One of the first things you’ll do when you get engaged is start planning your engagement session! There are so many questions to be answered. What’s the best location? What should we wear? Can we bring our dog? What if we’re awkward in front of the camera?
If this sounds familiar, not to worry! I’ve got you covered with all the tips and helpful ideas to plan your engagement session and make it fun!
First of all, decide on your vibe.
Before you start picking out outfits, consider what vibe you want for your photos. Something more casual or dressed up? Adventurous or romantic? Do you want fall colors or spring flowers? If you’re a super outdoorsy couple that loves to hike and be adventurous, you might want to choose one of your favorite trails or an epic lake. If you’re a more laid back couple that loves Saturday morning coffee dates, maybe photos at your fave coffee shop is the perfect spot. Knowing your vibe will help you decide on a location and plan the rest of your shoot.
Location, Location, Location
Once you’ve determine the vibe you want for your photos, you can start thinking about a location. Maybe you already have somewhere in mind like a favorite park or trail – that’s great! Start thinking about things you like to do together and some of your favorite places. If you’re still not sure, here are a few of my favorite locations in Colorado:
- Mountain: Brainard Lake, Rocky Mountain National Park, Mt. Falcon, Sapphire Point, Lost Gulch Overlook
- Parks or open space: Roxborough Park, Chautauqua Park, Red Rocks Mountain Park, Alderfer Three Sisters Park, Wash Park
- Urban: RiNo District, Pearl Street, Larimer Square
- Unique: The Paint Mines, Denver Botanical Gardens, your own home
What to Wear
Deciding what to wear for your engagement session can be one of the most stressful parts, but it doesn’t have to be! Above all else, make sure you pick something that you feel totally comfortable and confident wearing. If you feel self-conscious or uncomfortable, it will translate on camera and no one wants that! Beyond that, here are a few rules of thumb:
- Don’t be too matchy-matchy. Think 90’s family photos where everyone is wearing khakis and white button down shirts – not cute. Instead, choose outfits from the same color family and coordinate rather than match exactly. For example: If you’re wearing a light blue dress, he can wear gray pants and a navy shirt. When in doubt, neutrals always look amazing on camera and work in every setting.
- Avoid neon colors or anything overly bright. Harsh colors like hot pink or teal can cast odd colors onto your skin and distract from your faces.
- Flatter your features. Everyone, regardless of their shape or size, has an area of their body that they’re 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.
Don’t Be Afraid to Dress Up
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’ve always wanted to rock a sequined dress or beautiful gown, go for it! If you don’t want to add a new permanent piece to your collection, a lot of my brides love Rent the Runway for their engagement photos because you don’t have to spend a lot to feel like a million bucks.
Hair and Makeup
Your engagement session is the perfect time to do a trial run with your wedding day hair and makeup artist. Not only will you be able to test out your wedding day look, you will feel extra gorgeous and confident on camera with your hair and makeup professionally styled.
Make it Unique
Don’t be afraid to incorporate an element or two that is unique to you as a couple. If pizza is your go-to date night, share a pizza picnic in your photos. Bring your cute pup or pop some champagne, whatever feel fun and authentic to you! In addition to making your photos uniquely you, this will also add interest and variety to your photos so you’ll have more to choose from!
After your session, don’t forget to plan a dinner date! You’re already going to be all dressed up! Why not take advantage of it? The wedding planning process can feel all consuming, so take some time after the session just for the two of you to relax and have some fun together.