You’ve booked your engagement session. ( Couples session, anniversary, just because, whatever it may be ) Now you are wondering, “Oh god, what the heck do we wear?” A wedding is easy pickings, but when it comes to what to wear for engagement photos, it may seem a bit daunting to pick what you want to wear for your photographs. I have put together this little guide that goes over some basic guidelines of what to wear for engagement photos to ensure you look and feel your best while still making sure your images are focused on what really matters, YOU GUYS!
Now this is not an end all be all guide, at the end of the day, I would rather you just look and dress like you normally would and if you don’t follow anything in this to a “t”, it doesn’t mean that your photos aren’t going to be amazing. A little help sometimes is appreciated and can go a long way in how your final images look. I always recommend couples do not buy new clothes for the shoot. I get why this may seem like something that makes sense, but I recommend bringing stuff you normally wear, stuff that you already have and that you love to wear. It’s always a win to wear something that is representative of what you are like now. I would be much happy knowing you aren’t forced to wear anything you do not want to!
Below are the following guidelines I recommend about what to wear for engagement photos
Make sure it makes sense
Firstly, it’s really helpful to think about the location and conditions we are going to be shooting in and plan for that. If we are going to be hiking along the coast or around the mountains, bring shoes that have a good grip and are comfortable. If we end up at a beach location, it would be odd if you were wearing heels ( they are also usually a bad idea in most cases). If we happen to be shooting in the colder months, I recommend bringing layers and warm clothes. Things like boots and wool socks are great. I want to make sure you aren’t freezing! And if its hot, bring clothes you can breathe more in so you aren’t a sweaty mess! The idea is to make sure you are as comfortable as you can be!
Have some options
I recommend bringing a couple of options with you. That way, I can pick from what you have brought with you and change it up depending if we are going to multiple locations or now. I like to make sure the outfit makes sense for what environment so that there are no distractions ( which can sometimes be what you are wearing ) on what you are wearing, just focused on the both of you. I sometimes also recommend sharing with me via email or text what outfits you are thinking of, and I can lend a helping hand- virtually!
As I have mentioned, wearing clothing that you feel comfortable in isn’t only for the conditions we are shooting in, but also so you can move around freely too. If you are wearing a brand new pair of jeans, you may feel stiff and constricted. You want to be able to move around freely without fidgeting and pulling at your clothes. I recommend bringing clothes that are broken in, so you are as comfy as possible. Wearing clothing or accessories that can show movement is always a win, because with a little wind it can add an amazing energy to your images.
When it comes to a particular colour palette for clothing, I like to stick to earthy, jewel and neutral tones. This not only compliments my style of photography, but I find these colours nice to photograph and flattering in general. Neutrals don’t always mean gray or brown. There neutrals of many colours, like forest green, mustard yellow, navy blue or burnt oranges. The great thing about muted tones, is that they tend to compliment each other nicely. I recommend steering clear of pinks, bright oranges and reds. Most of the time it tends to result in skin tones looking a bit off in images. So I recommend sticking to muted colours over anything bright and fluorescent.
Patterns & Textures
Patterns can be great in images, as long as a little bit of thought goes into this before hand. I recommend smaller, subtle patterns as opposed to anything loud and crazy. Flannels are a great example of a nice pattern. The reason for avoiding any crazy and loud patterns, is that it will distract from your lovely faces! I would also recommend avoiding you both wearing patterns at the same time as you want to avoid clashing with one another. Another great tip: Iron your clothes before so there are not huge wrinkles to contend with!
A great way to incorporate patterns and texture is by wearing layers. Think sweaters, jackets or scarves. These add dimension to your photos and gives us a bit more variety to work with.
Accessories & Props
Accessories like hats, scarves, jewellery, is all great because its nice to pair these with your outfits. I only recommend that you avoid wearing big flashy watches, as they can distract from your faces when I am photographing up close shots! Props are also something couples may not always consider when thinking about what to wear for engagement photos. And no, I’m are not talking cheesy props here you may find on Pinterest, but props can really elevate your session and its a great way to bring “you” into it. Do you love picnics? then maybe we grab a cute basket and a blanket. Like snapping pics? Maybe bring your a polaroid camera. Do you have a kick ass motorcycle? Dogs? Etc. Props don’t have to be cheesy, but they are great for really capturing you both the way you normally are.
Hair and Makeup
I will never tell someone NOT to get their hair and makeup professionally done for a shoot, however I don’t think its absolutely necessary either, because to be honest, I would rather you look and feel like yourself, instead of a glammed up version of that. You can do whatever you want to do, but ensure if you are getting this done, to make sure you have enough time ahead of the shoot to make sure you’re on time for us to go on an adventure.
And that’s it!
I hope this was informative enough for you to now not feel so lost with regards to what to wear for engagement photos. If you have anymore questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to me! But the main message here is to just wear whatever you are comfortable wearing and what you feel great in.