Category Archives: trash the dress

Trash the Dress: Beth . Belle Isle Wedding Photographer

Beth in the Detroit River!

First of all, I have to give a big OMG to Beth for being fearless and sexy. This shoot was an anniversary gift for her husband, and the only thing that I think could have made it better was for him to come wading with us! We threw around ideas for locations, and we decided Belle Isle was the best place for us to go, because it has a quintessentially Detroit mix of beauty and grunge – an awesome juxtaposition for a trash-the-dress shoot. And just to be clear: nothing we did actually trashed her dress (more on that later).

Beth in the ivy behind the aquarium, Belle Isle, DetroitI have a thing for the BACKS of buildings, I guess. While plenty of Belle Isle is neatly manicured, this ivy is overgrown and turns chartreuse before it explodes in a riot of fall color.  This shoot had three distinct phases, and this is the pretty phase (it’s all pretty, but this is the clean/pretty part!).Beth rocking a rusty greenhouse doorBeth was NOT tentative about the dress-trashing. She told me that as long as we didn’t spray paint it or set it on fire, we should go wild. Rolling on the ground seemed like a good starting place…I love how her eyes match the gray of the concrete here, and the green of the ivy above.
Beth looking like a model outside the greenhouse, Belle Isle, DetroitI love how these images in front of the greenhouses turned out, but I was SO into shooting that I walked straight into a thistle bush (you can see it in the foreground of the image top left) and spent a few minutes tugging burrs out of my sweater. Anything for the shot!Beth in the Detroit River!And then it was time to jump in! Beth gave me one last are-you-ready-for-this (YES) glance and waded in! Fortunately, it was a warm-ish evening. Beth was smart and left the cowboy boots on (as any good cowboy would, in this particular situation!). So, this is where the shoot got a little dirty/pretty. I am kind of impressed how river silt accentuates the gorgeous applique…Beth looking dirty during a Belle Isle Trash the Dress shootAt the end of the shoot, we barricaded ourselves in a restroom on the island in order to rescue Beth from her dress. It was HEAVY!  Before we did, though, we took a few images in the restroom stall (the shoot is officially dirty/dirty!).

Beth in a toilet stall, Belle Isle, Detroit

Once the dress was off, we contained it in a mesh laundry bag and heaved it into the trunk of Beth’s car. I’m happy to report that Beth sent her gorgeous dress (in the giant mesh bag) through the washing machine on the gentle cycle, and it came out looking great! So much for trashing it. Ladies, if you want to make friends again with your wedding dress, it can be done without completely obliterating it!

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