What to Wear for an Engagement Shoot

It's that time of year that everyone seems to be getting in touch about having their engagement photos taken, and I certainly can't blame them! This is my favorite time of year, so of course it's also my favorite time to be out taking photos. Along with preparing to take engagement photos, brides naturally second guess what they should wear, so I thought I'd throw together a blog post to help explain it a little better. Since I'm the farthest thing from a fashionista myself, I got in touch with my friend Julianna Cato and asked her to put some outfits together for me that would be perfect for engagement photos. Julianna is an awesome fashion blogger over at J's Southern Chic. She's also on Facebook. Be sure to check out her blog, and see the outfits she put together for us below!

This list doesn't just apply to engagement photos. They work for almost any time you'll be in front of a camera. Here are my Dos and Don'ts, if you will, of what to wear for photos.

1. Don't match.

Some couples seem to have it in their heads that they need to match for their photos. This is far from the case! Try having one color that ties you together so that you blend, but don't match, or you can have one person in bright colors and the other in a neutral.

2. Be bold!

I think bold colors give your photos the most personality and style. A black dress is great and slimming for a night out, but for your photos, it's just going to make you blend in to your background, when this is a time that you really want to stand out. Don't be afraid of patterns! Bright colors and a pattern or print are great for engagement photos.

While patterns are great, I do recommend avoiding anything with big logos or outfits that are too strong of a contrast (e.g., you wearing a black dress and him in a white shirt). Try to stay on a similar palette.

3. Accessorize!

If you do decide to wear that black dress, mix it up a little with great accessories. Stick a camel-colored belt on it or a chunky, bright-colored necklace and some bright shoes. Take something simple up a notch and add a pop of color with noticeable accessories that make you stand out.

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Engagement Outfit by jjules

4. Do match.

While you shouldn't match each other for your engagement photos, you definitely should match the environment you choose for your location. If we're going to be shooting your session in the woods with fall leaves, a formal dress won't match the feel of what you're going for. Wear some jeans with a great pair of riding boots and a scarf, then throw your man in a plaid shirt of some sort.

Engagement Shoot

Engagement Shoot by caleynewberry

5. Buy something new!

You don't have to do this, but if you want an excuse to get a new outfit, this is where you totally have my permission because I want you to. . .

6. Feel hot. 

Wear something you feel amazing in. When you feel like you look good, that confidence reflects in your photos in all the right ways. I love this outfit that Julianna put together.

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Engagement Shoot by jjules

7. Size it down.

Your clothes tend to appear a little more baggy in photos, and this seems to be especially true for guys' shirts. You don't need to wear something you can't breathe or move in, of course, but you probably do want to wear something a little bit more fitted than normal.

Engagement Photos

Engagement Photos by caleynewberry

9. Layers.

Layers work great in photos. Whether it's a cardigan over your outfit, a scarf or a tank top under a knit shirt to add a pop of color, you'll tend to get a more complete look if you wear layers.

10. Be you!

Don’t feel like you have to change who you are just because you’re in front of a camera. You’re hiring someone to take photos of you because you want to capture exactly who you are, as a couple, at this moment in time. Be yourself and feel like yourself in whatever outfit you choose to wear.

Dressed Up

Dressed Up by jjules featuring a pink flower necklace

Use this as an excuse to play around with your style, and maybe even make a date out of it and go for a night out afterward. I was surprised to find that playing around on Polyvore for this post helped me envision things better, though Julianna is a lot better at it than I am. Give that a try and send them my way, if you want.

For lots of great outfit ideas, definitely check out Julianna's blog. She posts several different outfits every week, and they're all great!

Was this helpful at all? Which outfit is your favorite? For those of you that have had your photos taken before, do you have any tips to add that worked for you? Let us know in the comments!