Editorial Elegance at The Bodleian Libraries

Written by Caitlin Hoare
Not sure I’ll ever get over the interior of Bodleian Libraries in Oxford and if today’s editorial is anything to go by, it’s certainly not happening yet…

This stunning shoot, designed, planned and executed by Suzy Elizabeth Photography, manages to combine elegant, modern wedding aesthetics with the majesticness of Bodleian Libraries. The statement historic details don’t detract from the pretty touches, in fact it all works rather harmoniously together. This is the perfect inspiration piece for couples designing a modern wedding in an extraordinary venue such as this.

Notes from the Photographer

Suzy says…

The Bodleian Libraries was my number one choice for my latest styled shoot. Located in the heart of Oxford, it oozes charm and sophistication and the architecture has to be seen to be believed. I felt that its grandeur and elegance suited the look and feel for the shoot perfectly.

I wanted to create a shoot using local and luxury wedding suppliers and I was very clear on my vision. I wanted a very aesthetically pleasing shoot, one that was timeless and elegant, that used modern but classic pieces and that was in keeping with the grandeur of the location. I wanted the bride and groom to look modern and current, but also in-keeping with the elegance of the venue. I wanted a tablescape that was modern, but with lush and grand florals to make a real impact.

The shoot took place in June. The colour scheme was warm and luxurious with blush and toffee tones, a colour scheme that we felt could be used for weddings of all seasons.

I chose a stunning Kate Fearnley wedding dress for the shoot, that was modern and elegant. I wanted it to be sleek but with some classic lace thrown in, who doesn’t love lace! The dress was sleek and the skirt had pockets, for a touch of modernity. The dress boutique, Love and Loved Bridal, is new and will only source dresses from sustainable suppliers, something that is very important to me. To go with the modern elegance of the dress I chose a black tie to accompany it. Black tie is very current and in keeping with a luxurious wedding venue such as The Bodleian Libraries. I wanted the hair and make-up to make a statement and to be bold in the images but I wanted it to be classic and natural and in-keeping with the bridal look, Lucy Beesley kept to the brief and delivered exactly what I had envisaged. The bridal accessories were subtle and minimalist but complemented the sleek and timeless look beautifully.

For the interior of Bodleian Libraries, I wanted one statement table and to make a real feature of that. I choose a florist who works at the venue a lot and who is a master at creating dramatic and beautiful displays. The Library is a grand room with high ceilings so we felt that the height on the table was important to make it stand out. Matthew used tall stands and created a grand and high centerpiece with a real wow factor. The stationery was classic and elegant and used luxury gold foiling and wax seals to go with the classic table and warm and luxurious flowers in small vases really finished the table off beautifully. The cakes by Lisa Adams Cakes sat on a plinth next to the table to make a feature of it in its own right. Lisa used gold and warm tones to compliment the table colours.

We used Fabulous Flowers for the shoot. They are recommended suppliers Bodleian Libraries and have created many dramatic and show-stopping floral displays at the venue. I gave Matthew the brief for the shoot. I explained that we wanted one tablescape set up and we wanted it to be impactful, and I gave him the colour scheme. I left the rest to him and was completely blown away by his creation. I had explained that we wanted height on the table and he delivered, with the most beautiful, abundant floral displays, with warm and rich colours that beautifully matched the colour scheme.

We created a tablescape inside the Bodleian Library aimed toward a smaller and more intimate wedding. I wanted to show that even in a large venue, a small table set up can be impactful and intimate at the same time. We used lots of florals and luxury table details to show couples how they can dress a small wedding table and make it beautiful and luxurious

For the fashion, I wanted to showcase a modern look, which steps away from the traditional wedding dress. The two-piece bridal outfit is modern and elegant, sleek and sophisticated, suitable for a bride who wants something a little different.

Press Play


Venue Bodleian Libraries

Photography Suzy Elizabeth Photography

Venue Styling Joanna Wilford

Flowers Fabulous Flowers

Dress + Jewellery Love and Loved Bridal

Suit Walters of Oxford

Tableware The Luxe Collection

Lighting That Event Company

Shoes Di Hassall

Stationery Lynda Athey

Cake Lisa Adams Cakes

Videographer Andrew Collin Films

Hair + Makeup Lucy Beesley

Linen Northfields Linen

Ribbons Lancaster and Cornish

Furniture Oxford Event Hire

Crown Caped and Crowned

Hair Accessories The Bobby Pin

With Thanks to Models Alice Bryan & Oliver Fernandez

More from the blog

Discover our Venues

Refine your wedding venue search by location, capacity, type, and style.

Visit Venue Finder

Be Inspired

Planning advice, real wedding edits, and venue showcases to inspire you.

View Blog

Suppliers We Love

From photographers to bridal fashion and styling, find the best wedding suppliers right here.

View Suppliers