May 16, 2023

What Should I Wear? | Go to Guide for Senior Portraits

What Should I Wear?

That is the big question when planning your Senior Portrait Session. Not to worry! Here is your Go to Guide for Senior Portraits.

Go to Guide for Senior Portraits
We always recommend a few different outfit choices so you get variety.

Bring A Variety  Of Options To Wear:

We always recommend that our Senior Portrait clients bring several different outfits for their Senior Portraits.  We like to make sure you have a wide variety of choices for both your yearbook photo and anything you would like to print.

Keep It Simple:

I personally like simple clothing in portraits because it does not distract from the face and does not become dated too quickly.  My goal as a portrait photographer has always been to create art that people want to keep on display in their homes forever.  We have all seen portraits in peoples’ homes where you look at them and think, “What on earth were they thinking when they chose that outfit?”  I think a carefully curated selection is so important for success.  So with that in mind, here are some of my suggestions for your Senior Portrait Session:

Go to Guide for Senior Portraits
A simple solid color shirt is always a great choice. Choose a color everyone tells says you look fabulous in!

Go To Guide For Senior Portraits–Make Your Clothes Look Better:

Don’t forget to iron your clothes!  Wrinkles can ruin your look!

Glens Falls Senior Portraits
Love this portrait of Ben from a while back. Simple button down shirt and that guitar!
Albany NY Senior Portrait
Corduroy jacket with white T shirt and Khakis with the perfect necklace.

Texture vs. Prints:

Given the choice, I will choose textured fabric over prints any day of the week!  Fabric texture can add visual interest without being too distracting.  Again, the goal is to direct focus to the face, not the clothing.  Lots of times, prints are just a little too much for portraits.

Senior Portraits Ballston Spa NY
Late day in a downtown location can be really interesting for Senior Portraits. The vertical lines and the colors here were perfect.
Albany NY Senior Portraits
This location had a lot going on, so we kept the clothing relatively simple with just a pop of color.

Go easy on the graphics.  Too much of a good thing is–too much.  If you have items with graphics, the simpler the better.  A little goes a long way.

Clifton Park Senior Portrait
I love this shirt because while it has the flag as an element, it does not dominate the photo. Great choice!
Upstate NY High School Senior Portrait
Great choice for a graphic shirt. The pattern is interesting but not overwhelming and the pocket placement is perfect.  And the pants and shoes were on point!
Yaddo Gardens Senior Portrait Session
This simple sundress with eyelet fabric is just the right amount of texture.

Necklines and Cut:

Watch necklines and the overall cut and fit of your clothing.  Again, you want to draw attention to your face, not the clothing.  We also move a lot, so you don’t want anything too tight.  Cut and fit are your friend.  Think Goldilocks–Nothing too loose or too tight.

Clifton Park Senior Portraits
Love the neckline on this shirt!
Ballston spa NY High School Senior Girl Portrait
The neckline on this is fabulous as well. Love the blue against the green background.
High School Sr Portraits
There is a lot going on with this screen in the background, so the clothing really needed to be a little subdued.

Don’t Be Afraid of Color!

I love photographing bold colors, especially outdoors.  If there is a particular color you love or look amazing in, be sure to bring it!

Schuylerville Senior Portraits
Don’t be afraid of color! Bella brought this shirt, which I love!
Averill Park Senior Portraits
A jean jacket is a wonderful accessory to include because it will look great with almost anything.

Athletic Uniforms, Dance Attire, or Activity Related Items:

Bring something that reflects your interests in athletics or dance.

Shenendehowa Senior Portrait
Let’s Dance.
High School Senior Portrait Saratoga NY
Frank brought his football uniform and we had some fun with it.  He looks pretty fierce, doesn’t he?

High School Senior Portraits Upstate NY

Go to Guide for Senior Portraits Photo

Formal Attire:

Do you love your Prom dress?  Bring it!  Too many times a gorgeous dress is worn once and never used again.  A gown you love can be so complimentary and really is a statement piece in your wardrobe.

High School Prom Photo Saratoga NY
Why not do a portrait in formal attire in a beautiful setting like Yaddo?
Senior Prom Photo Saratoga Springs NY
Or we can do something equally beautiful in the studio.
Prom Photos Saratoga NY
We can even do something over the top.

Don’t Be Afraid To Accessorize:

Some accessories are fun, but let’s not go too crazy.

Averill Park Senior Portraits
This was not originally intended to be worn for photos, but I loved the way the fur framed Gianna’s face.
High school Senior Photos Albany NY
Hats and sunglasses–yes, please.
Black and White Senior Portrait
These sunglasses are actually a vintage pair that I own.

A quick note:  I have been asked if I have a “style closet.”  While I do have a few items here, I really prefer to photograph my clients with their own clothing and accessories.  What I do have here is meant to compliment or maybe add a finishing touch to what you bring to your Senior Portrait Session.  I don’t  feel that having your portraits taken with other people’s fashion choices really expresses your individuality, do you?

Upstate NY Senior Portraits
This leather fringed vest is in my stash. Really just to add –see the post we did on one outfit styled five ways.

Now that you have read this, go get your clothes in order!  I can’t wait to see what everyone brings this year!

Did you find this Go to Guide for Senior Portraits helpful?  Be sure to check out Planning Your Senior Portraits or FAQs for Senior Portraits.

Ready to schedule your Senior Portrait Session?  Call us at (518) 584-4237 today!





Yep, deciding what to wear for senior pictures is the most stressful part of planning a session! You’ve got some excellent advice for both guys and girls!

Blackburn Portrait Design

We try to take the stress out of planning senior portraits for all of our clients. Love when they show up looking fabulous and feeling confident!

Great advice for seniors prepping for their session! Love the variety you encourage.

Blackburn Portrait Design

Thank you Jody–variety is so important when photographing any portrait session!

Choosing what to wear for senior pictures can always be stressful! These are great tips for you clients to help them prepare for their upcoming session.

Love all your tips about choosing outfits for senior pictures! This is an excellent guide for a high school seniors, thank you!

Choosing the best outfits for senior pictures can be very tricky! I love these tips on how to dress and what to wear so teens are prepared for their photo shoot.

Blackburn Portrait Design

We love styling all of our Senior Portrait clients so they are camera ready and look fabulous!