Hidden New York City Getaway Combined with Earthy Wedding Vibes

We love a good adventure. So when Love Stories TV, the leading video platform for wedding planning and inspiration, asked us if we would be up for a socially-distant influencer-activated styled photoshoot involving Maggie Sottero wedding dresses at Collective Retreats on Governors Island, New York City how could we turn that down?!

All photography by Electric Love Studios

To be honest, I’ve always thought of Governors Island as this festival island venue that was frustrating to get to because it’s, well, a New York City island, and I am someone who has a low tolerance for super large crowds and transportation with standing room only. Of course, I am happy to say that I was absolutely *Buzzer* wronngg.


Governors Island’s hidden gem, Collective Retreats, is a New York City glamping oasis. The mix of luxury camping tents and trailers gives the place a hybrid feel of boho meets Austin, Texas. It’s easy to forget you’re even in New York City until you look out to the water to find the cityscape and Statue of Liberty. The ferry is a less than ten minute trip from lower Manhattan. We love the Best Parking app which landed us a garage directly across the street. From the ferry to Collective Retreats is an even quicker golf cart ride. The place sort of reminded me of our favorite Mexico island, Holbox.

Although, we didn’t stay the night I noticed enough for me to get on my phone and try to find out when I could book accommodations. Besides the obvious, the staff is extremely friendly, like happy-camper friendly. My automatic mental checklist noticed the cleanliness, electricity, heaters, super soft sustainable toilet paper, coolers, coffee, a shower, a good old fashioned safe (it’s small, so don’t plan to pack too much inside of it), and arguably most importantly… a restaurant and bar right on the property.


• Hosted by LovestoriesTV at Collective Retreats on Governors Island, NYC (learn more about Love Stories TV below)

• Wedding Dresses designed by Maggie Sottero

• Bridesmaids Dresses designed by Birdy Grey

• Brands behind the scenes (listed below)


Overall Logistics and Intention

As the health crisis has caused brands across the bridal and hospitality industries to cancel their experiential marketing initiatives, Love Stories TV is providing a solution that will allow influencers to experience products and services firsthand and share them with their followers and simultaneously providing its audience with bridal fashion and micro-wedding planning inspiration.

• Two days (one night stay per influencer)

• ‘Luxury Staycation’ event at Collective Retreats on Governor’s Island

• 12 influencers and their plus ones+1 with an overnight stay at the five-star glamping resort

• Guests will spend a portion of their stay wearing and creating content in Maggie Sottero gowns selected specifically for them based on their provided preferences.

• The venue specializes in micro and socially distant weddings, an aspect of wedding planning where engaged couples are eagerly looking for providers and advice as the health crisis impacts their plans. 

Our Experience

As the hired photographer and videographer for this photoshoot, Adrienne and I both agreed that being surrounded by, and working with such amazing women was inspiring and empowering, to say the least. As women ourselves, this isn’t something we experience often in our line of work. Yes, there are many women in our industry, however, it’s still male-dominated… especially filmmaking. There is a balance of not giving too much information away to our competitors, but also helping others in the industry to grow. And besides our work with SHAPE Magazine, this is the only other all-women photoshoot of this stature we have done to-date.

The entirety of this two-day shoot felt like friends hanging out; cheering one another on. I’ll never forget Caila Quinn walking in the distance, seemingly buried by a Maggie Sottero dress strung over her shoulder. While bouncing with each step, she made the journey to deliver this amazing gown to Brittany Lo’s tent to try on. I have to admit, we wanted to play dress up too! Not to get lost on a huge woman-power tangent, but I would like to acknowledge, there are women you can just flow with, naturally, and all of these ladies were the epitome of that notion! Empowering, brilliant, open, and incredibly beautiful women, inside and out.

The location and timing of our shoot was a dream come true! We had the most gorgeous light and weather to work with! Although we were all a bit windblown on the second day, no one was stopped by it! The ladies tousled their hair around, like the pro’s they are! Adrienne typically likes incorporating her own lighting for portraits, but the glow of the sunset blessed us with incredible, warm light. We could definitely shoot here again and again without getting tired of the view!

Beautiful curvy black woman laughing in Maggie Sottero Dress during Collective Retreat photoshoot

So who are these women? Find out below!


Here are the brilliant and incredible women involved in this photoshoot at Collective Retreats and the dresses they’re wearing.

• Liris Crosse in Joss (2021 Spring Collection)

• Caila Quinn in Elaine in black

• Rachel Martino in Charmaine (2021 Spring Collection)

• Alyssa Brieloff in Canterbury

• Lara Eurdolian in Erin Marie

• Ariel Oz in Irene

• Christina of LuxeBrideGuide in Fiona

 Nurys Marcel in Aubrey

• Brittany Lo in Hamilton

• Donna Kim in Vincent

• Juliette Dallas-Feeney in Pierce with Birdy Grey Sunglasses


What you aren’t totally seeing are the brands behind the scenes, LoveStoriesTV’s supporting partners.


amika @amika

Get those luscious locks looking beautiful for your shoot.

EMMA @emmabeautyla

Let your nails meet perfection with these nurturing yet glam products.

Whish Beauty @whishbeauty

Stay smelling fresh and clean no matter where you are during your busy days.

Trilogy @trilogyproducts

Create that glow that won’t go away- perfect for your special day.

Au Natural Skinfood

Curated especially for you and your skin type, every product will meet your every skincare need!


BABE @drinkbabe

Red, White, Rosé? BABE’s got you covered for any taste your up for.

1907 @1907water

Naturally high alkalinity, 1907water helps to rebalance and replenish our bodies from daily stresses- enjoy and refresh.

Ramona Wine @drinkramona

Commemorate the end of Summer with this refreshing lemon spritzer.

Ladurée @ladureeus

Macarons are truly the answer to every sweet craving, what better brand than Ladurée.

Lomli Coffee @lomlicoffee

Once you taste this brew, you won’t want anything else- we think you’ll agree.


The Tie Bar


Men’s attire perfectly designed for your wedding day.

Pretty Connected  + Simple Satch


So smart. So chic. Adorable masks + chain so you’ll never lose it and always look styled.

Amoressa Swim 


Sunbathing made comfortable and chic- all in one.



One last appearance for those pretty little toes before that Fall hibernation.

Electric Love Studios


The passion and precision of this photography & videography team is unmatched- the perfect answer for capturing your wedding day.

Ryan Porter


Ohh la, la- could these precious little bracelets come at a better time.

Birdy Grey


Bridesmaid dresses and a party line perfect for any bridal party occasion- yes please.

Buffr @buffr_

Protect that stunning ring regardless of what you’re doing- this will be your new BFF.


Love Stories TV is the new way to plan your wedding. On lovestoriestv.com, engaged couples can browse our massive library of professionally produced real wedding videos to get connected with the best pros, products and ideas for their wedding.

When founder Rachel Jo Silver got married in 2013, she decided not to hire a videographer. After the wedding, she regretted this decision and began to pay close attention when friends would share their wedding videos online. She was blown away by the quality of these films and their ability to both entertain and showcase all the details of the wedding. She realized that watching real wedding videos was the best way to research and discover the products and pros couples are seeking for their weddings.

So she built Love Stories TV. A place to browse and watch beautiful wedding videos. A place to connect with the right wedding professionals. A place to discover wedding fashion, decor, music, vows, speeches, venues and more. Today, Love Stories TV is home to a massive library of real wedding videos that represent real weddings from all over the world of every religion, culture, gender, budget, style and size.

Whether you just got engaged, have a venue but need to find vendors, or are getting married tomorrow and still haven’t written your vows, Love Stories TV is here to help. Love Stories TV is the best way to get inspired, discover products, and to find the perfect team of pros for your wedding.