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Summerville High Senior Portrait

What to Wear

What should I wear for my Senior Photo Session?

This is one of the most common questions I receive! If you’re wondering how to plan for your senior portrait session wardrobe, you’re not alone. For my clients, the goal is always to have a fun and stress-free photo experience. In order to do this, and to get the most out of your time in front of the camera—preparation is key! Having cute style on the day-to-day is one thing, but knowing the different types of outfits to bring with you for your photo shoot is another ball game entirely.

1. Decide Your Shoot Style

The standard shoot style is classic and includes items like a cap and gown, confetti, and maybe your college sweatshirt or sports uniform. Another style option is editorial, which focuses on magazine-esque items like flower bouquets, picnic blankets and baskets, vintage bicycles, gilded hand mirrors or other “outside-the-box” items. Psst…you can do a combination of both!

Please note that props are not a “must” by any means. Some of my clients love them and go all out. Some pick one or two items to bring. Others stick with just their outfits, and that’s great, too! The most important things you need to bring to your session are positivity and laughter. I'll take care of the rest.

2. Dress it Up!

The first piece to add to your shoot wardrobe is a dress or two. Try picking one dress to wear on its own, and then one dress to wear under your cap and gown outfit. The dress you wear with your gown should be shorter in length than the gown itself. Remember: there’s no such thing as “too dressed up” when it comes to your portrait session, so don’t be afraid to have some fun! If you don’t want to spend a ton of money adding a new permanent piece to your wardrobe, I hear that Rent the Runway is a great service to use for senior portrait photos because you don’t have to spend a lot to feel like a million bucks. Plus, you can send the outfits back when the session is over. Some of my clients love having an excuse to go shopping and purchase a new permanent piece (or two!) for their wardrobe—and that’s okay, too!


I recommend choosing long, flowing dresses or skirts because they’re flattering on all body types, look amazing on camera and bring extra movement and dimension to your photos. Maxi (or floor length) skirts and dresses will give us the best “twirl factor,” add more romance to your walking photos and look especially gorgeous when juxtaposed with nature, like the desert, forest, fields or beach. Feel free to re-wear your prom or winter formal dress! (I mean, might as well wear that dress more than just once, right?!)