I’m Claire and I’m a wedding and motherhood photographer based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. I am dedicated to capturing timeless memories through a genuine experience for my clients.









Congratulations! You are engaged to the love of your life! Now that you’ve booked your photographer, one of the next steps is preparing for your engagement session. When it comes to selecting your engagement session outfits, there are SO many options.  How many outfits do we bring? Do I want dressy, casual or maybe both? What’s the difference between matching and coordinating? Here are my best tips for how to select your engagement session outfits! 

Engagement session with couple and a horse in a grassy field

How Many Outfits Do We Bring?

I always recommend for my couples to bring at least two engagement session outfits. I think it’s so fun to have a bit of variety in your photos. This is the only time you’ll ever get to have engagement photos, so might as well make the session as fun and creative as you can!

I typically recommend for my couples to bring their favorite outfit with them and wear their other outfit first. Why? Because, if you’ve never done a photo session before (most all my couples) then it’s going to take you a little bit to relax and feel like yourself in front of the camera. I promise to make it fun and relaxed for the both of you! But it just might take a few minutes for you guys to be fully comfortable and by the time you change into your second (and favorite) outfit, you’ll be a pro!

Couple walking down a gravel path holding hands looking lovingly at each other

Dressy or Casual?

When it comes to deciding upon dressy or casual, I think it all depends on you guys and your personality! Do you both tend to dress a little nicer in your day to day? Or do you both feel most comfortable in jeans and a nice top? 

Here’s one of my recommendations: If you decide to wear a dress for one of your engagement session outfits, I would suggest wearing pants for your second outfit. It could be jeans or even some dress pants if you want to keep both outfits a bit more classy. But this way, we will be able to do some fun prompts that make it a little harder in a dress. I might have you guys sit for a few photos or if you’re feeling playful, have your man give you a piggy-back ride! 

Dress For The Elements

One thing I want to note is the importance of dressing for the elements! If you have an early spring wedding, you might have to opt for a snowy winter engagement session. As much as you may want to wear a light flowy dress, it’s going to look out of place at a snow covered tree farm. You can still look classy and put together in a long dress coat or even a sweater dress!

Winter engagement session couple standing facing each other
Couple holding hands walking down steps looking at each other

How to Coordinate Your Engagement Session Outfits

This will depend on your photographer and their style, but for myself, I tend to lean more towards outfit choices that will allow your images to turn out brighter and softer. You might not know this, but you can actually make outfit choices that will reflect the above. Coordination is key! You both don’t want to wear something too similar, but it does help to pick outfits that compliment each other well! It’s important to note that you don’t need all of these things in order to have brighter, softer images, but the more you include, the more romantic and bright they will be! 

  1. Neutral Colors 

I love blushes, tans, light pinks, faint blues, creams, grays and whites. They will result in more of a light feel to your images and these colors photograph softer and more romantic. 

  1. Long, flowy skirts/dresses

Dresses with feminine ruffles, multiple layers or ability to flow in the wind will always photograph so beautifully! You might be amazed at  how impactful moving fabric softens an image. 

  1. Khakis vs Jeans 

If you really want that light effect, you may consider having your groom wear lighter colored pants instead of dark jeans. 

With the above, I usually recommend lighter colors, however I have been a fan of little black dresses lately! They are definitely in right now. So classy and chic! 

Couple with arms around each other laughing
couple walking together at sunset bride looking back at camera

Engagement Session Outfit No’s

Along with things that help enhance brighter, softer images, there are also some things to avoid!

  1. Colors to avoid: bright reds, neons and oranges will reflect color onto the skin and can be difficult to edit. 
  2. Tiny patterns: Especially men’s small checkered shirts. These can cause something called “Chromatic Aberration” in digital images and makes editing tricky! 
  3. Alternate Heaviness: If one of you is wearing dark jeans, the other person may want to wear lighter colored pants. If one of you is wearing a navy top, the other shouldn’t wear a dark/heavy-colored top. Alternating the “heaviness” of your outfits can make your images look more balanced! 
  4. One casual the other dressy: If one of you decides to dress up and the other decides to dress more casual, the outfit pairing can look a bit awkward in photos. Just make sure to coordinate accordingly! 
  5. Other things to avoid: Tennis shoes, graphic tees, bold logos on shirts, sunglasses, baseball hats (unless any of these things is planned out intentionally for a prop as example). 

Overall, the most important thing is that you both feel comfortable and confident in your engagement session outfits! You want to feel like you! If you’re one of my brides reading this blog, don’t hesitate to reach out and ask me questions about outfit options! I’m more than happy to give you my input!

If you loved this blog, check out Matt and Joy’s fall engagement session here!