Tutorial Tuesday: Deciding What to Wear

Figuring out what to wear for your family photos can feel like a daunting task and it totally doesn’t have to be! Here are a few tips to try to make it easier! When in doubt, just reach out! I love helping my clients pull together their look for photos!


Tips and things to consider:

  1. Dress the hardest person first

    Start with the person that is generally hardest to dress. Maybe it’s your picky princess or your little man that hates structured pants. Start with the person who has the strongest opinion on what they wear (this year it was my husband – no tucked in shirts please!) You can plan everyone else’s outfits around that person.
  2. Pick 1 pattern, possibly 2 depending on the other

    Too many patterns in the photo and it can get busy. Pick one larger pattern as a center piece of the look and build around that. You can consider a second pattern if it’s subtle. For example, a large floral dress on mom and a checkered shirt on brother. But no more more than two and keep the patterns on the larger side. Things like pin stripes and hounds tooth don’t show up well in photos and can create distracting patterns.
  3. Coordinate, don’t match

    We like to tell our clients to coordinate but don’t put everyone in the same outfit to match. It’s okay to do a monochromatic look but mix up the textures and pieces to create visual interest in your images.
  4. Make sure it fits

    Well fitting clothing will help make you more comfortable during our session. If things are too loose or too tight you’ll find yourself picking and pulling and trying to position yourself to hide things. Wearing those that fit and you’re comfortable in means that you can focus on being present in the session and no fiddling with your clothes.
  5. Consider the seasons

    I only say this because we photograph outside. In late October, early November it can get chilly out. The short sleeved sun dress on you daughter may be cute but if she’s shivering because she’s cold we won’t be able to get nice natural smiles. Dress for the weather. It doesn’t mean you have to be bulky and ugly. Sweaters and dressy jackets can be worked into the overall outfit look. Little girls can wear thick tights under their dress. Thermals work great under boys jeans and khakis.
  6. Consider your decor

    If you plan on displaying your images in your home (which I hope you do!) You may want to consider your color choices for your outfits and how they work in the room where the images will be displayed. These portraits are art on your walls and should work with the overall look of the room.
  7. Shoes!

    Don’t forget that shoes are part of the look and will be in the images too! This is the time to leave the ratty trainers at home and wear something that coordinates with the outfit (this year I caved and let my son wear his vans but only because they were were brand new and in good shape and worked with his outfit)

Here’s a list of some of my favorite places to shop for outfit pieces:

Http://www.balticborn.com
Baltic born is great for beautiful womens dresses (both non maternity and maternity!). The quality is excellent and the shipped in about a week. I actually bought my dress for family photos this year from them. It was soooo comfortable!

http://www.livyandkateclothing.com
Livy and Kate was the fastest to ship of the few I ordered this year. It’s a great place for womens fashions. Dresses, sweaters etc.

http://www.joyfolie.com
Joyfolie is the favorite place for little girls dresses and outfits. Their dresses are the best twirly dresses and really well made. I actually have a collection of Joyfolie dresses in my client closet because they pair so well with my maternity gowns. Beautiful beautiful dresses for both little girls, young girls and moms!

http://www.catandjack.com
Targets brand of kids clothes has so many affordable and adorable pieces for kids. You can get them in the Target stores or online.


http://www.oldnavy.com
Old Navy/Gap is a standby as well. They always have cute kids pieces at great prices. I’m finding online shopping more fruitful than going to the store since store stocks have been lately but still a great place to grab some basics for kids.

https://www.janieandjack.com/
Janie and Jack is a favorite of some of my clients. I have one that will pick a piece from J&J’s newest line and build their outfits around it.


Still need inspiration? Here’s a collection of mood boards I’ve created for 2021!

Styles from Baltic Born (Mom), Joyfolie (Sister), Carter/Oshkosh (brother), Jcrew (Dad)
Styles from Baltic Born (Mom), Joyfolie (Sister), Carter/Oshkosh (brother), Jcrew (Dad)
Styles from Baltic Born (Mom), Joyfolie (Sister), Carter/Oshkosh (brother), Jcrew (Dad)
Styles from Baltic Born (Mom), Joyfolie (Sister), Carter/Oshkosh (brother), Jcrew (Dad)
Styles from Baltic Born (Mom), Joyfolie (Sister), Carter/Oshkosh (brother), Jcrew (Dad)
Styles from Joyfolie (Sister and Mom), Target (brother), Jcrew (Dad)


And need yet more? Check out my Pinterest board of outfit ideas. Pinterest is a great source of fall what to wear ideas!

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I'm a young family photographer specializing in maternity, newborn, and family portraiture.

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