Make the most of your engagement session – What to wear?

“what should I wear form my engagement photo session?”

That question come up often when I schedule my upcoming engagement photography sessions. To find the answer rather than just saying “just dress casually”, I looked to Julie, who I recently did an engagement session with along with her fiance Minh since she’s done a fantastic job selecting her outfit. I went ahead and asked if she would share her thoughts on how she chose her outfits for her engagement session, and she kindly agreed! She generously sent me an email with details on why she chose her outfits and a lot of great tips to share! (and even where she bought them!) This should be very helpful for the future bride-to-bes in picking their clothings.

Without further ado, hare the tips from the amazingly photogenic Julie on what she picked to wear and why:


Outfit 1: Julie: Navy & white graphic print shift dress (Ann Taylor Loft) and navy cardigan (JCrew); silver ballet slippers (Zappos). I purposefully wanted a graphic print dress because I thought it would really pop in pictures. When perusing magazine and websites, the pictures that stand out always have one element that really shines through. Some women like to have bright shoes (ie. a great pair of red heels) or bold accessories (i.e. a statement necklace). I think the key is to have at least one thing that really draws the viewer’s attention. So don’t be afraid to add some color or play with accessories. Women, especially, have so many options with jewlery, belts, hair pieces (headbands, feather pins), and shoes. But even guys could add a little something something, like funky argyle socks, or if you want to go fancy, nice cufflinks, or maybe a faded, rugged baseball cap, or a great pair of sneakers.
me: The dress looks perfect on Julie and is simply adorable. The seemingly repeating pattern really make her pop and draws the viewer’s attention without being too cluttered. It even works great in sepia/b&w tone as well! Good pick, Julie! ;-)

Outfit 2: White button-down cotten sleeveless top (Gap), yellow cardigan (JCrew), and slate gray silk dupoini skirt (Ann Taylor). I picked the skirt because I love the sheen and feel of silk and just tailored the rest of the outfit around the skirt. It’s helpful to have a ‘look’ in mind. This outfit was meant to be my more dressed-up option hence the reason for the heels and silk just has a great texture. Plus, since I love color, I liked the idea of pairing yellow with the gray. I was originally thinking a magenta or pink, but the point was just to add color.
me: This simply is an awesome combination and overall I love the looks of it – sleek, smart, dressy enough to go to work and pretty enough to walk into a party. This looks distinctively different from the dress she picked earlier which gives us a good variety in the pictures overall. Yellow probably wouldn’t have been good if we were heading to the beach, but look how works so well with her grey skirt and how good it looks even among brick colors. Best of all, this shows another side of Julie. Also notice how Minh has quite a different look simply by changing a shirt. =)

Outfit 3: White sleeveless top (Gap), dark blue jeans (Gap), and silver flip flops. I don’t think you can ever go wrong with the classics. A crisp white shirt and jeans is just easy and casual, but still stylish (at least in my humble opinion). Plus, it really helps to wear pants/jeans for certain poses. Best advice: be true to your own sense of style. You want the pictures to be you, just the best representation of you possible. And I think it really helps to love what you’re wearing because confidence is always beautiful.
me: The most amazing thing about this outfit is that Julie simply took off her cardigan and slipped into jeans and put on her flip flops – took her like 2 minutes in the car to change to a whole new look! Again, this looks distinctively different from the previous, but she still maintains true to be herself but only showing a different facade of her personality!

Tell us what you think! and be sure to share your tips here with other future brides!

Thanks again Julie! and of course, a few more of their engagement pictures to share!


This may possibly be my new favorite shoot of yours, Herman! :] And Julie did have GREAT wardrobe selections! Now, can you do a post on what to wear for girls who aren’t as pretty and don’t have nice long, skinny legs like her? :-P

OOOH…I LOVE it Herman! My top 5! Another great session under the belt. Even more pumped to see what you’ll do at our e-session. =)

Fantastic dress sense, fantastic advice and … utterly fantastic photography! Beautiful work Herman and an immensely useful article to boot!

Holy crap!! These are amazing! Thanks for the info too

Awesome info and super cute couple! Loved it :)

really creative poses with some fun locations. i love the one with the iron doors/windows.

What a great post! Lovely couple, and the tips on why she made her choices are really helpful. Love the yellow cardi with the gray and against the bricks – the wonderful shots would have been really different with magenta there instead. The graphic dress, like Julie herself, looks great in multiple settings. Beautiful photos – love the stairwell with clear bulbs and the yellow balloons!

What an awesome idea. So helpful to your future clients. With photos like this, there will be too many to count.

The shot with the cherry tree (or dogwoods or whatever it is) is stunning! They should totally get a big print of that shot.

what a fun session! she has great style

Wonderful colors and great exposure. Must have been a fun shoot.
Nice work.

Loved this couple! They both look fantastic and she’s obviously got great style. Loved the image on the stairs and under those beautiful pink flowers! x

This is a great post! Love the pictures and really helpful advice!

thank you so much for bringing out the best in both of us herman! we’re so lucky to have found you ;D i can’t wait for you to shoot our wedding!!!

Julie and Minh’s pictures are just GORGEOUS!!! You all made a great team. They look so comfortable as if you just happened upon this great couple and snapped some great shots!!

Great! Love the one on the steps.



next one

Engagement: Jeannie & Jerry @ Griffith Observatory