Engagement sessions check off a bunch of boxes on your wedding-planning list! Not only is this photoshoot a chance for you to get to know your photographer better and become more at ease in front of the camera. It also results in some pretty great shots of the two of you as an engaged couple.
While everyone hopes for just one amazing shot, more often than not, you’ll wind up with MANY pictures that you may not know what to do with. And since you invested the time and sometimes money in having these shots taken, you might as well use them as many ways you can.
While save-the-dates are where most engagement pictures wind up, there are a number of additional ways to use your engagement photos—and memorialize this wonderful time that marks the beginning of the rest of your life together. So let’s take a look at some other uses for your engagement photos:
Save-the-dates are typically the first wedding detail that engaged couples love to put together. While they’re not necessary unless you’re having a destination wedding, they’re still a lot of fun. Some save-the-dates highlight one great shot, while others allow you to include multiple looks from the same day. If you’ve had a few wardrobe changes and different settings, you may want to include one of both. The style of your save-the-date is entirely up to you, but couples often use more than one photo.
2. Wedding Website
If you’re planning to create a wedding website you’ll find that there are multiple sections. You’ll include all the details of your day, along with how you met, where you’re going on your honeymoon, bridal registry information and more. You’ll also want to include different pictures of the two of you, and engagement photos are perfect for this.
3. Holiday Cards
No need to stage an additional photoshoot this year for Christmas, Hanukkah or New Year’s cards. Take one of your favorites that you didn’t already use for the save-the-dates and use for your holiday card. You can either order cards directly from your photographer. Or if you own the proofs, you can upload to a online site and create your own card. Some good ones are Minted, Shutterfly or Snapfish—or even Walgreen’s or Costco.
4. Framed Prints
Set aside a few of your favorite shots to use as gifts for birthdays, Hanukkah, Christmas, Father’s Day, Mother’s Day and more for parents, grandparents and other family members. Five-by-sevens and four-by-sixes make great mementos. And it’s easy to find affordable frames to pop them into, polishing off the look. Personal gifts like this can be much more meaningful than store-bought presents.
5. Social Media Profile Pics
This probably a given. But the first place those great engagement session shots will most likely wind up is as your social media pic.
6. Shower or Wedding Décor
A lot of couples like to include framed pictures of themselves as a part of the décor at either the bridal shower and wedding. Baby photos, first days of school, college graduations, ad shots from your first date and then those great engagement pictures all tell the unique story of your lives and relationship. These are simple but meaningful ways to decorate your special day, and they’re also fun for your guests to see.
7. Guest Book
In addition to using framed engagement shots as wedding décor, you can also use one of these pictures in a guest book for all your guests to sign. This book will become a great keepsake, filled with fun messages and well wishes from your closest friends and family members.
8. Thank-You Cards
While you may not be thinking this far in advance, after your wedding is over you’ll need to write a whole bunch of thank-you cards to your guests. Rather than wait for your wedding photos to come back from your photographer—this sometimes can take up to a few months—you can select one of your engagement photos to use for your thank-you cards. Just be sure to use a shot that you haven’t used for your save-the-date at the shower or in wedding décor. This way when your guests receive the thank-you, it will be the first time they’re seeing this particular shot. Again, you can either order thank-you cards through your photographer or create them on your own.
9. Portraits for Your New Home
If you’re not already, you’ll soon be creating your own shared home together. And what better way to decorate it than with a large canvas from your engagement shoot. Your photographer can either have this made for you or advise on where to have it done. These aren’t inexpensive so you’ll want to make sure you’re having it done through a quality printer.