Today’s destination wedding is actually a photo shoot designed by wedding planner and designer, Kelly McWilliams, and an amazing team of Florida wedding vendors who wanted to show off a different side to destination weddings – a beach wedding at night! We asked Kelly all about their inspiration and the details from this big day and here’s what she had to say!
JF: Why did you decide to do a shoot at night?
Kelly: We wanted to do a shoot at night for a few reasons. Mostly, because it is so rare that anyone produces evening styled shoots and inspirational images are hard to find. We do so many Jewish wedding ceremonies on the beach and it’s hard to “imagine” what they can look like with great lighting. Finally, we like the idea that if you’re having a destination wedding that you can take advantage of the entire day and night! Maybe yoga & golf in the morning, a beach or poolside bbq lunch, free time for all the wedding guests to enjoy the island…all before the ceremony & reception. The best part about a destination wedding is that it is unrushed time with all your guests…days, not 4-5 hours.
JF: What do couples need to know about the unique elements of planning an evening event outside?
Kelly: By far the most unique part is how you have so many more options with lighting! You truly can have a candle lit ceremony. You can incorporate chandeliers, or lanterns or strung lights. Evening weddings are the epitome of romantic. Logistical things to consider are limitations with power and inclement weather. No matter what, a back up plan (with a location) needs to be set well in advance in case there are instances of rain, lightning or strong winds.
JF: Why did you select the location you did?
Kelly: We chose The Sundial Resort because it has several outdoor locations available for ceremony, cocktail and reception. Also, they have newly renovated indoor locations that would be equally as wonderful if the weather made a turn for the worst.
JF: What was the inspiration for the decor?
Kelly: My inspiration for this concept was the full moon & open sky of stars. Sanibel Island is dreamy at night and I wish more people had the opportunity to celebrate under them! I also wanted to focus on having a contemporary, glamorous and formal design for the ceremony and dinner.
JF: How did you see that design through?
Kelly: The first things on my prop list were candelabras and chandeliers. Lighting was for sure the key component. To highlight them I wanted everything to sparkle and shine. So we stuck with all white flowers, focusing on Phalaenopsis Orchids. We also used sequin pillows & tablecloths, and centerpieces in mirrored vessels. Even the ceremony programs were in a mirrored box. To make sure that there was a little note of the blue waters of the Gulf of Mexico, the chargers, menus & place cards, and the cake had a sea blue accent and the pillows on the pews had some sea creatures. Finally, to keep with the intention of the shine, I used ghost chairs so that any hint of sparkle could have the opportunity to show up.
To see the finished product on video and a behind the scenes look at making this feature come to life, check out the films by Matt Steeves Wedding Films.
Destination Wedding Photographer: Hunter Ryan Photo
Destination Wedding Photo Shoot Team: Shoot Production, Art Direction & Styling: Kelly McWilliams – Celebrations, Weddings & Parties, Venue: Sundial Beach Resort, Floral Design: Floral Artistry, Props & Tabletop: The Prop Closet via Kelly McWilliams’ Celebrations, Weddings & Parties, Linens: Nuage, Chairs/Pews/Lighting: Island Event Rentals, Cake Artist: SweetSlices Cake Design, Fashion: Tie the Knot, Hair & Makeup Styling: Salon Tease, Talent: Clint Wiley & Dawn Kelly, Video Produced & Directed by: Matt Steeves Wedding Films