RAISE YOUR HAND IF YOU’VE EVER RIFLED THROUGH YOUR CLOSET LOOKING FOR SOMETHING TO WEAR FOR: A) FAMILY PICTURES, B) ENGAGEMENT PHOTOS, C) DATE NIGHT, D) A WEDDING (AS GUEST), E) ALL OF THE ABOVE (AND THEN SOME).
You are not alone my friend. I frequently fret about what I’ll wear in my own damn photos. I want to look fresh and stylish, but comfortable. I want my clothes to lay just right, but ugh, just give me back the sweats please. Oh, AND we have to coordinate more than one person to my outfit? What.A.Trip.
First step? Let’s all just take a breath here. The good news is, you have clothes in your closet/laundry basket/on the floor. Phew.
Next, how about some practical tips I use for myself planning out outfits when I have pictures taken?
TIP NUMBER 1:
Be yourself. Dress in a style that you are familiar with. Wear something you are familiar with. Don’t try to impress anyone. I swear I cannot smell your clothes in the pictures, though I do recommend wearing clean clothes. Wear something that fits well. If it doesn’t fit, you’re gonna fidget. Wear something that makes you feel hella good. If you’re feeling yourself, it shows. And if you’re feeling self conscious, it shows.
Also: I don’t care if you’ve got designer or thrifted jeans. If you wear it, have worn it, will wear it a million times over, wear it for your photos.
TIP NUMBER 2:
Coordinate rather than match. Color palettes of 2 neutrals and 2 colors are your friend. Especially when you are dressing more than two people. One of my personal favorite palettes is: grey, cream, mustard and olive. I live for earthy fall tones. But you? You can create your own palette using the 2 neutrals + 2 colors equation. It’s the easiest math you’ll have to do. When deciding on color palette, work from clothing you already own. Open the closet, scan, what do you see? Make a list of common colors you see in each person’s wardrobe. Go from there.
When you “coordinate” instead of “match” you add interest without creating distractions. *chef’s kiss*
TIP NUMBER 3:
Coordinate level of “dressy,” too. You don’t have to dress to the nines, but if one of you is in a formal dress and the other is in a tee shirt and shorts, we aren’t all on the same level. If you want both casual + dressy options, plan for both! We can totally squeeze in an outfit change. In fact, I recommend it for my couples and seniors. It offers variety in your final images as well as allows you to express more than one side of your personalities!
TIP NUMBER 4:
You don’t need to go shopping for something new—but I won’t stop you! However, I’m a believer in trying to shop more intentionally and more ethically. If you decide to shop for something new, consider these things: a) does it go with something I/we already own? b) will I/we wear this again? c) do I/we need whole new outfits or will one or two items do the trick? Be intentional with your purchases and your wardrobe. It will serve you well.
TIP NUMBER 5:
Dress for the location of your session. If you have chosen a field, a trail, a park, or anything outdoors that might have dirt and mud, make sure you are wearing something you don’t mind getting a little dirty. I’m not saying you’re going to roll in the mud, but if you have to walk through it, it’s gonna get a little messy. That’s just the nature of, well, nature. Your kid will probably end up with a small grass stain on their butts, or your shoes will get clumps of dirt stuck in the grooves, or maybe the grass is dewy and everyone’s pants are a little bit wet. Wear clothing you don’t mind doing a little extra laundry care for afterwards. Besides, we aren’t made for perfect and pristine—we were born to be a little messy. That’s where the magic happens, right?
OKAY. YOU’VE PICKED OUT YOUR OUTFITS. YOU LOOK GOOD. YOU FEEL GOOD. YOU EVEN COORDINATE PRETTY WELL. NOW WHAT?
Get dressed silly. It’s time for your session. See you there!
xoxo, your faithful truth-teller
May 29, 2020
I'm a Minnesota wedding photographer. I am best known for my candid photos that showcase the truest spirits of you and the people you love. As a documentary wedding photographer, I give you space for uninterrupted moments to experience your event as it happens. Always present, but not intrusive. I am always on the move, working my way into the middle of the action as often as I stand back and observe. This approach results in a comprehensive gallery of images that honestly and wholeheartedly tell the story of your wedding day-- the story of how you love, who was there, and why it matters.
If you believe in people coming first, in immersing yourself in your event, in photographs that represent your life, then it's time to reach out. Together we'll make the photographs you've dreamed of along with photos you never knew were possible.
[…] If you liked MaKayla + Tim’s engagement session, check out this post featuring their intimate wedding day!Need help planning for your own engagement session? Get some free advice for picking out outfits here! […]
[…] If you liked this engagement session, check out Jess + Alex’s Pizza and Beer photo session.If you need help picking outfits for your session, check out my top tips for getting dressed for your photo session. […]