Daydream in Blue

by Carys - Stylist for The Prop Factory

Friday 5th July 2019 12:42:17


Daydream in blue 

With weekly blogs on the horizon as a way to share over a year's worth of lovely photoshoot inspo, where do you start? Given all the sunshine we've had over the last couple of weeks and the urge to run to the beach after work - definitely one of the perks of being based in the West Country - it feels like the perfect moment to revisit our Daydream in blue photoshoot.

We originally created this theme for a wedding fayre at Cliff House Salcombe and couldn't resist turning it into an inspirational styled shoot in the glorious setting of the local North Sands beach. Salcombe is a beautiful Devon coastal town brimming with sailing boats, secluded coves and ice creams so choosing a theme was simple - all the blues, coastal props and sandy styling. 

Why call it Daydream in blue? As soon as our blue Emily sofas, crisp white coffee tables and natural woven seats were settled on the sand they created the dreamiest display. I sat and looked out to sea and, just for a moment, with the sound of waves breaking gently in the background, drifted off into the loveliest of daydreams. It's a great day when your work feels like a holiday!

We had recently added to our collection of all things nautical so were excited to be able to feature our shabby white usherette tray, small nautical side table and natural woven seat/side table for the first time. Our white shabby posts are amazing for defining an area and I loved the idea of creating a simple and elegant 'isle on the beach'. With the extra touches of pillar candles nestled into the sand and statement plants in wicker baskets, that's all it needed with the already glorious natural backdrop of the big blue sea. Imagine our white wooden folding chairs either side of the isle for your guests to sit on whilst they watch your beach blessing unfold.

You can usually expect a beach party to be a laid back, relaxed affair - which suits our 'not quite perfect but still quite fabulous' down to the ground. We are always happy for our traditional inside props to go outside, but I don't think I have ever seen vintage furniture used to create a chill out area actually on the sand. A space like this is an amazing spot to relax, kick off the dancing shoes and take a breather at a wedding or party.

For an event with 80 guests or more you might need to create two or three of these spaces. The furniture you choose can be mixed up to suit the needs of those who will be attending, but I would suggest that for eight to 10 people you need one or two sofas, two armchairs, a coffee table and a side table for comfortable chilling. If your budget doesn't stretch to two sofas you could always look at floor seating, or mix in some nice beach rugs amongst the vintage furniture. 

I chose to accessorise the seating area with natural colours. If you aren't using strong colours or patterns, bringing in different textures can be a lovely touch. The throw and cushion have a sandy texture and neatly tie the beach-y tones in with the delicate blue velvet of the sofa. You don't necessarily need to spend a lot of money to create this look. We are very keen on reusing and recycling - have a look around at home and see what you could repurpose. Ask friends and family for spare throws and cushions and collect empty jars rather than putting them straight in the recycling bin. I filled our glass jars with sand and pillar candles and used some faux plants to bring the set to life. I always find this is a great trick if I'm creating a shoot without models. 

We wanted to shoot some inspirational wedding photo ideas and were delighted to have Liberty Pearl on board to capture it all. Wedding shoes were placed in the usherette tray and also on our blue Emily armchair, and a gorgeous bridal bouquet photo by Pumpkin & Pye took pride of place on our powder blue Emily three seater sofa.

It wasn't until we looked through the camera lens that we realised you could see our footprints in the sand all over the set. We carefully got on our hands and knees and shuffled backwards towards the camera, ruffling up the sand with our fingers as we went. See Carmen in action on the bottom left of this photo. . .It's not always the glamour you might expect on a photoshoot.

As an aside, it's worth a note to say that you do need the local council's permission to set up something like our lovely shoot. Sadly, you can't have the legal bit of your wedding on a public beach in many parts of the UK, so you might want to check out licenced venues that have fabulous beachside locations.

Back inside, we created a gorgeous tablescape in Cliff House Salcombe's wedding venue. The light and airy breakfast room made an ideal backdrop for our white farmhouse table (these have since been upgraded and now have lovely farmhouse legs) and colourful wooden folding chairs in shades of blue. These pastel-hued vintage chairs are hired out as a complete mix of colours, so if you want to recreate this look precisely you would need to hire out our whole collection.

We dressed the table in delicate blue and sea green mixed glass vases that we scavenged from charity shops, recycling centres and clearance shops. This is a cheap and easy way to personalise your table and, although it requires a bit of forward planning, they are surprisingly easy to collect, especially if you start looking early. You don't have to use the quantity that we did - less, as they say, can be more, or you could just save the idea for your top table.

We used hessian for our napkins and our napkin holders are wooden curtain rings. We all end up with spare wooden curtain rings somehow and so this is a handy way to use them. Remove the metal ring part and there you have it. You could even paint them to suit your colour scheme.

My favourite photo was the simplest - our powder blue Emily armchair with the sea in the background. Super relaxing to look at and shows off its elegance and colours beautifully. 

If you wanted to recreate this shoot on a bigger scale, but still in keeping with the beach loving theme, adding props like our blue & white giant deckchair and taupe & white giant deckchair would make memorable photo opportunities for your guests. Our blue velvet Chesterfield sofa, sea blue Emily sofa and matching sea blue emily armchair would extend your seating areas whilst a few little additions such as the white Queen Anne coffee table and white bar tables would complement the theme and add a practical place for guests to rest their drinks.

We've handily listed all the props used in our Daydream in blue shoot in one place. Click here

If you are looking to hire other beach themed props and furniture see our 'Oh I do like to be beside the seaside' products


Carys x


Venue: Cliff House, Salcombe

Beach: North Sands, Salcombe 

Photographer: Liberty Pearl Photography

Flowers: Pumpkin and Pye

Shoes: Rainbow Club

Props and Furniture: Us* The Prop Factory

Tags: Beach Beachy Nautical Beach Party Beach Wedding Beach Event Coastal Event Hire Party Decoration DIY Party DIY Wedding Prop Hire Furniture Hire