I helped to plan and style Sophie’s cousin’s wedding in 2012, so I was delighted when Sophie and Scott approached me to lend a hand with their wedding.
Sophie and Scott knew that they wanted to have a destination wedding, but weren’t entirely sure where. Scott lived in Paris for some time so this was one possibility for them, but they also liked the idea of a more relaxed, tropical setting. What they really wanted was to be able to celebrate over several days and for their guests to feel they were having a getaway as well as attending the wedding.
So, armed with this information I started to look into potential locations from Paris to Asia. When I came across the YL Residence in Koh Samui, Thailand, I felt secretly excited. The residence only had a small number of villas and Sophie, Scott and their guests would have the whole place to themselves, including a dining room where they could order whatever they felt like whenever they felt like it, a bar which would stay open for as long as they wanted to drink, and staff who would organise any activities that took their fancy. It would certainly be my perfect wedding, but I didn’t want to get over-excited until I got their feedback.
As it turned out, they thought the YL Residence was perfect too, and so we began. It wasn’t easy finding vendors for this wedding – first of all, not many vendors are actually based on Koh Samui, so travel fees from the mainland are common and sometimes quite expensive. Secondly, we didn’t want what seemed to be a typical Thai destination wedding with a tropical flower arch, frangipanis in the bride’s hair, chair covers with sashes and a red carpet. Sussing out vendors from afar was also tricky, as there is nothing like a face to face meeting to get a real feel for a person. In the end however we managed to find an amazing florist who completely understood our vision, a wonderful hair and makeup artist, and a great photographer to capture the day.
In terms of the styling we kept things very simple – we didn’t want too many props to have to be taken over to Thailand, and we knew that the beauty of the surroundings would mean that styling could be kept to a minimum.
This was the result.
All images by Gina Smith Photography