What to wear?! | Tooele Salt Lake City Utah Photographer

“What should I wear for my photos?”  This is actually a pretty important question. In the past I just always shrugged my shoulders, gave a few tips, and told them to wear what they thought was best. My job is to create beautiful lighting, flattering poses, and finding a great location.  But then I realized, if I do my part, and someone comes in a t-shirt and shorts with black calf length socks, it kills the picture ; )  So after years of taking photos, I’ve realized how important clothes are to the photo.

I had our family pictures taken this last summer. I have always just done them myself with a tripod and a timer. But now that I have three children, I HAVE to have a person behind the camera whooping and waving to get my kids to look in the direction of the camera. So I finally gave up some control and handed the reigns over to someone else.  And since I was going to the effort of having someone take our photos, I wanted them to be great. So I spent quite a bit of time coordinating our outfits. I didn’t want them matchy, but I wanted them to be cohesive.  Surprisingly, it took a lot of thought.  I was trying to use items we already had so I wouldn’t have to buy all new outfits for everyone.  Looking at the pictures afterwards,  I saw some things I’d change. The boy’s white socks stand out instantly. The baby’s light shirt stands out against the rest of our medium toned shirts.  The pictures turned out pretty good, but it helped me come up with some Do’s and Don’ts.



SOOO after that long intro, here is a list of tips of What to Wear:

  • Wear solid colored clothing, loud patterns tend to distract from your face. 
  • Choose muted/subdued tones, again so you are the subject, not your outfit. Bright colors (red, orange, yellow) tend to make you look larger as well.  
  • Choose similar tones for your top and bottom (both dark or both light) so that one doesn’t look bigger than the other. F0r example, if you wear white pants with a black shirt, your bum is going to look big.
  • Choose 1-3 colors for your group portrait, ones with similar, coordinating tones. Then have everyone just choose outfits within those two or three colors.  For example: dark green, navy, and burgundy -all dark tones. Or earth tones—blue, green, tan.
  • Choose a top with sleeves at least to the elbow to help slim your arms.
  • Choose long pants for men/ladies or a skirt below the knee for ladies.
  • Choose dark socks and shoes.
  • Dress up a little more than average.  T-shirts usually don’t look great in portraits.  I like to see men in a collar.
  • Layering can hide problem areas.
  • You want to look like yourself, but you want to look like your BEST self.

2 Comments on “What to wear?! | Tooele Salt Lake City Utah Photographer

  1. I can see the wisdom in those words. Great article and very helpful.

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