Way back in June—when wedding season was in full swing and life was much to busy to blog anything—we participated in the InFrame Bride Magazine tablescape photo shoot challenge, where 5 Michigan wedding planners are asked to design their version of a given tablescape theme. It’s not a competition, just a chance for all of us to show some unique ideas, and our personal approach to our theme! The overall theme was “the seasons” and being on the lake shore, we chose Summer so that we could show off beautiful Lake Michigan! We can design our tables absolutely any way we like, so photo shoots like this are always more difficult to design than weddings, because we have SO many choices…there’s no bride to keep in mind, and we’re not designing it to reflect someones personality, so the sky really is the limit on what approach we take with these photo shoot designs!
For our design, we decided to take a unique approach to a “nautical-theme”…while avoid the usual nautical look of stripes, navy, and anchors everywhere. Our vision for this table was having it look as though it were recovered from a ship wreck, without being kitchy or themey. A romantic table that looked fitting right along the lake, with nods to items you’d find from an old washed up ship wreck….woods, metals, lots of organic and earthy materials, and of course little nautical details such as the ship wheel, chest, glass baubles, fishnet and rope. More than anything, we wanted it to feel romantic, like you’d just LOVE to sit at this table on a romantic summer night.
The fun thing about photo shoots is that you can create your table anywhere, using anything. You don’t have to worry about the practicality of replicating your table 20+ times for a 150 person wedding, or if someone could actually eat a meal at your table, teetering atop a sand dune. So yes, you guessed it, we hauled our table, our cake, 10 lb (not joking) linen, and every other detail up and over dunes, to get it to our ideal spot over looking Lake Michigan and the light house. It was grueling and something I don’t hope to do again, but it was well worth it—who wouldn’t want this view from their sweetheart table! With so many vendors involved, we had to set the date for our shoot weeks in advance, and we were horrified to find it down pouring the entire day. It rained buckets up until about 30 minutes prior to our shoot, and started raining again about 30 minutes after finishing! While we did have a backup location, we were SO thankful we got to truly create our dream shoot in the ideal spot— right out on the beach!
A ton of amazing vendors made this possible, and helped bring our vision to life. A huge thank you to Ben+Mindy From Studio 6.23 for shooting this for us, and being so much fun to work with! Jennifer Ederer and her team at Modern Day Floral were tasked with bringing our floral dreams to life, and like always, they nailed it with this one! The gorgeous water-inspired cake with it’s soft gradient of dark to light was provided by the very talented Dee Appelman of Dee’s Specialty Cakes and that adorable custom sign was created by Steffany Segar of Steff’s Shabby Signs! We also have to give a huge thank you to 2011 intern Kayla Weems, who helped dream up this design, had her hand in some of the hand-made details, and assisted me in setting up this crazy table! This went to print in the 2011/2012 issue of InFrame Bride Magazine, so if you see the magazine, be sure to pick it up—there’s a ton of amazing photos to check out and lots of inspiration!
All photos by Studio 6.23