Wardrobe can make or break your session--it's vital to the overall look and tones of your images. Below are some general guidelines that will hopefully help you when choosing outfits for you and your family. You can also check out my What to Wear Pinterest board for more specific outfit ideas and style inspiration. I would LOVE to help you with your wardrobe selection, so prior to our session I will ask you to share photos of your outfits and I will give you feedback and work with you on fine-tuning for our session.
Long gone are the days of everyone wearing a white shirt and jeans (the exception for this being a newborn session where I encourage parents to dress in neutrals so as not to distract from baby.) You wouldn’t normally go out with your entire family dressed exactly the same, right? Instead, pick a couple of colors as a running theme, throw in one or two neutrals, and choose your outfits accordingly. By choosing a color palette that you love and dressing everyone around it, you will create a family that looks like they belong together while still celebrating everyone’s uniqueness. To get the flow going with wardrobe for your family, I recommend you start with one outfit that you really like and feel is flattering on you. From there, build from it for everyone else. You don’t need to shop and buy a new outfit for every single person in your family!
What colors run through your home? Do you like neutrals? Bright colors? Since you will (hopefully!) be hanging your family’s photos up in your home you want to make sure that what you’re wearing in the photos won’t conflict with the style or colors of your home.
If we’re going to be shooting in a grassy field, it's not generally the place to be wearing a cocktail dress or a tie unless you are really wanting that juxtaposition of rustic/formal. If we’re at the beach, colors that enhance the setting are great–neutrals, blues, greens, blacks… cream in all shades are great for the beach, which is the one place I'd say its ok to dress everyone in very similar tones! Don’t forget to pay attention to your feet -- a cute pair of shoes can make the outfit but should depend on your location. Closed toed shoes for somewhere more rustic and no shoes at all for the beach! Pay attention to the season and make sure everyone is dressed for the same one! If you're layering with that cute sweater, best not to put your daughter in a tank dress. You get the idea! ;)
Patterns and textures are your friend! But moderation is key. Unless...that's your jam! If your personal style is out there--work it! Otherwise, half of your family in patterns and the other half in solids (for example, a plaid, a floral, a solid top and a chunky knit sweater) works great!
*Stay away from characters and phrases or any non-fashion hats -- think timeless. On that note, unless you're wearing a family heirloom watch or something along those lines, best to leave your watch behind (I know, I love my Apple watch, too!)
Layers aren't just for cold weather! Layering adds interest and dimension. Throwing on a knit sweater that falls off your shoulder on over a dress is a great example of this, regardless of the weather!
In addition to the above suggestions, here are some ideas specifically for what to wear to your pregnancy session. (If you would like to take bare belly shots, please make sure you’re not wearing anything that will leave creases/marks on your skin.)
The perfect thing to wear for maternity shoots. For one, it’s incredibly comfortable. Comfort is key when you are pregnant, and when you’re taking maternity photos for an hour or so, you want to be as comfortable as can be. It also looks amazing on any pregnant body because it’s so flattering. One that has really lightweight fabric and flows with the wind is also a beautiful option. I have multiple dresses available to use for pregnancy sessions at no extra cost--from sheer lace, to bare belly, to more covered but body hugging.
The main focus in your maternity shoot is your bump, you may not want anything to take attention away from that, like a pattern or print. However, if its a form-fitting dress, a pattern can be great! Wear solid colors for your bump to stand out the most--especially if you're wearing something flowy. I absolutely encourage you to dress for what you feel fits your personality! Just make sure you aren’t overly pattern happy and you and your partner are wearing clashing patterns (if you're in a pattern, have your partner in a solid).
If you are comfortable with wearing tight clothing and don’t mind showing off all of your gorgeous pregnant body curves, opt for a beautiful tight bodycon dress. Many moms that normally wouldn't wear a tight dress feel the most beautiful in one while pregnant. Be proud of and don't be afraid to show off those (new to some) curves. (On the flip side of tight clothing, if you’re comfortable having on less clothing, I encourage you to bear that belly!)
A great idea is to have two have two outfits to wear for your maternity shoot, such as a casual outfit and a dressy outfit. This will not only give you options when choosing which photos you want to hang in your home, but it will also give you some variety in the photos as well. We can always find a spot for a wardrobe change! Yes, your partner can have one, too, if they so desire. (I only recommend an outfit change for pregnancy sessions.)