Being engaged and planning a wedding is a wonderful time in your life. You’re planning a special event you’ve been dreaming about for years and thinking about the exciting future that awaits you and your fiancé.
The most important thing during this time is that you don’t forget to stop and capture these memories.
Enter: engagement photos.
Engagement photos are a fun way to capture your joy and excitement in the early days of wedding planning. So if you’re recently engaged (or you sense a proposal is coming), it’s time to start thinking about your engagement photos—what you’ll wear, where you’ll take them, how they’ll fit into your wedding budget, and more.
Read on for our tips on how to get the best engagement photos you’ll treasure forever.
The first step to nailing your engagement photos? The perfect engagement photo outfits.
Yes, outfits, plural.
Many couples bring multiple engagement photo outfits just to have options, and photographers are very understanding. You’ll cherish these photos and memories for years, so what you wear matters. Here are some tips on picking the best engagement photo outfits.
Matching outfits aren’t the best choice for portraits, but you and your partner will want to be wearing complementary colors and styles. Wearing the same color might look boring in photos, but if you’re wearing an off-white dress with blue jewelry and your partner wears a navy shirt, you’ll go together perfectly.
Engagement photos don’t need to be formal. If you and your partner love jeans and T-shirts, then go with a classic, simple look for your engagement photos. Engagement photos are supposed to reflect you in your everyday style after all. And if you’re uncomfortable in what you’re wearing, it will reflect in the photos.
Bring two outfits to your engagement photo session. One casual, one formal. One with bold colors, one with muted. Whatever you want. Photographers are used to outfit changes, but don’t take that for granted. You’ll have plenty of photo choices in the end, so two outfits for each of you is perfect.
Don’t forget to bring multiple jewelry, accessory and footwear options as well, but you’ll want your hair and makeup to work with both styles.
Remember, you’ll have these photos for years and the latest style or makeup trend today might make you cringe a few years down the road. Stick with something you know you’ll love years later. Avoid clothes with large logos, images, and patterns as they may distract from you and your partner’s smiling faces.
If you’re taking engagement photos on the beach, don’t pack the hiking boots or suit jackets. And if you’re taking engagement photos outside during winter and snow will be visible, you might look a little silly in a floral sundress. Your outfit should always match the scenery.
When choosing your engagement photo outfits, you can most certainly ask for help. Your photographer can give you plenty of tips (and maybe some inspiration photos).
Friends and family can also give you an honest assessment of your outfit choices. You can also look back on photos from your past as a couple for inspiration.
It might seem logical that you take engagement photos right after getting engaged but that doesn’t have to be the case.
Most couples take engagement photos four to six months before the wedding, and if you’re planning a 12-month engagement, you can do the math. If you’re having an engagement party, that’s a perfect time to take your photos as well!
When you take engagement photos ultimately depends on how you plan to use them. Many couples like to use their engagement sessions for their save-the-dates, which means they might need to take them earlier rather than later.
You also might choose to take engagement photos as soon as possible so you can truly capture your early engagement joy. Some couples also consider the season and weather when determining when they take their engagement photos.
One of the most important factors is photographer availability. Your wedding photographer is one of the first vendors you should book since they are in high demand, so one of the things you should discuss with them is their availability for engagement photos.
When it comes to the time of day to take photos, mid-afternoon is a great time no matter where you are, and if you want the sunset in your photos, starting your session one-to-two hours before is ideal.
Of course, if you choose an indoor location for your photos, the time of day is less of a factor. Again, your photographer can provide invaluable insight on when you should take your photos, so don’t be afraid to ask!
When planning a wedding, your wedding budget plays a factor into every decision…and engagement photos are no different.
On average, you should plan to spend around $500 for your engagement photos, depending on the length of the shoot.
Some photographers will include an engagement photo session in their wedding packages, while the season you choose can play a factor as well. If your photographer is busy, prices will be higher, just like other wedding vendors.
The location—or number of locations—number of images delivered, level of editing done, and more factors all affect the final cost.
That being said, there are plenty of low-cost photography options. If you have a friend who has a nice camera, that might be a cost-effective choice. Just remember, professional photographers are costly and in-demand for a reason. They’re the best at what they do, and with them, you’ll get the best results.
When the day has arrived for your engagement photos, there are a few things you don’t want to forget, aside from your second outfit of course.
Here’s what you’ll need:
When deciding where to take your engagement photos, just like deciding on your outfits, go with something that fits you as a couple.
If you’re beach lovers, head to the beach. If you love hiking, pick your favorite trail. Go with something cute like your first-date spot, or maybe you’re just at your home because it’s your happy place.
You can choose almost anywhere, and many couples choose a public location so they don’t incur yet another added cost.
And if you’re getting married at Kendall Point, come take your engagement photos here! They’ll match your wedding photos perfectly, and we’ve got plenty of beautiful gorgeous photo spots. There’s no extra cost. Just give us a call to pick a time and date when no one else will be here.
Wherever you choose, chat with your photographer first so they can scope out the location, plan for the lighting, people in the background, and more.
Engagement photos are not only a time to revel in your engagement. It’s also a great time to test-run some things for your wedding day.
You can test out some hair and makeup looks and poses and see how they photograph before using something similar on the big day. It’s also a great way to test your patience for photo sessions so you know how much time you want to allocate for photos on your wedding day. Plus, you can get an idea of what wedding photo printing package you might want.
For more great engagement and wedding inspiration, check out the Kendall Point blog, and to plan your dream wedding, schedule a tour with us today (virtual or in-person)!