What to Wear Guide
Hands down, the most frequent question I get asked is, “WHAT do we wear!?” It seems that coming up with outfits to wear during a photoshoot is a really stressful thing for most of my clients, but it doesn’t have to be! Below are some of my favorite tips along with a few examples of theme-done-right photos to help take the anxiety out of this task (and maybe even have a little fun in the process!). Remember – the most important part is picking something you feel good in because clothes that make you FEEL good, make you LOOK good!
WHAT TO WEAR
- Matchy match is OUT, coordinating is IN
- Stay away from wearing all black, all white, or all anything. Combine light and dark shades and mix complementary colors. This is a fun way of showing off a little bit of each person’s personality. Those details really help make your photos unique and personal.
- Make sure everyone dresses at the same level of formality
- either all dressy or all casual. This means before you begin planning what to wear, you should give some thought to the type of photos you are hoping to capture in your shoot. How formal or casual you want your photos to be is a great starting point for deciding on outfits.
- Start with one outfit or a favorite piece and go from there
- Often it is a favorite dress, a bright piece of jewelry, or a handsome little bow tie that will be the thing that jumpstarts your photo’s theme. You can then build the rest of the wardrobe around it, bringing in coordinating clothing and accessories.
- Make sure all clothing fits and is comfortable
- We often purchase clothes for kids to grow into, but for a photo you want everyone to wear well-fitting clothes because it looks less sloppy. Clothes that fit photograph better and are just more comfortable. Comfort is such a valuable factor in getting a successful photograph because when everyone IS comfortable, they will LOOK comfortable.
- Layers add great texture
- Texture is important to a great photo. Layers add dimension and depth and are also a great way to add personality. For colder weather shoots this seems easy enough – sweaters, boots, vests. But this is just as easy with warmer weather shoots as you can add belts, jewelry, and other accessories.
- Don’t be scared of prints
- People often tell me they fear that a pattern will overwhelm a photo. In actuality, the opposite is true as patterns, especially in children’s clothing, can be a great way to tie your family’s wardrobe together! Be adventurous and mix it up a bit. Experiment with a pattern or two and see what happens!
WHAT NOT TO WEAR
- Avoid too much green. Green is a great accent color, but too much of it blends into an outdoor background (if we decide to photograph in your yard, and makes it harder for the people in the photo to stand out from their surroundings).
- Avoid fluorescents. Fluorescent colors are trendy right now, but they don’t photograph well. Often times they cause reflections onto your hair and face. They are also visually overwhelming, and pull the eye away from the most important part of the photo – you!!
- Avoid logos. Although certain brands are really popular, especially in kid’s clothing, you should avoid them in photoshoots. A word or brand image really stand out in a photo and can distract from the people and surroundings featured in it.
EXTENDED FAMILY SESSIONS
LIFESTYLE NEWBORN SESSIONS
My #1 tip for in-home sessions is KEEP IT SIMPLE! Neutral tones of gray, blue, black, tan or white always work well. It’s ok to add a pop of color or patterns, but I would suggest not being too “matchy”. Instead of matching, coordinate. For siblings, a light blue or pink accent can add a nice touch, but the focus should be the baby.
Kids under 1 year old may be photographed naked, unless you request not to. It’s always cute to bring a cute hat, bowtie, bow to be used for these shots. Also, please have a diaper cover.
I allow 3 outfit changes in a senior session so choose a variety that will show off your individuality. Please keep in mind that fitted clothing photographs best (avoid baggy styles) and that certain trends can really date your photos. Some people like the idea of incorporating dated trends into their photos, and some people like a more timeless look. Know what you are aiming for before you pick your outfits. Most importantly, wear outfits that you love and that reflect who you are because that is what you will be most comfortable in. I encourage you to bring along props that represent your high school years (sporting items, musical instruments, favorite books, etc). Accessories (hats, scarves, jewelry, bow ties, etc) are always fun to incorporate too!