Ladies, Stop Wearing Dresses to Set. Please, I’m begging you.

Woman wearing a dress and sandals on set (and on a ladder).
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Check out these tips for women, from women, for working on a video production set. Among our top recommendations? Dress for the job as a crew member, not for fashion.

We live in a wonderful time of female empowerment, and I love showing up to set and seeing other strong women. I was actually on an all-female crew for the first time and it was so awesome. However, lately, it has also come to my attention that some of the younger ladies straight out of college are not always prepared.

So, I’m just going to say it: Please don’t wear dresses, skirts, or open toe shoes to set if you are working. Honestly, though, this goes for anyone working behind the lens.

When you don’t dress appropriately for set it slows you down. If someone needs help lifting something and you are too worried about your outfit to help out, you aren’t just shooting yourself in the foot, you shoot all of us in the foot. In that moment, someone will notice you not pulling your weight. They will judge you, and you may not get a call back next time.

You may even prevent another woman from getting the chance to prove herself as an awesome crew member because you were unprepared for work. Which is what this all comes down to, being prepared for work. You wouldn’t show up to class without your notes and a pen, right? Then you shouldn’t show up to set in something you can’t do physical labor in. Period.

Working on set is potentially dangerous because you are often working in close quarters with heavy machinery. When anyone wears loose clothing on set they increase the chances of getting caught on any number of stands and equipment.

Wearing open toe shoes or shoes without good traction can cause issues for everyone (Read Men and Women), if something heavy does come down, you could get seriously injured. This one goes for guys and girls: please tie your hair back. If you have long hair it can be just as dangerous down as a loose top or skirt.

I hate when someone writes about a problem and doesn’t offer a solution so here are some suggestions for good outfits to wear on set.

Footwear

Comfortable boots or shoes are a must and the first thing I would suggest investing in on set. Keep the stilettos, flip flops, crocs, and sandals for the weekend, and exchange them for lace up boots or shoes that are comfortable for all day wear.

Jenn wearing Converse All Star shoes on set.


I love my Chucks, they work great for me. I can usually get at least a good year of wear out of them and they are very comfortable which helps when you are on your feet all day. If you are more comfortable in running shoes, sneakers or workboots, by all means, wear them.

Pants

Please for the love of all things holy, wear some well-fitting Jeans or dark Cargo pants or shorts. Make sure they stay up and, if they don’t, wear a belt. Pants that fit well will make it easier to keep moving at a good pace without worrying about getting caught on a passing C-Stand. Make sure you don’t mind them getting a little dirty and the more durable the better.

Tops

T-shirts work great! Solid color T-shirts are inexpensive, comfortable and durable which makes them great for working on set.  I usually wear a flannel shirt over my T-shirt because I get cold in the Georgia AC, but as long as you are comfortable and have full range of motion you are good to go.

Avoid low cut shirts, the last thing you want to worry about at work is accidentally flashing all of your coworkers because your neckline got caught on something you were carrying. Talk about a nightmare waiting to happen.

Accessories & Hair

Try to keep your accessories to a minimum and your hair up.Necklaces, bangles, bracelets, long earrings, they all get caught on equipment. In fact, not long ago I had to help another girl on set detangle her earring from a scrim.

Jenn wearing pants on set.

Hats are great if you are shooting outside all day. They keep the sun off your face and head while keeping your hair in check. Another clutch accessory to have if you’re shooting outside are some sunglasses, they are a lifesaver.

Messy buns and ponytails are great things for keeping your hair out of your face and keeping you cool on set. Or you could just cut it all off and never worry about it again, like me.

Now go out there and give ‘em hell in your T-shirt & Jeans!

If you want to check out some cool work gear for women check out Rosie’s Workwear.

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