How to Style Your Engagement Session: What Should I Wear?

Finally! We’re to my favorite part of engagement sessions planning: what should I wear?

I adore shopping! I love seeing what’s out there, trying on clothes, and buying things. So naturally, when we scheduled our engagement session, I immediately went out to find the right outfit.

But it felt like I had “shoppers block.” I just couldn’t figure out what I wanted to wear!

Now I understand why. I hadn’t determined our why or chosen a setting yet, so it’s no wonder the outfits just weren’t making sense.

But once you’ve determined your purpose and a setting, choosing your outfits becomes a bit easier. In taking a Fine art approach, your engagement session is less about your outfits, and more about telling a more defined story.

Telling a story with your clothes

One of the clearest ways we express our personality is through the clothes we wear. When you choose your clothes, you're telling a story

Now that you know the overall story you’re trying to tell with your session, The key is to choose clothes that help tell this story.

Setting & outfits

A primary concern is how the colors and textures in your outfits compliment the setting. Will you be strolling through streets filled with elegant architecture? Then fabrics like chiffon and silk in structured or minimal silhouettes tend to look really sophisticated. (Check Club Monaco or J. Crew for inspiration)

Will you two be cozying up in a field of tall grasses at sunset? Then an outfit focused on fabric texture may be just the thing. Natural textiles like light and gauzy linen, worn in cotton or denim, are filled with gorgeous texture and movement would compliment all the texture in the grass well.  (Look for some inspiration at Anthropology)

Would you like to take a waterfront walk together? Fabrics and shapes that reflect the fluid movement of the wind and water would be incredibly graceful here! Think of something that flows in the wind, like chiffon, linen, or silk. While you certainly don't need to be literal and match the blues of the sky and water and the yellows found in the sand, they may give you a starting place for your outfits. 

Color palette

Let’s talk about what you wear in terms of color. Think first about your purpose, your personalities, and your setting to determine the role color will play into your outfits.

If we go back to the analogy of the dials on a car stereo, color can be dialed up or down to fit the desired mood and tone. Wearing a variety of vivid colors can set off your skin, eye color as well as heighten the energy of the session. If you both tend to be pretty dynamic, vibrant personalities headed to an eclectic location for your session, this could be a great way to reflect who you really are.

On the other hand, I must admit that I have a deep love for subtle palettes for a few reasons. Film draws out pastel tones beautifully. Film renders skin warm and golden, gives a natural blush to your cheeks, and makes the green tones of a natural setting all look pastel, dreamy, and soft. So naturally, I love colors that make me think of the creamy, soft goodness of film.

Second, I personally think a light and soft palette looks incredibly clean and light on the eyes in photos. And a more calming and relaxed look is often a great fit for featuring in the home.

Thirdly and most importantly, when you turn down the dial on color, you make room for other things to speak more loudly in your photos. Emotional moments and sweet little exchanges can take center stage and be complemented rather than overshadowed by color.

Choose your moments

Whether bright and bold or soft and light, always remember to choose your moments. More is not always better. A statement piece works well when it’s not competing with other pieces to make a statement.

Think through what you want to remember most from your photos and allow every item you choose to support that. At the end of the day, your outfits are just another tool to allow your beautiful love and personality to shine through