Are you like me and freak out every time your family photography session is coming up. Thinking to your self “WHAT THE HECK DO WE WEAR?”
This is one of the most stressful parts of having family pictures and I am going to help you get your mind stress free and ready for your session.
What not to do:
Rule #1 What Not To Wear:
For the love of God do not show up as a family of 10 all wearing white shirts and jeans. Unless there is a reason for this like a fundraiser that requires all matching outfits. Just don’t do it! I will send you home to change. I'm only kidding. But seriously, no, matchy matchy.
Now, don’t get me wrong, putting twins in matching tutus, it's adorable. Or it is also adorable to have a sibling/cousin group, all wearing variations of gray looks. Also, the tutu idea is highly encouraged. What I am referring to is when a whole family is wearing the same look. We are individuals and I highly encourage expressing that in a tasteful way through your outfit.
Rule #2 What Not to Wear:
DO NOT WEAR ANYTHING UNCOMFORTABLE and too restrictive. It will show when someone is wearing a dress they can't control or pants that are too tight. Try on your outfit choices beforehand and make sure everything fits well and you're able to sit, stand, spin, bend, and roll down a hill in, without body parts popping out or seams splitting. If you are uncomfortable your images will show it. Our children are energetic beings and they will feel the restriction and your images will not be magical.
Rule #3 What Not to Wear:
As classy and sharp as a striped shirt may look just look the other way. Stripes that are close together can appear as a wave when used on sites that compress images, or small photo prints. Almost every site compresses the image, especially social media sites.
Now that we went over my top rules for what not to wear let’s take a second and look at what to do.
Do you need inspiration?
Start with the season, and go with coordinating seasonal wear. We are based in Boulder County of Colorado and the seasons here change by the hour. So this is easier said than done. If we are photographing you in fall colors such as navy, mustard, plum, maroon, cream, etc. Are very flattering to the fall scenery.
If you do not want to go with seasonal wear or you have booked a studio session and do not have a theme. I suggest going with colors and textures that would match you house decor. If you have a cream and beige living room, wearing blues, grays, and cream would compliment your living room space beautifully. Assuming you will be printing your images and hanging them proudly.
Feeling psychically uncomfortable about my body what should I wear?
I get this, trust me, I beyond get this. I have been well over 400 pounds in my life and this beyond relatable for me. Whether it is weight, or “my left eye does not open as wide as my right eye”, I have heard it all. *Alyssa climbs up on her soap box* ENOUGH! Stop the exhausting expectations and harsh comments about your self. Try this instead….Please..
Be kind to your self. Your children are watching you tear you're self down and lift you’re self up. Show them what beautiful feels like not just what beautiful looks like.
Dress for your body, and then dress for your confidence. Wear what feels good. Not what looks the best or the most trendy. What dress do you feel beautiful in? What colors bring out your eyes? Try your outfit on before the session and make sure you feel confident. You are beautiful and an outfit will never change that. *Steps off soap box*
Pro tips: Darker colors will slenderize anyone.
-If its a colder season bring a scarf and a cute jackets to spice it up and add variety.
How do I coordinate my outfits with my family?
This is actually easier than you think. I usually start with moms outfit. For example If mom is wearing a blush pink dress and jean jacket. Dad could wear jeans and a linen gray button down shirt with neutral colored shoes, a daughter one can wear a cream dress with a pink bow, a son could wear khakis and a light blue shirt. Stick to similar color themes.
Do not mix patterns and bright or loud colors. Unless we are doing a hip hop shoot.
Remember simplicity will allow the focus to be on the subjects faces and not their bodies.
Lighter and neutral colors can give a fresh and airy look to your images.
Also research on Pinterest or Instagram for looks and styles. It helps seeing some examples of colors being put together.
Pro tip: Lay out everyone’s outfit, socks, shoes, hair-bows, everything, on your floor and snap a phone photo and text it to your photographer. If anything stands out or slightly clashes probably should swap the item out.
Pro Tip #2: Make sure you coordinate your undergarments with your outfit. Bra strap removal is a common editing request when this is easily avoidable step with proper planning.
Accessories and Shoes:
First and foremost make sure you can walk well in your shoes. We don’t need anyone rolling down a hill because of shoes. Trust me it happens.
Also simple and beautiful accessories are always encouraged. Match the aesthetic from your family outfits and your personality. I am a newborn/toddler photographer, therefore, I am all about some props and statement pieces. However, make sure the piece isn’t distracting or doesn’t clash with your outfit.
I love glasses. I think they look awesome in photographs and really accent the subjects personality. I am a 4 eyed girl my self so I am hugely aware of the glare glasses can give off. If you are worried about the glare effecting your photoshoot, do not fret. Anti-glare has come a long way these days and sometimes do not need any angle adjustments. In the case that a pair of glasses is giving massive glares, I might ask if you feel comfortable removing them. If not we will just position you in ways that correct the glare. This will limit us a bit in lifestyle photography. So expect some images to have some glare in them. Another option is we just go with the flow and make it work. :-)
Pro Tip: If you are looking a specific look with glasses, buy some fake glasses and pop the lens out.
Unfortunately I will not photoshop your eyes if you choose to wear sunglasses to your session. Haha!
Do not dye your hair the night before with a box! Just don’t do it to your self. Keep your hair style simple and something you are used to doing. Make sure your hair isn’t on your face and that you use plenty of hairspray. Wind is the truest killer of great hair.
Pro tip: Bring a comb, gel, hairspray, etc with you just in case the wind changes! Or a bird poops on your head. Hey, it’s happened to me!
Now that we have discussed from your head to your toe, I will wrap with some last minute pro-tips and advice.
Sometimes it’s best to change children at the location into their photo session outfit. I have a kid that will cause a blow out at the most inconvenient times. Make sure to allow time for this before your session, if you have a kiddo that spits up or has blow outs. :-)
Last pro tip! Do not bring bribes that can cause outfit stains. Just avoid Cheetos and chocolate at all cost.
Please let me or your photographer answer any questions you might have. We are here to help guide you into a successful and beautiful stress free session.
Thank you for sticking with this article this far and I sure do hope you found this helpful. Please reach out if you have any inspiration or questions. I look forward to working and making some magic with you!