Planning Your Engagement Session

Posted by Amy Wu in Engagements

Hello clients! I always look forward to your photo session and want our time spent together to be fun! Many of you have asked me for suggestions on what to wear so if you would like guidance on outfit selections that are flattering for photos, please read on!

Outfit recommendations:

  • Some clients like to have an outfit change during the photo session. If the location we are at is conducive to allowing an outfit change then please do! You will have a variety to your photos. Sometimes clients like one outfit to be dressy and the other outfit to be chic and casual.
  • Dressy clothes for men could be a sports jacket, dress shirt, and pants.
  • Men’s accessories include a traditional long tie or a bow tie, but it is not necessary.
  • For women, dressy can range anywhere from a formal dress to a cute summer dress.  Look at the material of your dress.  If you want a romantic look go for dresses that give a flow when you try it on and sway in front of the mirror.  Usually the material is light in weight like chiffon.
  • Accessories for women include necklaces, earrings, scarves, or stylish hair clips.
  • If you and your significant other, friend or family member want to wear similar colors you can, but for contrast you can wear different color hues.  For example, light blue and dark blue or lavender and plum/deep purple.
  • Some of my wedding couples like to plan their wardrobe to match their wedding colors, invitation suite, or Save the Date cards.
  • I generally suggest wearing clothes that are solid in color.  You do not have to be matchy-matchy with the others in the photos but wear clothes that compliment each other.  Neutral colors photograph well or clothing with a punch of color, such as yellow or red. I like simple solid colors such as a little black dress. Be sure to dress for the weather.  The last thing you want is to freeze or sweat outside with the wrong selection of clothing.
  • If you like to wear prints such as plaid or polka dots, then I would recommend one person wears the print and the other wears a solid color.  The photos will appear less busy and distracting. Note-please do not wear anything with small repeating prints such as small checkered clothing, larger checks or plaid are okay because the small pattern will cause a chromatic aberration in your photos (the colors of your shirt may vary slightly from photo to photo).
  • Make sure you are equal in attire in terms of how formal or casual you want to dress. If one person is wearing an elegant black dress then the other person should avoid wearing jeans or shorts and tennis shoes.
  • Wear outfits that flatter your body shape. Sit down in the attire you want to wear and make sure you like the way you appear in front of the mirror. Some outfits such as tops or dresses are not as flattering to the shape of the body once you sit down. Pay attention to the color of your outfit to make sure you like how it matches your skin tone.
Old Town Alexandria engagement photo

Washington DC Wedding Photographer – Amy Wu Photography, Based in Washington DC.

Washington DC Engagement Photographer

Washington DC Wedding Photographer – Amy Wu Photography, Based in Washington DC.

Old Town Alexandria Engagement Photos

Old Town Alexandria Engagement Photos – Washington DC Wedding Photography – Amy Wu

  • For the ladies that want to pair up your ensemble with high heels you may want to consider arriving at your session wearing a regular pair of shoes that are comfortable to walk in if your photo session is going to be in a location that requires some walking. Carry the heels with you instead of wearing them.  Walking in a park with heels on may be a bit uncomfortable. Heels are feminine and flattering in photos.  They also help add height or elongate the legs for women who may need that extra boost.
  • If you cannot decide on a color choice for shoes, I would recommend selecting neutral colors such as nude, tan, brown, or black.

Washington DC Wedding Photographer – Amy Wu Photography, Based in Washington DC.

Washington DC and Georgetown Engagement

Washington DC and Georgetown Engagement

Other tidbits…

  • Bring something to drink and/or a light snack.  You do not want to feel dehydrated or hungry during your engagement session because you want to look and feel your best!
  • Do not bring valuables to the photo session.
  • Touch-up makeup, small mirror, or a hair brush if you want to freshen up during the session.
  • Ladies please consider having your nails “done” whether it be painted or trimmed and neatly filed.  I want to capture the engagement ring on your hand so I want you to love the ring hand and nails in your photos.
  • Another consideration is to have your makeup professionally done. Professional makeup artists know what to apply for a flawless photo-ready face. In addition, your photos will need less detailed retouching such as skin smoothing or blemish removing if the makeup is applied well. Less retouching means your photos will be returned to you even quicker.
  • Please clean your rings prior to the session for up close photos.
  • For the guys, please empty your pockets. Key chains, phones, or a wallet showing in your photos is not flattering. 
DC Wedding Photographer Amy Wu

Washington DC Wedding Photographer – Amy Wu Photography, Based in Washington DC.

Now that you are armed with my tips and suggestions I want you both to come to the session ready to have fun and relax. You do not have to be a pro at modeling for me, it is my job to take photos of you at your best angle!

~xoxo Amy

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