How to Save Money On Your Engagement Session

Weddings are expensive there is no doubt about it so finding ways to cut costs or eliminate them altogether is worth doing some research first. See how we saved money on our engagement shoot just by getting a little creative and using our resources. There maybe resources you have and may not know it yet.

Barter for your photographer

Ok, this sounds bad at first, but let me explain. Sammy and I have a good friend who is very talented in the graphic design and media area. We wanted him as our photographer, but he is a groomsman and we just don’t agree with putting our friends to work. We asked him if he would mind shooting our engagement session and he said yes! He offered to do it for free (now you can stop judging). Of course we aren’t going to let him do us a service and not provide compensation so we offered to take him to eat afterwards.

If you have a friend which most of us do, who is willing to provide a service like this for you, even half off their services or a barter trade is a sweet deal. If you don’t have the privilege don’t give up. Contact amateur photographers who are looking to grow their portfolio. You can find them everywhere with this social media/selfie craze we are in now, everyone has photography skills. It just depends on what look you’re going for and if you’re willing to take that chance.

So you’re a little too boogie for an amateur  or a “friendor”, try kindly negotiating the price with your favorite photographer and see what they can offer you. Honesty goes a long way. We got our wedding photographer for the entire day from getting ready through the reception for a very affordable price. These tips work.

Estimated cost of photographer for Engagement session= $200

How much we paid= $0 (nice meal in exchange for services)

Savings on this project= $200

Do It Your (DAMN) Self

Save money by doing it yourself. This even goes if you aren’t planning a wedding. Before you do it yourself be sure the time that it takes you to do whatever it is, doesn’t cost you more in time, effort and money than it would to just have a professional do it for you.

I pinned these cute embroidered converses years ago to my Pinterest wedding inspiration board, so I had to have them. I figured I have some experience with sewing. I never did embroidery work before, but I knew I could learn. I did check Etsy first to see how much the service would be and quickly after checking, I went to my Michaels craft store and got all the materials. This project was not hard to do at all. It did take me a few hours and a few tries, but it was fun and rewarding to know that I put my personal stamp on something for our wedding and I saved a chunk while doing it.


Estimated Cost of project= $300

Our Cost of project= $110 (2 new pairs of Converses and embroidery materials)

Custom Shoes savings= $190

Keep calm and don’t get carried away

Sure, it’s the start of the biggest event of your life and you only get married once (hopefully). Like any other purchase ask yourself, “Do I truly need this?” “What will I do with this after the fact?” “Is spending a fortune on designer shoes for the engagement shoot worth sacrificing an open bar at the wedding?” Keep calm, be patient yet persistent in your search and finding clever ways to reduce your costs. You will get through this and be very proud of yourself.

Other options

Check Groupon for a photographer

Only have 2 outfit changes or none at all to prevent over spending and lost time (maybe a new fit and something your hubby/wifey loves on you)

Create a sinking fund for this project and stick to it.

Do your own beauty routine as far as hair and makeup goes. Check out my first full face beat on my insta @justadub. It was fun and I am pretty pleased with the results.


‘Til next time

xo, Andy



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