Logistics aside, the wedding-planning process is jam-packed with events, activities and opportunities that will make you feel like a bonafide fashion goddess. When else do you get to don a couture-level on-trend wedding dress and have a full-on makeup and hair squad? And don’t even get us started on all those OMG-worthy shoes. Swoon. Then there’s that little thing known as the engagement photoshoot, where you and bae strike a pose and become immortalized in pre-wedded bliss. Engagement photos are perfect for your wedding website, save-the-dates and the walls of your home (and don’t forget Insta), so of course an on-point #OOTD is mandatory. We’ve come up with a list of easy tips (and covetable dresses, jumpsuits and jackets you can scoop up now) to help you nail your pre-“I do” look. Read on and get ready to knock those engagement photos out of the park!
Look to layers for visual depth.
1. Mango Structured Cotton Blazer ($100): If you were starting to doubt the sartorial powers of your closet MVP — the blazer — this little tip will put the tried-and-true topper back in your good graces. The sophisticated style staple effortlessly dresses up basic jeans and can switch up an outfit in seconds, providing you with a variety of different shots to choose from at the end of the day.
Forget about forgoing prints.
2. Ann Taylor Amalfi Halter Dress ($159): Don’t forget that you — yes, you — are the main focus of your engagement photos. Sure, we love an early 19th-century estate or breathtaking mountain vista, but this is your time to steal the spotlight — and rockin’ bright patterns is all part of it. Set against a stark backdrop or a natural landscape, you’re guaranteed to stand out. Floral and palm prints are timeless and boast wear-anywhere appeal, while geometric styles will fit right in with a modern urban setting. Remember, if you’re both diggin’ the prints, make sure to coordinate beforehand to avoid clashing.
Go back to basics.
3. Babaton Manuel Blouse ($85): Sometimes less is more — embrace clean lines and minimal tones. The high-contrast effect of black and white ensembles, especially when paired with architectural silhouettes, is always chic (especially on camera), which is exactly why it’s revisited again and again on the runway. For a refined-yet-fashion-forward ensemble, try a structured white blouse with high-waisted black trousers, or go down a more playful route with a ruffled top and midi skirt.
Show off your shoes.
4. Vince Camuto Kendalyn Tassel High-Heel Sandal ($129): Yes, there’s the dress, but let’s be real — your wedding (and all the extra events that go along with it) is a pretty great excuse to scoop up a few extra pairs of OMG-worthy shoes. And your engagement photos are no different. A pair of sassy red pumps, embellished block heels or printed flats are the perfect finishing touch to any #OOTD. Not only will they add a punch of personality to your look, but they’ll pop against simple backdrops and neutral hues too.
Channel the vibe of your setting.
5. Madewell Cruiser Straight Jeans ($128): Laid-back location? Don’t ditch the idea of denim — class it up by opting for white and pairing with refined separates and accessories. Take a cue from your surroundings, not only for your comfort, but for the sake of the shot. A formal gown might look a little out of place in a rustic barn setting.
Coordinate with your partner.
6. Halston Heritage Printed Cold Shoulder Crinkle Chiffon Top ($295): You don’t have to do the whole matchy-matchy thing (and we recommend you don’t), but a bit of color coordination will create a sense of cohesion and balance. Not to mention it will make your photographer’s job go even smoother — finding the right lighting is a lot easier when you’re dressed in similar hues. Don this pale orange blouse with tailored off-white trousers and block heels, then have your partner wear shades of blue for a foolproof look that will look flawless on camera.
It’s all in the details.
7. Jarlo Tall High Neck Allover Cutwork Lace Prom Skater Midi Dress ($187): Color and comfort aren’t the only things you should consider when putting together your ensemble. Add a few detailed pieces to your lineup (think: romantic lace, elegant embellishments and asymmetric hemlines) that will stand out in photos or highlight features in your partner’s getup. Another thing to think about? Fit. Stay away from anything that’s too tight, revealing or oversized that will dominate the photo. This lace dress hits all the right notes with its sheer panel, textured appearance and ultra flattering A-line cut.
Opt for comfy one-and-done pieces.
8. Karen Millen Floral-Print Silk Jumpsuit ($499): Getting gussied up doesn’t have to mean donning restrictive or fussy duds (or losing your lazy-girl style). You’ll be voguing from a variety of different angles and locations, so dressing in carefree clothes is your best bet. An easy-breezy jumpsuit is an effortless option that doesn’t just deliver in the comfort department — it’ll rack up some serious style points too. Any time is a good time to wear a jumpsuit; just add strappy sandals and a pair of drop earrings, and you’re good to go.
Layer on the leather.
9. Mango Zip Leather Jacket ($200): A classic leather jacket will take flirty frocks and classic separates to the next level the second you slip it on. This is a great piece to have on hand if a full-blown costume change just isn’t in the cards, or if you’re worried about that frilly feminine dress coming off as too precious.
Take cues from your wedding dress.
10. Free People Sweet Thing Tunic ($118): When isn’t a LWD appropriate? While your fiancé will have to wait until your wedding day for the big reveal, you can give him or her a sneak peak of what’s to come (and lend your shoot an undeniably romantic vibe) by previewing a little white dress that incorporates elements of the final design.
11. Zara Colorful Gems Earrings ($20): Any opportunity to rock a bit of bling should not be passed up. Up your outfit’s elegance factor (while adding intrigue to close-ups) with a pair of statement earrings or a glitzy necklace that won’t overshadow your piece de resistance: the ring.
Ditch the dress.
12. C/meo Collective Break Event Pant ($160): If you don’t do dresses, that’s totally cool. There’s no rule that says you have to sport an ultra feminine A-line to look stunning on camera. Stay true to you by slipping into a pair of tailored trousers, billowy palazzos or printed cigarette pants instead — you’ll feel confident and comfortable, and that will definitely show. Round out the outfit with a sleeveless silk blouse or a lace-trimmed cami and lariat necklace.
Choose pieces that move.
13. Zara Dress With Layered Top ($70): Achieving the perfect picture isn’t only about striking the right pose. Pieces that lend themselves to movement, like a flowy maxi dress or chiffon top, are a must for photos that are downright swoon-worthy. Just picture it: panels of airy fabric floating behind you and your fiancé as the sun sets over the water.
Play up your best assets.
14. Nordstrom Signature and Caroline Issa Center Pleat Wool & Silk Twill Skirt ($495): Be it a killer smile or legs for days, you have a few features you’re set on showing off — and if you’ve got it, flaunt it, girl! Choose pieces that keep the focus on parts of the body you want to highlight, like shorter hemlines, sleeveless silhouettes or an open back. This architectural skirt is great for flashing those gorgeous gams, especially when paired with minimalist ankle strap heels or nude pumps that create an elongated look.
Don’t shy away from color.
15. French Connection Rosie Drape Ruffled Dress ($168): Too much color? No such thing. It might be tempting to show up to your photoshoot in all-neutral-everything, but where’s the fun in that? Don’t be afraid to embrace bright color and show off that ah-mazing personality, especially if bae is doing the minimalist thing. The contrast will add texture and drama to the finished product (no blending in for you!). Not ready to go all out? Opt for a few colorful accessories instead.
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