“It’s Just Some Clothes, Getting Dressed is Easy!”
I’m guessing if that’s what ran through your head when you saw the title of this post, you aren’t here reading it. I personally don’t struggle to dress myself or my kiddos on a daily basis – but that’s mostly because there’s no pressure involved. If my youngest wants to wear a superman onesie to the grocery, I genuinely don’t care. And if people judge my Mom-bun and sweats on that grocery trip, that’s a them problem.
Clothes are clothes, and life is too short to care who’s judging me. (Imagine a shrug here, because there’s a shrug here.)
But when it comes to choosing your photography wardrobe – that is a situation full of WAY more pressure than a trip to Target. Or almost anywhere, in fact.
It’s even more pressure for mini-sessions…
Because mini sessions are quick by design, there’s no time for a costume change. Which means you get one shot at finding the perfect outfit to wear, both for you and potentially for your kiddos. Or your whole family, if you happen to be the boss of clothes for your household. And that’s… a lot.
Especially if you’re more of a sweats + a superman onesie kind of Mom.
BUT, there are a few things you can think about ahead of your session that might help you decide what wardrobe items to pull out for your fall mini session date!
1. Please don’t match too much
I get that it’s tempting…
Okay hear me out. I completely understand the temptation to get matching plaid outfits for your clan. Not to mention denim-on-denim is officially back, and the desire to relive the 90s is SO STRONG. I get it. I really, really, REALLY get it. And every family needs those photos that you look back at and cringe a little, knowing that they’re absolutely a product of their time. However… we’ve got iphones now, and those endearing cringe shots? You can make those happen yourself. For your professional session, let’s approach this differently! When you’re choosing the outfits for your session – ESPECIALLY if it’s a mini session – we want cohesion. Cohesion is different than matching. It’s about selecting multiple patterns and colors that work together to create a canvas of complimentary tones and textures that will feel timeless, because they’re friends. Color friends, and texture friends.
Check out those two just above – Dad in denim jeans, and daughter with a slightly different tone of denim as a jacket! FLAWLESSlY cohesive, with the addition of the gorgeous texture of her dress!
You know what they say about shaping your eyebrows? They’re sisters not twins? That’s the vibe that we want to use to approach your wardrobe choices!
2. Think about your color palette
When you’re selecting your outfits that are sisters-not-twins, I want you to think about the color palette. Now, when it comes to colors there aren’t really any hard and fast rules, it’s more about the vibe that you want to create. But there ARE some things for you to think about! If you’re not going for a Christmas tone… maybe don’t pair red and green, for example.
If you want a single color to be prominent in your photos, then try to pair it with complimentary tones. Like, if you’ve got a purple top you definitely want to wear, consider blue for your partner, and other blue and purple tones for your kiddos! You could even throw a pattern or two in there for texture, like a floral dress for your daughter, or a plaid shirt for your little boy. Or, like this couple, making sure that the floral texture on the dress matches the gold tone of that t-shirt!
There are also some practical things to think about. If you’ve got little kiddos and you know you’re going to give them a snack on the way to the session, white is probably not the best option. Make sense?
3. Are you comfy?
When you’re choosing wardrobe options, it’s really important to make sure that you’re comfortable. I know mini sessions in particular are quick, so it can be tempting to wear that dress that’s just a LITTLE too tight, knowing that you’re only going to be in it for the session and then you can change. But… if what you’re wearing (or what your family is wearing!) is a little too tight, or a little too loose, you’re going to be uncomfortable. And you’re going to be adjusting it. AND, there’s also a chance that if it’s on the tighter side, it’s going to show panty lines and bra straps.
If there are panty lines and bra straps visible on your body… they’ll be visible in your images. In particular for mini sessions, because they’re not designed for heavy editing after the fact! For minis, I like to capture you as you ARE.
4. No really, are you COMFY?
I don’t just mean “are you comfy” as in like, physically comfy. I also mean comfy as in “do you feel like yourself” in these outfits. I know I’ve put it after the ORIGINAL comfy question, but this one is arguably more important. Our job is to capture you as you are. And my position on how I do that, is by tapping into the magic of your family, the magic of your personality.
But if you don’t feel like yourself? Like, if you’re a “casual comfy” person and you come to your session in a gown and you can’t stop thinking about how ridiculous you feel… that’s going to show in your images. It’s not the easiest thing to explain, but the discomfort will be ALL over your face. And all over your pose. I admittedly pride myself on helping to make people feel comfortable in front of the camera, no matter what. But if I’m competing with a wedgie and your mind repeating “I look so weird in this” over and over… let’s just say we don’t want that getting in the way!!
5. It doesn’t have to be NEW.
Finally, before you go to Target to get brand-spanking new wardrobe items for your entire family ahead of your session… pause. Walk to your bedroom, and open your closet. Pull out your favorite items, and take a look at them. (Maybe not the favorite comfy oversized T-shirt you sleep in, I more mean favorite things you’d be happy to be photographed in. Though to be fair if “Comfy” is the overall vibe you’re going for, don’t necessarily count out pajamas!) Then, I want you to move on to the rest of the humans you’re bringing with you to your session.
Based on the favorite items you’re thinking about wearing… what’s in THEIR closet? Are there items that are cohesive with the outfit you’ve picked for yourself?
I’m all for any excuse to go get new clothes, and I’m definitely not trying to discourage getting something specifically for your session. But it’s not a requirement! If you already have cohesive, comfy items in your existing wardrobe… wear those.
If all else fails, send me a message!
Hopefully, this has helped make at least a few things clearer and easier when it comes to choosing the wardrobe for your Fall Mini Session. Or for ANY professional photography session, for that matter! But if you’re still stuck trying to choose and your session is coming up, send me a message! We can chat about the tone that you want for your session, and figure things out from there.