Family Photos | What to Wear

Without a doubt, the most popular question I get asked regarding family photo shoots is WHAT CLOTHING SHOULD WE WEAR? Guys, I hear you. I’ve been a professional photographer for 14 years now and I still LOSE MY MIND when it comes time to planning outfits for my own family photos.

The most important advice I can give is STAY TRUE TO YOUR OWN STYLE. You may love the look of boho maxi dress mama from Instagram, but if you have never owned a piece of boho clothing in your life and it wouldn’t be considered part of your normal style, you may struggle relating to those photos when you see them later. You want your photos to reflect your true vibe and style so you LOVE the outcome of your photos now and in years to come.

Do you love the idea of ripped jeans and t-shirts at home? How about fancy clothing in a downtown location? Or maybe you’re in your swimsuits at the beach? Perhaps you love a boho vibe in a field of long grass.

Below are a few easy and important tips for when you are planning your next family photo shoot. You can also get more ideas on my family style pinterest board HERE.


  • Choose a palette of 2-3 colors and mix it up among family members, including both pants and dresses. You want to be coordinated, but not matching. Picture a page in a clothing catalog where everyone coordinates, but nobody stands out more than the rest.
  • Typically solid clothing looks best, but adding in a light pattern on one or two people looks great
  • Plan your outfits completely at least a few days before your session. It helps to lay them out on the floor or bed to see them together.
  • Layers and accessories such as hats, scarves, leggings, jackets, and jewelry look fabulous in photos!


    To do:

  • Nonfussy, casual clothes to keep kids comfortable and for natural expressions of their real personalities
  • Fitted clothes

    Not to do:

  • Big bows, any sort of makeup, or hairspray
  • Baggy clothes


   To do:

  • Solid, darker colors are most flattering.
  • Men, if you are getting a hair cut, do so a week before the session.
  • Ladies, having your hair and makeup done professionally isn’t necessary, but the pros know exactly how to make you photo ready and feel like a rock star! Choose natural makeup, but go a little heavier than usual as photos tend to wash out a bit.

    Not to do:

  • Horizontal stripes (or any thick stripes).
  • Sleeveless shirts and shorts, which tend to not flatter adults.
  • Logos and bold patterns.



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