Education- What To Wear To Your Engagement Session
Today we are focusing on 10 things to wear (or not to wear) for your engagement session.
Your engagement ring! I know, I know. This seems like a duh kind of thing, but as is with all warning labels- there is a reason we’re reminding you of this. It has happened before that people have gotten to their session just to remember that they left their ring at home. Oops! Now, I know exactly what you’re thinking “It won’t happen to me- I never take my ring off!” Well, when getting ready for your engagement session, you will probably take the time to get your ring cleaned. Also, if you are having a dressier outfit, there’s a good chance you’ll be wearing a dress or skirt. Ladies, you will want to put on lotion before pictures but you don’t want to mess up your pretty ring so what do you do? You take it off and set it on the counter. This is what generally happens in the instances where rings have been forgotten. So, if you don’t want to mess up the ring, my suggestion- hand it to your fiancé, put on the lotion and then get it right back! Another aspect to remember with the ring is not to forget to either get a manicure or pedicure before pictures or else make sure you don’t have chipped nail polish. These are important pictures, so I generally suggest to treat them as a big deal and take the time to spend a little on yourself. Get your nails and even hair and makeup done. If you make it a point to make sure your session is important it will show through in the final images. Final tip for this tip- Ladies- take those hair ties off of your wrist! I will notice them before we start shooting but think about that big indent they leave on your wrist! It looks like you have a fat roll on your arm when you really don’t! I suggest making it a point not to wear them at all the whole day before pictures.
Think coordinating outfits NOT matching outfits. Complimentary colors or tones in the same family generally look better than if you try to make sure all colors match exactly. The colors rarely do match perfectly and then they clash. If your fiancé is wearing a light blue dress shirt then maybe try to find a dress in navy or a darker shade of blue. Plus, if you are too matchy-matchy then you start to look like those older couples that dress alike, and let’s be honest- nobody wants that for their engagement session! Save that for your 60th wedding anniversary!
We generally try to plan 2 outfits for engagement sessions. One is typically dressier and then a more casual one. Remember, if you are in a little black dress, then he needs to be dressed to the same level. Try to avoid pairing your dressy outfit with him wearing a pair of jeans. Also, I generally say to let the bride pick out the dressier outfits and then ask the groom what he wants for your more casual look and go from there. If he gets control over one look then he will be much more likely to dress up for you for your look. Also, we always start with the dressy look first so that he can get it done and over with.
Pops of Color with a neutral. So you found the most adorable white dress but what should he wear? Please, please do not put him in a white shirt as well! When one of you is wearing a more neutral dress or top, then the other should be your “Pop of Color”. However, pop of color should never mean neon. Neon colors do not photograph well generally and usually will wash the person out that is wearing them.
Patterns. Face it- every guy has a flannel or plaid shirt that they want to wear, and that’s totally fine! However, here are a few thoughts to keep your eyes from going crossed when you look at your final images. 1- the bigger the pattern the better. The bigger the pattern, generally, the less busy and therefore less distracting it will be in photos. Think Less is More. And 2- only 1 of you should be wearing patterns at a time unless there is a specific look that we’ve talked about beforehand. If you’re both in patterns then that is the first thing everyone will notice when they look at your photos.
Don’t forget the accessories! Vests, scarves, necklaces, ties and watches all need to be accounted for when packing to head to your session. This is usually in reference to your 2nd outfit since you will already be wearing your first outfit and accessories. Earrings are usually what is left at home since you are already wearing a pair. However, it generally isn’t the ideal pair for both outfits. Another important thing to bring is your makeup bag. You will be kissing so it’s good to have your lip gloss on hand for quick touch ups. Also- make sure if wearing bright or bold lipsticks- get the kind that does not rub off on him when you kiss him. No guy wants to look like they’re wearing lipstick even if it is because he’s been giving you kisses.
Match your location. I do not mean literally! However, if we are going out to a farm then maybe don’t wear the fancy dress and 4 inch stilettos. If we are shooting in or near water then maybe don’t wear expensive shoes or clothes that cannot get dirty. (Oh, and if we are shooting in or near water, please, please, PLEASEdo not wear white. I know you know what I’m talking about.)
Pets are always welcome. However, if bringing a pet, please bring a lot of treats as well as someone that can hold onto the leash when they are not in photos. I know I might seem like I can do it all when it comes to a photo shoot. However, if I have your large dog on a leash wrapped around me it becomes a little more difficult to focus or explain the next pose. But by all means, I always welcome pets! Especially big dogs!
If you aren’t comfortable in what you are wearing it will show. If your dress is too tight to sit in comfortable or if he is wearing a shirt that he hates then it will be obvious. Also, every time you look at your images the first thing you will remember is how uncomfortable you were even if it doesn’t show. When looking for outfits to wear to pictures, wear them for about 45 minutes before deciding on them. Can you walk comfortably in them? Is sitting a challenge? We move a lot during sessions so the ability to walk is important. 6 inch heels are might look killer, but are you going to fall on your face in pictures?
Last but not least- your outfits and photos should be uniquely you. Be yourself! If you aren’t a downtown, get dressy kind of couple then just tell me! We will find to locations and outfits that are more your style. If you are both giant sports fans or have a college rivalry and want to incorporate that- then tell me! I spend a lot of time planning these sessions with you and working on getting to know you so that they best reflect you. However, unless you tell me that you are more a ‘Snuggle around a campfire’ kind of couple instead of a ‘watch a sunset in a winery’ type of couple- how will I know?? We are all unique as individuals and as a couple, and I want to embrace and celebrate that in your engagement session. The very last thing I want is for your images to not reflect you as a couple or worse yet- look like a cookie cutter version of everyone else’s photos!