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OUTFIT GUIDE

OVERALL MOOD

The first thing you want to do when thinking about what to wear is imagine where we'll be shooting. What kind of feeling does that location give you? What kind of clothing would you typically wear there? What colors already exist in the space? What vibes are you looking for? Keep in mind I can help during any of these steps, so always feel like you can reach out to me! Writing down some keywords can be really helpful— do you want yours photos to feel adventurous, cozy, urban, natural, romantic, fun, casual, or artsy? These aren’t the only options you have, get creative and have fun thinking about what you want out of your photos!

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Both of these couples chose to be photographed in their own homes and wanted intimate, cozy, & casual vibes. They wore clothing that they would typically wear when hanging around the house together— making the images feel authentic. They also selected neutral tones - which made sense for the calm & cozy environments. We'll talk more about colors later on!

What the wear guide - engagement session kentucky
What the wear guide - engagement session kentucky

Micaha and Austin wanted to be a little more formal for their images, but not overly dressy. They chose outfits that would make their photos feel like I was capturing an afternoon date that included brunch, stopping by their local greenhouse, & walking downtown. Their colors complimented each other without being too "matchy-matchy." Austin's shirt is a great example of a color that can feel bold while still being a more neutral tone. His decision to skip a tie and leave that top button open helped the outfit feel more casual and laid-back— adding a tie would have made it feel like they were too dressy for the environment.

What to wear guide - sarah katherine davis photography

COLOR, PATTERN, TEXTURE, & AVOIDING DISTRACTIONS

There are some tried and true rules of what not to wear color-wise— like avoiding bright, neon hues that can reflect onto skin. Sticking with neutral tones is almost always the way to go for photos, but that doesn't mean you need to wear whites, browns, or very earthy tones if you aren't into them! All colors have a neutral version, for example olive & pine are both neutrals of green, mustard is a neutral of yellow, burgundy & rust both act as neutrals of red, navy is a neutral of blue, blush is a neutral of pink, etc. I've been using Pinterest to collect color pallets and outfits I've stumbled upon and enjoyed. Feel free to check it out for color and outfit inspiration inspiration, as well as sending me your own
suggestions!

Textures can either really add to or take away from an image. Natural fabrics like wool, linen, and cotton always photograph well. Some synthetic fabrics look great, while others can seem reflective and unnatural in images. You know those white poly-blend button downs for men? Those reflect various colors from the environment and don't photograph very well— however white linen versions of the same shirt look great in photos! Again— I'm here to help! Send me photos or links to clothing items if you'd like and I can give feedback!

Patterns can be fun, but they can also take the focus away from you. I really want my images to focus on your relationship and how you interact with each other. In general solid colors are best— but you can totally wear items with texture to make them more interesting! If you're really sold on a patterned item that's okay! We've got a few options. You can absolutely tone a pattern down with layers (i.e a denim jacket over a striped shirt or a cardigan over a floral top can make it look amazing and photograph really well.) or bring multiple outfits so you can change and have a variety of options. Not all patterns are distracting!

 Zoe & Paul rode their motorcycle to the park for our shoot, so their leather jackets really worked for this session!

Zoe & Paul rode their motorcycle to the park for our shoot, so their leather jackets really worked for this session!

KEEP IT AUTHENTIC AND STAY COMFY

Okay - time for some real talk. It is really, really easy for me to remove a pimple in post. However is very difficult to smooth out skin that has too much foundation build-up because someone tried to hide a blemish. If you get a break-out that morning, leave it be and trust me to take care of it for you! If you're wearing make-up, keep it very similar to your daily routine— you want to look like yourself! Couples sessions are one of my favorites because you get amazing images that are a peek into your real, every day love. On a wedding day many people go big with extra make-up, fancy hair, etc. which is awesome, but these couples photos are your chance to look just like your amazing every day self. It will be really special having that glimpse into real life when you're looking back! 

Let's talk about shoes. I know you have some really awesome shoes that you are dying to show off in these photos, but please be thoughtful about your choices! Shoes are where it always seems to go wrong. Getting back to the basics— where will we be shooting? What would you normally wear there? I've seen many a person slipping and sliding up hills or tiptoeing around mud in giant heels or dress shoes when they would have been way more comfortable in boots or flats. If you have shoes you really want to wear but you know they don't make sense for where we are shooting let me know! We can get a full-body shot in a more paved/flat area with your preferred shoes, then you can change into hiking boots or flats when we explore a little bit more. 

Sarah Katherine Davis Photography - What to Wear Guide - Wear Hiking Boots Engagement Session

So now that you have your outfit in mind.... it's time for the test run! Wave your arms around the air, do a weird shimmy, & hop on your partner's back for a piggy back ride. Did you feel uncomfortable (outside of how awkward you definitely just looked that is 😂) or have to adjust your clothing? If you are wearing clothes that need lots of adjusting or don't fit quite right it will show up in photos. I want you all to be free to move and interact with each other during our session, not worried about if your strap is sliding off or if your shorts are riding up. 

What to Wear - Couple Session - Sarah Katherine Davis Photography Louisville Kentucky
What to Wear - Couple Session - Sarah Katherine Davis Photography Louisville Kentucky

Last but not least, layers are your friend! If you have items that can but put on and taken off with your outfit it will really extend your range of options with your look! Feel free to bring a light jacket (jean, leather, whatever is your favorite), comfy cardigan, hat, scarf, etc. It's definitely not necessary, so no pressure, but being able to take a light jacket on and off basically gives you two outfits for the whole session. In the above images Sadie was able to leave the button-down shirt open & long, tied up, as well as taken off completely. She also was able to take her hat on and off, so all of their images feel really different.

That's pretty much all I can think of to share. If you have questions or want feedback always know you can reach out to me. I'm very happy to help and can't wait for your session! You can also check out the outfits from some of my favorite past couple's sessions here for extra inspiration.