You can never be overdressed or overeducated.Oscar Wilde
I’m so happy you’re taking the time to read this guide! To create beautiful photographs, so many moving pieces need to be in place. Ideally, we’ll have the perfect lighting, amazing weather, a beautiful setting, a relaxed and fun vibe, and comfortable clothing that makes you feel confident and alive. Choosing the perfect outfit can be tough though! This guide is meant to help you choose outfits that work well in outdoor settings.
I have been shopping all my life and still have nothing to wear.every woman ever
12 Wardrobe Tips for Your Outdoor Photo Session
- Choose Clothing with Warm, Neutral Tones – If your favorite colors can be regularly found in your outdoor photo backdrop of choice, they will likely work great! Consider wearing clothing that features blues, greens, tan, gold, orange, light pink, or white. I strongly encourage clients to avoid wearing all red, black, neon, or any colors that might clash with an outdoor scene. You’re less likely to love your photos if the colors don’t mesh well with the background.
- Coordinate Outfits – Your family, partner, or friend group doesn’t all have to wear the same color, but consider choosing colors and patterns that work well together. I don’t recommend that everyone wears plaid or stripes, but if one person in your party wears plaid and it matches with the other outfits – it can definitely work. If you have any questions about your outfits, go ahead and send me a FB message or text. I’m happy to help.
- Dress Up – I don’t mean you need to buy a $1,000 gown. However, consider dressing up slightly more than you would on a normal day. We always feel more confident when we know we look our best. Make sure you are comfortable and don’t wear itchy material, but wear something a step above what you would usually wear. Maybe add layers like a cute vest or jacket. (Check out Pinterest for outfit and layering ideas.)
- Fitted Clothing – It’s easy to think that loose clothing will hide any flaws. However, in photos, it can often make you look bigger than you are. Make sure you choose an outfit that fits you well and doesn’t have anything loose about it that can hang in an unflattering way.
- Get in Date Night Mode – Think about the last date you went on. What did you do beforehand? You probably got a haircut, bought some new makeup, shaved, tried out a new perfume or cologne, put on some fun music, had an adult beverage, trimmed your nails, and pumped yourself up to have some fun! Think of our photography session as a fun date night. (Also, plan to go out afterward!) You’ll be much happier with your photos if you do a little extra grooming and get in the same mindset.
- Footwear – Where are you heading for pictures? Wearing those gorgeous high heels won’t do any good if we are going to the beach! Instead, consider investing your high heel money in a pedicure. You may also want to wipe any mud stains off your children’s shoes before the photo shoot. Footwear might seem like a small detail, but if everything else about the picture is perfect, imperfect footwear (and socks) will stand out.
- Avoid Logos, Lettering, and Hats – Logos are easy to miss, but even small logos and lettering are distracting in photos. Please avoid wearing them. Also, hats with a brim can cast a shadow over your face during photos so I recommend avoiding most hats as well.
- Pay Attention to Details – Do you have a bandaid on a small scratch? Does your favorite watch not match with the outfit you chose? Is there a tiny rip in your socks that you don’t think anyone will see? Try to remove or replace small items like this. It will ALL stand out in photos.
- Add a Little Contrast – If we’re taking your photos in the woods around springtime, you’ll want to avoid wearing solid green clothing or you could blend in too much with the leaves. Adding a little contrast between the background and your outfit is best.
- Watch Your Pockets, Tuck in the Shirt, Fix the Collar – As your photographer, I will try my best to catch any wardrobe malfunctions. However, you can help by checking this ahead of time, too. Also, I will happily hold your cell phone and keys for you! Just please, please don’t put them in your pocket. It will show in photos.
- Consider the Weather – While you might be incredibly tough and not care what the temperature will be, your child or teenager is unlikely to smile for pictures if he or she is cold, hot, or in any way uncomfortable. Please check the weather before our shoot and make sure you and your little ones are dressed for the weather.
- Try Your Outfit On in Advance – Last, but not least, don’t wait until right before our shoot to put on your new outfits. I have had clients show up with clothing that still has the stickers and tags on and suit jackets with the back still sewn together. Life happens, but let’s try to avoid this situation. I want you to love your photos, and all these little details can get in the way if we overlook them on the day of your shoot.
It’s All About Mindset
All that being said, the right mindset is the most important thing you can wear for your photos! Try to forget about the stresses of the day, your little one’s tantrum, the small argument you just had with your partner, or the person that just cut you off on the way to your photo session.
Shake it all off. Let it go. Focus on your breathing. You’re having photos taken to capture this brief, imperfectly perfect moment in time and to share these photographs with the ones you love. Be yourself. Relax. I know we’re going to have a blast. 🙂
Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself.Coco Chanel