Style Tips for Amazing Engagement Pictures | Colorado wedding photographer

Style Tips for Amazing Engagement Pictures

Style Tips for Amazing Engagement Pictures

Choosing what to wear for your engagement pictures can feel like an overwhelming task. These outfits are going to live forever! You want them to look perfect. Lucky for you, after a few years as a wedding photographer, I’ve come up with a few tricks up my sleeve.

Keep scrolling to see all my style tips for amazing engagement pictures.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: coordinate your colors.

Style Tips for Her

1. Dress it up!

Have you ever thought about rocking a sequined gown, a tulle skirt, or a flower crown, but just never had an occasion for it? This is your chance to do it up! Remember: There is no such thing as “too dressed up” when it comes to your engagement session, so don’t be afraid to have some fun! If you don’t want to add a new permanent piece to your collection, a lot of brides love Rent the Runway for their engagement photos because you don’t have to spend a lot to feel like a million bucks. Plus, you can send the outfits back when the session is over. Other brides love having a great excuse to bring a new permanent piece (or two!) into their closet.

Long, flowy dresses and skirts are some of my favorite options. They look amazing on camera because they bring extra movement to the photos. I love when they blow in the wind, or flow around you and your fiancé as you’re kissing. They really make for super dynamic, gorgeous photos. Plus, ladies, they are always flattering for your figure. ;)

Wear a fancy ball gown: style tips for amazing engagement pictures.

2. Wear something that makes you feel “you”

Not everyone is into the long, flowy, feminine look, and that’s totally okay. The most important thing I like to stress to all my brides is that they still feel like themselves in whatever they choose to wear for their engagement photos. You don’t want to look at the photos later on and think, “What was I thinking? I would never normally wear anything like that.” So while this is an opportunity to get a little glammed up, don’t feel like you have to totally overdo it just for the camera.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: wear something you feel comfortable in.

3. Bring options

For the best of both worlds, I always recommend bringing along two outfit options. One dressy and glamorous, and one more casual. Something you would actually wear on a date together, or a day out vs. a night out. Maybe that’s two different dresses, or maybe it’s a nice dress and then jeans and a sweater. The second outfit could also be something related to an activity you like to do together— like jerseys for your favorite sports teams.

If it’s too stressful to think of more than one outfit to bring, that’s okay too. This is not a requirement, but I often find that my brides like to feel like they have options on the day of the session!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures.

4. Flattering your features

I know that most women, regardless of her shape, have an area of her body that she’s self-conscious about, so recognizing what that is in advance is key. Choosing flattering silhouettes and colors that complement your natural features is the best way to ensure you’ll love the way you look in your photos.

Three-quarter length sleeves create an awesome slimming effect on all arms, so be on the lookout for an option with a longer length sleeve. You could also bring a cute jacket, blazer, or cardigan along, too. Skinny straps or strapless dresses have the opposite effect on arms on camera, so I recommend avoiding those if your goal is a set of slimmer-looking arms. Heels elongate women’s legs, and closed-toes heels in particular look great on camera because they carry out the line of your leg all the way down to your toe. If your toes are showing in a peep-toe heel, you might want to schedule a pedicure before your session so you don’t regret letting your feet show. These little tricks make all the difference!

Quick tip: bring a pair of flats to wear when walking from place to place. Your feet will thank you later!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: flattering your figure.

5. Make a statement

Pairing an accessory or two with your outfit can really help bring some extra dimension to your images. Big statement necklaces can bring a lot of pop to photos. Belts, bracelets and earrings also bring great visual interest, so choose one or two that don’t compete for attention. Fresh florals in a crown or bouquet can be a really romantic touch as well. Definitely don’t go overboard, but having a little statement piece is always fun!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: wear clothes you feel comfortable in.

6. Get professional hair and makeup done

Professional hair and makeup is on the top of most brides’ checklists because it looks amazing and removes the stress of getting ready on your own. Whether it’s lash extensions or blown-out hair, professional hair and makeup will give you an extra boost of confidence in front of the camera, and it always photographs like a dream. If you’re working with a makeup artist, have her apply your makeup in natural light, if possible, so that it looks fresh and not too heavy. Plus, that’s the type of light I at least shoot in most often, so it’ll give you the best expectation of how it will translate on camera. Most of my brides feel like their makeup is “too much” at first, since it’s more than you would wear on a normal day, so if you feel that way at the beginning, don’t worry! Good makeup artists know how to get it just right for the camera—and you’ll probably love the final result. This is a good opportunity for you and a makeup artist to do a test run on what you want for the wedding day, too! If you need a recommendation for hair and makeup, I know some of the best in the business and would love to send you their information.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: professional hair and makeup.

7. Don’t forget about the ring

And I don’t just mean don’t forget to bring the ring. ;) I know you wouldn’t do that! Just remember that your bling is likely to be the focus of several photos (these are engagement pictures, after all) so be sure to get it cleaned, and maybe get a manicure while you’re at it!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: do your nails and get your ring cleaned.

Style tips for him

1. Go all out with a suit and tie

Channel that Justin Timberlake vibe and go for a well-tailored suit and tie. What man doesn’t look striking in a nice suit? And if he doesn’t have one, but wants to make the investment, it’s actually a lot less expensive than you might think. While custom suits can cost thousands of dollars, some of the most well-known brands have off-the-rack suits in their stores for a fraction of the price. Solid shades of gray or navy are a strong complement to most women’s outfits, whereas pinstripes or plaid patterns tend to distract the eye.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: dress your man up in a suit.

2. Keep it semi-casual

If he really isn’t the type of guy to get all dressed up, don’t feel like a suit is a necessity. Just like for the ladies, I never want the men to feel like they’re trapped wearing a monkey suit just because they have to have photos done. Maybe you just stick to dress pants and a nice button up, or even jeans with a nice shirt. Just be sure to avoid any graphic tees, large logos, sandals, and baseball hats. All of these things can be distracting, and when I say casual, I don’t mean what he’d wear to watch football with his buddies. ;)

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures.

3. For a man in uniform

Wearing your uniform for a few engagement photos can make for some super personal and powerful pictures as well.

4. Layered looks

Next time you walk by a store like J. Crew, you’ll notice the male mannequins and models are always wearing several layers at once. Blazers, vests, and coats up the level of any look. You could even consider adding a v-neck sweater with a pop of color from a long-sleeved collared shirt and tie underneath. Feel free to mix it up! Layers on men look great on camera (just like accessories for the women!) and mixing a suit coat or blazer with different pant color can add some extra visual interest to your photos. Don’t be afraid to get a little creative with layers!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: wear layers.

5. It’s all in the details

Long pants and closed-toed shoes are the most sophisticated and masculine looks for men. They draw attention away from his legs and feet and place it where you want it: on the face you fell in love with. So, for your session, it’s best to leave the shorts and sandals at home. Suit pants, dress pants or colored pants work best, especially when paired with closed-toe shoes. Brown leather dress shoes complement almost every look, whether he’s wearing a full suit or a blazer and colored pants.

Ties, bowties, pocket squares, colored socks, belts, tie clips, suspenders, vests, and (my favorite) watches are all details you might think about, and are sharp complements to any suit. Also, if you mix and match accessories like this you may be able to complement both of your fiancé’s looks without doing a full outfit change during the session (although of course you’re welcome to bring along two options to wear as well!)

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: it's all in the details.

6. Ladies: how to prep your man

Most men aren’t overly excited to take photos for two hours, because they don’t have an expectation of what’s to come and why it’s so important to you. Take a few minutes to educate and empower your guy. Tell him why you chose your photographer and why you love their style. Show him your three favorite sessions that your photographer has done; explain why you love them and express to him how much it means to you. He’ll get it and light up the camera for you! The most common thing I hear from guys before engagement sessions is this: because of a bad experience in the past, they don’t like taking photos or don’t think they’ll be good at it. By the time I’m done, though, they can’t believe how fast it went and just how much fun they had!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: have fun with it!

For the two of you together

1. Choosing colors

When choosing colors for your engagement picture outfits, I recommend selecting lighter tones and more muted shades. By avoiding ultra-bright, bold colors, it will help bring all the attention to your faces and let the eye focus on the way you feel about each other. And that softer color palette fits beautifully into almost all natural outdoor environments. Also think of color palettes to fit the seasons: pastels and brighter colors fit better with summer wear, whereas reds and plaids fit better with the colder weather.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: coordinating your looks.

2. Coordinating the looks

As you’re coordinating your outfit with your fiancé’s, keep in mind that your outfits will look the most cohesive on camera when the color palettes coordinate, but don’t necessarily “match.” You should each aim to wear a different dominant color, but stay within a similar color palette family. So if you’re wearing a blush dress, soft blue earrings, and nude heels (blush being your dominant color), then he could wear a navy coat with gray pants, paired with brown leather shoes and maybe even a blush pocket square. Now he has his own dominant color (navy) while still incorporating a few touches of your color palette.

Also, don’t be afraid of patterned clothing, but be aware of how the patterns will look together. If one of you is going to wear plaid, for example, I’d suggest the other wear a more basic colored shirt so that the patterns don’t clash against each other and become distracting.

Figuring out how to coordinate your outfits together can be the most challenging part of figuring out what to wear for your engagement pictures, so I’ve made a Pinterest board full of examples for how to do it (plus, you can use all the photos in this blog post for inspiration.)

One last note: most of my brides choose their outfits first, and then put together their fiancé’s outfit based on that. That’s why I have a section here for each of you.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: coordinating your looks.

3. Think of the season

Do you want your engagement photos to accentuate the season in which we’re taking them? Perhaps you’re getting married in the summer but you really want a winter engagement session. Or you have a fall wedding so you want your engagement announcements to scream fall to your invited guests. Your clothing is a great way to illustrate the season! Spring and summer are great for cute sun dresses and strappy heels or sandals. Fall and winter are when you can start getting cozy with boots and leggings and layers of scarves and sweaters.

Regardless of the season though, don’t be afraid to get glamorous with one outfit! A ball gown in the snow is not something you’re going to see every day, and it’s worth a few minutes of cold. Trust me.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: coordinating your looks.

4. Bring a little something extra

Want your engagement pictures to look more editorial? Something fit for a magazine? Bring a little extra something with you! There are lots of ways you can personalize your session and give yourself something to hold or do. For example, you could bring fresh flowers, a beautiful blanket, colorful smoke bombs, or even paint powder to bring some extra color and fun to your session.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: personalizing your session.

You do not have to go crazy with props. While Pinterest is full of various save-the-date ideas involving couples holding up signs, you’re going to want something special and unique to you. Keep in mind some of the things that connect you and your fiancé—things you like to do together, or shared interests that bond you. For example, say you both love baseball. Perhaps you could bring a baseball and bat with you to your session. Or, say you have a weekly date at a favorite coffee shop. You could bring cups of your favorite drinks—or even have your session there! The possibilities are endless. Whether it’s a larger item like a classic car, or smaller ones like baseballs or coffee cups, or blankets or hats, even incorporating just one extra styled item could be a fun way to make your session more unique.

More ways to personalize your engagement pictures.

PHEW! Who knew there could be so much to say about styling your engagement pictures? I hope this has been helpful, and don’t forget to check out my other tips to help you prepare for the most amazing engagement pictures:

The Complete Guide to Help You Prepare for Your Engagement Pictures

Choosing the Location for Your Engagement Pictures

Favorite Colorado Mountain Locations for Adventurous Engagement Pictures

How to Personalize Your Engagement Pictures

Also check out my Pinterest boards for more engagement style inspiration and outfit ideas. If you liked this post, PIN IT below!

Style Tips for Amazing Engagement Pictures

Choosing what to wear for your engagement pictures can feel like an overwhelming task. These outfits are going to live forever! You want them to look perfect. Lucky for you, after a few years as a wedding photographer, I’ve come up with a few tricks up my sleeve.

Keep scrolling to see all my style tips for amazing engagement pictures.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: coordinate your colors.

Style Tips for Her

1. Dress it up!

Have you ever thought about rocking a sequined gown, a tulle skirt, or a flower crown, but just never had an occasion for it? This is your chance to do it up! Remember: There is no such thing as “too dressed up” when it comes to your engagement session, so don’t be afraid to have some fun! If you don’t want to add a new permanent piece to your collection, a lot of brides love Rent the Runway for their engagement photos because you don’t have to spend a lot to feel like a million bucks. Plus, you can send the outfits back when the session is over. Other brides love having a great excuse to bring a new permanent piece (or two!) into their closet.

Long, flowy dresses and skirts are some of my favorite options. They look amazing on camera because they bring extra movement to the photos. I love when they blow in the wind, or flow around you and your fiancé as you’re kissing. They really make for super dynamic, gorgeous photos. Plus, ladies, they are always flattering for your figure. ;)

Wear a fancy ball gown: style tips for amazing engagement pictures.

2. Wear something that makes you feel “you”

Not everyone is into the long, flowy, feminine look, and that’s totally okay. The most important thing I like to stress to all my brides is that they still feel like themselves in whatever they choose to wear for their engagement photos. You don’t want to look at the photos later on and think, “What was I thinking? I would never normally wear anything like that.” So while this is an opportunity to get a little glammed up, don’t feel like you have to totally overdo it just for the camera.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: wear something you feel comfortable in.

3. Bring options

For the best of both worlds, I always recommend bringing along two outfit options. One dressy and glamorous, and one more casual. Something you would actually wear on a date together, or a day out vs. a night out. Maybe that’s two different dresses, or maybe it’s a nice dress and then jeans and a sweater. The second outfit could also be something related to an activity you like to do together— like jerseys for your favorite sports teams.

If it’s too stressful to think of more than one outfit to bring, that’s okay too. This is not a requirement, but I often find that my brides like to feel like they have options on the day of the session!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures.

4. Flattering your features

I know that most women, regardless of her shape, have an area of her body that she’s self-conscious about, so recognizing what that is in advance is key. Choosing flattering silhouettes and colors that complement your natural features is the best way to ensure you’ll love the way you look in your photos.

Three-quarter length sleeves create an awesome slimming effect on all arms, so be on the lookout for an option with a longer length sleeve. You could also bring a cute jacket, blazer, or cardigan along, too. Skinny straps or strapless dresses have the opposite effect on arms on camera, so I recommend avoiding those if your goal is a set of slimmer-looking arms. Heels elongate women’s legs, and closed-toes heels in particular look great on camera because they carry out the line of your leg all the way down to your toe. If your toes are showing in a peep-toe heel, you might want to schedule a pedicure before your session so you don’t regret letting your feet show. These little tricks make all the difference!

Quick tip: bring a pair of flats to wear when walking from place to place. Your feet will thank you later!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: flattering your figure.

5. Make a statement

Pairing an accessory or two with your outfit can really help bring some extra dimension to your images. Big statement necklaces can bring a lot of pop to photos. Belts, bracelets and earrings also bring great visual interest, so choose one or two that don’t compete for attention. Fresh florals in a crown or bouquet can be a really romantic touch as well. Definitely don’t go overboard, but having a little statement piece is always fun!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: wear clothes you feel comfortable in.

6. Get professional hair and makeup done

Professional hair and makeup is on the top of most brides’ checklists because it looks amazing and removes the stress of getting ready on your own. Whether it’s lash extensions or blown-out hair, professional hair and makeup will give you an extra boost of confidence in front of the camera, and it always photographs like a dream. If you’re working with a makeup artist, have her apply your makeup in natural light, if possible, so that it looks fresh and not too heavy. Plus, that’s the type of light I at least shoot in most often, so it’ll give you the best expectation of how it will translate on camera. Most of my brides feel like their makeup is “too much” at first, since it’s more than you would wear on a normal day, so if you feel that way at the beginning, don’t worry! Good makeup artists know how to get it just right for the camera—and you’ll probably love the final result. This is a good opportunity for you and a makeup artist to do a test run on what you want for the wedding day, too! If you need a recommendation for hair and makeup, I know some of the best in the business and would love to send you their information.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: professional hair and makeup.

7. Don’t forget about the ring

And I don’t just mean don’t forget to bring the ring. ;) I know you wouldn’t do that! Just remember that your bling is likely to be the focus of several photos (these are engagement pictures, after all) so be sure to get it cleaned, and maybe get a manicure while you’re at it!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: do your nails and get your ring cleaned.

Style tips for him

1. Go all out with a suit and tie

Channel that Justin Timberlake vibe and go for a well-tailored suit and tie. What man doesn’t look striking in a nice suit? And if he doesn’t have one, but wants to make the investment, it’s actually a lot less expensive than you might think. While custom suits can cost thousands of dollars, some of the most well-known brands have off-the-rack suits in their stores for a fraction of the price. Solid shades of gray or navy are a strong complement to most women’s outfits, whereas pinstripes or plaid patterns tend to distract the eye.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: dress your man up in a suit.

2. Keep it semi-casual

If he really isn’t the type of guy to get all dressed up, don’t feel like a suit is a necessity. Just like for the ladies, I never want the men to feel like they’re trapped wearing a monkey suit just because they have to have photos done. Maybe you just stick to dress pants and a nice button up, or even jeans with a nice shirt. Just be sure to avoid any graphic tees, large logos, sandals, and baseball hats. All of these things can be distracting, and when I say casual, I don’t mean what he’d wear to watch football with his buddies. ;)

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures.

3. For a man in uniform

Wearing your uniform for a few engagement photos can make for some super personal and powerful pictures as well.

4. Layered looks

Next time you walk by a store like J. Crew, you’ll notice the male mannequins and models are always wearing several layers at once. Blazers, vests, and coats up the level of any look. You could even consider adding a v-neck sweater with a pop of color from a long-sleeved collared shirt and tie underneath. Feel free to mix it up! Layers on men look great on camera (just like accessories for the women!) and mixing a suit coat or blazer with different pant color can add some extra visual interest to your photos. Don’t be afraid to get a little creative with layers!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: wear layers.

5. It’s all in the details

Long pants and closed-toed shoes are the most sophisticated and masculine looks for men. They draw attention away from his legs and feet and place it where you want it: on the face you fell in love with. So, for your session, it’s best to leave the shorts and sandals at home. Suit pants, dress pants or colored pants work best, especially when paired with closed-toe shoes. Brown leather dress shoes complement almost every look, whether he’s wearing a full suit or a blazer and colored pants.

Ties, bowties, pocket squares, colored socks, belts, tie clips, suspenders, vests, and (my favorite) watches are all details you might think about, and are sharp complements to any suit. Also, if you mix and match accessories like this you may be able to complement both of your fiancé’s looks without doing a full outfit change during the session (although of course you’re welcome to bring along two options to wear as well!)

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: it's all in the details.

6. Ladies: how to prep your man

Most men aren’t overly excited to take photos for two hours, because they don’t have an expectation of what’s to come and why it’s so important to you. Take a few minutes to educate and empower your guy. Tell him why you chose your photographer and why you love their style. Show him your three favorite sessions that your photographer has done; explain why you love them and express to him how much it means to you. He’ll get it and light up the camera for you! The most common thing I hear from guys before engagement sessions is this: because of a bad experience in the past, they don’t like taking photos or don’t think they’ll be good at it. By the time I’m done, though, they can’t believe how fast it went and just how much fun they had!

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: have fun with it!

For the two of you together

1. Choosing colors

When choosing colors for your engagement picture outfits, I recommend selecting lighter tones and more muted shades. By avoiding ultra-bright, bold colors, it will help bring all the attention to your faces and let the eye focus on the way you feel about each other. And that softer color palette fits beautifully into almost all natural outdoor environments. Also think of color palettes to fit the seasons: pastels and brighter colors fit better with summer wear, whereas reds and plaids fit better with the colder weather.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: coordinating your looks.

2. Coordinating the looks

As you’re coordinating your outfit with your fiancé’s, keep in mind that your outfits will look the most cohesive on camera when the color palettes coordinate, but don’t necessarily “match.” You should each aim to wear a different dominant color, but stay within a similar color palette family. So if you’re wearing a blush dress, soft blue earrings, and nude heels (blush being your dominant color), then he could wear a navy coat with gray pants, paired with brown leather shoes and maybe even a blush pocket square. Now he has his own dominant color (navy) while still incorporating a few touches of your color palette.

Also, don’t be afraid of patterned clothing, but be aware of how the patterns will look together. If one of you is going to wear plaid, for example, I’d suggest the other wear a more basic colored shirt so that the patterns don’t clash against each other and become distracting.

Figuring out how to coordinate your outfits together can be the most challenging part of figuring out what to wear for your engagement pictures, so I’ve made a Pinterest board full of examples for how to do it (plus, you can use all the photos in this blog post for inspiration.)

One last note: most of my brides choose their outfits first, and then put together their fiancé’s outfit based on that. That’s why I have a section here for each of you.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: coordinating your looks.

3. Think of the season

Do you want your engagement photos to accentuate the season in which we’re taking them? Perhaps you’re getting married in the summer but you really want a winter engagement session. Or you have a fall wedding so you want your engagement announcements to scream fall to your invited guests. Your clothing is a great way to illustrate the season! Spring and summer are great for cute sun dresses and strappy heels or sandals. Fall and winter are when you can start getting cozy with boots and leggings and layers of scarves and sweaters.

Regardless of the season though, don’t be afraid to get glamorous with one outfit! A ball gown in the snow is not something you’re going to see every day, and it’s worth a few minutes of cold. Trust me.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: coordinating your looks.

4. Bring a little something extra

Want your engagement pictures to look more editorial? Something fit for a magazine? Bring a little extra something with you! There are lots of ways you can personalize your session and give yourself something to hold or do. For example, you could bring fresh flowers, a beautiful blanket, colorful smoke bombs, or even paint powder to bring some extra color and fun to your session.

Style tips for amazing engagement pictures: personalizing your session.

You do not have to go crazy with props. While Pinterest is full of various save-the-date ideas involving couples holding up signs, you’re going to want something special and unique to you. Keep in mind some of the things that connect you and your fiancé—things you like to do together, or shared interests that bond you. For example, say you both love baseball. Perhaps you could bring a baseball and bat with you to your session. Or, say you have a weekly date at a favorite coffee shop. You could bring cups of your favorite drinks—or even have your session there! The possibilities are endless. Whether it’s a larger item like a classic car, or smaller ones like baseballs or coffee cups, or blankets or hats, even incorporating just one extra styled item could be a fun way to make your session more unique.

More ways to personalize your engagement pictures.

PHEW! Who knew there could be so much to say about styling your engagement pictures? I hope this has been helpful, and don’t forget to check out my other tips to help you prepare for the most amazing engagement pictures:

The Complete Guide to Help You Prepare for Your Engagement Pictures

Choosing the Location for Your Engagement Pictures

Favorite Colorado Mountain Locations for Adventurous Engagement Pictures

How to Personalize Your Engagement Pictures

Also check out my Pinterest boards for more engagement style inspiration and outfit ideas. If you liked this post, PIN IT below!

Style Tips for Amazing Engagement Pictures

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