(Closed) Are save the dates and engagement photos a trend or a necessity in your opinion?

posted 4 years ago in Photos/Videos
  • poll: Did you do save the dates or invitations?

    Yes, we did both.

    We only did engagement photos.

    We only did save the dates.

    We didn't do either of them.

  • Post # 31
    5077 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: December 2014

    We had a surprise wedding, so we obviously didn’t have STDs or even invites. We also did not do engagement photos (or even professional wedding photos). 

    I think STDs can be helpful if you have many guests who will have to travel. People are more spread out these days than before, so I think that’s the reason for the rise in these. 

    Engagement photos are totally not necessary. I think they’re just part of what seems to be the trend nowadays (at least in the US) of people wanting to have professional photoshoots done for every milestone (senior photos, engagement, wedding, boudoir, pregnancy, family, etc.).  

    Post # 32
    60 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: October 2017

    View original reply
    brittnamrogo :  I answered that we did both, but more accurately we had a proposal shoot and sent out save the dates. My Fiance had arranged for a photographer to capture the actual proposal, and then we had some portraits done immediately following. Had he not done that, we probably would’ve done engagement photos because I’m a totally picture person. Also, I have noticed that many photographers will inlcude a complementary engagement session in their wedding packages. I think it is intended to be a nice little bonus and allow them to work with you prior to the big day to ensure that you like everything/work out kinks. 

    As far as the STD’s go, I think they are a nice headsup but not necessary. My main reason for sending them was that our wedding is a destination wedding and I included our wedding website url so our guest could have all the details they needed in advance as hotel rooms book up quickly in the area. 

    Post # 33
    471 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: August 2017

    STDs were necessary for us because we’re having a local destination wedding which requires all of us to travel.  Also, a bunch of our friends are also getting married this year, and we wanted to make sure that our invited guests knew to keep the weekend of our wedding open if they want to attend.  If you are having a local wedding and people don’t have to make travel plans, then I don’t think they’re necessary, although they’re nice.

    Apparently I’m in the minority but my fiance and I did not do an engagement photo session, and we have no regrets.  99% of engagement photos I’ve seen are cheesy and just not my style.  We were able to do a less expensive package with my amazing (but pricey) photographer by omitting them.  I’d much rather spend that money on something else.  We were also lucky enough to have my fiance’s best friend’s wife take photos of us (not a scheduled engagement session) when we were wandering around my fiance’s hometown waterfront, and they turned out incredible.  So we already have beautiful photos of us in our regular clothes being affectionate in a beautiful setting.

    Post # 34
    3437 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2017 - Poppy Ridge Golf Course

    No engagement photos. Didn’t find them necessary. Have pics together in Costa Rica where we got engaged so thats enough memory. Sent save the dates out Monday but already regretting that choice. Mom: I got your invite! Me: Mommy its a save the date not the actual invite. It says formal invitation to follow. Mom: Its a what now? So this is like an invite before the invite? I already know the date dear I have it saved. Me: *rubs forehead* I wasn’t even aware save the dates were a thing before coming to WB so it should have occurred to me that majority of the people we know might be a bit confused getting these. 😅

    Post # 35
    281 posts
    Helper bee

    View original reply
    brittnamrogo :  Hi, we did both, but it isn’t a necessity per say…just personal preference. For us both are necessity. Our photographer was there for the actual engagement and we will have those memories to cherish and I love that. We are also using those photos for the invitations and ceremony and reception. We need save the dates also because a lot of guests are out of state or out of the country. I hand made them myself just because I wanted to be creative and put some personal “love and time” into it. Not something that anyone has to do, but I’m glad we did.

    Post # 36
    4904 posts
    Honey bee

    Trend.  I’m neutral on engagement photos. They aren’t a necessity.  

    I’m not a fan of save the dates except for people who will have to travel, your very closest VIPs (and I would think you are checking with them before you book a date anyway), or if you are having your wedding on a holiday or popular holiday travel weekend.  Most people simply don’t need that much notice.  The standard 6- 8 weeks notice an invite gives is enough notice in most situations.  

    Plus, I think they can be more hassle than they are worth.  I don’t know if people are so caught up in thinking everyone simply must set aside this day just for me instead of treating it as a “heads up- invite coming and I hope you will be able to make it” or what?  I see more and more people posting on forums who I think planned poorly or out of order.  It’s like they were so involved in making sure they announced their “special day” via save the date and it now bites them in the butt because they did it before they figured out budget and financing or venue capacity or didn’t consider their relationships may change in the intervening year, etc.   

    So, fine in limited circumstances and if you have your ducks in a row, otherwise not necessary and potentially a bad idea if you do not have things locked down rock solid.

    Post # 37
    937 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: March 2018

    For Save the Dates, I think there are a lot of occasions where it’s best to send them and PPs have done a good job of listing those. For us personally, we’re going to send them because 1. A lot of people in our peer group are getting married these days and I just think it’s good to call “dibs” lol, and 2. A good chunk of our guests will probably need to get a hotel room, and I’d like to give as much heads up as possible.

    Here’s where I’m going to go against the grain: in my opinion, engagement photos are 100% necessary. Like many bees here, I found them corny and tacky before, but here are the reasons that changed my way of thinking:

    -The last time either of us were in front of a professional camera was for senior pictures – and we both looked awkward as hell in those. Any practice being more comfortable in front of the camera is time and money well spent

    -In that same vein, we’re paying a lot for our wedding photos – we want to look damn good in them. Giving our photographer a chance to learn our angles/how to work with us will definitely help

    -I’m doing my makeup trial on the day of my photos, which will give me a perfect chance to see how my makeup photographs

    So yeah, even if we don’t ever end up showing a single soul any of our engagement photos, I definitely think the experience will be worth it. 

    Post # 38
    10274 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: August 2016

    We DIY’d our engagement photos. It was a super fun way to spend a couple of hours. And we did send STDs because the majority of our guestlist needed to travel. But I don’t think either are necessary if you want to skip them. But we do lots of things in life that aren’t necessary. Really 99% of a wedding isn’t necessary for actually getting married.

    Post # 39
    413 posts
    Helper bee

    I had visions to do my engagement shoot in a specific place for years! I was super excited to do mine (and I actually like some of those pictures more than my wedding photos), but I dont think its necesary if you dont want them. I also liked having save the dates (we did magnets), since we had a lot of Out of Town guests.

    Post # 40
    427 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: March 2016

    View original reply
    honeybee16 :  Ditto!

    I will say Save the Dates also can be virtual aka FREE (in some cases)! We did Save the Date e-cards and it was fine. And even then, family had spread the word especially to those flying from out of state and internationally (we had a few in this boat). Save the Dates were 7 months before but family knew about the date shortly after we booked the venue.

    Post # 41
    2803 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2016

    I don’t think either are necessary. 

    Engagement photos came with the package we chose, and there wasn’t a way around doing the extra shoot, because the packages were by total hours you wanted on your wedding day. We did however, arrange to do them about six months after the wedding, and have a family shoot with out kiddos instead. Doesn’t work that way for everyone, but it did for us.

    Post # 42
    877 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2017

    No they are not a MUST. Your life will go on

    We did both engagement photos and save the dates.

    Engagement Photos: first of all it doesnt matter when you got/how long you have been engaged for. they are called enagement photos so during the time of your duration you can get them whenever

    we did ours 4 months after engagement, I know people who did them right away some who wanted to lose weight/other physical things and did them before wedding.

    I just think its nice to have professional pictures of you other than wedding

    But for us it was KEY to work with our photographer before wedding I have simply heard way too many bad stories and I am not about to put down a huge amount of money and just trust their website (of their selected best works) thats me though

    Save the dates.. to me these are a no brainer and they are also super cheap can even be done online.

    Post # 43
    133 posts
    Blushing bee

    We ended up doing engagement photos and save the dates because the engagement photos were included in the package and the save the dates were pretty cheap for us.

    But I don’t think it’s mandatory to do either. I think engagement photos are really just for you and your fiance to have some pretty photos of yourself. A little self-indulgent but who isn’t lol.

    And the save the dates… well I basically told everyone I wanted there the moment we knew our date so the save the date wasn’t anything new. Just a formality.

    Post # 44
    1146 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: May 2017

    We were engaged almost a year when we did our engagement shoot but we didn’t post them (just used as a profile picture and that’s it). It was good to practice posing with our photographer and we used one of the photos for our save the date. Which was helpful for guests who wanted to schedule things early! (A few are coming from overseas) the rest of the photos we used to make a guest book from artifact uprising and it’s so awesome

    Post # 45
    7976 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper

    We are doing both.

    I think STDs are important because people book things so far in advance now. My boss books his vacation 1 year in advance, as soon as he comes back from his last one lol. Since we no longer live in an era of living 2 blocks from your childhood home, and many people are so spread out, I think its a nice courtesy to give them a heads up on the date/place so they can start making travel arrangements.

    I think engagement photos are dumb in general. I don’t think people really care how cute you look now that youre engaged, or if your STD has your face on it or not. I do think its nice to be able to work with your photographer before your actual wedding, and I know I’m looking forward to (hopefully) getting through my nerves and relaxing a bit. I’d rather stumble through an engagement shoot and get through it, vs at my wedding.

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