Are you asking yourself “Should we get engagement pictures taken?” If you’re anything like me, you are on the fence about whether or not you want to get engagement pictures done. This post will walk you through that question, give you some tips if you are nervous for your photo shoot and share some creative ways to cut money in your wedding budget so you can afford to add engagement pictures!
Last week on Wedding Wednesday, I shared the last segment of our little love story – our engagement! So, it only seems fitting to spend some time talking about engagement pictures, which is next up on our Ultimate Wedding Checklist. Shortly after you get engaged (read my engagement advice here), you may be start asking yourself should we get engagement pictures taken ? If you’re anything like me, you are on the fence about whether or not you want to get engagement pictures done.
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Are you asking yourself “Should we get engagement pictures taken?”
I was hesitant to take engagement pictures for a few different reasons. Logan and I aren’t real big on “PDA”, so I was a little nervous about getting all up close and personal in front of the photographer and that big camera. I didn’t know what we would do with the engagement pictures anyway. Lastly, we were working on a budget wedding. I wasn’t sure I could find the room in our budget to fit in another photo session. However, after a lot of thought and talking about it more with our wedding photographer, we decided to get them done. I’m so glad we did!
Nervous about your engagement photo session?
Neither Logan and I were too excited about getting in front of the camera and spending a couple hours hugging and kissing in front of a stranger. It actually sounded like a horrible afternoon. If this sounds like you, check out these awesome posts:
The engagement photo session is great practice for your wedding! This was something that our wedding photographer mentioned to us when we were trying to decide if we wanted to get engagement pictures taken. Your wedding day is going to be FILLED with a camera in your face and lots of hugging and kissing in front of a whole audience.
In my post about choosing your wedding photographer, I mentioned how important it was that you and your fiance feel comfortable with your photographer. During your engagement photo session, slowly but surely, your wedding photographer will break down the barriers and get you to loosen up a bit in front of the camera. A good photographer will be able to capture the way you and your fiance interact and love on each other in a natural setting. This experience for both you and the photographer will undeniably set you up for success as you move towards your wedding day. I guarantee that you will feel SO MUCH more comfortable in front of the camera after your engagement pictures.
Ways to use your engagement pictures
I wasn’t too sure what we were going to do with our engagement pictures so I wasn’t sure we really needed them, but we ended up using them for many things – and I’m still using them! Here are some ideas:
- Christmas Gifts – we framed some of our favorites for Christmas gifts for our family
- Save The Dates – we created save the date postcards using our engagement pictures – here are some great ideas from Minted, Etsy, and Wedding Paper Divas
- Use a photo book for guest book at your wedding
- Make some DIY wedding decor like the vintage window frame at this wedding, this awesome photo hoop
- Create fun magnets
- Make canvas prints for your home
- Incorporate them into your wedding slideshow to be shown during your reception
- Use them on your table numbers (love this idea and this one too!)
- Order a fun custom clutch
- Create a unique sand ceremony bottle (order a handpainted one from Etsy or make your own with these photo glass transfer instructions)
- Make something fun from Shutterfly, like a puzzle, iPhone case or Christmas ornament
- Offer customized labels on soda bottles or wine bottles at your wedding
- Put the photos on your wedding website
- Incorporate them into your wedding favors (like these CDs)
Do we have room in our wedding budget for engagement pictures?
My main concern with getting engagement pictures done was spending more money on photography. Photography was already a large portion of our wedding budget (read about how set up your wedding budget here) and I wasn’t sure where I would pull the extra money from to add engagement pictures.
After we talked with our wedding photographer and decided that we wanted to take engagement photos, we went back to the drawing board and took a good look at our wedding budget. Luckily for us, it was early in the process and many of the items were still very fluid.
I ended up deciding to shift some funds around to make room for engagement photos. We took the majority of the money out of our allocation for flowers. Instead of getting bouquets made for our bridesmaids, we DIY’d them out of baby’s breath that I purchased in bulk from Costco (we got a couple of these delivered). Since I had 10 bridesmaids and the average cost of a bridesmaid bouquet is $50-90, this saved us over $500. All we did to make these was wrap bundles of baby’s breath together using twine and then tied a bow. They were so simple to make!
Another way we saved money on the flowers was NOT having floral center pieces on every table. Center pieces can range from $30-$100 and we had about 13 tables, so this saved us over $400+. Instead of buying floral center pieces, we used a combination of vintage books, vases filled with extra baby’s breath and dried wheat, potted succulents, mason jars and other knick knacks.
Lastly, we made our own Groomsmen Boutonnieres with the baby’s breath, twine and burlap. The average boutonniere cost $10-15 and we had 7 groomsmen plus Logan, so this saved us $80+.
All in all, these creative ways to save money on our wedding flowers gave us an extra $1,000 of wiggle room in our wedding budget to add engagement photos!
Further Reading – Here’s 35 other genius ways to save money on your wedding!
I am so glad that we decided to take engagement photos. I cherish these photos that capture our love so uniquely in such a natural setting.
Did you decide to get engagement pictures taken? What other factors influenced your decision? I would love to hear your stories and tips!!
Follow along on my Engagement Photo Ideas Pinterest Board for more inspiration.