How To Prep For Your Engagement Session


The love of your life just got down on one knee, asked for your hand in marriage and you answered with a resounding, “YES”! You are now right in the middle of planning for your big day and you have something else to think about – your engagement session!

While planning for engagement sessions brings lots of excitement, they can also add to your to-do list and bring up a lot of questions. What are we supposed to wear? Where should we take them? What if I’m awkward in front of the camera? We have to kiss in front of a camera...what do I do with my hands?!

No need to worry! I’ve been there as a bride and I’m now on the other side of things as a photographer. Full of helpful tips and style inspiration, this post will help you prep successfully for your session!



First, let’s cover the number one question when it comes to prepping for your session. What do we wear? Most photographer’s like myself encourage you to wear two different outfits for your session. You may be thinking, “Oh, great, another thing to plan.” Actually, being able to have two different outfit options helps take some pressure off because you don’t have to narrow things down to just one outfit. Personally, I love options! ;)

It’s best to do a casual outfit that shows off your normal, everyday style and then, a dressy outfit to play up how special this time of life is! When choosing your outfits, always stay true to who you are and keep in mind that these photos will last a lifetime. Neutral colors always photograph beautifully and will keep you from having any regrets years down the road. Let’s just say neon colors might not be in style all the time and they also don’t photograph super great. ;)

It’s important not to be too matchy either! Choose colors that are complementary. This could be a light blue shirt for your guy and a white dress for you. Patterns are acceptable as well! Just choose patterns that aren’t too busy and distract from your beautiful faces. Remember to balance patterns with solids too. One more thing – consider your background and location when choosing a patterned outfit. You can find some style inspiration in the photos of my couples below and also on my Pinterest inspiration board here

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Your photographer is a great resource for helping choose a location. It’s very important to ask for your photographer’s guidance on the location of your session. There are many things to consider in a location in order to have great photographic results – let your photographer help!

I often ask my couples for their vision, inspiration or any settings they’ve seen that they love and feel represents who they are. Maybe they love the city vibe or mountain views. From there, I send over several specific locations that I know will work great for the session and then let my couple choose!

It’s also good to think about spots that are meaningful to you like your actual wedding venue or the city you met in. My husband and I had our engagement session in Downtown Greenville, SC which is where we got married! It was so special!



Being in front of a camera can be daunting, but I promise it’s not as bad as you think! As a photographer, it’s my job to make you feel comfortable and confident during your session. Perhaps you prefer a certain side of your face or something totally random that your photographer (or anyone else) would never ever be aware of but YOU are aware of it (we’re all our own worst critic!). When in doubt, always communicate with your photographer! It’s best if we know ahead of time any concerns or worries you have.

Ultimately, don’t worry about where to put your hands or how to stand – I’ll direct you when necessary, while also keeping a sense of genuinity in your session. Candid photos are always my favorite – we want to show off who you are!   

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That’s right, if you know me, you know that dogs are everything to me! Most photographers are open to including your pup as well – just be sure to communicate beforehand.

Our yellow Labrador, Paisley, is like our baby. So if you’re wondering whether you should include your dog in the session with me, the answer is YES! Almost all my sessions have dogs in them and I wouldn’t have it any other way!

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So, now you’re feeling pretty good about your upcoming engagement session! You’ve got your two outfits and the location is set. You’re feeling confident because you’re not alone in wondering where to put your hands. Now is the time to soak up these moments. Make a date night out of your session. Plan to go to dinner afterwards just the two of you without any talk of wedding planning. Trust me, you’ll appreciate keeping things stress-free and taking moments to remember that you’re marrying your best friend!

I want to hear from you! Please show some love and leave a comment below with any questions or what you’d like me to write about next. For more inspiration and to stay up-to-date, follow along with me on Instagram as well.