shelby tsika photography, @shelbytsikaphoto, wedding photography, vera wang bride, swall salon asheville, playing bride, wedding dress, asheville

That One Time I Played Bride with STP

· saying yes to the dress and new experiences ·

October 27, 2016

Get inspired. Seek to inspire. Start blog. Create contact form no one will ever use. Post Instagram (x 1,000). Use a lot of hashtags (x 10,000). #avl #asheville #828isgreat


“Hi Ferriss! I am a wedding+portrait photographer from Texas. I am originally from Asheville and will be heading back there the beginning of June! I am holding a styled bridal shoot and will be renting a wedding dress, getting vendors to contribute florals and hair and makeup. We will be hiking up craggy gardens trail for the shoot! If you are interested, please let me know!”

*Reads email; asks self, “omg am I actually going to do this, can I do this, can I play bride, I’m not a model, totally out of my comfort zone but it would be super fun so why the heck not and YOLO”

*Responds to email with something along the lines of: “Sure! I’d love to.”

And that’s how I played bride with Shelby Tsika–the darling behind Shelby Tsika Photography. 


There are times I hate social media (most of the time) and then there are times I love it (less of the time, but times that are usually pretty rewarding so it makes up for hating it most of the time). This is a perfect example of times I lalala love it–for the genuine people I meet and meaningful relationships that enhance my life and who I am in this world. And this one thing in particular all loops back around to the fact I even started my blog in the first place. Everything, whether we realize it in the moment or not, is a step toward something greater.


And not just to the dress–to new experiences! Life is a series of domino effects and from one event to the next, you’re reminded why you started. In a saturated, information-overload world, it’s all too easy but we can never let ourselves forget why we started. And so one day I started a blog, created a contact form I thought no one would ever use, used too many hashtags on too many Instagram posts and put myself out there like whoa, and I experienced something way cool and made a new and lasting friend who has more to offer than I do. Do I want to be a bridal model for styled shoots in the future? Heck no! But I said yes to the dress just for fun and much more than just fun came out of it.

Playing Bride with STP

Shelby is featuring our shoot together at Craggy Gardens in Black Mountain, North Carolina on her NEW! website, launching today. In just a matter of months, her dreams are becoming even more of a reality and her dedication, commitment, drive, soul and passion shines through in every image, thoughtful post and word she puts out there. I feel SO grateful to be able to play a small part in her journey! I’m sharing some of my favorites but head on over to her new site for the full shoot at

I’m sharing some of my favorites but head on over to her new site for more from our shoot in a special blog post, Hair, makeup and vendor credits at the bottom. XOXO

Hair by Hannah Bailey, owner and stylist at Swell Salon in downtown Asheville

Makeup by Jen O’Leary of Blush

Dress by Vera Wang via Borrowing Magnolia

Florals by Blossoms at Biltmore Park

Photos obviiiii by the amazing Shelby Tsika Photography


October 27, 2016