What to Wear Guide
Let’s face it, picking out outfits for a photoshoot is downright stressful. You want to look good, but at the same time, you don’t want to overdo it. Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. Let me preface this with saying that I am most definitely not a fashion stylist. I work from home, so that usually means you’ll find me in my comfiest sweats, and maybe a nice t-shirt if I’m feeling fancy. These tips are just what I’ve found work best from my past shoots. Remember, these are guidelines, not rules. If you’re dying to wear something that doesn’t fit within these guidelines, you rock that outfit. Ultimately, I want you to look and feel like yourselves.
I will start off with my #1 tip that will surprise a lot of you. You do NOT have to go shopping for new clothes beforehand. This isn’t saying that you absolutely shouldn’t. However, I’ve found that most people actually feel more comfortable, and are more likely to be relaxed, in favorite pieces that they’ve owned for a while since they are no longer worrying about getting dirt on that brand new dress, or feeling stiff in a new button-down. Some of my client’s favorite photos have been taken in their favorite, worn-in jeans and old band t-shirts. The more comfortable you feel, the more comfortable you’ll look in the photos. Plus, I’m a strong believer that photos are more meaningful when you can look back at them and they actually represent who you were at that time in your life. Do you really want to look back at photos of you and your significant other looking uncomfortable in fancy clothes, when that’s definitely not your style?
Something else I recommend for women is wearing clothing that can show movement in the wind, like flowy dresses and skirts. This will help add energy to the photos, not to mention look freaking gorgeous!
Hair & Makeup
This one is totally up to you. I definitely don’t think it’s necessary, however if getting your hair and makeup done is going to make you feel like a rockstar, more power to you! I personally don’t wear much makeup and am generally rocking a super messy bun (I have yet to master the art of messy bun that ‘,,actually looks really good, but just messy enough that people will think you didn’t spend much effort on it” - if this is you, text me your secrets.) If I were to have a full-face of makeup and perfectly done hair, I just wouldn’t feel like myself. All that being said, do what makes you feel most comfortable and most like you!
Please don’t go looking on Pinterest for prop ideas. I’ve seen my fair share of chalkboards and cheesy Hobby Lobby letters, it makes me cringe just thinking about it. However, props can be great when tastefully chosen and used. I’m talking about puppies (pleeeease bring your puppies), surfboards, campfires, blankets, bouquets, etc. Heck, we can even incorporate a Taco Bell picnic if you want! If you have props you want to use, just let me know and we can make sure to include them in a not-so-cringe-worthy manner.
I always recommend bringing several outfit options to the shoot. To get the best results, I’ll pick items from the options you guys bring that I think will look best for the location. Doing this allows me to make sure the outfits will compliment the environment, while also ensuring it’s something you’ll feel like a million bucks in! There’s no need to bring your entire closet though, 3-5 outfit options is plenty, and will keep us from spending hours going through wardrobe choices.
Also remember that, depending on the location, there’s a good chance you’ll be changing in the back of the car or on the side of the road. If that make you feel uncomfortable, that’s totally fine, and you can just bring one outfit. In this case, I recommend texting me some outfit options, and we can pick it out together beforehand.
I typically suggest sticking with neutral and earthy tones. Neutral doesn’t mean just black, whites, browns, and grays. There’s actually neutral/earthy tones of every color (mustard yellow, burnt orange, forest green, navy blue, etc.). Outfit color can make or break a photoshoot. and I strongly recommend avoiding neons and overly saturated colors such as bright red, oranges, and pinks. These colors can reflect onto the skin and surrounding, resulting in some wonky colors. If you have question on whether a color is too bight, just ask me beforehand and I’ll be happy to offer some guidance! When in doubt about what to wear, choose neutral, solid colors. Clothing should compliment the shoot, not steal the show.
Avoid loud, chunky, crazy patterns. The smaller or more subtle, the better! You don’t want the pattern distracting from your beautiful faces! Flannels are acceptable, just avoid pairing too many patterns together as this can cause the photos to look too busy and hectic. Also, be sure to iron your clothes before so there’s not huge distracting wrinkles.
Make Sure it Makes Sense
Before choosing your outfits, think about the location, weather, and conditions we will be shooting in. If we are going to be hiking around mountains or trekking through muddy forests, bring shoes with good grip that will be easy to walk in. Heels are almost always a bad choice unless you’re freakishly good at walking in them! My shoots are action based, rather than pose based, so I promise there will be lots of frolicking and twirling that could make heels a nightmare! Remember to plan for the weather and bring clothes that are weather appropriate. You don’t want to be a human ice cube or sweating bullets the entire time! If it’s going to be really hot out, I highly recommend bringing multiple shirts to avoid sweaty pit stains in your photos.