Aylett Nurseries in St Albans was founded in 1965 by Roger Aylett and continues to be a family run business today. Ayletts is well known in the area for providing high quality indoor and outdoor plants, shrubs and trees as well as every kind of gardening equipment and accessory you can imagine. Ayletts is also a great place to meet friends and family in their Dahlia Coffee House where you can enjoy delicious hot and cold food throughout your day. A highlight of Ayletts year is Christmas when the displays come alive to the delight and enchantment of visiting children, parents and grandparents alike.
This year Winter Wonderland includes moving reindeer and mice busy cooking, while the Christmas area has a bauble ceiling over the myriad Christmas gifts and ornaments.
The Aylett team was keen to showcase their wonderful efforts on their recently launched virtual tour. Striking Places was engaged for a third time. The brief was to extend their existing virtual tour to include a glimpse of Winter Wonderland, the Christmas decorations display and the Christmas Tree Area. Careful planning was required to showcase each section at its best and to ensure the additional parts of the tour would integrate with the existing virtual tour. It was also essential to display the fully stocked Christmas Tree Area while the sun was shining and before happy Christmas shoppers came to collect their beautiful Christmas trees. As Ayletts are in the process of creating a new website, Striking Places was also asked to bear in mind images that might be used for the new website banners.
Two visits were needed to capture the photography for this job. One day included skirting round Winter Wonderland so as not to give too much of the display away and create some mystery to encourage visitor to the garden centre. This day found an intrepid photographer boosted up high enough in the forklift safety cage to get a picture of ALL the Christmas trees in one shot; perfect for a website banner! Unfortunately, the English weather put paid to extending the virtual tour through the Christmas Tree Area that day. The second day of shooting began with an unexpected change of plans on a product photography shoot in Watford. Fortuitously, the job changed and the photographer was available at the same time as the sun: the Christmas Tree Area was shot on the spur of the moment and just in time. You’ll see from the tour that the sun was out when the shoot started and the sky was overcast by the end.
With the imagery captured there was no time to lose. To showcase the Christmas virtual tour online and on Google Maps this year, the Striking Places team had to focus on rebuilding this, now even larger, tour.
Surely there’s some of the story missing? Yes there is! The second engagement found Striking Places in Aylett’s renowned dahlia garden. Why not investigate the virtual tour to remind yourself of the days of summer?
This really is a work of all seasons!
Julie Aylett | Owner | Aylett Nurseries
“Striking Places are absolutely fantastic to work with. Everything was explained in such a way that made perfect sense. Jo is such a people person and was always open to suggestions. She ended up in a forklift truck to get the best angle on shooting the Christmas trees! I would always recommend Striking Places and I look forward to our continuing involvement with them.”