After a recent post of my family photos, I have had a few people contact me about how I pick out outfits for my family photos. I am not a fashion blogger, stylist, or designer, but I do have a few tips I thought would be helpful to share.
- Make sure you feel beautiful
Dress yourself first. I have started with the kids outfits and tried to match something in my closet to them, and it just doesn’t end with the result that I want. So now I start with an outfit that I feel pretty wearing. If you feel pretty, you will like the photos, because, let’s be honest, your kids could be in potato sacks and you would still love a photo of them. Kids outfits that you love are much easier to find on a quick shopping trip. Seriously, go to Target or Old Navy and you are bound to find something you will just love to dress them in.
2. Use a simple color pallet of 3-4 colors
Don’t be afraid of color, but don’t let color be a distraction. Remember in the 90’s, family pictures meant everyone put on their blue jeans and white shirts? Well, please don’t do that… it’s 2017. Remember when plaid shirts became a trend and family pictures had everyone in different plaid patterned shirts, don’t do that either. Side note: Please don’t be offended if you have done either of these trends, because you are not alone. It was the “in” thing to do.
My rule of thumb is to use one bold pattern and then maybe a simple complimenting pattern with some solids and color blocking. Use your bold pattern to pull out your color pallet and then mix and match from there.
This is where you get to dress up those solids and add your personality! Accessories photograph very well and bring your outfit game up a notch. Think of your favorite shoes or belt ;).
For Fall pictures, think layers. Scarves and sweaters are a great way to fashionably dress for the weather. The average temperature on the day we have scheduled for our family mini session is 68 degrees. Dress for the weather and your surroundings, because if you don’t, you will have goosebumps, shrugged up shoulders, and red noses in your pictures.
5. Prepare- Plan ahead
My couch makes for the perfect place to lay out our outfits and see how they look right next to each other. I have heard of people using the floor or their bed to lay out their outfits… to each their own, jut make sure you aren’t scrambling the day of your shoot, because something is bound to not fit right, be in the dirty clothes hamper, or need ironed. I also like to take a picture of the outfits on my phone. One, because I am a super visual person, and two, because I might find something out and about that I think might work better and it’s nice to have a picture for reference.
6. Disney Characters and Star Wars are a NO
I try to avoid all logos and characters. The photos are about your family and the beautiful faces of your children. Characters, logos, and words are a big distraction.
7. Think like Jackie O.
Jackie’s style was timeless and classic. These photos are going to be up and displayed for years to come. You want to look at them and think of how classic and wonderful you all look, not think “what were we thinking?!”. When it comes to trends, opt for simple ones and ones that will most likely stick around, like scarves, or hats, or boots…. leave the man romper in the closet and those giant bell bottoms that come in a out of fashion right there next to the romphim.
Here are some samples from my recent family session and some other family sessions we have photographed and just loved their styling.