You’ve found a photographer and booked a date for your family’s photo session.  Hooray!  But now the biggest, most stress causing question arises - What should we wear?  

Clothing can make or break a photo shoot.  It is important to stay true to your personal style but also keep in mind what looks good on camera.  We all want beautiful images and clothing is a tool to make those pictures come to life.  Here are some of my tips that I share with my clients on styling.  These are of course, my own set of rules.  If you or other photographers have any ideas on how to look great in pictures, please share in the comments.

Same is Lame.

Gone are the days (I hope) that everyone shows up in the same outfit like blue jeans and white t shirts.  When the group is wearing the same uniform, the image is a boring blend of sameness.  Everyone does not have to match.  Instead, try to coordinate colors that work well together .  For example, stick to a color palette like pastels or jewel tones and dress everyone within that color range.  But again, not the SAME color.  I even encourage pattern as long as it compliments and is not overwhelming.  When you mix it up, you will bring more life to your images.

Color my World. 

I adore color. Vibrant, happy color.  It adds a pop and richness to an image that makes it memorable.  Be it a bright sweater, scarf or necklace…a little color can go a long way.  Just make sure the colors coordinate with each other.

Love to Layer. 

I am a big fan of layering your outfits.  By simply adding a cardigan, tights or hat, your image will have more detail and depth.  It adds variety.  Add texture like tweed or ruffles or lace and you can create even more visual interest.

Beware of Trendy.

Timeless fashion is always best.  The worst would be for you to look back 10 years from now and wonder, “Why did we wear that?”.  Try to avoid outfits that are too trendy.  You can never go wrong with classics like a great fitting pair of jeans or wrap dress.

Location Matters.

Keep in mind where the session will take place. Your clothing needs to make sense with the location and the season. If you are in a wooded forest during the autumn months, you wouldn’t be wearing a light sundress and sandals.  Jeans, boots and warm sweaters would make better sense.

Be True to You.

At the end of the day, these photos should reflect who you are individually and as a family.  Select clothing that makes you feel confident, comfortable and helps your personality shine through.  Everyone is happier when they can be themselves!

More random DON’TS

  • Don’t wear tops with BIG logos, cartoon characters and words. Too distracting.
  • Don’t wear white sneakers or white socks.  Just not a good look on anyone.
  • Don’t forget to pay attention to your nails.  Chipped nail polish is not pretty!
  • Don’t put your kids in overstuffy uncomfortable clothing.  They will be miserable and so will the pics!

Mallika Malhotra, owner of mikifoto, captures the joy of childhood and family life. She loves to shoots outdoors in natural light and serves the NJ/NYC area. Like her on Facebook and follow her blog to continue to be inspired by her vibrant work.

Related posts:

  1. How to Get Natural Smiles in Photos by mikifoto
  2. Let It Snow

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