What to wear to your

photography Session

What to wear to your

Photography Session

Hello and welcome!

I’m so excited for your upcoming session! I want you to know that I’m honored to be your photographer and humbled that you’ve trusted me with the responsibility of helping you create memories you’ll look back on and cherish for a lifetime.

My goal is simple: for your session to be as fun and stress-free as possible! That’s why I’ve created this guide just for you so that you get the absolute most out of your photos.

At the end of the day, though, the location you choose and the outfits you wear won’t matter nearly as much as the fun we have together and the memories you make. The style choices you make will definitely enhance your photos, but the most important accessory to bring with you is joyfulness –– which is the one that makes the biggest difference in your photos anyways. You don’t need to have prior experience in front of the camera. Just show up with a smile and I’ll take care of the rest.


First Steps

1. Order of outfit selection. For family photos, find an outfit for Mom first, then any girls in the family, and then the boys.

2. Textures. An amazing way to create a fantastic look! Look for texture in layers, accessories, and hairstyles. (Examples: cardigans or suspenders; necklaces; hats; braids or hair bows)

3. Patterns. Try to keep a patterned outfit to 1 in every 3 members of a shoot. Patterns include florals (dainty is best), plaids, and stripes. Try to avoid horizontal stripes and outfits with logos.

Color selection

Pick a color that works with your skin tone. Look for colors that work well with your skin color and undertones. For example, if you have a lot of red pigmentation in your face, go with a cooler color (like blues or greens). If you have fair skin, stay away from the extremes (stark white or black).

Earth and muted tones work well with my editing style. Neutrals (creams, grays, and off-whites) are also a great choice that create a timeless and clean look to your images. Lastly, I personally believe that everyone looks good in some shade of blue.

Colors that work the best with Captured by CM editing:

Green – Sage, forest
Orange – Rust
Yellow – Mustard
Purple – Plum
Browns – Deep brown or camel color
Red – Burgundy
Pink – Mauve or dusty rose
Blue – Dusty blue or navy

Try to AVOID bright reds for best results!

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Coordinating family outfits

Pick a color scheme. You can easily find color palettes on Pinterest (I have a few pinned here) or look around your home and pick colors that would harmonize well on your walls!

Plan each outfit with “dominant colors” and “accent colors” in mind. A dominant color is the color that you see the most in an outfit, while an accent has a smaller piece of visual real estate. If you can aim for each person to have a different dominant color, and then tie in and vary the accent colors, it’ll look great all together.

Try not to be “matchy-matchy.” Instead, think about what “fits” together. This will create more visual interest, and allow each personality to shine through. A good example of fitting outfit colors together is this group family photo. Imagine if all eleven of them wore jeans and white button down shirts – it would be too much!

Try mixing up your children’s outfit types. One can wear a dress and flats, while the other wears pants and boots. One can wear a bowtie, and the other can wear suspenders, etc.

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Tips for her

In my experience, every woman (regardless of her size or shape) has an area of her body that she’s self conscious about. Recognizing the areas you’re self conscious about when selecting your outfits is key.

Choosing flattering silhouettes and colors that complement your natural features is the best way to ensure you’ll love the way you look in your photos.

Three-quarter length sleeves create an awesome slimming effect on all arms, so be on the lookout for an option with a longer length sleeve. If your dress has shorter sleeves (or no sleeves) and you want the option to cover them more, consider bringing a cute jacket, blazer, cardigan, or pashmina to incorporate into your look.

If it’s colder outside, I suggest bringing a warm coat (the longer, the better!) to wear when we’re not shooting so you don’t freeze in your dress.

Tips for him

When selecting an outfit for photos, the most important part isn’t the price. It’s the fit. For men, it’s important to have a jacket or shirt that fits snugly (but not too tight), and pants that are the correct length and don’t have too many breaks. Just like high heels make women look taller than they are, bunched up fabric stacked on top of a man’s shoes makes him look physically shorter than he really is.

If you opt for a long-sleeve button-down, we can roll up the sleeves for a slightly more casual look, which gives you two looks with one shirt.

The same way that a dress is the most flattering silhouette for the female body, a blazer, sport coat or jacket has the same flattering effect for men. You can’t go wrong with a dress shirt, slacks and a blazer.

Solid colors will help keep the attention where it belongs, whereas pinstripes or plaid patterns tend to distract the eye, so stay away from too strong of prints. Avoid logos and opt for solids instead.

Wear with confidence


There’s no such thing as “too dressed up” when it comes to your portrait session, so don’t be afraid to have some fun!

Moreover, if you wear an outfit that you think looks pretty, but that you don’t think flatters yourself, then you will most likely dislike a lot of photos of yourself in it. Wear an outfit that you feel confident in and you’re all set!

Watch the direction of your stripes! Stripes that run up and down will lengthen your shape, and horizontal stripes with widen your features. If you are trying to minimize your hips, stay far, far away from horizontal stripes.

Remember that lighter colors/white create a larger illusion, and darker colors/blacks “shrink” space. If you want to broaden your shoulders, opt for a light top and a dark bottom.

Planning your time

When you’re planning “getting ready” time before your session (scheduling your hair, makeup, etc.) please give yourself a lot more time than you think you’ll need.

Also make sure to account for things like traffic, getting lost and parking, so you can prevent unnecessary stress, arrive a few minutes early to your session, and be ready to start on time. I’m only able to shoot when light is still in the sky, so we’ll want to take advantage of every minute we have together before the sun goes down!

Want to shop for something new?

Here are some of my favorite places to shop for photo sessions!

Still not sure?

I am here for you! Shoot me an email with your outfit questions and I’ll work with you to find the perfect look.


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