What in the world do I wear for my shoot?

Hurray!! You booked an adventure shoot/engagement shoot/honeymoon shoot and found the most epic spot for the location. But now you’re looking at your closets and wondering okurrrr… what the heck do we wear??!

This is one of my most frequently asked questions, and what couples and I chat about a ton before the shoot. Dressing for a getting photos done is different than just dressing for an event. After even my first few short months of doing photography, it was really easy to see some trends in what types of clothing photograph the best!! Lets just get right to it!

  1. Colors – In general, neutral/earthy tones photograph really well! YES to tans/taupes/browns/creams (depending on what compliments your skin tone), but if you’re not a fan, you’re not limited to those! Colors found in nature- for example greens-a sage or a forest green would be a better option than a bright pastel mint. Or for blues, blue that you would see in the ocean tones/skies. The reason for this is that you want your beautiful faces and the movement in your bodies to be the focal point, rather than your clothing!
  2. Prints – I love love love my prints, but for photographs, I love either a simple print (either a small print or a more “faded”/less loud type of print), or just non printed clothing. Don’t worry about looking too plain. The reasoning is the same as for the colors-a loud print will bring the eye in to that clothing piece, and away from your faces and the nature. When shooting outside, there is so much texture in the background already (mountain peaks/ridges, trees, rocky tide pools, texture in the water, etc, and the photo can look very busy when there is a loud print thrown in as well.
  3. Home Decor – This one a lot of people may not think about!- what colors do you have in your home/living room/bedroom where you would most likely print and frame your images? Make sure that it goes with your space! It doesn’t have to be matchy/matchy and be the same colors that you decorate with, but you want to make sure it won’t clash in your space.
  4. Comfort- ladiesss gah, I know. If you find the most flattering dress that looks amazing, but the only thing is that its a wrap dress that doesn’t wet to stay closed, or the top always needing to be pulled up, I would suggest to save it for a fun date night, and keep looking! Or make sure to grab some double sided tape. We will be doing a ton of movement during the shoot, and its worth it to have clothing that can accommodate all the things we will be doing! (sometimes just a safety pin will do the trick!) But you will be less distracted/worried and be able to be more present if you’re not constantly having to adjust to make sure everything’s in place.
  5. Dynamic Movement-In general, wearing your hair down/half up half down so that we can see some movement with your hair is really nice! The same goes for clothing-its always fun to shoot with a longer skirt/dress (the shorter flowy ones can just fly right up!) that has some flow in it so that we can get those epic dramatic Beyonce photos! Oftentimes we will be shooting somewhere with some wind, and so planning for that with your hair/dress is a good idea. In general, something more fitted on the top and flowy on the bottom is an easy and flattering option, but of course depends on body type and what you are comfortable with.
  6. Hats-I just love hats and they’re a fun accessory to shoot with. Thats all! But really, just personalize the shoot! Wear your favorite hat (heeeyyyyy), jewelry, etc.
  7. To wrap it up, make it your own!– Decide on whether or not you want a more casual/shorts and cute beachy top/straw hat kind of look, or a little bit dressier/more dramatic look with a longer dress. OR let’s go swimming and cliff jumping, wear your swimmers! Get something you feel beautiful in and is distraction free (both in the fit and the colors/print!). Totally go shopping if you need to! Photos are an investment, and the prints will be up for long time (orrr,… forever?!!) and I feel like a new outfit that you LOVE and fits all the criteria is minimal in cost by comparison. H & M, Zara, Asos, even Forever 21 have a lot of affordable options that would work. Plus, then you’re not worried about getting that cute Free People dress dirty, 😉

I hope this helps!! Please ask if you have questions. I love to shop and style my couples too, and provide some real/tangible options. This way they are completely tailored to your comfort, body type, location and budget!

As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts on these!!

xx, Emily

Hey friend!

Hi! I’m Emily, a couples, elopement and brand photographer based on Oahu, Hawaii.
You want a stress free, meaningful, and inspired approach to photography-something creative but still refined. Comfortable, but still elegant. I deeply value every couple that I get to create with, and can’t wait to hear your vision and collaborate with you!