Deciding what to wear to your portrait session can be difficult and stressful. If it’s an engagement session, you’ll probably be using these photos for your Save the Dates, Facebook profiles, or your wedding website. Either way, you want to make sure you look good! I put together a few tips to take away the stress and help you find the perfect outfit for your session.

First of all, choose something that’s you. Don’t choose something just because it looked good in someone else’s photos. Choose clothing that you and your fiancé would normally wear and looks flattering on you. (If you’re self conscious about your arms, stay away from sleeveless tops.) You don’t necessarily have to go buy a new outfit, even though an excuse to go shopping is always nice! If there’s something you wear that gets you a lot of compliments, that’s a good place to start. Make sure you’re comfortable!
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When trying to coordinate colors, don’t be too matchy-matchy. Save the white shirts with jeans for the portrait studio. It’s best to pick 1-3 complimentary colors for a “theme.” This way, you probably already have clothing in these colors in your closet and you’ll both feel comfortable with what you’re wearing. A good rule of thumb is to look like you’re part of the same catalog or dressed for the same event.

Your clothing can also be used as a prop. Glam it up! A flowy dress at the beach will add some movement, and a sharp suit against a rustic or urban backdrop will make you stand out and add interest.

It’s also a great idea to think about where you’ll be hanging the photos in your home. You’ll want the colors of your outfits to match your decor in order to stick with your theme! If you Google “what to wear photography,” you’ll get a ton of ideas.

Layers are your friend! During the session, you may get warm or cold and need to shed or add layers. Some locations won’t have adequate space for changing outfits, so adding and taking off layers can add more variety.

If you’re wearing a simple top, a scarf or statement jewelry can add interest. Shoes can also add a little personality. Ladies, if you’ve got a killer pair of heels you want to show off, make sure you bring an extra pair of comfortable shoes you can walk around in between shots.

Dress for the season and use the weather to your advantage. If your session is outdoors in the winter, wear a coat and bring a hat, gloves and scarf. Does it look like rain? Bust out the umbrella and galoshes.

Engagement sessions are the perfect time for a trial-run of your hair and makeup. Make a day of it! Get your hair and makeup done to see how well it’ll photograph. That way, you can always go back to your stylist with suggestions for any necessary changes before the big day.

When it comes time for the shoot, you might need to do touch-ups just before or during the session. Bring a tote bag to carry around some things you’ll need to freshen up. I’ve made a list of some things clients have needed during shoots. You can check out that post here.

If you need some style inspiration, I’ve created a Pinterest board with some great visual suggestions. If you have any more tips to add, feel free to share below!

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