The months in-between saying “yes” and “I do” is such a beautiful time! You’ve agreed to marry the man of your dreams, the love of your life and your best friend. You’ve become a “fiancé” and wedding plans become one of your top priorities. The engagement period of your life is truly a special time because it symbolizes the transition from boyfriend & girlfriend to husband & wife. You learn so much about the other person you plan to share your life with and the thought of forever with them gives you butterflies! Some people have long engagements, while others have very short ones, but regardless of the amount of time, I think that engagement photos are truly something that should not be missed or overlooked.
More often that not, I get a lot of questions from brides about engagement sessions, and I thought I would share my tip and ideas on how to make the most of your engagement session.
1) Why should we have our engagement photos done? Taking the time to have your photograph taken, professionally, with your fiancé is such a wonderful opportunity. What better way to document this important time in your life, and always be able to look back and remember the love you two shared as well as the feeling of anticipation as your wedding date approaches! My main goal in an engagement session is to make you and your fiancé feel comfortable, have fun and to create beautiful images that reflect your love and happiness! Another big reason is that it gives us a chance to work together before your big day! Also, it is very helpful for me to see how you and your fiancé interact without the pressure of a wedding day. It helps us both know what to expect on your big day!
2) What should I wear? I get this question from brides quite often and my answer is simple. Dress in a way that makes you feel beautiful and confident! No one ever wants to outshine the bride, and the same goes for your engagement session. I want you feeling like a million bucks! That being said, I don’t mean you need to buy an expensive dress or a whole new outfit (unless you want to, of course!). As women, we always want to look our best and for some that might mean a fabulous pair of skinny jeans with killer heals or a maxi dress with a beautiful statement necklace or even something simple and classic like a little black dress or a crisp white linen shirt with your favorite pants. I like to think of it as something you would wear on a date.
3) What should my fiancé wear? This is where it sometimes gets tricky for my clients. Most guys are nervous about having their picture taken and don’t know what to wear either. A lot of guys think that they will be forced into a matching outfit or an outfit he would never be caught dead in. And that is not what we want. If we go back to question #1, I want you to feel comfortable and confident. So, try to stay away from something that makes you uncomfortable. As far as matching goes, try to stay away from an exact match unless of course that is something you two love to do. I like to go for complimentary colors or choosing a color palette that works for both of you. You can read more about my tips for choosing outfits on this post. Having flexibility in outfit choices will really help you to not stress out about it too much.
4) Does it matter what we wear? My answer to this is definitely yes! As I said before, these photos mark a special time for you two and you will want to wear something that makes you feel comfortable and confident. I think that what you wear should not only complement the other person, but also your individual personalities and who you are as a couple.
5) Where should we have our engagement photos taken? I follow this question with a question of my own. What are some places that the two of you enjoy spending time together in? Part of what makes an engagement photo special is that it reflects who you are as a couple. Being in a special place can not only make you feel more at ease, but it also incorporates part of your story as a couple. Is there a special trail you both like to hike and reflect on your day off? Is there a park or special location where you shared your first kiss? These are all places that hold special meaning and can add to more personalized portraits.
Here are some additional tips that I personally feel can help you make the most of your session. Firstly, have your hair and makeup professionally done, unless you are one of those lucky girls who can work wonders on their own hair! It will really make you feel extra special and pampered! If you have a trial run done with your hairstylist before the wedding, this is a great time to do it as well, simply ask him/her if they can modify it for your engagement photos. That way all your prettiness doesn’t go to waste 😉 Secondly, have your engagement ring cleaned and consider your nails. A big part of the engagement story is the little piece of jewelry that it represents and it will be a focal point for a few images as well.
Lastly, just remember that the main reason behind having these photos done is to tell this chapter of YOUR love story! If you have a pet that you share, think about including him! And don’t be afraid to laugh and have fun! Bring a favorite game or activity to include in your session. The possibilities are endless and these photos are capturing the beginning of a legacy that is your marriage. My hope is that you will look back at these photos years from now and remember the love you shared and how much more you’ve grown to love each other since that moment.
*** This couple is a great example of choosing colors that go well together and outfits that compliment each other and their personal taste. I love the feminine color of her dress and the combination of jeans with a shirt and tie. They also had these portraits taken on the campus of the college that they both attended at the time. They will be able to look back at these photos and not only remember their engagement season but also when they went to school together. You can tell how much they love each other by the way they look at each other!