Styled Shoot | Toujours

Tracey from Toujours Wedding House (a Durban company stocking exquisite bridal gowns) approached us with an article for our blog. Before we get going, I realise that the terms “styled shoot’ gets mentioned a lot on blogs, and some people may have no idea what this means.  A styled shoot is a set up depicting a wedding scene. One might put together a styled shoot to create a strong body of work for a portfolio, or to collaborate with friends/like minded professionals. 

Things to note if you are a professional wanting to put together a styled shoot:

  • The final result (images) are the equal property of all parties involved. The photographer may take the baton over the line, but there were 3 runners in the relay that got him in the lead. 
  • Consider the costs involved for each party. It’s not fair to offer your time, and expect other vendors to contribute time AND incur costs. Think about what the florist has paid to make you the exquisite bouquet that you are going to use as the cover photo of your Facebook page to attract high-end clients. In my opinion, a budget should be created and costs split among all involved. 
  • Credit each contributing individual, every single time a photo is used on social media. If you promised the collaborators exposure, then you have to deliver by offering them that exposure every single time the photos is used. And while we talk about exposure…if you promised the collaborators a feature on a wedding blog, it is your responsibility to work your butt off to get that shoot featured. 
  • Have fun! A styled shoot is an opportunity to work without the stress of a real-time wedding. There are no client expectations – so produce work that YOU love, experiment, enjoy it!

Creative Shoot Collaboration – “The Wedding Experience!”

Our group of Durban wedding industry creatives got together in December of 2015 to discuss ideas for a creative shoot. All we knew at that point was that we wanted beautiful images to show off each of our talents! As we got chatting, a common theme kept popping up – “the realistic experience for a couple when planning their wedding”

People who work in the wedding industry know that you are always striving to be more creative, more competitive, and more unique! How do we capture the imaginations and hearts of our brides? Creative shoots are a great way to do this as they allow you to show off new and exciting options for brides to daydream about. The possibilities are endless and so gorgeous – couples are inundated with image after image of new ideas to consider.

What this sometimes means is that a couples basic “brand” is lost in the planning of this grand event! Not that we are saying couples shouldn’t show off a bit on their special day, it is after all one of the most important days a couple will experience. What we are saying though, is that it is good to stay grounded and keep things simple to allow the fancy ideas to grow from a realistic beginning.

We decided that our shoot would focus on a few main elements:

  • The brides look in terms of her wedding gown fitting experience, hair and makeup – the feminine! Who she really is and how she is comfortable showing herself off on this special day – whether innocent and soft, glamorous vixen or the natural, girl-next-door. Often it is easier for a bride to visualize all other elements of her wedding when she knows what she will be wearing on the day.
  • The couples “brand” in terms of décor and setup – a bit of feminine and masculine to capture the essence of marriage. A marriage is about commitment and the union of two people – starting a life together. You are accepting each other fully and announcing your “brand” to all your loved ones – “This is who we are, what we love and we want to share it with you!” Find the balance between your feminine and masculine and you find a beautiful way of decorating your wedding day
  • The bond between a couple – we were lucky enough to work with one of Toujours Wedding House’s previous brides who brought her hubby along for some of the photos – this created a genuine intimacy in the photographs as apposed to a forced connection. Including a real couple in on our shoot added that authentic quality that we wanted to capture – they have planned their wedding, they had expectations, they felt overwhelmed at times and they ultimately loved every minute of their wedding day! The relaxed way that our photographer shoots worked perfectly with these natural models – comfort with the photographer is half the battle won when accurately capturing your wedding day!

We hope that these images inspire couples to stay true to their own life and personalities. For us it is so important to learn about a couples expectations and experiences so that we can truly offer the appropriate service and to help couples bring their wedding ideas to life.


Photography By Jacques Joubert
Dresses and venue – Toujours Wedding House
Décor Styling – Simply Fabulous Events
Décor Hire – Hired & Co
Makeup – The Durban Makeup Artist
Jewellery – Bella Bespoke
Stationary (menus) – Ruby & Swallow 

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If you have a styled shoot that you would like to submit, please email 

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