Man oh man. I know it can feel kind of daunting to pick what to wear for photos. Here are a few guidelines I’ve put together so you guys can be sure to look hot and be all over each other and feel like Beyonce, while still making sure the images are focused on your guys’ love, not what you’re wearing. Full disclaimer, I don’t know anything about fashion. I wear t shirts and sandals every day so there’s a hell of a good chance you’ve got better style than I do haha! This is just what I’ve found to work best from trial and error from past shoots, they’re only guidelines, not rules! You can show up wearing potato sacks for all I care.
Ultimately, I want you guys to look like yourselves. Don’t feel like if you don’t follow these guidelines that your photos are gonna suck. The most important thing to me is that you guys feel and look like yourselves, how you normally dress, so you can be as comfortable as possible! A lot of people try to go shopping for new clothes for the shoot beforehand but I actually recommend not going that route. Bring stuff you normally wear, stuff that’s already in your closet that you love and feel yourselves in. An old band t shirt and ripped jeans? Perfect. A lot of my couples will go shopping for “nicer” looking clothes which is totally fine, but sometimes they regret not just wearing they feel like themselves in. Who cares if you look back at the photos in 20 years and laugh about what you’re wearing? As long as it represented what you guys are like right now, thats all that matters. Plus, guys are usually not all that stoked about putting on a collared ironed button up with dress shoes if they’re used to wearing flannels and Chacos every day. Pinky promise they’ll be way more happy to be at the shoot if you don’t force an outfit he thinks is stupid.
Here’s a few guidelines to help if you’re feeling lost about what to wear :
First off, I always recommend to bring options. To get the best results, I’ll pick and pull from the options you bring for you guys to change into for each location we shoot at. This way I can make sure the outfits compliment the environment so that the focus is on you two, not on any distractions, which yes, can be your outfits. All you have to do is make sure you bring stuff that you feel like a million bucks in that we can pick and pull from!
Don’t bring your whole closet though. It will take too much time for me to go through everything and will take time away from your session. Most people bring about 3 or 4 pairs of bottoms and 4 or 5 tops each, then you can bring dresses, accessories, jackets and whatnot as well. Also, just know that depending on where we are shooting, you’ll most likely be changing in the back of the car on the side of the road. If you aren’t down with that, that’s totally fine and you can just bring one outfit! Just make sure to text me a few photos of the outfit options you have and we can pick it out together beforehand.
Make sure it makes sense.
Think about the conditions and locations we are going to be shooting in and plan around it. If we are going to be hiking around the mountains, bring shoes with good grip and you won’t twist your ankles in. If we are shooting on a sandy beach, it would look weird if you’re wearing shoes (ps heels are almost always a bad idea in most scenarios, unless you’re freakishly good at walking in them haha). If it’s freezing cold outside, bring lots of layers and warm clothes with wool socks and boots. If it’s going to be hot, bring clothes that can breathe more so you don’t have sweaty pit stains in the photos. Be as comfortable as you can be!
Like I said, make sure that the materials you wear will keep you comfortable during the shoot not only for temperatures but also for being able to move around in. If you're in brand new jeans that are still stiff and tight, you might be distracted during the shoot trying to make sure everything stays in place as well as lets you sit and run and move around in. I recommend bringing clothes that are "broken in" so that you'll be as comfortable as possible. I also love when people bring clothing or accessories that can show movement by catching wind, because it adds energy to the photos and looks freaking gorgeous!
I typically recommend sticking with neutrals and earthy tones. Neutrals doesn’t mean just grays and browns, there’s neutrals of every color (mustard yellow, forest green, navy blue, burnt orange, etc) Stay away from bright fluorescent distracting colors. The only specific colors I typically recommend to stay away from are pinks, bright oranges, and reds. If you have dark or olive toned skin it might be an exception with the light conditions, but a lot of the time it results in people looking really pink and weird in photos. So just try and stay away from those colors if you can, but if you really want to wear something that is pink, orange or red just check with me!
Avoid big, loud, chunky, crazy patterns. The smaller or more subtle, the better! If the pattern is too loud, it will distract from your faces. Flannels are always a yes in my book (probably because I wear one every day haha)! I usually try to avoid pairing too many patterns together because, you guessed it, it makes the photos feel a little hectic and distracting from your faces and the location. Also, be sure to iron your clothes before so there’s not huge wrinkles distracting from your faces either!
I love when people bring hats, sunglasses, scarves, jewelry, etc because it’s nice to pair them with different outfit options. Just avoid wearing watches so they don’t distract from your faces when I’m getting close up shots!
When I think “props”, my mind flashes through all of the cringe-worthy Pinterest photos I’ve seen of cheesy chalkboards and hobby lobby props brought to shoots that basically just make me wanna barf. But props don’t have to be cheesy! Props could be a dominos pizza picnic, a motorcycle, your naked cats (if you have a dog and don't bring it I’ll be pissed), blankets, a truck/car, a campfire, a bouquet, a paddle board, etc. If you have props you wanna incorporate, let me know and we can make sure to incorporate them in a non-cheesy way!
In Home Sessions
All of the above applies, but for in home sessions I say the more skin showing the better! No that doesn’t mean you need to be borderline naked, I’m just saying the photos will look a lot more comfortable and intimate than if you’re in lots of heavy layers! Cause let’s be real, most of us walk around without pants on at home anyways. I recommend bringing options of tank tops, shorts, sweaters, and jeans to mix and match! Anything that will show some skin is perf! Or if you wanna just wear a sweater with undies for a few or have your bae be shirtless, then heck yes to that. I pinky promise I’m not a creep hahah.
Hair + Makeup
A lot of people ask me whether or not they should get your hair and makeup done by a pro. My answer is always “whatever will make you feel best, do that.” I absolutely don’t think it’s necessary whatsoever, because in my personal opinion, I would rather look like MYSELF rather than a super glammed up version of myself; especially because I wear pretty minimal makeup with a messy top knot anyways. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve had girls show up to shoots wiping off the caked on makeup and taking out 500 bobby-pins their makeup and hair artist did because it just doesn’t look like them. But, if you want your hair and makeup done, then definitely do it, because the most important thing is that you feel confident like Beyonce always. If you’re getting hair and makeup done, I recommend you schedule to be done at least an hour before you have to leave for the shoot so you aren’t late. Also, if you’re whiter than toothpaste like me and want a spray tan, be sure to get a suuuuper natural airbrushed spray tan rather than one from a salon/tanning place. We don’t want you looking like an oompa loompa!
Welp that’s all folks!
If you have anymore questions, don’t hesitate to let me know! If you’re still freakin out about what to wear feel free to shoot me a pic or two of what you’re thinking, or we can create a little Pinterest board together! But overall, just wear what you’re comfortable in and feel like you in. A pair of Vans you’ve had since 8th grade? Great. A sweater you wore for basically a month straight? Awesome. A hat that you know your mom hates? Perfect. You do you, and I promise the photos will turn out amazing.
BREAK THE RULES