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Styling

Summertime Sipping ⋆ Styling Tips, Tricks + A Special Drink

August 30, 2018

Wow, it’s hot out! I spent yesterday in Boston for a few client meetings and had the urge to share this refreshing drink recipe with you all – because, well, we desperately need something light, tart and cool right about now! We mixed up this specialty drink while styling for a shoot at the Roger Williams Park Botanical Gardens, this past winter, anticipating exactly the New England weather we have now: a scorching, summer heat wave.

Before I get into just what goes into this delicious cocktail I wanted to share a few styling musts …

These tips are great to keep in mind if you are planning a wedding or a styled shoot because they will help to guarantee that you receive the best photographs possible.

1. Use Your iPhone To Your Advantage:

I always snap pictures of styling work with my iPhone before I give the okay for the professional photographer to work their magic. Seeing the layout and design on screen helps to convey what it will look like once the pros are capturing it. Sometimes, I am able to catch things out of balance, a strange texture or an overall style flaw that I have had trouble recognizing with the naked eye.

For example. when I first shot this flat lay via iPhone we were using only the rattan tray and the palm leaf on top of the poured cement floor. In person it looked like a fun mix of industrial + tropical but on my screen it was looking a bit unfinished. The feedback I got from a simple iPhone shot inspired an additional layer of texture, color and interest. The final result ended up looking delicious and we further reached our tropical peach goals!

photo: shannon grant photography

2. Give Context:

When you are styling something inanimate it is always great to add a human element wherever possible. Think Davinci … you want to be able to feel that tension. Shannon Grant took the reigns, for adding the additional human interest with this shoot, and had our model join in for many of the detail shots. Don’t you want to pick up and sip a cocktail just like Chloe is doing?! It’s true – this drink and layout would probably be gorgeous on it’s own but by incorporating her hand it gives the scene purpose and an additional level of interest. So refreshing!

3. Fresh Is ALWAYS Better: 

In the off-season, or when shooting a season ahead, it is always tempting to use fake floral, fruits, props etc. While I’ll admit, the fake flower and look-alike industry has certainly improved, it is still so important to keep it real. How come? Well, fresh flowers photograph entirely different than fake floral because of how the camera captures the natural vs. the material. There’s nothing worse than having a beautifully styled scene with the use of fake elements because they stick out like a sore thumb. Luckily, for this shoot the amazingly talented team at Wild Dahlia was able to source fresh, tropical elements in the dead of winter – rock stars!

photo: shannon grant photography

Champagne Paloma:

Bring on the tequila! A champagne Paloma is a special tequila-based cocktail that uses fresh grapefruit and lime juices, as well as a splash of champagne. The light fizz is fun while the fruit juices have a lovely tartness.

Ingredients (per serving)

  • 3 oz freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 0.5 oz fresh lime juice 1 tbsp
  • 1.5 oz tequila
  • Ice
  • 2 oz champagne

Instructions:

  1. Combine and stir the grapefruit juice, lime juice and tequila in a glass. Next, add ice. Finally, pour in a bit of champagne and then gently stir. Sip, sip – enjoy!

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