I am a huuuuuuge fan of paper. Of course, in wedding speak, I mean all the good stuff we dwell on, stress about, spend hours looking at—fonts and formatting and all that jazz.
I love so many, in fact, that narrowing anything down is next to impossible. Are you sensing a theme here? I pretty much always love everything pretty and want to do it all. But to avoid looking like the internet threw up all over our wedding, I need to rein myself in a little bit!
So I started with the things that make me drool. From the simple to the elaborate, showcasing photos or without.
This was another aspect that changed when getting engaged became real.
Originally, when we discussed our engagement, we were thinking it would be closer to two years. With that in mind, we wanted to do our engagement photos during the summer in between on the Toronto Islands.
Then, we became engaged, and we decided we wanted a year long engagement. That meant no summer in between, and these photos being done in the fall or winter. As beautiful as the Islands are, they’re not somewhere we want to be outdoors in the winter.
So, we discussed new options. The first one out of Ganders’s mouth was the perfect location.
When looking for a photographer, I really wanted to find someone who gave us the option for an engagement session. But before I made that a requirement in our search, I spent a lot of time going back and forth on whether or not engagement photos were something I wanted.
When I talk to people about engagement pictures, I normally hear two very different viewpoints. On one side, a lot of people have said that engagement sessions are vain. Moo and I used one of our engagement photos for our save the dates and had another made into a canvas that now hangs in our living room. I’m sure everyone who comes over judges us a little, and I’m totally fine with that—I absolutely love seeing that picture every day. On the other side, I’ve heard that engagement sessions are a great way to get to know your photographer and get comfortable in front of the camera. This is perfect for people like me, who haven’t been the main focus of a professional photographer since their senior portraits in high school. So since the vanity issue obviously wasn’t a huge concern for us, Moo and I just needed to figure out if the benefits were worth the extra money.
Instagram shot of our living room/dining room—our picture is front and center.
After a few conversations, we decided to purchase an engagement session with our photographer. We were really laid-back about it—no props, two locations, and we already owned most of the clothing we wore (you can even see a hole in my leggings in some of the shots—oops!).
If you’re trying to decide whether or not to do an engagement session, here are the top four reasons I’m happy we did it:
Once Mitch delivered our engagement pictures to us, I wanted to get right down to designing our save the dates. I had some experience with Adobe InDesign at two internships, so I planned on tackling the design aspect. Mr. PB and I both love football, so jumping on the bandwagon of the ticket-style save the date only made sense. For those who don’t have a design background there are plenty of awesome versions on Etsy.
Now that I had sorted through inspiration pictures, gathered our props, and picked out our outfits, it was time for us to get in front of the camera lens. I emailed Mitch some of the inspiration pictures and let him know I had gotten the props.
As for the location, I wasn’t totally sure where I wanted them to be. I didn’t want them to be too green, but I didn’t want a totally urban feel and I loved the idea of a football field. I had contemplated us making the drive to Buffalo to get pictures taken at Ralph Wilson Stadium, the home of the Buffalo Bills, but the person I talked to in their front office said they don’t allow engagement photos in the stadium. I also thought about my alma mater, the University at Buffalo, but I have more ties to that than Mr. PB does.
I was totally clueless when I came to locations in Rochester. Apparently, I don’t get out enough and have no idea what my city has to offer. Maybe it can be a mission of me as a Mrs.—get to know your city! Anyway”¦Mitch and his assistant (AKA my cousin, AKA my matron of honor) Sharpie were clutch! Mr. K and I met them at their house, and Sharpie just started driving. We tossed around ideas and then the light bulb went off—there’s a beautiful park near our ceremony venue, and our venue itself is on a college campus”¦with a football field. Cha-ching!
So, now that you know the who, what we’re wearing, and where the picture taking will be, it’s time to see some of Mitch’s work! (Warning: Lots of photos to follow. But they’re awesome ’cause Mitch is awesome, so bask in the awesome!)
The ampersand was a bit more difficult. I did a lot of online searching for a wooden ampersand and was striking out. I found some on Amazon and Etsy, but they were either too small, too expensive, or a font I didn’t like. (I’m sort of a font snob.) During a day of window shopping, I stopped at Marshall’s and was looking through their home decor department. Lo and behold, they had a fuchsia ampersand. I was originally looking for a white or charcoal colored ampersand, so it was momentarily disappointing. I even purchased charcoal colored spray paint but opted against potentially ruining my only shot at having an ampersand. But the more I thought about it, the better the fuchsia ampersand was. It meant Mr. PB and I could coordinate our outfits with blue and purple and then the fuchsia ampersand would be the final piece to represent the entire color palette. I’d like to say I planned things that way and sought out a fuchsia ampersand, but all the credit for this one goes to fate.
There are plenty of fabulous engagement photos out there, many of which can be found on Weddingbee by previous bees. (Shout out to a few of my favorites: Miss Pyramid, Mrs. Camel, and Mrs. Wallaby)
I knew that I wanted to have engagement photos taken with Mr. PB, and our photographer Mitch was totally down with that. We were engaged in September 2012, and I didn’t want to do the photos that fall or in the cold winter or the icky sorta spring in Rochester. I decided that late summer 2013 would be the best bet; plus, it gave me plenty of time to seek out inspiration.
I put a couple in the original inspiration post, but here are a few more that lingered in my mind before we stepped in front of the lens.
I love balloons. I always say it’s not a party without balloons. They’re just so fun and colorful and bring a smile to my face. / Source: Adrienne Gunde Photography
OK, plenty of them turned out nicely. We met with our photographer, Caili Helsper, on a lovely September evening for our engagement photos. It was a month earlier than planned because she had a cancellation, so we jumped on the better weather (and then I promptly freaked out because I had nothing to wear!). We’re, well, kind of awkward (I make a lot of faces), but they turned out great.
Hi hive! Just stumbled upon this super funny engagement shoot on Offbeat Bride, and we thought you guys would get a kick out of it. This couple, Marian & Elliot, decided to do an e-pic shoot, but they wanted to put their own spin on it. So they reinterpreted some of the traditional poses, flipping them on their heads.
Just check out a couple of our faves (all photos by Malia Moss):