What to bring in for your boudoir photo-shoot
So you’ve finally booked your first ever boudoir photo-shoot. You’re excited because you know this is something you really want to do, you may have even thought about it for a while, but the question still remains… what should I bring in to make the most of this session? After years of experience, these are our recommended lingerie, clothing and accessories to make the most out of your boudoir photo-shoot.
If you are still unsure of reasons to have a boudoir photo-shoot then please see our previous blog post Why Boudoir?
It is always great to have a variety of items to wear in your shoot and bring some diversity into your images, more is always better than less as your photographer can help you decide and give plenty of suggestions on the day. Having said that, we would still love to give you some guidance on what we think works best everytime, but remember you can tailor this in whatever way you see fit. Please scroll down to see our recommended underwear suppliers list. Don’t feel like you have to bring in everything on this list, these are just our overall suggestions:
Lingerie will be the most important part of any boudoir photo-shoot, having booked the shoot you already know that that’s what you’ve come here to do, so whatever your reasoning may be, underwear is key. When it comes to lingerie, we always recommend MATCHING sets. This doesn’t mean you have to go and spend or that the items have to be perfectly matched when you bought them, however if you’re bringing in a black lacy bra, make sure you have black lacy knickers to match, the same goes for all colours and materials, this simply gives better consistency in your images. When it comes to colours, depending on taste, we suggest as a rule of thumb, have a black set, a white or lighter set and a coloured set. Bright red looks beautiful against darker background as well as shades of blue and purple. Patterned or printed underwear looks fabulous too as long as it’s matching. Lastly, make sure it FITS you well, no one wants to be wearing a bra too big or too small, and you absolutely want to be as comfortable as possible.
We also recommend bringing in a comfy Calvin Klein underwear set for a more casual underwear look.
You’ve already got a few matching underwear sets in your wardrobe, so how can you go the extra mile when it comes to lingerie? This is where lingerie can get fun, again you don’t have to go out and buy anything new, you may already have some of these things hidden away… A negligee is essentially a night gown, usually made of a soft silky fabric. These are a fabulous way to make the most of your photo-shoot and are also a great go-to for ladies who perhaps don’t feel as comfortable wearing a bra & knickers combination. We prefer the shorted night-gowns to long ones, as they allow you to move your body more freely when it comes to posing.
These are similar to a nightgown but are usually more sheer and have more sex-appeal than a traditional night dress. Sometimes they are fur lined or include bows, ties and ruffles, your taste is yours but we at Boudoir by Cameo believe simplicity is key so anything with too much diamante is a no from us! If you like cutesy and fun whilst still being sexy, the babydoll is for you!
Teddy’s & Bodysuits
A teddy is essentially a bodysuit in the form of underwear, so it can have lace, bows & frills but only really aims to cover the torso area. This is another great go to if traditional bra and knickers isn’t your thing and they tend to have similar adjustment straps to that of a bra. Bodysuits can also come in the variety of non-traditional lingerie, and can still look great in classic materials like cotton, essentially it is a swimsuit (not meant for swimming!). A classic black, white or skin-toned bodysuit can look incredible under a leather jacket or on its own paired with your favourite heels.
Stockings & Suspenders
Suspenders are an elastic strap attached to a garter or belt, with the sole purpose of holding stockings up. Stockings are sheers long socks, sometimes with details or a black seem going down the back of the leg, these have to be held up with a suspender belt or you can use hold ups which are similar but don’t require a belt to stay up. Hold ups can look great with just a matching bra & knickers and just like stockings they come in a wide variety of colours and tones. We recommended going with a sheer black, brown or skin-toned pair. The stockings & suspenders combination has been classic lingerie go-to for women since the late 1800s, although less popular for women to be wearing on a regular basis nowadays, the look will always look elegant, classy and fabulous in a boudoir photo-shoot! (no tights please!)
Corset’s, Bustiers & Basque’s
Historically speaking the corset is tightly fitting lingerie made up of stiff non-stretchy material with rigid boning, has a lace up back for tightening, and worn from below the chest to the hips. It’s main purpose since its debut has been about hugging and restricting the body to create a shapely figure and bring out a women’s natural curves. This certainly isn’t everyone’s cup of tea if you’re going for comfort, that said we have seen our fair share and absolutely love how they look in photographs. The corset aims to enhance the waist, and the bustier is similar but aims to boost the shape of a women’s breasts. The Basque is a french term that broadly describes lingerie similar to that of a corset or bustier, but in the modern day tends to enhance your figure naturally without completely shaping like a corset would. These items are highly popular amongst burlesque/can-can dancers, and looks incredible if you’re someone who loves the classic pin-up style of boudoir photography.
Silk dressing gowns
When it comes to dressing gowns, we aren’t talking about the fluffy robe you wear on a Sunday after a hot bath and a hangover, we much prefer the silky, sensual kind that make an excellent addition to spicing up your traditional lingerie photographs. An excellent example is the classic Japanese silk kimono or often when looking at negligee’s or night gown’s they may come with a gown to match. This is not a necessity but can bring a nice new dimension to the context and mood of your images.
Dresses & Clothing
So we’ve talked underwear, so what else can I bring? Of course you came to be photographed baring as little as possible, but this shoot is yours and one we encourage you to make the most out of! So if you have a dress that is sentimental to you or that you feel kick-ass in, then by all means please bring it!
Dresses tend to look better with heels so consider this when packing the night before. Jeans is also a highly recommended item of clothing as they can be worn casually with your Calvin’s or dressed sexy with a teddy, bodysuit or bra. The same goes for skirts, leather always looks fabulous. Jackets are also an excellent way to jazz up any underwear look, again leather is a classic look, however traditional suit jackets (you could even bring in the matching skirt or trousers) can make for an extra classy look.
We absolutely love a cotton shirt (yours or your partners!) too, this makes for that gorgeous girl-next-door appeal.
If this shoot is a gift for your partner, then we absolutely recommended bring in some of his clothing, whether that be a tie or something like a helmet or hat that might part of his work uniform (just make sure he doesn’t need it on the day!)
Costume & Dress-up;
If you’re someone who likes to have fun in or outside of the bedroom, you may have a wide selection of dress-up items. This could include sexy halloween costumes like a witch or devil outfit, or the classic naughty nurse or playboy bunny outfit. Our take is that we prefer classic lingerie over dress-up as some costumes made with cheaper material will age quicker in photographs. If a costume is sentimental or one that your partner absolutely loves you in, then by all mean bring it along! After all this shoot is unique to you and we want you to feel your absolute best.
That having said, if you have any quirky lingerie (knickers with exciting shapes or frills) or have a unique fetish i.e bdsm, you are welcome by all means to bring these items in.
Sometimes our ladies who are doing the boudoir photo-shoot for a partner’s birthday or anniversary gift, will often bring in their partner’s uniform or relevant accessories to wear. Coming back to our last point under Dresses and Clothing, this is absolutely recommended if your partner is in the armed forces or emergency services. This type of dress-up makes for incredibly special photographs that both you and your partner will cherish for many years to come.
Jewelry, Hats & Accessories
We have covered all things clothing, now for the final cherry on top of the cake…what accessories to bring! Not every woman is big on jewelry and that’s absolutely fine, please stick to your personal taste and don’t feel like you need to change your usual tune. When it comes to jewelry we recommend classic pieces that will enhance your lingerie. This could be a simple pair of diamond or diamante studs or dangly earrings. Anything with a good sparkle we recommend highly! This is the same for necklaces and bracelets. We usually say no to hoops as the bigger ones tend to do their own thing in photographs which can be distracting. Again if you have sentimental items please bring those. Body jewelry can look amazing too.
Hats are a great accessory to any photo-shoot, and will add unique context to your boudoir images and can even look incredible whilst nude. We recommend wide-brimmed floppy hats or sun hats for a more feminine look. However trilby’s, berrets and cowboy hats have worked well in the past depending on your style!
As mentioned in some of our previous sections, using accessories such as a partner’s tie looks great. Any other accessories like scarves, headbands, sunglasses or costume jewelry that you would love to be photographed in please do! Always aim to pair any accessories with an outfit you have in mind. We mentioned unique fetishes earlier; particularly in the world of bdsm, you may wish to bring in lace ties, a whip or cane or even handcuffs, depending on your taste.
Heels are an absolute must, even if they aren’t something you’d normally wear, we highly recommend them as they help aid in making the most out of posing a women’s body. A classic black pair is fine, but you may have colours to match your lingerie. We recommend stilettos over wedges, and prefer closed-toe unless your toe-nails are painted in an appropriate colour! You may wish to wear trainers for a most casual look but we would say as a rule of thumb, one pair of heels is absolutely fine. Louboutins with the elegant red sole look extra appealing when photographed, but please don’t splash out on a pair if you don’t already own one! Knee-high boots are another of our absolute favourites when it comes to heels.
…make it personal to you, the most important thing is that you bring in anything that makes you feel fabulous!
Lastly, make-sure your nails are exactly how you’d like them, we recommend a classic french manicure or a neutral shade so ensure they match all your outfits, any makeup looks you’d like to go with can be discussed with your make-up artist on the day.
Our recommend lingerie suppliers for all budgets:
Lights, camera, action!
We’ll see you on your shoot day, and can’t wait to see what you bring in with you.