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8 Clothing Tips for your Engagement Photography Session

It doesn’t matter if you are fuller figured or slim. Clothing matters when it comes to engagement photography. We at BW Photography Studio want you to look your best, so we came up with these 8 tips to help you look your best in your engagement photos.

Engagement Outfits
Engagement Outfits

Tip 1) Shapewear is your friend.

Whether your full figured or thin, we recommend shapewear. Why you ask? Because shapewear doesn’t just hold you in; it actually shapes and smooths your body. That smoothing effect removes your body’s bumps and bulges and allows your natural curve to shine though. It also can be much more flattering that underwear lines because those lines tend to draw your attention in a photo. In our fashion engagement shoots, we have even had soon to be brides wear just the shapewear top and a flowy skirt. So thin or curvy, shapewear is your friend.

Never do baggy clothes.. you completely loose your shape

Tip 2) Never do Baggy

No matter how comfortable those baggy shirts and pants are, don’t wear them in your engagement Photography shoot. If you want to look your best, go for the form fitting. The issue with baggy is that it hides your body’s natural curves. With baggy clothes your body tends to look square. Squares are not flattering to anybody. Now to be clear, when we say form fitting, we don’t mean “Tight”.  Wearing clothes that are tight cause bulging. Undergarments like bras are notorious for being too tight and therefore causing your skin to pucker or bulge. So try and get your garments fitted properly, but avoid at all costs baggy clothes.

Tip 3) Emphasize your Waist

Try and find clothes or add accessories that emphasize your waist. By placing a belt or using a skirt that bunches together on your waist line, you can really help define your natural body and curves. Keep in mind that we are talking about your waist and not your hips. Many of us wear “hip huggers”. The issue with that style is that it places a large breaking point directly on your hips that cuts your body in half at the largest part of your body. Jeans that actually come to your true waist can accentuate your natural curve and give you a more hourglass figure. If you are in a dress, try adding a belt to your waist line to define it. Sometimes we even use a ribbon to cinch in the waist.

Notice the attention is drawn to her face.

Tip 4) Necklines that Plunge

We are not saying that you need a low neckline. However by wearing a V neck it can ensure that attention is drawn to your neck and face. The V shape also helps a viewer’s eye travel vertically up and down the image. The goal is to keep the viewer from looking left to right. Why? Because when a viewer’s eyes are made to travel a photo up and down, it makes the subject appear taller and thinner. 

When your eyes view things horizontally, items appear very large and wide. Vertically they appear thin and tall. A neckline that forces your eye to travel up and down due to the contrast of your skin vs your clothes actually makes you look thinner and taller. It also helps to establish a distinct bust. If you are uncomfortable wearing a v neck or open neck, then try and find clothing that has a zipper going down the front, or a pattern that is vertical. This also has the same effect.

Tip 5) Contrasting Colors

Our eyes are immediately drawn to places where colors meet and are contrasting. For example, you are drawn to the text on this page, because it is black against a white background. In engagement photography or any wedding photography, the same rule applies. For brides it is usually easy. You are in a white dress and a viewer’s eyes are immediately drawn to you because you stand out against dark backgrounds. 

With your engagement photos, we tend to wear color. Your goal is to choose colors that are not overly bright. By choosing more neutral colors in areas you want to draw less attention to and brighter colors where you want attention to, you can actually lead viewer’s that view your engagement photography images where you want. So let’s say you really like your chest, but hate your rear end. Put the darker colored pants and brighter top. 

Just be careful to not go too contrasting, because where those two colors meet is where your eyes will go directly too. If they meet at your hips, it will make your hips look larger. We always try and tell our soon to be brides to wear neutral colors that are classic in style. That way in 20 years when you look back at your engagement photography photos, you don’t think to yourself, “What was I thinking”. We all remember the 80’s with the giant shoulder pads right?

Do you instantly notice the patterned dress?

Tip 6) Be careful with Patterns and Prints

We are not saying don’t wear patterns or prints. But in general it’s best to stay away. Not only do certain patterns go out of style, but they also draw your attention and actually make you look wider. For example a lace pattern pulls your eye towards it. That’s ok if you are trying to accentuate an area. We have many engagement photography clients that purposely wear a lacey cut top to make there bust look larger. But most of the time it’s best to stay away from patterns. For one, solid colors generally don’t go out of style. They are also easier to find things to match with. Bottom line, it’s ok to wear patterns in photos, but we don’t recommend it. Especially stay away from horizontal stripes as they make you look wider.

Tip 7) Button that jacket

If you are wearing a jacket in your engagement photography session or any photograph for that matter, always button or zip up the jacket at least to under your bust. Jackets add bulk and when unbuttoned or unzipped they fall straight down your sides. This makes you look bulky and square. When you button the jacket, it pulls the fabric in at the waist and can help define your natural body curve.

Button that Jacket so that it shows shape to your body!

Tip 8) Find dresses with black cut outs

If you have ever been dress shipping, you will find certain styles with black blocks on the sides. Believe it or not, but those black blocks actually help to make you look slimmer. They hide the sides of your body and bring in your waist line, so sometimes it helps if you can find those types of dresses.

*Bonus Tip) Rent designer clothes

Did you know you can rent designer clothes? You sure can. Dresses usually run between $50-$200 to rent. Visit

If you enter your measurements on this site, they will actually help you pick out some great styles and things to wear so you look great on your engagement photography session.


If you follow these 8 great clothing tips on your engagement photography session, you will love your images and they will be timeless. BW Photography Studio photographers will be happy to discuss wardrobe for your engagement photography session, so don’t hesitate to bring up any concerns during your mood board review. 

If you have any questions or would like to book your engagement photography session or even a wedding photographer just email our booking manager at:

  • We have over a decade of capturing cherished wedding memories and turning moments into love legends.  

Sandcastle Farms Bride and groom holding hands in sun

Why Choose Us?

  • We're your local Charlotte and surrounding area experts.  We've uncovered the city's secret gardens, the intimate alcoves, and the ethereal backdrops where your love story comes to life in each frame.

  • Your vision, our commitment.  We walk you through everything and leave nothing to chance.  We customize the look and feel of your images to your desires.

  • With awards from Wedding Wire and the Knots as well as our publications in wedding magazines around the globe.  

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