A Vintage Safari at Deer Park

Written by Emma Hla
One of our biggest pieces of planning advice is to stay true to who you are as a couple. Be influenced by your interests, your passions in life and whatever makes you both tick. Guests want to see and hear your personalities throughout your day, which is why I love todays inspiration so much.

The photographer behind this beautiful vintage inspired shoot has a love of travel, specifically Safari and the beautiful landscapes of Africa. With romantic whispers of a bygone era, this shoot is all kinds of pretty and has so many gorgeous touches that you could translate to your own big day décor.

The venue for this shoot is also pretty epic. The Deer Park Country House Hotel in Devon sits in over 80 acres of grounds, featuring wild flower meadows, woodland walks, manicured lawns and riverside trails. They also have the most remarkable treehouse accommodation for you and your guests.

So enjoy and I hope it gets you thinking about how to tell your own story…

Notes from the Photographer

Jen says…

I chose Deer Park for the venue as it felt perfectly suited for the theme of the shoot – a romantic, vintage Safari.

I wanted it to feel like you could be having a destination or elopement wedding in Africa, out in the wilderness surrounded by beauty. I based the shoot on my own experience of holidaying in Kenya as I loved being on a safari; the early morning starts, the sumptuous lunches and dinners in evenings, where you can hear the guttural roar of Lions echoing in the night from a mile away. It has such a romantic feel to it. I also stayed in treehouse style lodging, which was great fun! As Deer Park have their own tree house accommodation it was perfect.

Most people think of Safaris and instantly they imagine bold Zebra and Leopard print, but I wanted to show a softer side. For the colour palette I took inspiration from a couple of my favourite old movies; Out of Africa and King Solomon’s Mines. They’re quite old and dated now, but I love the simple clean look of the crisp cream and beige linens that were worn to keep cool. It’s a somewhat vintage look now, but for me it signifies the look of the time and has such a romantic feel to it. Pale pink was introduced to the flowers to complement the soft and romantic feel of the shoot.

Our bride wore a beautiful vintage style ivory dress from Isabelle Montagu, with a drop waist sash, drop back and lace detailing across the neckline and shoulders. The Groom wore a light cotton shirt, stone coloured trousers brown waistcoat, stone coloured jacket and Panama style hat from Monsieur Mojo. The hair stylist, Natalie Nichols, swept our bride’s locks into an elegant up-do to show off the brides dress and beauty. Her make-up, created by Jai Prettejohn, was kept simple, elegant and natural.

An old trestle table from Virginias Vintage Hire was used for the tablescape, with chairs and wicker table from The Prop Factory. The wicker table was used to hold the cake that was designed by Claire Makes Cakes, which was kept simple with decoration inspired by the wicker furniture. The large wicker chairs, trunks and Soda Cypher were from Keeping It Vintage and were used for the couple to sit for the evening sundowners after a day’s safari. I also teamed their stunning ratten chargers with simple but elegant white Jasper Conran plates, Marks & Spencer Loire Crystal glasses and Zara wooden Cutlery to give a luxurious but modern feel to the tablescape. The napkins were made bespoke by Lighthouse Interiors. Wooden animals found in Africa on Safari were purchased from Ebay in addition to some that came from Kenya to add to the Safari feel. The stationery was designed by Hiphip Hooray to fit in the with the theme.

Sophie Millington created the amazing and beautiful flowers for us. She interpreted the brief and the theme beautifully, using white stocks, waxflower, protea, eucalyptus, white scabiosa and cream spray roses that mirrored the colours of the shoot.

I think this is a shoot that can easily be replicated, whether a bride chooses to replicate the look in its entirety or take small elements, such as the flowers, the natural but elegant table setting, the fashions with the vintage look of the bridal gown and lightweight stone suit. Or just use little wooden animals to give it that Safari feel! I really wanted the shoot to be inspirational as much as aspirational, and a little bit of me hopes it might inspire couples to support some of the amazing charities that protect the wellbeing of some of the most majestic creatures we have on this earth.


Concept & Styling Jennifer Shoubridge

Photography Jennifer Jane Photography

Venue The Deer Park Country House Hotel

Dress & Shoes Isabelle Montagu

Jewellery Erin Cox

Hair Natalie Nichols

Make-up Jai Prettejohn

Menswear Monsieur Mojo

Cake Claire Makes Cakes

Flowers Flowers by Sophie Millington

Stationery Hiphip Hooray

Table Virginias Vintage Hire

Table, Chairs & Wicker Table The Prop Factory

Wicker Chair/Suitcases & Soda Cipher Keeping It Vintage

Table Linen Lighthouse Interiors

Plates Wedgewood Jasper Conran Strata

Cutlery Zara Home

Glassware Marks & Spencer Loire Crystal

With special thanks to Models Jasmine Lam and Paul Wong

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