Photo sourced from Zaineb Bajwa

Getting engaged is one of the most exciting & stressful things to happen to a girl. While there are always a million things to consider during wedding planning, the engagement photo shoot gives you a chance to get creative and celebrate who you are as people. This may be the first time you two will be formally photographed and introduced together as a couple, so picking perfect looks is important. After all, these are pictures that you can use for not just the wedding, but years to come. Here are a few things to keep in mind when styling your engagement shoot:

Make sure your style theme represents you and him. It is all too easy to get caught up in the chaos of Pinterest inspirations and who’s-doing-what, but be authentic. The engagement shoot is for you both before it is for anyone else. And it is equally important for your fiancé to be involved and represented in the photos. While most guys let the girl handle the majority of the wedding stuff, remember to include him, and make sure you both are comfortable with what you are wearing.
While there is no concrete rule for the format of an engagement shoot, each outfit change takes about an hour to cover from start to finish. There are so many ways to go about this. You can pick one look you love, one look your fiancé loves, and one classic outfit. You can also opt for a formal look, a casual look, and one traditional look. If you come from different cultures, consider incorporating traditional clothing into one of the shots. When styling & organizing a photo shoot, consider locations, weather, photographer, and time.
The engagement shoot is a good opportunity to get all dressed up in a formal look. These are pictures that will last forever. Being too trendy now may result in looking outdated later, so include at least one classic, sophisticated look that can be framed as a staple in the home. A simple black dress and coordinated suit are always a good option. However, “classic” does not mean “muted”, so do not be afraid to explore a bold color pop. When entertaining the idea of a gown for a shoot, plan the details ahead of time, such as jewelry, shoes, hair and makeup. Dressing up in fancy clothes does not have the same effect if the hair & makeup or accessories are too casual, or if you are wearing the wrong undergarments. If he plans on wearing a suit, be sure to remember small details such lapel pins, pocket squares, and especially a portable steamer.

Image: Pinterest

For a more casual vibe, the stylization should feel effortless, but not sloppy. Casual looks mean less fuss, but are not necessarily easier to organize. Because the focus has shifted away from elaborate clothing, hair & makeup as well as locations & poses become increasingly more important. If you decide to wear jeans, coordinate the color of the denim and if you choose a simple backdrop, pay attention to how your faces photograph. Casual looks are also a great opportunity to incorporate props and signs. Keep it relaxed, and have fun.
Photo sourced from Bisma Mirza

Photo sourced from Bisma Mirza

Traditional looks can be challenging, but also play a huge role in representing cultures. South Asian traditional-wear, for example, is often intricate and elaborate. While vibrant colors photograph well, embroidery and details may not have the same effect on camera. Pick an outfit that is not too detailed and take test shots prior to the shoot so you can get an idea. Like the formal outfit, traditional looks take planning. 

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