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I’m sure being the son, husband, father…. or family in general… of a photographer is hard.  I love to dress my kids up like we’re going to a photoshoot even when we’re headed out to shop.  So, for my son’s first birthday, my father, my husband, and my son all dressed up in white button downs, black bowties, jeans and suede shoes for a haircut and a shave.  Adorbs!

In downtown Frederick, there is a lumber-sexy clothing store called Citizen Frederick, and I love it.  In addition to the typical accessories such as bags, mustache styling cremes, and cuff links, Citizen Frederick has its own barber shop!  Like the kind where you can get your European soccer haircut and hot shave.  So, as a mom photographer, I could take my son to Kartoon Cuts, or an vintage-style barber shop with tattooed barbers, leather chairs and the smell of pachouli.

Oh, pachouli.  Prrrrr….

Jalapeno Photography was the photographer for the 1st Birthday Party- a first haircut.

Jalapeno Photography was the Newborn Photographer for the 1st birthday haircut.

Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. newborn photographer for this 1st birthday party.

Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. newborn photographer for the 1st birthday- a first haircut.

Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. newborn photographer for the first birthday party.

Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. area wedding photographer that photographed this 1st birthday party

Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. wedding photographer who took this newborn shoot- a first birthday haircut.

Jalapeno Photography was the newborn photographer who took this shot of little

Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. area wedding photographer who took this newborn shot.

Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. area wedding photographer who captured the first haircut.

Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. wedding photographer who captured this shot of her son

Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. area newborn photographer who captured this shot.

First haircut with Jalapeno Photography was Citizen Frederick barber shop just outside of Washington, D.C.


  • cassie @ primitive & proper - aaaaaaaah these are just the cutest!!!!! that pic of all the men, and then the one of just amaru in front of the flag- priceless!!! how handsome are all the men in your life?ReplyCancel

Last week, I suggested several shooting locations to a few clients, and tried to send along a few examples of images produced at those locations.  What I realized is one of my FAVORITE shoots isn’t on the new fancy-schmancy blog.  These beautiful images shouldn’t languish on my old blog!  So, for those who haven’t seen, here are some of my favorite images shoot at my estate.

In addition to just loving this couple, this shoot is a place holder for me.  This is the first shoot at my estate, and we shot it on the day we closed on the property.  These 7 acres are my little piece of heaven!  I’ll have another engagement session soon– with beautiful fall leaves!

Engagement session photos outside of Washington, D.C. Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. engagement photographer.

Engagement photos in a field just outside of Washington, D.C. Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. engagement photographer.

Field engagement photos outside of Washington, D.C. The Washington, D.C. engagement photographer was Jalapeno Photography.

Rural engagement photos outside of Washington, D.C. The Washington, D.C. engagement photographer was Jalapeno Photography.

Historic engagement photos outside of Washington, D.C. The Washington, D.C. engagement photographer was Jalapeno Photography.

Field engagement photos outside of Washington, D.C. The Washington, D.C. engagement photographer was Jalapeno Photography.

What to wear for a man on his Washington, D.C. engagement session.

I think “what to wear” is the most asked question I receive from couples planning their engagement photography in the Washington, D.C. area.  It’s such a hard question because what you wear in your engagement photography will be something you look at for years to come.  Most my couples want how they look in their photos to be: chic, refined, elegant, and maybe a little studly.

I put a little general “what to wear” post (see here), but for many, it didn’t go far enough.  They knew colors and styles they loved, but went to their closet or the closest J. Crew… and were lost and overwhelmed.  Do you feel the same way?  Don’t worry, I asked Antonio with Citizen Frederick to help me out.

First, business matters.  I’m a photographer, not a stylist.  I was not compensated for this post in any wayI asked Antonio of Citizen Frederick and a women’s boutique (info coming soon on the store– Silk and Burlap!) if we could partner because I want someone to send my couples to– someone who has listened to what I need to give couples awesome photos (see that general what to wear post here) and is willing to listen to my clients about what they like, what fits, and what makes them feel like the Beckhams.

I thought about going to someplace like Maxwell or Neimans in Tysons…. but here’s the deal, those people change.  Antonio owns the freakin’ store.  I can text him and let him know you’re coming and give some background on where we are shooting.  I know that my clients will be taken care of, and I don’t have that same assurance elsewhere.

So, as you are planning your session, here are some of the outfits Antonio of Citizen Frederick put together for the guys.  I love them!  Let me tell you, from the photographer’s perspective, what works and why.

The Preppy

Perfect what to wear for engagement sessions in Washington, D.C.

Perfect what to wear for men

If you’re a little preppy or a little nerdy, embrace it.  Justin is wearing slim-fit khakis, canvas sneakers, a bow tie with pops of color matching his socks, a chambray button down, and a cardigan.  The cardigan isn’t something that I would have picked, but it plays down the bow tie so it is not such a BOW TIE.  Also, its an awesome way to casual up an outfit.  It’s dressy, but not as dressy as a jacket.


Also, don’t forget about the details.  The socks are a perfect match to the bow tie.  The belt and watch take the outfit to “done.”

The Professional

What to wear for the professional for engagement photos in Washington, D.C.

What to wear for a professional to his engagement photography in Washington, D.C.

Jason is wearing tailored khakis with a houndstooth sweater, white button-down shirt, and rugged boots.  As a professional, you may look at your closet and see suits… or gym clothes.  Jason’s look is a great “medium ground” outfit.

Word of caution, however, if you want to wear a white button-down shirt, layer it under something– a sport coat, sweater or vest.  Layers create dimension and and texture.  A plain white shirt “sucks” all the light in the image and draws your eye away from your face.

The Lumber Sexual

Lumber-sexy what to wear for a DC engagement.

Lumber-sexy engagement what-to-wear for Washington, D.C. grooms.

Justin pulled off the perfect lumber sexy look.  If you know me, I love a red, white and blue color pallet.  It’s classic, clean, stylish, and heck, even patriotic.  Jason layered some classic jeans, brown boots, grey shirt, denim shirt, and quilted plaid jacket.

This is a perfect look for a guy’s guy.  Word of caution: every outfit doesn’t work on every body.  This is perfect for Jason because he’s so thin.  It gives him great bulk.  If you are a bigger guy, too many layers will make you feel and look like the hulk.

The Sporty Look

Sporty engagement photography what to wear session for Washington, D.C. grooms.

What to wear for your engagement photography for the sporty Washington, D.C. groom.

For the guy who hates to be “styled,” Adam’s sporty look is perfect.  Tailored khakis, white kicks, his favorite hoody, and a navy jacket.  He’s dressed up but still comfortable.  The key to this look and the next look is a slim fit trouser.  The style is unabashedly casual.  This is your engagement session, however.  Not tailgating.

Word of caution: Adam is in solid colors.  Solid colors or wild patterns are awesome.  Plaids with tight weaves or thin, close-together stripes don’t present well on screen or in print.  The color gets all wavy and starts to look like a topographic map.

The T-Shirt Guy

What to wear for the

What to wear for your Washington, D.C. engagement photos.

Some guys are just t-shirt guys.  You put them in something else, and you almost feel itchy for them.  Again, with a great pair of fitted jeans, a crisp t-shirt, and some killer boots… you can get by for one of your engagement session looks.  You should still have a more formal look, but this one can pass for your casual look.  Pop it with a killer jacket to get that lumber-sexy look.

The Monochrome Man

What to wear for the groom for his Washington, D.C. engagement photos.

If you are stuck on wearing a white shirt, it should be because you love the monochrome look, not because you can’t find something else.  You can’t find something else?  Ask Antonio to help you.  If you like the monochrome look, think about photographing against a simple wall– white, gray, no patterns, no leaves or trees.  Also, a white shirt will make a big guy look bigger.  Something to consider.

Thoughts?  You’ve seen looks for the the preppy, the professional, the lumber sexual, the sporty guy, the t-shirt guy, and the monochrome man…. I’ve love to have leave a comment with you favorite style and the female styles you’d like to see next week!

  • cassie @ primitive & proper - great picks! i am a plaid or t shirt gal and those are my two faves! although i love hoodies, too!!! happy november, my friend!ReplyCancel

  • Katie - Love love love these suggestions! So hard to pin point what guys should wear, but this is just spot on!ReplyCancel

  • Julianne Cyr - I love this! It would be useful for many reasons, not JUST for engagement photos too! I personally love the lumber-sexual :) Thanks for the info and the ideasReplyCancel

I’m in the thick of editing and shooting– most photographers are done for the season, but I have a double-header this weekend, then I peter down (real phrase, right?) to one or two weddings a month.  Still, I have to spend a little bit of time on my house every day week to make sure I continue to take back the farmhouse.

If you didn’t read this post, in addition to shooting weddings, I’m also rehabbing a nearly 300-year old farmhouse just north of Leesburg.

Now that I’ve finished most of the big projects (read about the big projects here), I get to start decorating the inside.  I love me some antiques– not weird, mahogany pieces that look like they should (or do!) smell like cigarettes.  I don’t love something just because it’s old.

I love one-of-a-kinds, raw wood, Frenchy-glam, gody chandeliers and sexy clawfoot tubs- kind of antiques.  

I also like clean and am finding the cost-benefit of not fixing something old to make it “kinda” work, but sometimes buying new.  So, I’ve fallen in love with this site called Joss and Main.  It’s one of those sites running daily or weekly deals, and I think its associated with Wayfair.  The reason that I like it is because I consistently find the best deals on this site, and I’m in love with the products.

I shop One Kings Lane, Guilt and others that are stored under my shopping button on my iPhone.  I don’t think I’ve purchased anything from One Kings Lane, however.  I love Guilt’s clothes, but have only purchased a candle from their home section.  Here’s what I’ve picked up from Joss and Main:

This 9 x 12 rug for under $350!  I had a kilim rug, but it rolled at the corners.  I couldn’t find a real antique rug on Craigslist in the right size (9 x 12 ish), colors (reds), and price.  I LOVE this one even though it has some turquoise.  I’ll save my pennies for other Joss and Main rugs for other rooms of the house.

This hot air balloon mobile is perfection and is in my son’s vintage adventurer nursery.  I thought about making it…. but, I don’t have time, and I didn’t want it to look like a student project.  Kind of a splurge for a mobile and his vintage room, but it’s also kinda art.  I consider it a deal at $70-$80.

Then, this chandelier.  I LOVE it.  It has a rustic look with all the modern wiring.  Add to that, I saw similar one at Restoration **Outlet** for $800+, and this was a steal for $275-$295.  The plaster ceiling medallion was already there, and the metal cap came with the chandelier.

I know I started this post with working on the house, “weekly.”  I don’t want to leave you under the impression that I completed these projects this week— oh goodness, no.  I’ve collected these things over the last year.  Right now, I’m working on just keeping the house together while I work through editing and shooting.

… but when I need a little mental break, I’ll pop into my shopping button on the iPhone.  If you need a break today, too, totally check out Joss and Main.  I’ve included my affiliate link, and it would be awesome if you use it to help me save my pennies for this couch…. This couch gets me all smiley face with heart eyes for sure! The 73.1 inch Corinne Sofa.

Dear, Lovelies…. I have been so busy shooting and editing, I have neglected you.  Let me try to woo you back with beautiful eye candy from some of the projects I’m working on.  I am in love with these shoots!

Some wedding photography from the Hotel Monaco in Baltimore.

Kelly and Rob had their wedding at the Hotel Monaco in Baltimore. Jalapeno Photography was Baltimore wedding photographer.

An engagement shoot in Harper’s Ferry.

Cassidy and George had their engagement photography in Harper

An engagement shoot at my estate.

Eric and Sarah will have their wedding in Bethesda. Jalapeno Photography was the Washington, D.C. wedding photographer.

Just you wait!  I am bundling blog posts like Christmas packages.  I am so excited to show you more!

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  • Kelly - Ooh La La Designs - Gorgeous! Your images capture love perfectly xoReplyCancel

    • - Thanks so much, Kelly!ReplyCancel

  • Amber - Love that city wedding!!! The bride kinda looks like Ann Hathaway!ReplyCancel

    • - Thanks so much, Amber, and about the bride, I know, right?! All day we were talking about how she bucked trends to be this classic, stunning beauty.ReplyCancel

  • Shaunae - Very pretty! Can’t wait to see more from the wedding at Hotel Monaco!ReplyCancel

    • - Thanks so much, Shaunae! I should have the full post from the Monaco wedding up in two weeks!ReplyCancel

  • Crystal - Beautiful work!! Love the light in the city wedding!!ReplyCancel

    • - Thanks, Crystal! We were worried it would be too industrial, but I think you’re right. The light added to the shoot!ReplyCancel

  • Sarah Marie - Beautiful eye candy indeed! love that wedding dress.ReplyCancel

    • - Thanks, Sarah Marie! I love that dress, too. Not many ivory dresses this year, but this one… wow!ReplyCancel

  • Erica - Really lovely, I particularly love the one with the red shoes…so cute! CheersReplyCancel

    • - Erica, I love her shoes, too! Awesome shoe choice by Sarah for sure!!ReplyCancel

  • Amy Santos - Love the wedding portraits in the city, how stunning!! And the backdrops for both engagement sessions are so inviting. Great photography!ReplyCancel

  • Tracey Ahrendt - Fabulous Engagement and Wedding Professional Photography!!! Love your workReplyCancel

  • Lori Foxworth - I didn’t realize there was a Hotel Monaco in Baltimore! One of my very favorite wedding venues. Absolutely adore your wedding photography. Beautiful work.ReplyCancel

  • Andrea - Wow! Can’t wait to see more! Love the moody west Virginia engagement session!ReplyCancel

  • Andrea - Wow! Can’t wait to see more! Love the moody west Virginia engagement session!ReplyCancel