December 3, 2019

Essex Bride Magazine Styled Photo Shoot at Stoke-By-Nayland Country Retreat


Essex bride magazine, stoke-by-nayland weddings


I had the absolute pleasure of working with Essex Bride Magazine and some wonderful suppliers on a styled shoot towards the end of the summer. Our venue was the beautiful Stoke-by-Nayland Hotel located near Colchester.  Dress Code Nine supplied a ridiculous amount of  gorgeous dresses, making deciding which ones to pick one of the hardest bits of the day!  Our wonderful models, Catherine and Megan, did a great job showing every single chosen dress off perfectly.   Their hair and make up were styled by the equally talented Gemma of  Beautiful Hair By Gemma and Elaine of  Elaine Marie Makeup.  A gorgeous, natural bouquet, by Butterfly Flowers, with purple and pink tones set off the chic, natural beauties in all their finery as we pranced around the many beautiful spots that Stoke – by – Nayland had to show us.

Soft & Elegant Hair & Make Up

We began, however, with coffee, hair and makeup. I love photographing at styled shoots and in many ways, it is much like photographing an actual wedding.  You start with the prep and I love seeing how effortlessly talented hair and make- up artists, like Gemma and Elaine, can bring a ‘look’ together.  I’m useless at both so I enjoyed capturing them at work on our lovely models.







The Natural Cabins in the Woods


The cabins at Stoke-By-Nayland, with their solute to the 1940s land army girls, were really beautiful and elegant.  This was our first port of call for the day. We found the charming cabins burrowed away and surrounded by trees.  They were just behind the amazing new tipis and camping facilities that the hotel are offering for future weddings. It’s great to know that there is extra space for all your guests. Everyone can join you in celebrating the whole night through!  The cabins complement the natural feel of their surroundings with their timber frames echoing the forests around them.  A perfect spot to backdrop the first of our gorgeous dresses.






Green Spaces and Amazing Views


We moved on to one of Stoke-By-Nayland’s many terraces that look out over the vast greenery and lakes that are abundant at this venue. Photographing outside, surrounded by nature, is where I am happiest and having this much countryside wherever you look is amazing.  So much green! It acted as a perfect backdrop to showcase the many beautiful gowns from Dress Code Nine.  There were lace details, ribboned dresses and veils blowing in the breeze.



The Ballroom Feel


Our final location was one of the reception rooms that actually felt more like a ballroom, with grand chandlers hanging from the ceiling and mirrored walls which reflected the light that seeped in from the many windows, making this room bright and airy at the same time.


Get in touch

If you are planning to have your wedding amongst the beautiful gardens of Stoke-By-Nayland Hotel then I would love to hear from you.  You can see more of my work in my portfolio or you can contact me here.

The Suppliers


The Magazine 

Essex Bride Magazine

The Venue

Stoke-By-Nayland Hotel

The Dresses

Dress Code Nine

The Hair

Beautiful Hair by Gemma

With Accessories from

Undercover Glamour 

See how to recreate the look here: Undercover Glamour Blog 

The Make-up

Elaine Marie Makeup

The Flowers

Butterfly Flowers

The Models 



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