"These times of woe afford no time to woo.” Could there be a more appropriate time for those wise words by William Shakespeare? Thankfully, though, the world is proving him wrong. Through all the tragedy, love is sprouting up all around us and people are coming together (however they can) to celebrate. This team of vendors decided to take inspiration from Baz Lurhmann's 90s interpretation of Romeo + Juliet and put a slightly more uplifting spin on it. Spoiler, the poison isn't real (in the movie, but also in the shoot lol!)
Amw Events wanted to design an event that focused on bright, unconventional florals, and they knew exactly the right florist for the job, Lucy Coco Floristry. When they found No.131 Cheltenham, inspiration hit. Taking a page out of the lighting and cinematography from Romeo + Juliet, Jade Touron Photography and Jake Burgess Films played with neon lighting and some familiar vignettes from the movie. You can see the full shoot in the gallery. Keep scrolling to read more from Photographer, Jade Touron, and maybe a Romeo + Juliet quote or two. What? We couldn't help ourselves, she's cultured! *hair flip
"WHAT [NEON] LIGHT FROM YONDER WINDOW BREAKS?"
The venue itself, No.131 Cheltenham, inspired the shoot. A blue neon cross in the restaurant bar strongly resembles the climactic scene in Baz Lurhmann's 'Romeo + Juliet'. Its grandeur and stately interiors, with elements of gold on the walls, further suit the theme. There was even a balcony for our Juliet! From there, the suppliers took elements from the film and interpreted it to suit a micro-wedding layout. With a red, pink, and gold color scheme, the flowers are the statement. We wanted to highlight these colors in the arrangements, so we opted to forgo the usual green foliage. The flower choice was led by the 'Romeo and Juliet' theme–romantic, timeless, and opulent. And, of course, this shoot had to be filmed! Jade Touron Photography and Jake Burgess Films studied the film for moments and poses that could be replicated. And put their own spin on it! Props such as the feather wings helped bring a few moments to life.
"THE SWEETEST FLOWER OF ALL THE FIELD"
We wanted to create a beautiful, serene, dream-like vision. To create this depiction, we used clouds of pastel pink cerise Gypsophila and hot pink Limonium as our base. We used Amaranthus, also known as 'Love Lies Bleeding' which was perfectly apt for our 'Romeo and Juliet' shoot. This was also followed through with an abundance of scented roses, chosen with great care, their names symbolic of the love/death theme running throughout the story. These included, 'Garden Pink Piano', 'Memory Lane', and 'Silver Shadow'. We used brick red stallion Chrysanthemums, ornate and architectural Anthuriums, ruby pink Cymbidium orchids, which symbolize morality and virtue, and a plethora of pink, crimson, and caramel carnations. The main floral installation draped across the fireplace, gracefully falling down one side. The ceremony set up was simple, with red petals and hurricane lanterns to decorate the aisle. The banquet table had a flower runner down the center, accompanied by pink, red, and white candles.
A "BOUNTY AS BOUNDLESS AS THE SEA"
The tablescape was refined but fun, adorned with classy glassware and gold cutlery from Vintage Gold China. Bee Davies brought her usual quirky flair with painted poison bottles as name cards/wedding favors. Each bottle was hand-painted with a unique design, from Catholic imagery like the sacred heart (a re-occurring image on this shoot) to her signature flowers and quotes from the play like, "Did my heart love 'til now?" This approach translated beautifully to the drink menu card, another bespoke design. The header reads, "I drink to thee", and flowers embellish the three illustrated cocktails.
"[DRESS] LIKE THE MOON, FOR SHE CHANGES CONSTANTLY"
The dresses showcased in the shoot are from Willow Victoria Bridal, a new line designed by Victoria, the owner of Victoria Lou Bridal, and exclusive to her shop. Her boutique is coincidently a Stratford-based store–Shakespeare's birthplace! The collection featured a host of trends, from 3D embellishments to balloon sleeves to intricate hand-beaded designs, and the shapes are designed to accentuate female curves. These gowns were paired with beautiful jewelry, designed by Hermione Harbutt. One model wore the 'Artemis' headpiece to highlight the hair halo, whilst the other model wore white tassel earrings as the statement piece.
"FOR I NE'ER SAW TRUE BEAUTY TILL THIS"
The first makeup look was very pared back with glowy skin and gentle mascara. Alexandra Sinclair Makeup wanted a natural look to emulate Claire Danes's Juliet. The second look was a bit more playful with pinks and false eyelashes for a sleeker finish. The grooms-wear was heavily influenced by Leonardo DiCaprio's costumes, with a flamboyant blue floral shirt for the first outfit. Our model, Ben, then changed to a more formal suit that matched Romeo's very own wedding suit. A navy suit paired with a white shirt and a floral tie.