Ryan & I have been wanting to do a stylized Outer Banks Cinco De Mayo Wedding in Nags Head, NC for some time now! In all reality, we have been planning this shoot for a few years and finally the stars aligned when we found the PERFECT couple for the shoot and the perfect vendors to put our ideas in motion. We love to shoot styled shoots for other vendors but when it is our brainchild, that just makes everything so much better because we are shooting what we want to show. For all you other photographers out there, styled shoots have definitely been the trend for some time now.. With all the wedding editorials & blogs out there these days, everyone just wants to be noticed. A bit of advice for all of you... You have to be inspired by what you are shooting. Be a part of that planning process! It is totally worth it because having that collaboration of vendors will be magic, trust me!
Ryan & I chose to have the shoot take place at Jockey's Ridge State Park. We chose this location because we wanted this to look like we weren't on the Outer Banks. I know, I know.. so cliche, right? It is so funny that I say this because I think just about every photographer wants to shoot somewhere other than the Outer Banks.. not that we don't love where we are, that isn't what I am saying.. When you shoot at the beach over and over and over again, sometimes it can be a bit mundane and you need those off-the-wall locations to spark the creative section of your brain every now and then. Now Jockey's Ridge isn't anything crazy (literally just a bunch of rolling hills of sand), but when you are planning a shoot that you need to look like you are in some sort of desert region, it is absolutely perfect!
We brought on Stephanie Olejniczak (a very talented makeup artist) and her boyfriend (Micah) as our beautiful bride & groom. Stephanie did the makeup on herself & her bridesmaid. Be sure to check her out on Instagram (@stepholejnmua). Molly with Glimmer Hair & Makeup is always an amazing stylist and styled up our bride & bridesmaid! They looked killer! We also included a bridal party in the shoot along with wedding guests. We did have stipulations that their outfits (guests included) had to be spanish/southwestern inspired. Most of the guests rented their outfits from Mom's Sweet Shop & Something Old Something New (two amazing shops here on the Outer Banks). We purchased the dress that Stephanie wore from BHLDN & Micah's outfit from none other than Target!
When we wanted to bring in a florist/designer, we knew that these people would have to be as invested in this shoot as much as we are. That is a hard task to tackle knowing that we are in wedding season and styled shoots are definitely not easy and thrown together. We knew that this one was going to be more difficult that any of the others that we have been a part of and lots of blood, sweat, and tears went into this (literally) from all involved. When we asked Shirley with Sugar Snap Events to be a part of our crazy idea, she didn't hesitate. We could not have asked for a better florist/designer to tackle this project. This lady is truly a rockstar full of crazy ideas that were perfectly executed. When we were planning this, I gave her inspiration and she just ran with it. Everything was better than I could of expected! During one of our planning meetings, we were trying to plan out a ceremony structure/arbor and Shirley said to us, "what if the arbor was round"? We went crazy with the idea and she found the best person to build this! Big shout out to Andrew & Lindsey with Altwood Co. The structure was truly magnificent and I know they have received many compliments on how wonderful it looks. The other rockstar of this shoot would be Jessie with Amaranth & Artifact! Her style is just over the top, super trendy, and exactly who we needed for the specialty rentals included in this shoot. Jessie has an interior design background and she knew exactly how to take this to the next level. She incorporated some of her best inventory including the latin style settee that was used as part of the table seating and the amazing bohemian inspired peacock chairs. From the colorful mexican blankets to the perfectly dressed table, she thoroughly implemented perfect pieces to compliment Shirley's flowers and our style. Jessie also brought in the very talented Salt & Stain for the ceremony benches and accent tables used to display the cake/churros.
I have had the absolute pleasure of working with some extremely talented people over the years and I would have to say that Shannon with The Shabby Dream Shop is one of my new favorite people. She is probably the sweetest, most genuine person I know who pours herself into her work every single day. The moment I met her, I knew that I had to use her for this shoot. Her dreamcatchers are next level. She works with you on your style and when you see her inventory, you literally see magic. She absolutely blows me away every single time I see a new piece and I couldn't have been more blown away with the dreamcatchers that she made special for our shoot. They were organic, they were modern, they were perfect!
At first, Ryan and I were not going to bring in any food/cake into this photo shoot as we were going to mainly focus on the details of flowers & decor, but I am so glad that we changed our minds. Lisa & Marcelo with Ortegaz in Manteo, NC brought the most amazing array of food & drinks. The food was perfectly tied to the theme and looked too scrumptious not to eat. The table was full of beautiful colors from the plates, food, decor, liquor bottles, margaritas, etc... We are so grateful for all of their hard work! Great Cakes! of the Outer Banks provided a tasty, colorful creation of a cake! We gave her an idea of what we wanted and she ran with it... the result was a naked cake with colorful layers of frosting that tied into the latin inspired Cinco De Mayo theme.
Last but certainly not least, we want to thank Heather with HLR Designs for yet again creating the best invitation suite for our shoot along with printing on the paper bags for the Churro bar! We could not thank you more for taking time out of your busy wedding season to help us yet again with another shoot! If you are looking for invitations for your wedding, look no further! Heather is your girl!
Thank you again to all of the wonderful people who made this a success! We are so excited to share your hard work and creativity!
Photography- Ryan & Rach Photography
Flowers/Decor- Sugar Snap Events
Location- Jockey's Ridge State Park
Specialty Rentals/Decor- Amaranth & Artifact
Furniture- Salt & Stain
Dream Catchers- Shabby Dream Shop
Invitations/Paper Goods- HLR Designs
Arbor Design- Altwood
Hair- Glimmer Hair & Makeup
Makeup- Stephanie Olejniczak
Wedding Cake- Great Cakes!
Churros- Viva Mexican Grill
Guest Attire- Mom's Sweet Shop
Bridesmaid Attire- Something Old Something New
Wedding Dress- BHLDN
Groom's attire- Target