Oh my. I know first hand how stressful it can be when picking what to wear for a photo session. Do I wear a band shirt? Do I wear a suit? Do I wear a dress? Do I wear a onesie? The answer to all of those could very well be “yes”, but I’ve put a few guidelines together so you guys can be sure to look unreal, jump all over each other, and feel like a stack of $100 bills on top of a cherry cheesecake. Truthfully, I don’t know anything about fashion. I wear too much denim, baggy sweaters, jeans that haven’t been washed in months, and a 7 year old pair of Van’s. What I’m saying is, there’s a strong chance you are way more fashionable than I am. I’ve done a ton of shoots throughout the past few years and this is simply what i’ve found based on trial and error from those past shoots. Again, these are just guidelines, there are no rules! You can show up wearing pickle costumes for all I care.
For me, the most important thing about fashion is that you guys feel and look like yourselves. Don’t feel like if you don’t follow these guidelines that your photo’s are gonna suck, because they won’t! Dress how you normally dress and be comfortable! Comfort is everything on these shoots. In fact, a lot of people ask me if they should go out and pick out new “fashionable” clothes and I always say no! Raid your closet, raid your basement, and bring clothes that you’d normally wear! Clothes that feel loved, worn in, and you! Do you have a $2 shirt you found that is your absolute favourite? Perfect! Do you have 55 holes in your pants? Killer! What matters most to me is that you are representing who you are right now. If in 30 years you look back and think “This was us!” that’s a win in my books.
What the frick do I wear?
Firstly, feel free to bring a few different pieces of clothing. Often times to get the best results, I’ll look at the location, and then pick the best clothes that will compliment the environment we are in so that the focus is on you! To make it easy, just bring stuff that makes you feel amazing and we’ll pick and pull from there.
DO NOT bring your entire wardrobe - haha! It will take a painful amount of time to go through and it could end up taking time away from your session. Couples generally bring 2 or 3 different tops, and 2 or 3 different bottoms each. From there, feel free to bring a dress or two, accessories, jackets, hats, belts….whatever! Also, keep in mind that depending on where we are, there’s a good chance you’ll be changing in your car or in the woods. If that isn’t something you are down for that is obviously fine and you can just bring one outfit. If you’re feeling stuck, feel free to shoot me a photo of the outfits and I’ll help guide you as best as I can!
Does it make sense?
Where are we? Are we in the woods? Is it snowing and freezing? Are you in a dress with heels and is he wearing a t shirt and sandals? How comfortable are you right now? Being comfortable is again, so, so important. If we’re shooting in the woods, bring shoes that you won’t break your ankles in. If we are shooting on a beach, don’t bring any shoes at all! If it’s cold, wear layers, wool socks, and boots. If it’s boiling hot, bring clothes that will allow you to breathe so you don’t have pit stains. Be as comfortable as you can be!
Heels are almost always a bad idea unless you are INCREDIBLE at walking in them!
Like I previously said, make sure that the materials you wear will keep you comfortable during the shoot not only for temperatures but also for moving around. If your new jeans are still stiff and tight, or your shoes aren't sitting right, or your new shirt is riding up, you could be distracted during the shoot trying to make sure everything stays in place. I always recommend bringing clothing that are “broken in” so that you’ll be super comfortable. Also, clothing or accessories that can show movement by catching wind are a fantastic thing! They add energy to the photo’s and always look incredible!
I love, love, love when people bring accessories. The only one I tell people to avoid are watches. They can distract from faces when I’m getting up close!
Colours can certainly seem confusing, but they really aren’t. Typically, I recommend you wear neutrals, earthy tones, and metallics. Neutrals doesn’t have to mean gray and beige. There are neutrals of most colours (mustard yellow, burnt orange, forest green, navy blue, etc..). What I recommend you stay away from are bright, fluorescent, distracting colours. The only real “rule” I’d say there is for colours is to stay away from pinks, bright oranges, and reds. There are a few exceptions - but it’s almost always best to stay away from those 3 options. Depending on the lighting conditions, those 3 colours will often reflect on to yours and your partners skin and look pretty darn weird. If you really want to wear pink, red, or orange - feel free to check in with me and we’ll make it work!!
This one is simple! Avoid big, chunky, crazy patterns. The smaller and more subtle, the better! The only reason for this is that if the pattern is too “out there" it will distract from the emotion of the photo and could end up being the only thing that draws your eye in. We want people looking at your faces! Also, depending on how crazy the pattern is, you could end up blending in with the background with is problematic as well. Flannels are always a 100% yes, this is mostly because they are my favourite thing to wear (har, har, har). Pairing too many patterns can become really hectic looking, so I recommend only one of you wears patterns or flannels. There are exceptions to this (example: if you both wear different coloured flannels and are also wearing jackets over them so there isn’t too much flannel happening) but a good base to go off of is to make sure only one of you has patterned clothing. Also, This may seem silly, but make sure the clothing is ironed. Huge wrinkles can be insanely distracting.
I have legitimate nightmares about props. This is mostly because when I think of props, I think of the empty picture frame being held with you two in the frame…or a chalk board saying “she said yes”…or a huge letter from michaels. Did you almost puke? Same. However, props don’t have to be a cheese festival! Props could be a pizza picnic, a motorcycle, your dog (PLEASE BRING YOUR DOG!!!!), blankets, your car, a campfire, flowers, a bicycle, your favourite board game, etc. If you have props you definitely want to incorporate into the shoot, just let me know and we’ll find a non cheesy way to do it!
Stay Home Sessions
Everything mentioned above can apply to stay home sessions. I find the most helpful advice is from the “does it make sense” category. If you’re anything like me, you wear 7 day old shirts, no pants, and essentially are in your most comfortable state. What you wear at home is what you should wear for a home session, because it fits the scene and will look like you two in your element.
Hair & Makeup
A lot of people also ask me if they should get their hair and makeup done. I say “whatever the heck is going to make you feel best, and make you feel like you!”. If getting your hair and makeup done will do that, then go for it! I absolutely don’t think its necessary, because for me, I’d rather you guys look like yourself rather than a super dooper glammed up version of yourself. Again, it’s whatever makes you feel best! I want you to show up to the shoot and feel like Brad Pitt and Beyonce all at the same time. What does that mean exactly? Who knows!
If you have any questions at all, please feel free to shoot them my way. Again, if you’re still totally confused feel free to shoot me a picture and we can work together on it. I’m beating a dead horse at this point, but overall, I just want you to wear what your comfortable in and feel like you in. 10 year old shoes and a sweater with holes? Yes. A dress with your hair and makeup done and killer shoes? Great! That shirt your mom hate’s and has tried to throw out a few times? Perfect! You do you, and I promise you the photo’s will be amazing.