Edinburgh Engagement Session Tips & Ideas

So you’ve just got engaged – congratulations! If you’re planning an engagement session in Edinburgh, you’ve made the right choice. And – you’re in the right place. I’m here to help you find magic when walking on city cobblestone streets, and I’ll be there to capture these one of a kind moments for you.

Which is why I’ll start with providing you with some advice and recommendations. And whether it’s an outfit or a gorgeous location that you need some advice on – I’m here to help you out.

Engagement photos are one of the most beautiful memories you will keep. Whether you are just taking a short trip to Scotland or you’ve lived here your entire life – pre-wedding photoshoot is something totally worth it.

So let’s make your Scotland engagement photoshoot an unforgettable experience!

edinburgh castle engagement session 2

Engagement photos at Edinburgh Castle, men and women embracing

Engagement photos in Edinburgh | Edinburgh engagement photographer

Having a  engagement photoshoot is an amazing idea. Especially if you’re thinking about engagement photos in Scotland!

Think: gothic cathedrals, dark hidden alleys, medieval castles, historic ruins, but also green rolling hills, giant redwood groves at the Botanics and rocky hill summits…

Scotland’s capital is a place that you’ll fall in love with at first sight, I guarantee. It happened to me first time I visited – so I know what I’m talking about. It’s not only the most photogenic city in the world, but also filled with wonderful, welcoming people, sound of bagpipes on Royal Mile, where you can spend mornings with a cup of artisan coffee, and evenings with a dram of whisky or a hot toddy, enjoying both the views and the atmosphere.

So now, let’s explore the secrets to getting the most incredible engagement photos in Edinburgh!

royal mile engagement photos edinburgh 2 copy scaled
Royal Mile engagement photoshoot Edinburgh

Why should we have an engagement session?

Firsty, memories – it will become a great memory to look back on. So once you’ve got the link to your final gallery, order prints and put them in an album. Also, you can show them to your friends and family also by sharing them on Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest. Or send your friends and family a link to the gallery!

Secondly, your engagement photos can be used as a Save-The-Dates, together with your wedding invitations. Isn’t it an awesome way to announce your wedding date to your family and friends?

Thirdly, Edinburgh is a perfect place for engagement photos. It boasts a variety of beautiful locations – both within the city and outside. It’s an engagement photographer’s dream, as the town has so much to offer!

Finally, another great reason is that an engagement photoshoot is an opportunity to build a connection with your wedding photographer and get to know them. It gives you an idea about what to expect on your wedding day. And it’s also a chance to discuss your elopement or wedding day with them and share your ideas. 

Engagement photos on Circus Lane in Edinburgh New Town
Engagement photos on Circus Lane in Edinburgh New Town

Consider having professional hair and make-up done for your session.

If you are unsure about what to do with your hair or what kind of make-up would suit your outfit, why not consider it? You can even schedule your trial with your HMUA so you get also get a preview of what your hair and make-up will look like on your elopement or wedding day, and what kind of style you’d like to go for.

Personally, I’m pretty crap at doing my own make-up and hair, so if it was me I’d definitely consider hiring a professional to do the job for me!

arthurs seat edinburgh engagement photos

Engagement photoshoot on top of Arthur's Seat at sunset - golden hour couple photoshoot in Edinburgh, Holyrood Park

When shall we have our engagement photoshoot in Scotland?

The answer is – it’s entirely up to you!

Just make sure that as soon as you’ve found the photographer whose work you absolutely love, get in touch with them and lock in the date. The wedding and elopement season in Scotland never stops so we can be quite busy – and fully booked! And with spring, summer and autumn dates always being in high demand, you might want to secure your slot as soon as you can.

Now, let’s talk seasons of the year.

As every single month shows different colours of the landscapes, you might want to consider what kind of atmosphere you’d like to go for. Beautiful oranges and yellows of autumn? Leaves falling from the trees? Or maybe you’re dreaming of engagement photoshoot at the summer sunset in the evening, with a view of Edinburgh skyline? Or would you prefer to travel to the Scottish highlands to have snowy mountain tops in the background of your images?

Calton Hill surprise marriage proposal in Edinburgh - engagement photos in Scotland

Surprise marriage proposal on Calton Hill - newly engaged couple kissing

What should we wear for our engagement photos in Scotland?

Let’s start with the question on what to avoid. The most important thing is to express your personal style and not to wear anything uncomfortable just because it looks good. Not worth it! We will concentrate on capturing some sweet moments between you and your fiancé so wear something nice, but comfy. And something that will keep you warm in the cold seasons of the year, too.

Second of all, I’d advise you against clothes with patterns or any logos on them, since we want to make your photos look – and stay – timeless. Also, romantic and moody landscapes of Scotland don’t go very well with these. Plus, they often distract the viewer from most important part of the photograph – you, the couple!

What looks good? Maxi dresses look super romantic in photos taken in Scotland. And this look is not just for the Outlander fans, I promise! A very classy look for a guy could be chinos and a smart shirt. When it comes to colder times of the year, longer wool coats look incredibly elegant.

And, you can’t go wrong with a clear umbrella on a rainy days. It adds to the atmosphere of the photos, you’re in rainy Scotland after all! They’re a great addition to your images.

My top tips: go barefoot for a beach engagement session. Don’t wear high heels if you hate them. Don’t wear dresses if you don’t like them. Don’t be scared to wear a beanie, scarfves or gloves in the winter. Scotland can be super cold and windy then! Also, a tartan shawl may add some cosy magic to the photos.

Rainy engagement photos in Dean Village

What colours to wear for your engagement shoot

Generally, I like seeing people in neutral colours – especially when surrounded by nature. Earthy colours also go amazing with the atmosphere of Edinburgh and Scotland – my favourite clothes colours include mustard, brown, orange, grey, beige, but also red and green. Although – green is not a good idea if our backdrop is nature, plants or hills in the summer, as it blends in the background.

What is more, I love to create a colour pop effect in my photographs so if we’re going to shoot at the Botanics or Holyrood Park, yellow, mustard or orange will be the most wonderful colours choices. What about colours I would avoid? Intense blue, pink, purple or both partners wearing black. I love to see a bit of a variety between you!

Beige, grey, black ones create a very classy look especially when surrounded by Scottish landscapes. Cosy sweaters are also a great idea for an autumn or winter engagement session in Scotland. And you can never go wrong with tweed in the colder months.

Finally, if you’re still unsure about what to wear, I’ll be happy to give you some more detailed outfit-related advice depending on the place we are planning to visit!

Woman showing her engagement ring on her hand in the photograph
engagement session edinburgh scotland

Make an adventure out of it.

Why not book a great spot for brunch or dinner after your session, or start your day with a good cup of coffee at your favourite café?

The better you know your photographer and the more comfortable you feel around them, the better the photographs will be. Get in the car and head outside the city, go for a long walk before the start of your session.

Or simply go somewhere neither of you have ever been to – what if you discover a new, magical or a hidden place somewhere in Scotland?

Victoria Street engagement session in Edinburgh - engagement photos tips and ideas, Edinburgh
Victoria Street engagement session in Edinburgh - engagement photos tips and ideas, Edinburgh

Top piece of advice: chase the light – choose the best time of day for your engagement photoshoot.

If possible, try to schedule your engagement session two hours before the sunset or shortly before the sunrise (but only if you’re an early bird in this case!).

The golden hour is my favourite time of the day – it’s a period shortly after sunrise or before sunset during which light is beautiful, warm and soft. As this time of the day gives you the best chance for outstanding photographs.

So the rule is: the lower the sun is in the sky, the better everything will look in the pictures. But one thing to bear in mind is that sunsets in Scotland are unfortunately quite rare. Overcast though it something to expect on a majority of days, no matter the season of the year.

Although the sky is often cloudy and seeing the sunset is impossible, it will give us an opportunity to create darker, moody look in the photos, which goes so well with the Scottish landscapes and atmosphere. A little bit of rain will not hurt either, as the colours become beautiful and saturated. One top tip when it comes to Scotland – it doesn’t hurt to carry an umbrella just in case, as the weather forecast is usually a bit unreliable and you can expect a wee bit of rain almost every day!

To sum up, it’s always best to rely on your photographer’s advice when choosing the best time of day for your photoshoot. So lean on them for advice!

Engagement photography in Glencoe, Scottish highlands

Glencoe engagement photoshoot - rainy adventure photoshoot in the Scottish highlands

engagement session scottish highlands

What if we want to have our session somewhere outside Edinburgh?

Then let’s get in the car and go! There are so many incredible places to explore in Scotland. And it’s an amazing idea to have your engagement session done somewhere far away from the city, especially if you’re a fellow nature lover and enjoy the great outdoors.

We are spoilt for choice – the list of beautiful locations is seemingly endless!

My favourite spot outside of the city is definitely Glencoe, if you’re up for a 2.5-hour drive and love the idea of mountainous backdrops, breathtaking and moody scenery and love the idea of bumping into some deer during our photoshoot. So just take a look at the images above – it can be you guys, enjoying the rainy days in the highlands and having lots of fun together!

Engagement photoshoot on Arthur's Seat in Edinburgh at sunset, Scotland

Couple laughing during their engagement session in Holyrood Park, Edinburgh

Holyrood Park pre-wedding photoshoot

Best engagement session locations in Edinburgh

When booking your engagement photoshoot in Edinburgh, you are spoiled for choice in terms of beautiful locations within the city. Whether it’s the medieval magic of the Old Town, or Georgian charm of New Town’s architecture – or the highland vibe of Holyrood Park.

My favourite locations include Arthur’s Seat (especially at sunset and sunrise!), the Botanics, Calton Hill, Dean Village, Circus Lane… but let’s not forget about cosy cafés such as the Milkman or Thomas J Walls, stunning and unique spots such as The Scotsman Cinema or hidden gems such as Assembly Steps of Divinity College.

I’ll be more than happy to help you out with choosing the best spots for photos – I’ve got your back!

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Elopement Photographer in Scotland

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