What to Wear for Family Photos

by | Beginner, Family

what to wear for family photos

Family Photos Attire Cheatsheet

Easily pick out what to wear for family photos without worrying about clashing, mismatching, or looking boxy. Use my family photo attire cheatsheet to prepare!

Have you booked your summer photo session? Or are you taking your kid’s summer photos? Summer is a great time to have your professional sitting. Everyone is together; a little sun-kissed and often at the beach-a perfect location for a family session. If you know me, I am all about taking my family’s photos and even on occasion being in those pictures. But the question always is…what to wear for your family photos?

First, what to wear…

Remember that neutral, muted colors look best, and these colors focus on you and not what you’re wearing. I don’t mean the jeans and white shirt kind of neutral…those days are done. I mean soft, muted prints or neutral colors. These colors also stand the test of time. You want to look back on your photos in ten, twenty…even fifty years and have no regrets about your outfit choices.

family photos muted colors
Family Photos: Muted Colors Look Best

Next, remember to coordinate, don’t match! Pull 3-4 colors from the main outfit or that will blend with the outfit, and go from there. Layering the colors can help pull it all together, and it’s okay to have stripes on one person and patterns on another if the colors all work together.

family photos coordinated colors
Family Photos: Coordinated Colors

Consider your location when choosing your outfits and what to wear for family photos. Formal attire doesn’t fit the vibe of the beach. Shorts and a t-shirt don’t work well for a city photoshoot. Think through the look you are aiming for, and your location before picking out your wardrobe.

And lastly, be true to yourself! You want to look great in your photos! Relaxed, not uptight, and if you are uncomfortable in your clothes, you are not going to look relaxed…and the same goes for your kiddos! Shop your closet first. Do you have a favorite outfit? One that you feel your best when you wear? Start there, if that fantastic outfit will look good in photos, and make you feel relaxed, go with it, and build everyone else’s wardrobe around it!

family photos comfortable clothing
Family Photos: Wear Something You Feel Comfortable In

Second, what not to wear for your family photo session…

Don’t wear boxy, shapeless clothes. I’ll admit it…I have a dress that I LOVE! I wear it all of the time. The colors are great, I feel confident in it, and it’s so comfortable, but it does NOT photograph well. It’s boxy and not exactly flattering. When I wear it, and someone takes my photo, I have to be aware of the way it hangs. Try to wear clothes that define your shape. Remember, no baggy clothes!

Avoid neon, extremely bright colors, and graphics. This is one time you don’t want your kids picking out their outfits. Bright colors and graphic t-shirts are distracting, and you will be incredibly disappointed if you spend time and money, and the first thing that someone notices is a busy graphic t-shirt. You want your family to be the focus of your photo and not their clothes.

family photos avoid bright colors
Family Photos: Avoid bright colors

Just like you should avoid wearing crazy, bright colors, you should also avoid wearing white or black. White shirts tend to “blow out.” This means there will be no detail in your shirt. A black shirt will do the same. It will “clip” losing all detail. It is much better to avoid these two colors if you can when deciding what to wear for family photos.

Because, you want to look back at these photos for many years to come, invest some time and energy into picking the outfits that co-ordinate, make you feel confidant and comfortable, and look timeless in your photos. Above all, don’t forget to be yourselves!

family photos coordinated colors
Family Photos: Coordinated Colors

After you scheduled your session, take some time to consider what to wear for family photos to make sure that you are comfortable as well as timeless, and remember to make sure to learn how you can take your own photos of your family! It’s easier than you may think. All you need are a few tips!

Learn how to use manual mode and take control of your camera so that you can create the amazing images that you’ve always imagined with the Manual Mode Essentials Ebook!

Lifestyle Photographer & Mentor

Hi, I’m Dena, a natural light lifestyle photographer with 20+ years of experience capturing other people’s memories and teaching photographers how to understand and easily use their cameras.

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