I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time finding what to wear on a typical day, not to mention on a day I’m going to be in front of the camera! I often find that choosing what to wear in front of the camera can be hard for even the most confident and fashionista-type people, so if you’re struggling to try to decide what to wear to your photo session, no worries, I got you!
The number one thing I want you to remember when picking out your outfit is comfort. First and foremost, you should feel like YOU.
I always recommend bringing two outfits, one that’s a little fancier and fun and one that’s relaxed and closer to your everyday look. We all like to get dressed up, especially for a memorable moment like your engagement session, so it’s great to have that nice button-up shirt and gorgeous dress on hand for photos. But it’s also nice to have pictures that are a little closer to how you look from day to day.
MATCH YOUR LOOK TO YOUR LOCATION.
Your options for your engagement session location are endless—the hills in the Ozark’s, the plains of Oklahoma, maybe even your favorite coffee shop, or in the coziness of your living room. Plan your outfits around what your know about the location. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend wearing a ball gown in your living room, haha!
TEXTURE AND MOVEMENT.
I recommend picking an outfit that has fabric that moves and flows with you. This adds beautiful movement to the photos and is fun to twirl around in. Natural fibers like cotton and linen are excellent. Avoid stiff fabric with collars, as these often need adjusting and get tucked in weird spots.
I always recommend neutral and earthy tones as these show up best on camera. Of course, I’m not saying we should live in a beige world and completely ignore color. By neutrals, I mean softer colors. Primary colors can be beautiful and striking but can tend to distract from you. For example instead of bright green, lean more towards a forest green.
The rule of thumb for pairing your outfit with your partner is to either compliment or contrast. Remember the color wheel from middle school? This is a great reference point to see what colors compliment each other, and what colors look a bit weird together.
BE CAREFUL WITH PATTERNS.
When picking out your outfit, try to stay away from bold patterns as they often steal the attention of the photograph when it should be on your lovely face!
Subtle patterns, or larger, spread-out patterns, look best, like flannel or a large floral print. But less is more with designs when it comes to photography. Matching patterns is hard, so if one person is wearing a colored pattern, I recommend the other wearing a solid neutral.
If you’re not sure whether or not your patterned outfit will work, just shoot me a test and I’d be happy to help you out.
LOGOS AND WORDS.
Words and logos, a lot like patterns, can be distracting and take away from you. Quite often, logos are placed in not-so-subtle places, and I don’t think we’re trying to advertise Nike during your engagement session, haha! I recommend leaving logos or words out unless they are tasteful and in theme with the shoot and fit your personality.
Sunglasses, hats, jackets, and even socks, are a great way to add some extra oomph to your outfit. Throw some extra accessories in your bag to play around with during our session but avoid large distracting pieces.
The only accessory I would recommend staying away from is watches, especially if they are more prominent. While they look great in person, I will be photographing from angles and distances that the average eye doesn’t look at. A large black watch doesn’t always look good in an up close image as you pull your Love in for some sugar.
If you are an expert heel wear, girl, wear those heels! But if you, like me, find heels completely uncomfortable, then do yourself a favor and ditch the heels for some cute flats. Or, like my sister did when I took her and my brother-in-law’s engagement photos, ditched shoes altogether and went barefoot.
Select the right shoe based on location, and think about what you’d wear if I weren’t following you around with a camera. Always consider the context for aesthetic and practical reasons.
If we are taking a hike up in the mountains, you can pack your cute shoes in a bag and wear the handy dandy hiking boots on the way up.
HAIR AND MAKEUP.
Like I said at the beginning, I want you to feel like YOU. If you’re a gal who likes simple makeup or even no makeup at all, I don’t want you to feel like you need to have a whole glam done to look beautiful on camera. You are beautiful on your own; however, you like to do your makeup, and I want to photograph that.
Same with your hair—whether you get it professionally styled or run a brush through it, I want you to feel like you. The key to anything is good hygiene.
- Dress for the season.
- Dress for the location.
- Compliment — don’t match.
- Wear something that feels like you and is comfortable.
- Natural fibers and earthy tones look best in most settings.
- Avoid bright patterns, prints, and logos.
- Add some accessories like a hat or jacket.