Over the past month or so, I’ve been interning with Scottish womenswear brand nicci.n as a stylist and marketing assistant and working with fab designer, Nicola Gardner, to ready and launch her new Autumn/Winter 2015 collection.

It's been an amazing experience, and I've learnt an unbelievable amount about the whole process of designing and launching a collection - not as easy as it looks! - and wanted to share some of the behind the scenes snaps and final images from the studio and editorial photoshoots on here.

Photographer Rach Roberts and Model Raechel McGinn

Firstly, a bit about the whole wonderful collection. Nicola was inspired by 16th Century Scottish history and Mary Queen of Scots and has taken elements from the fashions of that period, such as high necklines and ruffs, bright fabrics, and exaggerated silhouettes, and given them a modern day spin, turning them into wearable highstreet pieces. I immediately loved how unique and edgy all the designs were, especially with all that gorgeous leatherette and intricate bead detailing, and really think they translate to everyday wear.

The studio with model Raechel McGinn strutting her funky stuff

The first day of my internship, i was invited along to Edinburgh College to help out on the studio photoshoot and it was an absolute dream working with everyone on set. Makeup artist Danielle Dickson, photographer Rach Roberts, and model Raechel McGinn were all pro's and super relaxed and comfortable at the shoot. It was exciting to help put the looks together and I learnt a lot from watching photographer Rach direct Raechel to get the best shots. So with the help of Taylor Swift blairing out of the radio, the day flew by!

Makeup Artist, Danielle Dickson, working her magic, Designer, Nicola, making some final adjustments

Once the studio shoot was done and dusted, I was asked to start scouting locations for the editorial photoshoot which was the bit i was most excited about. With the historical theme in mind, I had to find a location that reflected that 16th Century element, preferably somewhere historical and rustic with loads of character.

It was perfect then that I came across Dalhousie Castle, Scotland’s oldest inhabited castle just 8 miles south of Edinburgh. It offered the ideal back-drop to this historically inspired collection with its ivy-covered stone walls, grand interiors, and thrones galore, so we were spoilt for choice for backgrounds to shoot against. 

Model, Evelina Brinkemo, looking regal in the nicci.n. Ivory Cotton Sateen Shirt

The potential for some really great shots was obvious as soon as we arrived at the castle, which is set within beautiful woodland and park grounds, and even has it's own falconry centre! After trying and failing to convince the falconry to lend us one of their birds for the shoot - how amazing would that have been?! - we had a wander around the castle to scope out some locations whilst makeup artist, Danielle, set about making up models Urszula Prokop and Evelina Brinkemo in full-on 16th Century gear. Think huge beehive hair adorned with jewels, crowns, and pearls, porcelain white faces, and doll-like lips. Beautiful!

Rach captured Evelina and Urszula working the throne in the Dalhousie reception

The castle had the most perfect interior and props to match the collection, and being able to use these authentic historical pieces really brought the clothes to life.

Having selected the locations for each outfit, we began setting up the shots and I got stuck into styling the models with all the fab accessories that Nicola had brought along with her, and helping Rach capture the best lighting for each shot.

Just a few of the props that Nicola brought along with her.
Evelina in the sheer lace dress outside Dalhousie Castle

Evelina rocking the nicci.n. Burgundy Leatherette Mini Dress

It was a long day and before we knew what was happening it was 8pm and time to wrap things up. It was a bit of a rush at the end to get the final shots done before we lost all the light, but with the aid of some strong coffee and a whole lot of kit kats, we managed to pull it off. Below are some of the final images.

Urszula in the nicci.n. Leatherette and Lace Fishtail Maxi Skirt and Top

Seeing the whole collection brought to life as the photos came back over the following weeks was really rewarding and made all the work worthwhile, and I absolutely loved my time working with Nicola and all the gang to launch this new collection from one of Edinburgh's newest and most exciting womenswear designers.

  If you want to see more of the collection, you can find pieces on nicci.n, Asos Marketplace, and Wear Eponymous.

Also, huge thanks to staff at Dalhousie Castle for allowing us to use the property and grounds for this shoot.

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