10 Props to Have on Hand for Your Engagement + Wedding Photos

To have and to hold... to arrange and to pose.

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Whether you’re a budding professional photographer, a blushing bride-to-be or a detail-oriented (read: obsessed) groom, I’m here to make your next big shoot your best one yet. I’ve compiled a checklist of the most romantic, must-have props to have on hand for your engagement shoot and wedding day photos! Pick and choose a few items from this list for photos that are guaranteed to reach the highest level of pin-worthiness possible. 

The Ring

Photo by: Devon Donnahoo Photography, Styling by Katie Kalafat

Devon Donnahoo Photography, Styling by Katie Kalafat

This goes without saying: gotta have the rings! Pro tip, though? Have your sparkler cleaned professionally prior to the photoshoot. I never realize how dull my ring becomes until after I turn it in for a nice, healthy cleaning. Only then do I spot the (huge) difference between dull, sad rings and shiny, happy rings. Friends don’t let friends wear dull diamonds in engagement/wedding photos, so I must insist you heed my advice. Non-negotiable, guys.

Custom Ring Box

HyperFocal: 0

Photo by: The Mrs. Box Wedding Heirlooms

The Mrs. Box Wedding Heirlooms

We know better than to sleep in our rings, don’t we ladies? At the end of the day, you’ve got to store your stunner somewhere and you might as well make it special. Invest in a custom ring box and bring it along for photos. Doing so will allow the ring to really shine (get it?) and reinforce your personality in the process. My advice? Consider the theme or essence of your wedding day during the process of selecting your ring box. Planning a jewel-toned day? Opt for a rich, ruby red or sapphire blue box to complement.

Flowy Fabric

Sheaths of soft, barely-there fabrics like hand-dyed linen or tulle serve as incredible backdrops for the many other little details. Wind stretches of fabric through shots of your rings, the shoes, paper goods or bouquet for an ultra-romantic and stylized feel.

Pretty Paper

Photo by: Devon Donnahoo Photography, Styling by Katie Kalafat

Devon Donnahoo Photography, Styling by Katie Kalafat

When you’re ordering invitations, don’t forget to order an extra couple of sets for yourself. Capturing your invitations alongside flowers, fabric and other fun props allows for others to get a real, rounded-out sense of the design of your wedding day. Plus, who doesn’t drool over hand-lettered envelopes and custom crests online?

Gilded Serving Tray

Okay, you’ve got this and that and the other, but where do you disiplay it all? On a gorgeous silver or gold serving tray. Feeling flirtier? Opt for rose gold, instead. All are equally stunning and serve up pin-worthy pics on a platter of pretty.

The Veil

CI-Jess-Abbott_wedding-veil-project-on-door1_v

CI-Jess-Abbott_wedding-veil-project-on-door1_v

Oh, the things one can do with a veil! The romantic styling opportunities are truly endless here. Drape a veil over just about anything and prepare for all of the swooning.

Heirloom Items

Bridal Bouquet

Bridal Bouquet

Photo by: BePhotography.net

BePhotography.net

When it comes to pictures, we know how to make them pretty, but only you can make them personal. Bring along a few super-special heirloom items that share the story of each family. After all, without those who came before you, would you be heading to the altar to marry the love of your life? Nope. An example: I wore my late grandmother’s wedding ring on my right ring finger in my engagement photos and I plan to wear it again on my wedding day. I know she would love it just as much as I do.

The Blooms

Flowers on flowers on flowers. Invest in some extra fresh-looking blooms and you will live the rest of your life with no regrets. Properly-placed petals and arrangements have the power to take a bland, basic photo to Pinterest-worthy in .02 seconds. 

Bow Ties + Cufflinks

Brides are notorious for the darling little detail shots, but grooms deserve the same attention. It’s their day too, after all. Have his accessories on hand for solo shots of his tie, shoes, pocket squares, cufflinks and socks. A wristwatch never hurts, either.

The Shoes

Confession: I’m probably biased with this one because my fiancé proposed with the prettiest shoes to ever exist. (Ever!) Still, all bias aside, I am passionate about the fact that shoes make for drool-worthy detail shots that every BTB dreams about. Plus, there’s something so sweet about the shoes you wear to declare your unconditional and everlasting love in, don’t you think? “I do” is a monumental moment — not just any old, dusty walking shoes will do it justice. Once you’ve found “the ones,” pair them with your partner’s shoes and a couple of the above this-thats for gorgeous photos that you’ll both look back on with a smile. Bonus idea: frame the shoe shot and display it in your closet. 

+ One last tip: When in doubt, let the time-tested tradition of something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue guide your way when preparing for the big day. Follow that and you really can’t go wrong.

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