5 Ways to Channel Outfit Post Creativity in the Winter


As I write this post today, snow has just canvassed the northeast and heartily dumped down in New York City, where I begrudgingly made my way to the subway feeling more like Randy from A Christmas Story than a chic fashionista ala Carrie Bradshaw on my way into work to pen my weekly feature for IFB. The snowfall may feel magical, picturesque, and rife for outfit photos to some, but for me, all I want to do is huddle around a space heater inside, keeping my extremities from getting frostbite. So…what do you do about outfit pics in the winter, if you're like me and quickly get chilled to the bone?

I've come up with a list of some options that will keep your pictures looking fresh and inspired, as well as your tootsies warm as you show off your amazing style and location prowess. In fact, most of these can double up as a fun outing for you and a friend; just be sure to give them a quick crash course on the kind of shots you like and your camera on the way there!

Where the Kiddies Go:

Kids (and parents) get a little stir crazy after the holidays, embarking upon activities that are family friendly AND outside of the house being both educational and fun. Take inspiration from this and head there yourself; places like museums, zoos, aviaries, aquariums, a science center, history center, a sporting event; seek locations that offer plenty of space to be able to get a good dozen or more shots in with interesting displays, and decent light in the background. If you've been there before, plot out where you want to take your photos ahead of time, or look at a floor plan and list of exhibits for additional info.

Of course, you may need to/want to ask permission in advance to take photos if you aren't sure if it's alright or not.  If budget is a concern, be on the look out for “family days,” “pay what you wish” days or nights or any other deals via Groupon or otherwise to reduce the fee of admission. Some places even grant you free admission if you eat in the café, so perhaps treat your photographer to lunch and a free admission in exchange for the photos!

Seek Vintage-Inspired Backdrops:

You can find really cool backdrops ALREADY hung up in places indoors all around, from rug stores to antique shops and small galleries. What you find has the possibility of adding a great dimension and texture to enrich your images, and it also can tie into what I wrote last week, about bloggers supporting their local communities. Again, clear it with a shop associate or owner in advance, and be sure to throw a thanks and a link their way in your post.

Where the Tourists Go — That's Indoors:

There may be some iconic spots that, as a resident of your city, you may be quick to forget about or even usually avoid! Doing a quick search for NYC, I found that the majority of the ones that popped up were actually inside, or had indoor components to them. Heading there in the morning may provide some good light, and lessen the amount of people walking in front of your camera.

It may feel a little corny to you, but I bet there are readers of yours across the country or the globe that find it to be wonderful.

Borrow From Your Neighbors:

Does a neighbor your friendly with have a wall in his/her apartment painted a unique color or has distinct wallpaper that may look great in a photograph? See if bringing over a bottle of wine may gain entry to the apartment for a quick photo shoot, and maybe throw in a fancy corkscrew to see if he/she would be willing to even take the photos for you!

Also consider if a friend or relative has a big, unused finished or unfinished, uncluttered basement that they wouldn't mind letting you use.

Create Your Own Indoor, Temporary Space:

If you're like me and live in a small apartment, it's difficult to dedicate space to a studio for outfit photos.  You can buy a paper backdrop and use gaffers tape to create a quick set up, and don't feel obliged to select plain old white. Go for a color that may provide a nice pop against your hair color or skin, and be sure to buy a roll as wide as you can afford, so you have plenty of options for poses and variety. You can also get temporary wall paper or tiles to add some interesting depth via an impermanent look to your place. Just remember to avoid anything too dark or flashy, as it's nice to enhance your photo with a cool backdrop, but you don't want it to necessarily detract from your outfit.

What have you done with outfit photos during the wintertime?

[Image credit: Shutterstock.com]


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17 Responses

  1. Zharkyn

    Thank you for this post. honestly, I was googling few weeks ago “How to handle photoshoot during winter?” hehe :))) I like your ideas and I will definitely try them out :)) thanks

  2. Vicki @ WITC

    I tough it out and shoot outside! Though I tend to go for a “spray and pray” method. Rapid firing with the remote trigger and getting a shoot done in five minutes 🙂

  3. Christine Buzan

    Thank you for posting this! It’s so timely on this extremely cold day… I thought my face was going to freeze off!

    Oddly enough, I was just thinking about that this morning. Living in NYC specifically, its’ difficult to take photos inside of an apartment since most are the sizes of shoeboxes. However, going somewhere like the library is a great option i’ve yet to explore.


  4. Tiana Hood

    Very timely! I just started a blog and was wondering what people do in the winter. I’m a total wimp in the cold so standing out there freezing is just not an option for me. I’m not that die hard! I live in Denver where it is usually very sunny even in the winter, which makes doing winter shoots half way tolerable but lately it’s been pretty freaking cold. Great tips!


    • Julia Dinardo

      haha, I’m a TOTAL wimp too Tiana! I bet you have some really gorgeous outdoor options when it’s warm, and I bet some cool, quaint, indoorsy ones too! 🙂 Good luck!

  5. Casey Shteamer

    I love the rug store idea!! Definitely need to do this. So glad for this post, as it is -27 with windchill here today in Chicago and definitely not shooting an outfit post outside today!

    • Julia Dinardo

      So glad it came at the right time Casey, and geez – Chicago got hit hard!! Maybe the Marshalls Fields/Macy’s building would be cool (but from the inside, of course 😉 )

  6. Juliana

    I live in Canada, so this post is perfect for me! I was actually thinking about this the other day because I wanted to keep up with my outfit posts, but it was extremely hard in -30 to -40 weather. I’ll definitely try out the backdrop idea. I never thought about trying to pick a background colour that’s not white… – Juliana

  7. Monika Faulkner

    I live in Vancouver, Canada…so with few exceptions, even our mid-winter weather is never really THAT cold; I find dealing with the rain can be more of a challenge!! I’m lucky that my husband is my photographer, so we usually just park as close as we can to our shoot location, jump out of the car, take some pictures, jump back into the car to warm up, and repeat!!


  8. Ana and Diana

    These are great ideas! Here in winter rains a LOT! so it is super difficult to take pictures outside. Because of that it has been a while since i made an outfit post. I will definitely take some of these ideas with me and hope to post again this week! 😀

  9. Lyn

    This is so helpful ! I’m lucky that winter has not really arrived yet but they say ti’s coming so I can def use these tips!
    One thing I ‘hate’ about indoor photos : it is so hard to find great light!
    Do you have any tips that your indoor-photos have nice colors/lightening//shadows/etc? It would really be helpful since I’m not an expert in these kind of things.. xx Lyn

  10. anna

    yes this polar vortex is surely cramping my fashion blog style…i have found hotel lobbys to be the next best thing…but i do dearly miss the outdoor shoots..oh chicago, come on and warm up already:)