How to Perfectly Plan What to Wear for Engagement Photos

One of the most important choices you’ll make for your engagement session is fashion. Choosing what to wear for engagement photos can be tricky. You’ll want to put some thought into your engagement wardrobe to not only look your best, but also let your personality shine. There are certain classic styles that make people look great and there are also trends to avoid. So if you’re wondering “what should I wear for my engagement pictures,” have a look at this guide that offers a few easy and practical tips to help alleviate some of the stress, and ensure that you look your best in every photo.

A sophisticated engaged couple wear an emerald green cocktail gown and classic black tuxedo and bowtie while framed by the châteauesque architecture of the Biltmore Estate.

I encourage my couples to start out in their most formal outfit and gradually get more casual as the shoot progresses. You should plan to bring 2-3 outfits at a minimum. That way, I can match the outfit to the environment and create an unique editorial look. If you need some guidance, it’s a great idea to work with a fashion stylist that fits your aesthetic. A professional stylist can help showcase your personality, enhance your look, and take your photos to the next level!

First – for the guys

Now before we get into it, the bulk of this is for ladies – because let’s be real, most guys have that one shirt that they wear for every special occasion because you told them it looked good once 5 years ago. So with that in mind, here are a few preliminary tips for the guys:

  • Wear a suit to start off your session. You can’t go wrong with a classic black, grey, or navy suit. It creates a strikingly classic profile.
  • Make sure your suit is clean, pressed, and free of wrinkles.
  • Choose a classic dress shirt in a complementary color to your suit.
  • Pair your suit with dress shoes that are polished and in good condition.
  • Add a simple tie or pocket square to add some personality to your look.
  • If the engagement shoot is outdoors or in a more casual setting, consider dressing down by removing the tie and opting for a more relaxed shirt.
  • A nice blazer or sports jacket with chinos or dress pants is also a great option for a more casual look.
  • Wear comfortable shoes that are appropriate for the location of the shoot.
  • Avoid wearing clothes with busy patterns or logos that could be distracting.
  • Accessorize with a watch or cufflinks to add some sophistication to your look.
  • Bring a backup outfit in case of weather changes or if the photographer suggests a different look.
  • Your shoes and belt should match.
  • If you’re going to wear jeans, the darker the better. Black jeans are great and offer a more edgy look.
  • And lastly, remember to get a haircut a few days before so you won’t have that bit of hair on the back of your neck.

If you are looking for a suit in Greenville, SC I encourage you to check out Rush Wilson Limited to purchase a custom made to measure suit. Remember, the most important thing is to feel confident and comfortable in your outfit. You want to look your best while also feeling like yourself.


Now, here’s what to wear to for engagement photos…

Be comfortable. If your clothes are too far outside your level of comfort you’ll look awkward and won’t be able to focus on each other. If jean’s and a T-shirt are your go-to, then find something closer to that style. But be sure to match the outfit to your shoot location. (A T-shirt would look really out of place in a hotel lobby or elegant space.)

Color Coding

Complimentary colors look better than perfectly matching.

When deciding on outfits for your session, look for complementary colors and solid prints. Try to stay away from anything too busy, it can be a distraction in the photos. If you’re able to tie in to your wedding colors, that’s even better!

Romantic, colorful mountain engagement session with a couple wearing an orange floral maxi dress and a navy blue blazer with blue jeans.

Don’t Let Your Clothes Take Center Stage

Wearing neutral colors for an engagement session is a great choice as they tend to be timeless and versatile. Neutral tones such as beige, gray, white, and black are perfect for creating a clean and elegant look that won’t distract from the main focus of the session: you.

Neutral colors also have the advantage of being easy to coordinate with one another, making it simple for both of your outfits to complement each other. Additionally, neutral colors provide a great backdrop for any location or environment, allowing the couple’s personalities and emotions to shine through in the photos.

An engaged couple lean in for a kiss while walking in the city. She is wearing a neutral cream colored dress with pearl earrings and white heels while he wears a navy blue suit with brown belt and oxfords.


Wearing simple and classic jewelry pieces like stud earrings, delicate necklaces, or minimalist bracelets can add a touch of elegance and detail to the look. Men can opt for a watch or pocket square to add a touch of sophistication and detail to their look. Accessories should match the overall style and color scheme of the outfit, and avoid anything too flashy or distracting. By keeping the accessories simple and refined, they can enhance the beauty of the couple’s natural features without drawing attention away from them.

Simple is best

I recommend that you bring multiple outfits for an engagement session, but it’s important to keep it simple by limiting the selection to no more than two outfits. When you’re planning what to wear for engagement photos, the focus should be on capturing genuine emotions and expressions you share, rather than trying to produce a fashion show. By keeping the wardrobe simple, it allows the couple to remain comfortable and natural throughout the session, which will lead to more authentic and impactful photos.

Sunlit mist at Looking Glass Falls Engagement Session

Plan for Your Body Type

Wearing clothes that fit properly is essential for a successful engagement session. Ill-fitting clothes can be distracting, uncomfortable, and unflattering. Clothes that fit well can enhance the body’s natural lines and curves, creating a polished and put-together appearance. If you take the time to ensure that everything fits correctly when you’re choosing what to wear for your engagement session, you’ll feel confident and look your best. That will allow your personalities and connection to show and lead to more elevated images.

A black and white photo of an engaged couple wear matching black t-shirts to plunge into a secret swimming hole in the mountains of North Carolina.

Dress For the Weather

I always emphasize the importance of season and weather when it comes to selecting outfits for an engagement session. Wearing the wrong clothing can detract from the overall aesthetic of the photoshoot and make it hard to enjoy yourselves.

During colder seasons like fall and winter, I suggest incorporating layers and cold-weather accessories into your outfits to create a polished and fashionable look. Adding jackets, scarves, and hats can enhance your style and keep you warm during the session.

In warmer seasons like spring and summer, it’s important to consider breathable fabrics and light colors to ensure you stay comfortable throughout the shoot. I encourage my clients to opt for romantic looks like sundresses, flowy skirts, and light-colored suits to create a dreamy and whimsical style.

Ultimately, I believe this should be your first concern when choosing what to wear for engagement photos. Proper wardrobe planning is a very important part of creating stunning and timeless engagement photos. By keeping season and weather in mind, I can assist my clients in curating a wardrobe that not only suits their personal style but also complements the overall vision of the shoot.

Snowy kissing engagement session photo at Bear Wallow Mountain

So now you have all the tools you need to plan the perfect wardrobe for your engagement session. Hopefully it will now be easy for you to choose what to wear for engagement photos!

In conclusion, be sure to plan ahead. Put your personalities into it, and above all, have fun!

Want to learn more about creating a magazine worthy engagement session? Check out my journal entry that shows you how to plan for an elevated engagement session.

Finally, if you’re looking for someone to capture your photos like this – Check out what it’s like to work with me.