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4 Must Know Styling Tips For Your Boudoir Session

You've booked your session, you've poured through the Pinterest archives and you've dreamt up the perfect location...

grinch meme san diego boudoir portrait styling tips

There is so much pressure put on photoshoot attire... "What will I wear? What photographs well?"

As sessions start approaching these are the questions that come up most often. While it's a fun creative outlet for me to help style a session head-to-toe, more than anything I actually just want my clients to feel like the best version of themselves during our time. It's incredible how those "favorite jeans" or that "special occasion dress" can have such an impact on your confidence and comfortability - so lean into that! Regardless of any other advice in this post, I hope the biggest take away is: to wear what makes you feel comfortable and confident. Everything else is extra. When you're feeling confident, those vibes will shine through into your session no matter what you're wearing!

But really, I don't assume clients are asking this because they don't know what clothes they themselves like, but rather they want to make sure their wardrobe photographs well - and for that I have plenty of advice. So let's get to it!


bohemian outdoor boudoir portrait photography

1. Whitest Whites + Blackest Blacks

Let's get started with the basics.

White + black.....you can't go wrong!


I typically encourage wearing neutrals + soft colors so that you're never limited by feeling like you clash with your surroundings, but sometimes those most basic colors can actually cause more problems than they solve. This is where undertones and off-colors can make a huge difference.

Keeping a few tiny details in mind will help you avoid looking flat or formless in your photos, and those details are...details! Texture + simple patterns are hands down the best way to wear white + black.

Notice in the brightest and darkest spots of these images how the texture of the fabric or its subtle pattern gives depth that might have otherwise been lost.

Another solution is simply wearing "close to it" colors.

Black tips: A deep, dark green or blue will look almost black and a dark pattern will give depth without disappearing into the shadows.

White tips: Wearing cream or off-white. These colors will read as white when photographed, without any blue-ish highlights or reflective tendencies.


bohemian mountain maternity boudoir portrait

2. Simple, Classic + Comfortable

You can never go wrong with your comfiest jeans or a basic matching set. Aside from the fact that you know you're gonna look and feel amazing in them, wearing simple attire with calm colors brings all the focus onto you and your surroundings.


bohemian outdoor blacks beach san diego boudoir portraits

3. Color Without Clashing

I'm bias when it comes to wardrobe palettes, because my closet is filled with "muddy" and "dusty" hues. But while I may be happy sporting an entire outfit of grey and tan, that just doesn't fit everyone's style. So please, do not be afraid of adding those big pops of color!

When you're adding brighter, bolder colors to your outfit just keep in mind two small things.

1. What time of day are you shooting?

Sunset & sunrise will naturally have warmer hues, while midday & dusk will have bluer, more vibrant tones. You can use the time of day to create more contrast with opposing color schemes or match the day's natural tones.

2. Where are you shooting?

If you're shooting outside in nature, you'll most likely have plenty of neutral backgrounds to choose from that will help your color choice to pop. If you're shooting somewhere more urban (which tend to have busier + more elaborate views), stray away from anything with too much print, as it will limit your location choices.


4. Layers on Layers

Setting the scene...San Diego in the middle of summer. Why on earth would you need (or want) to layer up?? Of course in the cold it's easy to pile on layers and create an outfit absolutely overflowing with depth, but what about when it's 90 degrees outside?

First things first - layers do not need to be clothing. The best way to think of what kind of layers you may want to incorporate is just by thinking of what would be fun to play with? What items can you hold on to, take on + off, twirl around with, drape, drag, lay on...you get the jist.

Not only does adding these kinds of elements add visual depth to your outfit, but each piece becomes its own sort of natural prop. By adding or ditching these elements you can completely change your look, which also gives your final gallery more contrast. Win, win, win!

Now for me personally, there's one last reason to pile on the layers, and it comes down to comfortability + fidgeting. I'm the girl always sliding her necklace back and forth or with her hands in her pockets...and don't get me started on the fact that I can't wear a drawstring sweatshirt without looking like a complete fool (hah!). There is something very calming and comfortable about being able to fidget, so don't hesitate adding in that necklace or hat!

These are my basic suggestions + rules of thumb for anyone who just doesn't know where to start. But if you're reading through this and disagreeing with any of these tips, or you know you feel confident in your styling and know how to rock the newest trends...then go for it!

You. Do. You.


For more styling inspiration and suggestions check out my Pinterest!


jackie batch photography san diego boudoir portraits

Hello - thanks for stopping by!

I am so grateful to have a job that I'm THIS freaking in love with...


Wanting to capture moments + feelings filters into every aspect of my life...

Let the posts come to you!

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