Choosing Wardrobe for Portraits

  1. Portrait Photography Props & Accessories
  2. Wardrobe & Makeup Tips for Portraits
  3. Choosing Wardrobe for Portraits

Selecting the right wardrobe for a portrait photo shoot can be a daunting task. You want to choose clothing and accessories that will help bring out your subject's personality, while also making sure that the clothing fits the overall aesthetic of the shoot. From choosing colors and patterns to selecting the right fabrics and silhouettes, there are many factors to consider when it comes to choosing wardrobe for portraits. In this article, we'll explore the key tips and tricks to help you select the perfect wardrobe for your portrait photography. The first step in selecting wardrobe for portraits is to decide on a color palette.

Selecting colors that coordinate well with each other will help create a cohesive look. Opt for shades that will complement the subject's skin tone and hair color. Also consider what colors will flatter the subject's features. For example, bright colors such as red or yellow can help bring out blue eyes or fair skin. Next, consider the fabrics you’ll use in the wardrobe.

Choose fabrics that will drape nicely and won’t be too bulky or stiff. Lightweight fabrics such as silk, cotton, or linen are ideal for portraits since they won’t add bulk or distract from the subject’s features. When choosing wardrobe for portraits, it’s important to think about accessories as well. Accessories can add an extra element to the portrait and help make it more interesting. Consider adding a hat, scarf, jewelry, or even a prop that is meaningful to the subject.

Be careful not to overdo it with accessories; it’s best to keep them simple and tasteful.Finally, consider adding layers to the wardrobe. Layers can add depth and texture to a portrait and help bring out the subject’s features. Adding a cardigan or blazer over a collared shirt or dress can be a great way to add visual interest to a portrait.

Layer Clothing

When it comes to choosing wardrobe for portraits, layering clothing can be a great way to add depth and texture to the image. Start by selecting a base layer that will be the foundation for the entire look.

This could be something as simple as a t-shirt or tank top, or more elaborate like a dress or blouse. Once you have your base layer, you can start adding layers on top. Adding a cardigan or blazer can create a more polished, professional look. If you want to give your portrait a bohemian feel, try adding a patterned scarf or statement jewelry.

Layering different textures and fabrics will also help add interest to the portrait. For example, try pairing a chunky sweater with a light-weight scarf or a silk blouse with a leather jacket. By experimenting with different combinations of clothes and accessories, you'll be able to create unique looks that will make your portraits stand out.

Coordinate Colors

When choosing wardrobe for portraits, it's important to take into account the subject's skin tone and hair color. Start by selecting a color palette that will complement these features.

If the subject has fair skin and light hair, consider cool colors like blues and purples. For darker complexions and hair, warm tones such as reds, oranges, and yellows can be more flattering. If you're unsure of what palette to choose, neutrals such as black, white, and gray are always a safe option. When coordinating colors, think about how different pieces of clothing will look together. If you want to create a monochromatic look, choose items within the same color family.

If you opt for a more eclectic style, incorporate multiple hues that will complement each other. Just make sure to avoid any colors or patterns that will clash or draw too much attention away from the subject.


Accessorizing for a portrait can be a great way to add another dimension to the image. Consider adding hats, scarves, jewelry, or meaningful props that make the portrait unique and reflect your subject’s personality. When accessorizing, it’s important to keep in mind the overall look of the portrait and ensure that the accessories don’t overpower the subject.

For example, if you’re using a bold patterned scarf with a busy background, it may be better to choose a more subtle accessory. Alternatively, if you’re working with a muted background, using a brightly colored scarf may be more effective. Adding accessories can also help draw attention to specific features. For example, if you want to emphasize your subject’s eyes, you could choose a pair of statement earrings or a necklace that draws the eye upward. On the other hand, if you want to emphasize your subject’s neckline, you could choose a scarf or shawl that frames their face.

When choosing accessories for your portrait, it’s important to think about how they will look in the photo. Consider the color, texture, and size of each accessory and how they will interact with the environment and clothing. Additionally, be sure to consider the lighting in the space – certain accessories may be difficult to see in certain types of lighting.

Choose Fabrics

Choosing the right fabrics for a portrait is an important part of creating a successful look. Opt for lightweight fabrics such as silk, cotton, or linen, as they will make your subject look more natural and comfortable.

Silk is a luxurious fabric that can add an elegant touch to any outfit. Cotton is a classic choice that is always in style. Linen is a lightweight and breathable fabric that is great for summer portraits. Be sure to check the fabric's drape and texture to ensure it looks good on camera.

Avoid bulky fabrics and overly shiny materials, as they can create unflattering shadows or distracting reflections. Additionally, be sure to choose fabrics that are easy to take care of and don’t wrinkle easily. When selecting accessories such as scarves and hats, keep in mind the colors and fabrics of the clothing you have chosen. Try to coordinate colors and fabrics to create a cohesive look. Choosing wardrobe for portraits doesn't have to be difficult! With these tips, you can select clothing and accessories that will make your subject look their best. Remember to coordinate colors, choose lightweight fabrics, accessorize tastefully, and layer clothing to add depth and texture to your portrait.

Virginia Holmes
Virginia Holmes

Total twitter guru. Hipster-friendly coffee practitioner. Hipster-friendly tvaholic. Wannabe foodaholic. Devoted twitter fanatic. Extreme internet advocate.

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