I’ll always remember when one of my couples reached out to me asking to do another engagement session because she realized that although they loved and adored the photos from their first session, they didn’t really think about how the style of their engagement session plays into planning their wedding.
You might be thinking, “What does that even mean?” Well, SO many couples use their engagement session images in different ways in preparation for their wedding, and she realized that the style they chose for their session just didn’t fit the overall vibe of their wedding day!
It’s likely that, if you chose me as your photographer, you’re probably into earthy, nature-inspired, warm colors. My style lends itself to nature and many of my couples choose to stick with neutral and warm tones for their outfits. The color scheme you choose for your engagement session outfits combined with the colors of the location itself are all going to play into the overall look and feel of your images. Are you going to be hiking in the woods? You’ll see mostly greens, yellows, and browns. Or if you’re out by the ocean, you’ll see tans, blues, and pinks/oranges during sunset. Want a garden setting? There will be lots of greens with pops of bright colors from the flowers. Maybe your style is more urban and your session is out at your favorite bar in Philly? You’ll find more deep grays, rust, and black tones in this setting. The most important thing to remember is that I will always guide you with what to wear for YOUR session, but make sure to think about the overall color scheme and feel of your wedding day and how these images will play into that!
Like I mentioned earlier, my couples are adventurers who love off-the-beaten-path, outdoorsy locations for their sessions! So if that’s the vibe you go for in your engagement photos, then if you display them at your super sleek, all white wedding, they might not compliment each other as well as you originally intended.
If you’re having a super edgy wedding vibe with crazy pops of fun colors, then maybe a session location that mimics the vibrancy of your venue would be great! In the case with my bride that I mentioned earlier, they had an adorable in-home rustic engagement session out on a farm that was cozy, sweet, and lighthearted. However, they’re a super edgy couple with unique style and love to rock all black outfits whenever they can, so they were ALL about planning another session to create moodier images that would fit with the style of their wedding day much better!
What season to have your engagement session in is totally a personal preference and I have couples who always have different opinions on it! Some couples want images that are taken in the same season that their wedding day will be in, this way, their images feel cohesive in that sense. Other couples want a totally different season for the sake of variety! Both are totally valid options, so just think about what season you want on display! If you’re having a romantic fall wedding and your engagement session images are of you two in bathing suits in a waterfall, you may feel like it doesn’t necessarily fit the feeling of the day. If this is the case, just think ahead and plan a few outfits, so you can still get the fun waterfall pictures, but also plan an outfit that would lend itself to fall colors!
Once you have chosen the season for your engagement session, you can then start thinking about props! Summer sessions are great for using fire pits and drinking cold beers while late fall sessions are perfect for wrapping yourselves up in cozy blankets and sipping hot cocoa!
Another thing to consider is will these props play a role in your wedding day in any way? If you are having a winter wedding, maybe you’ll want to offer a hot cocoa bar to tie back into your engagement photos! Or if you’re having a summer wedding with lawn games and drinks, use your engagement photos to tease what beers or cocktails you’ll be serving on your wedding day by using them as props in your photos! Props can totally spruce up a session and are the perfect way to hint at what your wedding day will FEEL like when the day comes!
When choosing the prints you’ll have on display at the wedding or in the guestbook album we create together, try to think about how it will look alongside your wedding decor! Even though a sleek black linen with gold debossing may look sick with your grungy, urban styled session, your wedding day may have more greenery and rose golds built into it, so a stark black album may clash on the table alongside your rustic florals. Maybe opt for a neutral cover for your guestbook, so it can work beautifully for both!
When choosing to frame prints, keep in mind the color scheme and aesthetics of your day! Your home may be a rustic farmhouse theme, so your frames may be weathered wood, but if your wedding day isn’t a rustic farmhouse feel, you may opt for gold pressed glass frames instead.
In the end, it is ENTIRELY up to you how you want to style your engagement session and wedding! I truly have always encouraged my couples to do what THEY want for their session and wedding no matter what! I hope these pointers help you when you’re considering your session plans, so if you’re concerned about creating a cohesive vision from engagement session to your big day, you can feel totally prepared!
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