Avant Garde Bride: Non-Traditional Wedding Day Style at Brinkburn in Northumberland

Paulo Santos Avant Garde Photoshoot inspire@paulsantosphotography 9

Good morning beauties, we needed a quiet day on the blog yesterday because quite frankly, our to-do list was about 2 billion and 53 miles long right. It’s considerably shorter now – major sighs of relief all-round!

I would usually share a real wedding first thing in the morning but these images were simply too breathtaking and sublime to not deserve the prime spot on Love My Dress today.  Sent in by photographer Paulo Santos, one of our talented and highly recommended Little Book wedding directory members, they offer brides an alternative view of modern bridal style. I adore the deliciously gothic and avant garde vibes.

Paul is an exceptional photographer – his mastery of light and shadow is incomparable and I am genuinely blown away by these images. I adore sharing his wedding photography on Love My Dress too.

Words from stylist Jo at Madam Jojo Creative follow…

“Having Brinkburn, nestling in the heart of a dramatic Northumberland ravine, together with the organic mix of its producers’ talent, style and natural flair, overall high lightened the rawness yet classic feel of this editorial shoot. The location’s history and it’s ghostly ‘kept secrets’ was of paramount importance as the images had to both reflect and promote this, whilst observing its edgy concept.”


Images by Paulo Santos

16 Avant Garde bride Paulo Santos Photography.jpg“Paulo’s individual aesthetic and vision captured the true beauty of the surrounding enchantment. His personal brief with regards to the photography was to simply capture the whole essence of the shoot using only natural light.

As the stylist, my engagement was simplified by the pure and sublime slim silhouettes of vintage fabrics bestowed by the meticulously curated collection ‘The Twins Pieces’ – enhancing the whimsical and timeless appeal of both the overall style and substance.”

The Twins Pieces is a collection of exceptional original vintage bridal fashion, curated by real life twins Kelly and Caroline, who also happen to be the most wonderful wedding photographers – and also members of our Little Book Directory.

You can read more about The Twins and their vintage wedding dresses and accessories here.

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“This successively enabled Tina to create an avant guard vision where an amalgamation of wild textures and exaggerated volume of hair complimented the stunning and sensational hair pieces of Agnes Hart.

Make up artist Victoria’s concept again was delicately designed to endorse the creatives’ specific vision – a natural, dewy and ethereal look with bejewelled embellishment.”


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“Floral designer Hannah, showcased arrangements that ‘captured the imagination of modern brides’ by using contradictory elements and colours, which were styled as modernistic wearable accessories.”

“With the end of the year drawing to a close, Brinkburn invited me to organise a less traditional styled shoot and bring together some of the best wedding suppliers in the industry for an incredible avant-garde styled photo session. It needed a good discussion round a table with wine to visualise and carefully co-ordinate a set that would bring out the magic of everyones efforts.”

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Kudos to the creative team behind these images. I absolutely LOVE to see wedding industry pro’s pushing the boundaries of creativity like this and being unafraid to step away from the norm. These images hugely inspire me and I also adore how they have embraced seasonality and all the colours, textures and offerings of nature as it transitions so beautifully between Autumn and Winter.

Enormous thanks for sharing Paul, Kelly, Caroline and everyone else involved.

Oh – and brides in the North of England, perhaps it’s time you checked out the beautiful Brinkburn Priory in Northumberland as a potential wedding venue?

Credits & Thanks


Annabel View all Annabel's articles

Founder of Love My Dress. Passionate Podcaster and Editor. Annabel lives in rural North Yorkshire with her husband and business partner Philip, their two daughters and menagerie of furry hounds. She loves photography, meditation, walking, being outdoors and star gazing. She is fierce when it comes to championing talent within the wedding industry and when she's not working on Love My Dress, she supports her husband Philip in the running of the family's sustainable flower farm and floral design business, Moonwind Flowers. In 2013, she became a published author.

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