I’m sensing a theme with my recently engaged couples—sushi seems to be the common denominator. Shannon and Ben, whose downtown Phoenixville engagement session I featured earlier this month, told me their all-time favorite date night is sushi and wine. During this session with Kiley and Kevin, I found out their first date was at a sushi restaurant in Cherry Hill. They’ve been together for almost eight years at this point. Sooo, if you’re hoping for a ring sometime soon, it might be a good idea to book a sushi date to seal the deal. Idk, can’t hurt to try right!? After that, check out these 13 fall engagement picture ideas and photo locations for the perfect NJ engagement session!
1. Share your style and vision with your photographer
Kiley and Kevin’s Collingswood, NJ engagement photos took inspiration from Kiley’s coastal hometown of Plymouth, Massachusetts. Growing up, Kevin also spent a lot of time on the coast in Ocean City, NJ. It was important for them to have engagement photos that captured that unique connection between the two. So, they chose one of the best locations in NJ for fall engagement pictures: Cooper River Park in Collingswood, NJ. This setting combined both of their hometowns’ charm in one beautiful, picturesque setting, and it couldn’t have been more perfect. From the riverfront views to the vibrant colors of autumn, these NJ fall engagement picture ideas are sure to make your photos stand out!
Sharing your engagement photography style and vision with your photographer is super important for a successful shoot day. The more we know about your love story and background, the better! I always tell my couples to send me a link to their engagement photo ideas on Pinterest so I can get an idea of the vibe and feel before their session.
2. Pick a photoshoot location that means something to you
There are so many amazing NJ engagement photo locations that it can feel overwhelming to choose one. My advice is to pick a location that means something to you and your love story! In this case, Kiley and Kevin chose Collingswood, NJ, where they purchased their first home together in 2021. Their adorable bungalow-style home is a short distance from the Cooper River and downtown, which has endless restaurants and shops. This, along with the cozy small-town atmosphere, is what drew them to Collingswood in the first place!
This is what Kiley shared with me when I asked about the significance of their session location:
“I think the most special part of it is that it’s located within walking distance to our house! It is a beautiful park and really helps us capture our love of the water, fall esthetic, and OUR love! We also spent a lot of time walking and running around the water, so it’s a place we frequent very often. We also drive by it every day going home, and driving by it lets us know we are almost home! It was definitely showcasing our new hometown, which I think is really special in and of itself”
The best part of choosing a meaningful location for your engagement photo session is being able to look back on photos that remind you of a special memory or mark a specific milestone in your journey!
3. Choose a backdrop of New Jersey fall colors
Shooting your engagement session in the Garden State has its perks! If you love the look of Kiley and Kevin’s fall engagement photo session location, check out Collingswood, NJ!!
Where is Collingswood, New Jersey?
Collingswood is a hidden gem just 5 miles east of Philadelphia! The Cooper River and surrounding park were the perfect backdrops for this fall session.
When is the best time to take fall engagement photos in New Jersey?
Late October is my recommendation for the best time to capture New Jersey fall colors. These photos were taken on October 26, 2022, and the leaves were absolutely stunning! Seriously, this tree was a paid actor. I honestly don’t think this leaf-lined path could have looked better if we had scattered the leaves ourselves.
The fall foliage in the northeast is always stunning, and the vibrant oranges and reds of New Jersey can act as a gorgeous backdrop for your engagement shoot. Grab a few photos in front of a tree blazing with fall color or pick a spot with the perfect combination of rustic and modern vibes! You don’t have to be in the middle of a forest to get the most out of New Jersey’s fall foliage.
4. Choose a low traffic outdoor location
Collingswood was a perfect session location because we had endless backdrop options in low-traffic areas. I was able to capture some amazing wide-angle landscape shots, which isn’t always possible in super busy spots.
These landscape photos add some versatility to your gallery and look amazing when you blow them up on large canvas prints!
5. Find several fall engagement shoot outfit ideas
Don’t overlook outfit selection when it comes to planning your engagement session! Pinterest is a great resource when searching for fall engagement shoot outfit ideas. You can also look through your photographer’s Instagram or website portfolio for inspiration. Work with a local or virtual personal stylist, or ask your photographer for specific recommendations if you’re not sure what will photograph well.
Kiley’s personal style draws inspiration from a vintage/elegant/timeless feel. Her lacy white dress is a best seller from Ivy City Co. and her velvet green off-the-shoulder dress is from Baltic Born. Both dresses majorly delivered on her vintage-y style inspiration!
Kevin consulted with a Macy’s stylist to pick out his brown jacket for the session. From there, he selected a white dotted shirt from Jos. A Banks to pair with it; the mixed patterns really added an interesting yet not too busy element.
If you’re still worried about finding the perfect outfit(s), I’ve got you covered. In my welcome packet/brochure I share outfit selection criteria and ideas!
6. Bring at least two outfit changes
I recommend bringing at least two outfit options for your shoot. This will add variety to your photos and give you more options when choosing favorites from the gallery.
One idea is to choose an outfit that’s more dressy and another that’s more casual. Either way, these outfits should reflect you and your personality and be something you feel comfortable in!
7. Choose complimentary outfit colors
A list of fall engagement picture ideas would not be complete without talking about the importance of your color choices! Can we talk about how perfect the color pairings were for Kiley and Kevin’s engagement shoot outfits? I love that they selected a fall-esque palette because it really complemented the orange foliage in the background of their session.
Sticking with neutral and simple outfit colors like brown, cream, navy, and denim is always a safe bet. But don’t be afraid to bring in a pop of color too, especially if that’s an essential part of your personal style! Kiley’s green velvet dress had a vintage yet classic feel, and the material went well with the time of year.
8. Add movement to your poses for versatility
Speaking of dresses, my next fall engagement picture idea has to do with movement. A long dress or fabric made of flowy materials is going to be your best friend when you’re halfway through a shoot and running out of pose ideas. Sometimes you just gotta let the outfit do all the talking!
Try twirling, dipping, and swishing movements for some frame-worthy final poses. What might feel really awkward or uncomfortable in the moment can turn into some of your most cherished photos!
9. Switch it up with modern poses or soft focus photography
While the classic poses are timeless, don’t be afraid to switch it up a little by adding in a modern pose or two. This can be anything from walking hand in hand and looking away from each other to capturing shots through a window. Soft-focus photography is often overlooked, but it can make for dreamy photos that still allow you to capture the season’s beauty.
When my couples are open to it, I love to introduce creative poses and photography styles into their session. As I mentioned earlier, sharing a mood board or engagement photo vision before the session can help me brainstorm some ideas that will make your session 100% unique!
10. Think about how you will use your photos when posing
Planning how you will use the photos when posing can definitely help you pick your favorite engagement session poses. For example, if you’re planning on using a photo for a save-the-date printout, then try taking that pose with the scenery in the background and room for added text. On the other hand, if the photo is just for you to cherish, then pick a more unique pose that speaks to who you are as a couple and what your love story is all about.
There is no right or wrong way to pose, so don’t be afraid to get creative and play around with your picture ideas!
I love what Kiley shared with me after their session:
“We just had the best time during our session! It was so much fun! Afterward, we were like, “That was a really fun activity for us! … It really reminded us why we’re getting married in the first place :)”
11. Consider at home engagement photos
Kiley and Kevin’s engagement session was special for several reasons, one reason being that we captured intimate photos in their home. I love when my couples opt for an at home engagement session! One of the biggest benefits is that it can be a more personal experience. You and your partner will be in a familiar and comfortable environment, which can help you relax and be yourselves! Having an engagement session at home is a great way to incorporate unique elements of your relationship into the photos. Some at home engagement photo ideas are:
- Cook or bake something together
- Play a board game
- Set up a picnic in your living room
Don’t forget to have fun and make the most of your engagement session!
12. Find locations that are close together
The other locations we traveled to for this session were within walking distance from Kiley and Kevin’s home. Picking locations that were so close together gave us a lot of time to play around in each location and find the best backdrops. We were able to take our time with posing in each location, and we didn’t feel rushed!
It also ensured that we could choose the best time of day for shooting and that we didn’t have to worry about traffic or parking. If you’re interested in a stress-free shoot with lots of options for great locations, picking a walkable area that’s close together is the way to go!
13. Choose a local NJ wedding photographer
Choosing a New Jersey wedding and engagement photographer who is familiar with the area is a great way to ensure your engagement photo session goes smoothly. If New Jersey isn’t your home state, choosing a local photographer means you’ll not only have a photographer but a tour guide as well! Your photographer will likely know of some hidden gem locations that match your style and vision that you hadn’t even thought of or come across in your research.
If you’re on the hunt for a wedding photography team, Lauren E. Bliss Photography would be honored to tell your love story. Whether you’re a local New Jersey bride, booking a destination wedding, or eloping in private, my team and I will be with you every step of the way to capture the moments you’ll cherish forever. So what are you waiting for? Let’s pop that bottle and do this thing!