Where are all my “I have no idea what to wear” people at? Uff, I feel you! And then you add in finding an outfit for your engagement session!? As a wedding and lifestyle photographer (and past bride), I know firsthand how daunting the task of choosing the ‘perfect’ outfit can be. There seems to be so much pressure surrounding wedding planning, and it all seems to start with your engagement session. One of the biggest things I pride myself in as a photographer is ensuring my clients feel comfortable. And that starts with what they are dressed in. I’ve put together a simple, to the point list of 5 tips for choosing outfits for your engagement session. Let’s dive in!
Disclaimer: Please carry this thought with you while you read this blog – wear what makes you feel comfortable. Wear what makes you feel like you.
I promise this one isn’t as intimidating as it may seem. I want to encourage you to think about that one color you wear out with your friends and they say, “Wow! That color was made for you!” Maybe you’ve noticed that when you wear a particular color, it just feels like you.
I don’t know about you, but I remember last year when the Color Analysis Filter was trending on TikTok. If you’re not familiar with a Color Analysis, it is literally a tool that is used to determine what colors flatter you best. Now, most of us don’t have access (or don’t want to pay) to have a Color Analyst tell us what we look good in! But no worries, friend! See the next tip for a general rule of thumb when it comes to finding flattering colors.
So if you’re struggling to discover what color compliments your skin tone, I suggest looking at the Earth around you! That’s right. Look at the trees in the forest, cloaked in a rich forest green. Even that deep navy blue that washes over the ocean. Or the leaves changing to a burnt orange, burgundy red, and a mustard yellow. It’s not often that you seen neon yellow, fuchsia, or construction-cone orange. 😅 I guarantee you’ll look stunning in whatever you wear, but I also know that an Earth tone will compliment your skin tone best for your engagement session.
Kind of in the same realm as Earth tones are neutrals. And I’m sure you’ve probably heard it before: neutrals, neutrals, neutrals. And there’s a reason. Not only are neutrals, well, neutral… 😉 But they allow you to stand out in a photo, rather than be overshadowed by your clothing. Tans, beiges, browns, and creams look beautiful against pretty much any setting.
Similarly, patterns can quickly become too ‘busy’ and can distract the eye from the subject (ahem, you!). While I definitely love a good floral print, flannel, or stripes, I suggest only one partner wearing a pattern. The other partner should opt for a more solid color to avoid any distraction.
Adding in some accessories can change your entire outfit! Maybe you throw on an edgy leather jacket over a sundress, layer some necklaces with your plain white t-shirt, or cozy on up in a warm scarf. Accessories can completely change the look of an outfit and give it a different spin. 10/10 recommend!
Not to sound like a broken record, but if you feel comfortable, you are going to look CONFIDENT! Your outfits should reflect not only your individual personalities, but you as a couple. Are you more of a casual couple? Then you probably aren’t going to feel your best in high-heels and a cocktail dress. Or maybe you love a little bit of both! You love going out for drinks on a downtown rooftop on a Friday night, but thrive by roasting marshmallows over a campfire on a Saturday. Let your outfits represent that!
If you want to highlight a few different ‘vibes’ you have as a couple, bring some options! Your engagement session can literally feature each ‘love’ you have as a couple. From the downtown rooftop to your favorite campsite.
I promise this has to do with you engagement session outfits. Stay with me! Like I mentioned above, if you’re comfortable, you’re going to be full of so much confidence. One of the best ways to do this is by making a date out of your engagement session! If you’re not super comfortable in front of the camera, pretend your photographer isn’t even there. Easier said than done, but it makes a huge difference. Grab your favorite cocktail on the rooftop. Go window shopping downtown. Cozy up in front of a campfire. Sip your morning coffee overlooking the lake that you spend every weekend in the summer at. In doing this, you’ll already know what to wear! What do you usually wear on your date nights?!
Choosing outfits for your engagement session doesn’t need to be as complicated as it’s made out to be. I know that I want my couples to feel like their best, most authentic selves when I am photographing them. If that means they find the most joy in going to the beach + jumping off the dock, I couldn’t be more stoked to capture the moment! I want to encourage you to truly take advantage of your engagement session. Just as your wedding or elopement can be whatever you want, your engagement photos can be as well. You’ve got this! Now, let’s crush your sesh!