los angeles arboretum engagement session

louis + melody are two wildly creative folks (melody is an extraordinary violin player and louis a videographer for musicians and weddings) and one super cute couple. we met up one hot and humid day for their engagement session at the gorgeous los angeles arboretum (sassy peacocks included) and props to them for putting up with an hour of me saying "can you stand in/around/behind this plant?" 

laguna beach engagement session | krista + ryan

dreamy light and a coastal breeze - can all my photo shoots be like this? these two lovebirds will be married this weekend and if our engagement session was any indication, it's gonna be a grand ol' time. 

What to Wear : Engagement Sessions

Today I'm thrilled to share some 'what to wear' advice from my good friend and talented stylist, Nichole. She's the good taste behind the inspiration boards that I share with every couple before their engagement session and was kind enough to offer a few key points to keep in mind when picking out your wardrobe. Enjoy! xo

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One of you popped the question, the other said "yes!" and here you are. Amongst what seems like hundreds of tasks that need accomplished to plan a wedding, you find yourself needing some engagement photos. You may be flipping through the photographer's look book and thinking, "Wow, these couples look so put-together! What am I going to wear?!" No need to worry. With a little planning on your part and an amazing photographer like Lily Glass, you'll be blown away by your own photos!

Be your [Best] Self.

Yes, of course, you want these photos to be a reflection of who the two of you really are as a couple, relaxed and natural. However, if the real you equals sweat pants and hoodies, all bets are off. You don't need to wear a formal gown, but a little effort goes a long way. These photos will be seen by all your friends and extended family. You may even be using them as part of your Save-The-Date announcements. If your parents are anything like mine, your engagement photo will also be featured in the local paper. Its a good idea to invest in a new outfit that makes you feel great. You'll definitely be able to wear it throughout your engagement to parties, dinners, and meetings with vendors. 

Dress on the Same Level.

While you don't want to show up wearing matching shirts, you at least want to look like you are attending the same event. If your fiancé is wearing jeans, don't show up in a cocktail dress and heels. Not sure where to start? Try checking out the website, catalog or store of your favorite brand to study how they put things together. Even if the brand is out of your price range, it will give you an idea of the type of pieces to look for at a more frugally-priced store.  Here are two examples  of outfits styled at the same level as your partner.

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Pay Attention to Details.


It's the little things that can make all the difference in a good outfit. Add a pop of color somewhere. A bold necklace, scarf or earrings add interest to an outfit. They also make focal points for the photographer, allowing him/her to make better compositions and more visually-interesting shots. This goes for the guys, too. Try a bold scarf or tie. Amazing shoes look great on everyone and instantly take a casual outfit to the next level. Just remember to refrain from crazy heels if you'll be walking around out in nature during your shoot.


Ladies: Your photographer is definitely going to want several shots of your hand with that gorgeous new ring . This means do your nails! You don't need to spring for a manicure if you're on a budget, but at least trim your nails and apply a coat of neutral polish.  This is also a great time to have your hair done professionally. Having your hair curled or straightened by a good stylist will help you to feel extra confident and radiant for your close-up!

Gents: Like your bride, clean up your nails for close-ups. Also, get a haircut about a week before the shoot. This will give it time to grow out a bit and not scream " I just got a haircut!" Facial hair is fine, if that is your normal look, but please trim it up. No Neck Beards.

I really wanted to end this article with a list of items to avoid completely, but I can't. I've seen some amazing photos where the couples have on less- than-traditional outfits. My suggestions may not fit every couple, but I hope that they guide those of you who are completely in the dark.  If you have the confidence to pose in your swimsuit, the edge needed to rock leather shorts, or the style to pull off a vintage ensemble, go for it!


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