never got a cake!!!  How humiliating would that be?! 

Armed with my handy lists and the vision we have for the shoot, I then begin building a Pinterest board.  I really do have a love-hate relationship with Pinterest.  It can be so overwhelming if you don't go in knowing exactly what you're looking for, and how to par down the results you get from your search.  But if you know how to use it effectively, Pinterest can be your best friend when planning a shoot.

When I search on Pinterest, I don't just type in "whimsical backyard styled shoot".  The results are too broad and difficult to make your own. Instead, I search for separate elements of the shoot.  For example, "whimsical sweetheart tablescape" or "backyard wedding guest book".  From these images, I decide which ones best match with the adjectives the photographer had in mind and how we can make each element uniquely ours.

Elizabeth Henson Photos
 Vendor Wishlist:
Once the photographer & I have decided on our inspiration, we sit down and put together our "vendor wishlist".  This consists of the different elements we want to incorporate and which vendors would best help us execute our vision.

I usually use a styled shoot as a great opportunity to reach out to a vendor I've been DYING to work with.  You know, the vendor that you keep hoping and praying one of your brides will book?  Yeah, this is when I reach out to them and beg them to work with us.  Ok, maybe beg is too strong a word.  But I do ask very nicely!

Usually the vendors provide their goods {cake, florals, linens, lighting, etc.} for free.  However, being involved in the shoot benefits each and every vendor!  Everyone gets to practice their craft without the constraints presented by a real wedding day.  After the shoot, the photographer provides each vendor with a gallery of images they get to use for their portfolios and social media, showcasing some of their best and most creative work. 

Etsy is usually my very first stop for different accessories for the shoot.  Ties, cake toppers, etc.  If you're unfamiliar with Etsy, go check it out!  It's the most amazing platform where different creatives set up shops to sell their homemade goods.  It's so easy to get wrapped up in going from shop to shop to see all the amazing things people make & sell.

Even though the sellers are based all over the country {and even internationally}, the sellers tend to have an awesome "small business" mindset.  Everyone wants to see everyone else succeed.  And therefore, they are always more than willing to be a part of the styled shoots.

When reaching out to Etsy sellers, I always offer to pay for postage and return the goods promptly following shoot day.  The sellers receive the same gallery as the rest of the vendors to use in their advertising and they are also cited in any publication the images are shown, which brings more traffic to their shop.  Everyone wins!

Andrew & Tianna Photography
Shoot Day Necessities:
On shoot day, I always bring along a kit very similar to my wedding day survival kit.  This bag contains all the things I'll need {or might need} during the day, plus a few extras that are necessary for shoots.  Examples: SNACKS {big priority....I usually go for small bags of goldfish crackers}, bottled waters {if it's really hot, I bring these in a cooler with ice}.  Sunscreen & bug spray, and a first aid kit {including Advil}.  Scissors, a single-hole punch, masking tape, and zip ties.  Another thing I found out comes in handy: GLOVES & EARMUFFS!  While preparing for a shoot on a rooftop in March, I randomly grabbed about 4 pairs of gloves and some earmuffs.  Just about everyone on the "crew" ended up with some of my pink gloves on...including the guys.  Talk about feeling useful!

So there you have it....some of the things I learned over the last year while planning a lot of styled shoots.  If you're interested in hearing a bit more about how to execute a successful shoot and get the most out of it, I'll be speaking at Elizabeth Henson Photos' Meet & Greet on August 20th!  Email me for details or follow this link!  Hope to see you there!

Mexican Wedding Styled Shoot

You may have seen the Urban Rooftop Styled Shoot that I coordinated with Andrew & Tianna Photography back in March.  Well, we had such a great time working together that we decided to do it again at the end of the month!

This time we were putting together a Mexican wedding shoot for Tidewater & Tulle's blog that was inspired by Cinco de Mayo.

We were lucky enough to shoot at the Planter's Club of Suffolk.  If you haven't had a chance to check out this venue, do yourself a favor and get on that.  That place is magical.

Special thanks to Andrew & Tianna for trusting me again!  Ya'll are a blast and I adore you!  And also to Courtney Jordan, for being my right hand for the day!

Venue: Planter's Club of Suffolk  //  Photographer: Andrew & Tianna Photography  //  Styling Help: Courtney Jordan  //  Dress: Maya Couture on Main  //  Signage: Water's Edge Design  //  Furniture: Paisley & Jade  //  Rustic Detail Rentals: Styled. Decor  //  Invitations: The Girl Tyler  //  Makeup: Beauty & Baubles  //  Hair: High Voltage Hair by Crystal Casey  //  Cake: Sweet Emma Lou  //  Flowers: C&J Floral Design  //  Model: Maria Spady of Maria Grace Photography

Urban Rooftop Styled Shoot

You may have noticed how much better this little blog is looking the past few months.  That's all thanks to Tianna of Andrew & Tianna Photography.  She's a saint and I owe her more than one bottle of wine for dealing with all my crazy questions and requests.

Well she asked if I'd be interested in putting together a styled shoot for her and Andrew.  To say I was excited would be an understatement.  The vision we came up with was a rooftop wedding with a perfect balance of industrial and natural elements.  We chose the rooftop terrace at the Norfolk Waterside Marriott for the venue and used some incredible vendors.

I have to say that I loved the finished product.  And it turns out, so did Every Last Detail!  They featured the styled shoot on their blog and we couldn't be more thrilled.


Photographer: Andrew & Tianna Photography  //  Venue: Norfolk Waterside Marriott  //  Videographer: Snapback Studios  //  Styling: Emma Hering & Julia Stancampiano  //  Dress: Rent the Runway  //  Bow Tie: Tangled Ties  //  Suspenders: CrystalAmour  //  Signage & Furniture: Water's Edge Design  //  Vintage Props: Greenhouse Picker Sisters  //  Linens & Chargers: Waterford Event Rentals  //  Invitations: Paige's Paper  //  Jewelry: Stella & Dot by Nikki Marie  //  Cake: Kandy's Cakes & Pastries  //  Bouquet & Boutonniere: Roost Flowers  //  Models: Sachel & Ethan

Portrait Styled Shoot

Well folks, we did it again!  I got to team up with Elizabeth Henson Photos once again to put together a super fun day filled with beautiful models, kick-butt vendors, and some incredible photographers.  We originally planned this shoot to happen back in the beginning of December.  But some gross-tastic weather threw a wrench in those plans and we had to reschedule it for January 11th.  Sometimes I feel like things happen for a reason, and I think this was one of those things.  The day was PERFECT.  It was cold, like really cold.  But it was also gloriously beautiful!  Clear skies and an stunning sunset made the wait so worth it.

We were able to team up with my friend Maggie and use her family's property for this shoot.  If I could coordinate every one of my events on this property, I would.  It's GORGEOUS.  I'm so envious of Maggie having grown up in such a beautiful place.  Thanks again for letting us crash your place Maggie!  You're the best!

This shoot was quite a bit different from the one we did in October.  Liz wanted to put together a fun group of photographers that could get together to practice.  How awesome is that?  Ya'll may not know this, but Liz is amazing.  Not only is she a really talented photographer, but she's one of the most motivational people I've ever met.  She loves helping and teaching and coaching.  She's one of those people that is just as enthusiastic about you and your company as YOU are.  Since I met her last June, she's been one of my biggest cheerleaders and I'm so thankful for her.  Watching her come up with ideas for events like this just makes me so happy.  Ok enough sap for now...on to the shoot.

We ended up with six photographers {seven since we had one group of two!} and three models.  The photographers were broken up into 3 groups and given 30 minutes with each of the models.  The three models were given different looks.  Andrea was our athletic chic model.  She even did some fun yoga poses for us towards the end of the evening....wait till you see those pictures!  Ali was styled in a sort of winter white look.  I must have told her a hundred times that she looks just like Taylor Swift.  But really, she's so much prettier!!  And Chynna...you might recognize her from our shoot in October.  She's amazing and hilarious and I was so happy to get to hang out with her again.  She was our boho model.  And boy, did she rock it!

Ok enough babbling for now.  Here are a few of my favorite photos that Liz took.

You should definitely check out the photographers that attended the shoot.  They're all so wonderful and talented and just a whole lot of fun to be around.

A huge thank you to our AMAZING vendors:

Accessories: Worth the Wait  //  Jewelry: Chloe + Isabel  //  Make Up: Dahlia Edwards  //  Hair: Olivia at Salon Oh

Winter Styled Shoot

Happy New Year ya'll!!!  I'm hoping to make lots of big changes and work on some really exciting projects to make JDE the best it can be in 2015.  But its going to be tough to top 2014!  I'm not sure if you heard or not, but we rounded out the year with our VERY FIRST PUBLISHING!!  I'm still in shock.

On December 31st, Artfully Wed featured the winter styled shoot that Elizabeth Henson Photos and I put together back in October.  We had an absolute dream team of vendors working with us to make our first styled shoot all that it could be.  Liz & I just couldn't be happier with how everything turned out.

You might recognize our models too.  I was lucky enough to coordinate with my bride from June and my bride & groom from July!  They were amazing and fun and just so dang pretty!

Here are "a few" of my favorite shots that Liz took.  And be sure to check out Artfully Wed's post to see some more!




A HUGE thank you to all the amazing vendors that helped pull this off.  You're all a dream to work with and I'm so happy to know you!

Photography: Elizabeth Henson Photos   //  Venue: Country Villa Inn & Day Spa  //  Vintage Rentals & Styling: Greenhouse Picker Sisters  //  Florals: C&J Floral Design  //  Hair Stylist: High Voltage Hair by Crystal Casey  //  Makeup Artist: Mystique Salon & Day Spa  //  Vintage Rentals: Bluebird's Garage  //  Cake: Kandy's Cakes & Pastries  //  Dress: Maya Couture on Main  //  Invitations: The Girl Tyler: Design & Photography  //  Bow Tie: Tangled Ties  //  Suspenders: Crystal Amour  //  Jewelry: Stella & Dot by Katelyn Hadder  //  Models: Steve & Nicole Hofmeister, Katelyn Hadder