creating a studio wardrobe, Houston Texas photographer

Creating a Studio Wardrobe to Elevate Your Clients’ Portrait Experience

Shannon Reece Jones Photography

If you know me, you know that I am all about providing a truly luxurious experience for my clients. And if you want to do the same thing for your own clients, then one of the basics I recommend is creating a studio wardrobe.

If you are reluctant to have a client closet, I hear you. I used to feel the same way. I felt like a client wardrobe would make my images all look the same, and I wanted each client to wear something that was just for them. So instead of providing gowns I simply recommended vendors and provided links with ideas for what to wear. But eventually, I saw that a studio closet just might help me to serve my clients better. Little did I know the difference it would make!

Here are some tips for creating a studio wardrobe that can elevate your client experience and make your artwork even prettier!

creating a studio wardrobe, Houston Texas photographer

Why Create a Client Closet

As a Houston newborn photographer I had tons of baby wraps, outfits, props, and headbands at the studio…but nothing for mom. I made the mistake of thinking that because I was a newborn photographer, I only needed to provide outfits for newborns.

Gradually though, as I learned to pay closer attention to my clients needs and wants, I realized that a lot of new moms were so overwhelmed with taking care of their baby that they really hadn’t given much thought to what to wear for their newborn session. (Not to mention that your body changes after giving birth, and sometimes a favorite outfit from pre-baby days just doesn’t work anymore.)

So I bought a few camisoles to keep in the studio, just for those moms who were struggling to find outfits at home. Turns out, that was nearly all of my moms. Everyone wanted to wear those camisoles!

Over the years, I’ve worked on creating a studio wardrobe by adding dresses. I have quite the collection now, and my clients absolutely love them! Every time I add a new gown, it’s worn in the next session or two. I even added a mirror to my client closet to help moms choose an outfit they love.

Not only do my clients love being able to choose dresses at the studio, I’ve noticed that having a client closet has really helped my brand consistency. Although I don’t choose the individual gowns for each client, I do choose what goes into the collection. So all of the styles and colors work beautifully with my brand. If brand consistency is something you struggle with, you’ll be amazed by the difference a client wardrobe can make!

Studio Maternity Dresses

Tips for Creating a Studio Wardrobe (even on a budget)

If cost is an issue, don’t worry. You can still create a studio wardrobe on a budget. Here are some tips for getting started:

Don’t feel like you need an entire closet filled with outfits to announce that you have a client wardrobe. Start with just one or two pieces that look flattering on everyone and that you personally love too! Even limited options are a huge improvement on having nothing at all.

As you begin buying dresses, prioritize pieces that provide flexibility and variety. Rather than buy 3 empire gowns, make sure each dress is different from the other, so that clients are more likely to find a style that works for them. Also, dresses with some stretch can fit multiple sizes, so it’s worth paying attention to details like stretchy waistbands or adjustable straps.

There’s no need to start with expensive brands. I still find pretty and affordable ideas on Amazon all the time! The important thing is that what you choose works with your style. As you build your business, you can invest in some more expensive pieces if you’d like.

What to wear to your photography session

Learn and Grow as a Photographer

Building your photography business is an adventure! I hope these ideas for creating a studio wardrobe have inspired you. If you want to continue experiencing meaningful growth in your business, I have a whole collection of courses and resources on my education page, as well as unique mentoring opportunities. Hope to see you there!

Lots of Love,