The first question I receive after booking a new wedding is “When should we schedule our engagement portraits?” Here are a few things to consider in deciding when to take engagement photos.
The Save the Date Factor
First and foremost, it depends on whether you need the photos for your save the dates! Most wedding experts suggest you send your save the dates six months before your wedding. Furthermore, you should bump them back to eight months or longer if:
- You’re planning a destination wedding
- You’re getting married around a major holiday
- You’re getting married on a day other than Saturday (Sun-Fri)
Therefore, if you need your engagement portraits for your save the dates, it’s wise to get them done at least 7-9 months before your wedding to give your photographer time to get them ready for you.
Not worried about save the dates?
If you’re not bound by a save the date deadline, consider one of two approaches: either the same season as your wedding –or– the opposite season from your wedding.
Example 1: The same season as your wedding
Choosing the same season as your wedding will provide a consistent look across both your engagement portraits and your wedding photos. It can also allow you to work in similar themes or design elements between the two. For instance: engagement photos at a Christmas tree farm for a Christmastime wedding, or engagement portraits along the beach for a nautical-themed wedding.
Example 2: The opposite season from your wedding
On the other hand, selecting the opposite season from your wedding will offer you some contrast. For instance: wintery engagement portraits for a summertime wedding or springtime cherry blossom engagement portraits for an autumn wedding.
One tip: give yourselves plenty of time
Keep in mind that your wedding photographer’s weekends probably book up early with… you guessed it… weddings! So trying to book engagement portraits on a weekend in October (most popular month for weddings) probably won’t be possible. I can’t speak for all photographers, but in the middle of busy wedding season, I can typically only accommodate weekday engagement sessions. If weekends are a must due to your work schedules, give your photographer plenty of time to help you find a date that works for both of you.
Got it… Next question: what should I wear?
Excellent question. Here are some tips for what to wear for engagement portraits.