French Vintage Styled Shoot || Hart House Restaurant || Burnaby BC

I love styled shoots. The creative flow, the team effort and collaboration. I love meeting new vendors, who love what they do. A couple years ago I met Jayme from A Unique Boutique, she helped me with my first styled shoot. Not only were her florals amazing, but her commitment to help on the day of the shoot, did not go unoticed. I really appreciated her work ethic and her easy going personality, I hoped we'd work together again. This time around we decided to collaborate together. We planned and pinned and we brought together a fantastic team of vendors. It was so nice to plan a styled shoot with someone. It made everything easier and a lot more fun. In mid December all of our hard work paid off. We were featured by Champange Sweets! Our Team:

"Bride" and "Groom": Asia and Ryan Sanders

Photographer - Sherri Preston Photography Florist - A Unique Boutique Styling - Peach Tree & Co. Stationary - Belle Impressions  Hair Stylist - A` la Mode UpDo's by Alex   Make-up Artist - Kelsey Dickson Makeup Artistry Macarons - Whisked Away Baked Goods Rentals - Past Pieces Venue - Hart House Restaurant   Dresses - Pure Magnolia Assistant - Adielle Martins

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For Photographers: How to Plan a Styled Shoot

How to Plan a Styled Shoot My first styled shoot was planned using the post by Jessica M Wood Photography in LA. While her post was invaluable to me. I have been able to learn a few things on my own, things that are maybe more relevant depending on the market you are in. My styled shoots exist out of Vancouver. Some of this post will be regurgitated from hers, but what I learned from actually doing a styled shoot will be highlighted. She has some great visual aids so make sure you check her blog out too.


Brainstorm. Pin ideas on Pinterest so you can share with vendors when they ask. Finalize your ideas. You need a theme, a colour palette. You need all cohesive ideas. Whilst remembering at the end of everything, your idea could evolve into something entirely different. The outcome can depend on how your vendors see your vision, the weather, your designer, what the vendors can actually offer and the space you find.


Research + Vision

Research vendors, find the ones that you think will not only say yes, but the ones who have a style similar to your vision. If they don’t, you may end up with an entirely different look. This happened to me with one of my vendors in another shoot. It was very difficult to incorporate their product into the shoot, and I had to find a way to compensate for what I was now missing since it was a main ingredient and even though it didn’t fit, I still had to shoot their product, to give them photos and credit I had promised.



My first point of contact to vendors is always email, but I don’t see why, in person or phone wouldn’t work. I found email the easiest and least time consuming and met with vendors in person or on the phone once they came on board. Jessica posted her initial email on her blog. You can check that out. Some vendors don’t need that much information first off, but some might, especially if they don’t know of you. I also found being complimentary of a vendors product or service was very helpful. So when I adore a product, I make sure they know it - in my first email.



Create shareable spreadsheets with the vendors name, business, contact info and what they are offering. You can also include links to to your inspirational Pinboards. Giving a vendor something visual helps to keep things cohesive.


Date, Venue + Delivery

Try and and find your venue first. You can’t plan much without your venue. Once you find your venue you can nail down your date. Always have a few dates in mind. Monday’s seem the be the easiest date to get since most wedding vendors take Mondays off. Do keep in mind this may also increase your travel costs. You need to pick up and return items and if vendors are closed on Monday you may have to go a day or two early to pick it up, and then drop it off the day after. Some vendors will bring the item to you. You ALWAYS say yes to this. The less non photography things you have to do, the easier the day will be.


I’ve had potential vendors try and charge me, but you can always find a vendor with your vision who is willing to put in the same effort as you. This is team building, networking and marketing. You don’t need to pay for your styled shoot. Ever.



Find a bride and groom. This can be the most challenging part since styled shoots are often on a weekday. For most couples at least one of them works weekdays. You can go through a modelling agency, but I find that using real couples is more authentic and beautiful. I like to capture their authentic love. Married couples are the best. They really know each other. During a cold wintery styled shoot I had a groom keep touching his wives arm whenever she got goosebumps because he knew they would go away if he touched her. It’s that kind of tenderness you want to convey. Real love gets published.

Meeting Up

Always, always try and meet up with your vendors. Your vision will be more cohesive, you will build a stronger relationship with the vendors. The day of will be less stressful because you’re not meeting 10 new people.


Day off Social Media

Post vendor links + handles and on social media before the shoot, during the shoot and when you get home. Be grateful to the vendors on social media. They worked hard for you.


Shot List

Know before your shoot, what you need to capture. Have a shot list and check it off at you go. So much is happening and before you know it the light changes. In my opinion details are best shot in natural light get those right off the bat, while the designer is setting up, unless you are also the designer then shoot as you are setting up.



Return everything you borrowed the day of or next day. Be punctual to appointments.



Research the blogs you’d like to be posted on. The ones that fit your style and theme. Every photo blog has a different criteria so you need to size your photos and pick your photos according to the rules of each blog. Some blogs are exclusive and some are not. Make sure you read the fine print. In case of rejection, some blogs will give you feedback if you ask nicely. Always ask for feedback, that’s how we get better and always be nice to the Bloggers. Don’t burn bridges. If you treat them nicely, you still have the chance to be published with them one day. Remember they get hundreds if not thousands of submissions. It’s not that your shoot is bad, it’s usually just not what they are looking for at the time.

Social Media When Published

Get it out there! Once the blog is published, publish it on your blog. Put it on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, even YouTube! Get it out there, and give a should out to all the vendors including handles and or links to their websites AND compliments of course!


Thank you

Always say thank you to your vendors and to wherever you get featured. These people are part of your business. They are valuable to you and you to them. Treat them as your team.



Deliver the photos as promised to each vendor. I always deliver upon publication. I don’t release anything until they are published so the publishing blog can do the first reveal. You don’t have to do it this way, but it’s nice to leave it as a surprise.


And that’s it. I hope this helps you! I love doing styled shoots, so I am happy I can share this information with you! I hope you have a great time planning your own!


Click for Vendor List


A Nanoose Bay Beach Wedding || Andrea and Jay

Andrea and Jay have a beautiful love, an electric chemistry. Their wedding day was perfectly them. Down to earth, relaxed and stress free, ending with a swim in the ocean, drinks with their dearest friends and family, and of course a Harley ride, or two. 2014-09-03_0001.jpg 2014-09-03_0002.jpg

Andrea grew up going to this beach, this cottage. She spent weekends here as a teen and then as an adult. It was her dream to be married in this place, that held so many precious memories. Her grandparents owned it at one time and now it’s a family property shared amongst her mom’s siblings. When Jay proposed they didn’t have to search venues. All they needed was a tent in case of rain. But the weather was on their side. It was a beautiful sunny day that Saturday, with the perfect amount of cloud cover to make the ceremony light perfect.

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The moment she started down the isle with her arm linked in her dad’s took my breath away, it was hard to maintain composure as I fought to fight back my tears of joy. Andrea’s dad worked hard to be able walk her down the isle. After over a decade of suffering from Parkinson’s, his ability to do so was difficult, but as the months and weeks led up to Andrea and Jay’s big day, he worked with a trainer so he could have the joy of walking his only daughter down the isle.

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Congratulations, Andrea and Jay. Thank you so much for inviting me to be a part of your day. To celebrate with you. You two, are beautiful.

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A Photography Shoot Out || Devan Greenhouses Abbotsford BC

Not so long ago my friend Jen and I sat in my dining room chatting over tea. Both of us are photographers and so photography often comes up on such occasions. She told me of her plan for a shoot out. A gathering of photographers of all different levels coming together to shoot, learn, grow and just have fun. And so we did. On a sunny Thursday evening in June, 5 photographers and two models met at Devan Greenhouses in Abbotsford BC. The flowers were sensational, the company easy to keep, the models, gorgeous and the light, amazing. What more could we ask for? A soy latte at Starbucks afterwards of course!

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The Photographers:

Jenni Marie Photography Urban Fig Photography Sherri Preston Photography Sarah Darbey Delaney Photography


Cakes by Madison Venue:

Devan Greenhouses


Collaboration is amazing. I recommend it to every photographer. Especially the ones that work from home. It’s good to get out and away from the computer. To socialize in person. It’s a blessing to interact with people you wouldn’t otherwise know and to let the creativity run. Team Work. That is the essence of collaboration. It’s a beautiful thing. In the fall a team of vendors and I worked diligently to create a wedding styled shoot now coined “Pretty in Spring”. It’s amazing how an initial plan transforms and evolves. My initial vision for this shoot included fog or snow. But in Vancouver we work with what we get. This particular day started with sunshine and ended with over cast skies. Instead of winter we got spring and this is the result. We are so thankful to Vancouver Bride for picking up our feature. To Stephanie and Stephen Hall - a beautiful couple who graciously donated their time to model for our project. 2014-04-20_0039.jpg 2014-04-20_0040.jpg 2014-04-20_0041.jpg 2014-04-20_0042.jpg 2014-04-20_0043.jpg 2014-04-20_0044.jpg 2014-04-20_0045.jpg 2014-04-20_0046.jpg 2014-04-20_0047.jpg 2014-04-20_0048.jpg 2014-04-20_0049.jpg 2014-04-20_0050.jpg

The Creative Team

Photography || Sherri Preston Photography Decor || Ainsley's Affairs Florist || Unique Boutique Florals

Make Up Artist || Charrisse Mae Make Up Artistry 

Hair Designer || Jade Ward from Lure Salon

Stationary || Belle Impressions

Cupcakes || Cloud 9 Specialty Bakery

Men's Suiting || Baracos + Brand

Bridal Gowns || Frocks Modern Bridesmaids

Jewellery || Elsa Corsi from Jeweliette Jewellers -  

Venue || Cecil Park Green House

Rentals || Pedersen's Event Rentals

Matt and Melissa: A Brooklyn Wedding

Matt and Melissa met at two weddings of two mutual friends. Then finally, Matt came to NYC, so they could have their first date. There was a blip though, by this time, Matt had moved to China for business. Despite the blip, six weeks after their first date, Melissa was hooked. Melissa, the girl who was never ever going to live anywhere but NYC, was falling for a man in China. Shortly after this realization, she moved to China for what she describes as a brief "love sabbatical." It was her way of seeing if he was the one. At the end of her two m,onth stay, Matt took her to Yu Gardens in Shanghai and got down on one knee to pop the big question. And so, in Melissa fashion she flew home to NYC and planned a NYC wedding in less than three months. Not only did she plan a wedding in 3 months, but she planned it well and without spending an arm and a leg, which lets face it - that's hard to do in NYC.

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Photography: Sherri Preston Photography Second Shooter: Iqral La Rode Photography Venue: The Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture Shoes: Bloch Ballet shoes Dress: Louhu Commercial City in Shenzhen, China Catering: Bassett Caterers

Cale + Danielle: Pacifc Shores Resort Wedding in Parksville BC

Danielle and Cale are this super fun couple with four adorable children who traveled from Edmonton to have a hometown wedding. I have never witnessed a mother so fast on her feet. I was in awe as I not only watched her get ready to be wed, but as she got her kids ready to stand up for their parents. The love Cale and Danielle had for each other and their kids shone through the day. It was a beautiful celebration of love and family.2013-12-19_0031.jpg 2013-12-19_0032.jpg 2013-12-19_0033.jpg 2013-12-19_0034.jpg 2013-12-19_0035.jpg 2013-12-19_0036.jpg 2013-12-19_0037.jpg 2013-12-19_0038.jpg

Photography: Sherri Preston Photography Ceremony + Reception: Pacific Shores Resort & Spa

Greg and Joann: A NYC Wedding at All Angels Church

Meet Greg and Joann Phelan - the second. Funny fact: Greg's parents are also Greg and Joann. This gorgeous couple met at a college retreat in Connecticut. After graduation with just a few weeks between them they both moved to NYC . Of all the places they could live in the city, they ended up across the street from one another. For Greg it was basically love at first sight, but It took Joann a little longer, to come around! Greg never gave up and thankfully they had so many mutual friends in the city that "chance" meetings happened often. About a year and a half after their move into the city, Joann suddenly realized something. After all the time she spent trying to avoid Greg's attention, she realized she actually wanted it. The following winter the two traveled to see Joann's parents in Taipei and it was there Greg got down on one knee. And now, they are living their happily ever after.2013-12-19_0030.jpg 2013-12-19_0029.jpg 2013-12-19_0015.jpg 2013-12-19_0016.jpg 2013-12-19_0017.jpg 2013-12-19_0018.jpg 2013-12-19_0019.jpg 2013-12-19_0020.jpg 2013-12-19_0021.jpg 2013-12-19_0022.jpg 2013-12-19_0023.jpg 2013-12-19_0024.jpg 2013-12-19_0026.jpg 2013-12-19_0027.jpg 2013-12-19_0028.jpg 2013-12-19_0025.jpg

Photography: Sherri Preston Photography Second Shooter: Iqral La Rode Photography Ceremony: All Angels' Church Reception: Terrace in the Sky Catering: Terrace in the Sky Cake: Make My Cake

Mari + Alex: A Hawaiian Destination Wedding

Meet Marilynn and Alex, two of my favourite people! Their first date was an impromptu meet at Starbucks/Chapters. They were supposed to have another more planned out first date, but both we eager, and after all - it was Valentines Day. Must have been a good date, since four short months later, she had a beautiful ring on her finger! Mari dreamed of a wedding near the beach, so a beach wedding Alex gave her. They wed in the late afternoon (after a casual day of playing in the pool!) on the lawn of The Royal Lahaina Resort in Maui overlooking the sand and the Pacific. Her Groom walked her down the isle to calm her nerves. The perfect gesture. The sun shone and the skies were blue. Her son the ring bear, her mom - maid of honour, his dad the Officiant. And then suddenly, they were Mr and Mrs. Toews. 2013-11-19_0001.jpg 2013-11-19_0002.jpg 2013-11-19_0003.jpg 2013-11-19_0005.jpg 2013-11-19_0006.jpg 2013-11-19_0009.jpg 2013-11-19_0008.jpg 2013-11-19_0010.jpg 2013-11-19_0012.jpg 2013-11-19_0013.jpg 2013-11-19_0014.jpg 2013-11-19_0017.jpg 2013-11-19_0018.jpg 2013-11-19_0019.jpg 2013-11-19_0020.jpg 2013-11-19_0021.jpg 2013-11-19_0022.jpg 2013-11-19_0023.jpg 2013-11-19_0024.jpg 2013-11-19_0025.jpg 2013-11-19_0026.jpg 2013-11-19_0027.jpg