Senior Portrait Sessions: Choosing The Perfect Outfit

Planning what to wear for your senior portrait can make even the most grounded senior a little bit overwhelmed. Pinterest is filled with style boards, Instagram has fashion feeds you love and your parents have their own ideas. No worries, a few days before your session I can stop by for a design appointment or you can text me photos of your choices. We can look at what you’ve put together to make sure you aren’t missing any last minute details; there is no additional cost for this service.

Stick with clothes that you already own and love. I know picking out what to wear for your senior pictures can seem like a fun opportunity for a shopping trip but you run the risk of picking something too trendy or that you won’t love as much the second or third time you see it. The perfect outfit looks like you on your very best day. Now is not the time to be someone other than who you are. Borrowing from a friend is also not the best idea.

Make sure your outfit looks just as good whether you’re sitting, standing, or kneeling. If your dress only fits right if you’re standing up, it’s probably not the right outfit. Wearing clothes that restrict your posing options will definitely limit your variety of choices you will have for your finished portraits.

If you wear glasses every day, you should wear them for your senior portraits. With that said, there are two things that are challenging: glare and transition lenses. The best solution is to talk with your eye care professional about removing your lenses or about having an empty pair of frames. Most eye care professionals are very accommodating, but try not to wait until the last minute in case you find that something needs ordered in. Personally, when I have my photo taken, I take the lenses out of my previous pair of glasses.

Make sure that cute graphic tee is going to make sense in 10 years. In general, I suggest staying away from t-shirts with graphics on them. They sometimes don’t make sense when the full phrase, word or graphic isn’t shown because of pose angles.

Bring all the gear. If you’re going to wear a sports uniform, bring the whole thing including the equipment.

Avoid any highlighter color, especially if you are using a natural or garden setting. Neon colors are hard to blend and match to almost any surrounding. If you’re surrounded by a lush green forest or the perfect overgrown field and you are in red, everything might have a Christmastime look that is hard to get away from. Don’t get me wrong, red can look amazing in the right setting. Natural, solid colors will photograph the best including: blues, greens, grays & whites.

Show off your culture and traditions. You might not wear cultural items or clothing to school, but they can be beautiful elements in your senior portraits that help to tell the story of who you are.

Get the underwear right! Ladies; I know it is awkward to discuss, but what you’re wearing under your clothes is as important as what you’re wearing for your senior portraits. Make sure that bra has your chest in the right place, the straps aren’t visible and the color isn’t showing through. If you’re wearing white, you should be wearing flesh colored undergarments. When you’re laying out your outfits, make sure you’ve pulled the undergarments you’ll need too.

Mix it up. I encourage you to choose a diversity of styles and levels of dressy with your outfit choices. A more dressy outfit, a work-casual outfit, and a totally casual outfit is what works well. If you love dresses and only want to wear dresses for your session, that is great, but make sure there is variety in lengths, textures and features to give diverse options.

Senior portraits are about expressing yourself. Make sure your clothing choices match your personality and are something you are comfortable in.



Nice to meet you!

My name is Lori Tester. I have over 3 decades of professional photography experience. I would love to document this special time in your life.

graduating is a big deal.

Enjoy it.

it will be gone before you know it.