10 Tips for Styling Your Family Photos
Dress your best – a few quick tips:
Women: Long, flowy dresses photograph very well with neutral colors, layers, and accessories. If dresses aren’t your style, go with pants and a blouse!
Men: Dressy casual looks best with grey, khaki, or denim as a base color palette.
Kids: I’m a sucker for anything vintage-inspired to dress the littles in. It’s also fun to throw in some accessories like kid-sized boho hats, boot socks, bows, vests, or suspenders. (If you’re local to Colorado Springs, Paris Market Vintage that has the best baby/kids clothing).
I know firsthand that coordinating outfits for your session can be stressful, overwhelming, and sometimes expensive, but I’m here to help. Your outfits are important because they can really enhance the mood of your photos and make your vision come to life. I’ve written down some basic rules that I think will ease the process altogether. If you need further suggestions, I got you. Feel free to send me photos of different outfits you’re thinking of and I can help narrow it down to the ones I feel would be the most flattering, soft, and complimenting. Now let’s get down to it!
Don’t be overly ‘matchy’.
My first suggestion is to decide on 3-4 colors (Pinterest or Google can be helpful for this), and choose different patterns and variations of those colors to style your outfits. A bonus tip is to find an outfit mom feels most comfortable and beautiful in, then go from there.
Consider your personal decorating style.
While you can find great inspiration posts on Pinterest, don’t get too caught up in coordinating outfits that aren’t really you. Take a look around your house and consider home decor. Since you’ll likely be hanging some photos up on your walls, pick outfits to compliment the colors in your home.
The little details matter.
Find accessories that will compliment your outfit choices. Something as simple as a cute jean jacket, styled hair, cardigan, or a hat can really enhance the mood of your photos.
Give thrifting a chance.
I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but if you’re worried about the money aspect of styling your session, I would recommend hitting up your local Goodwill or Arc store. Styling doesn’t have to be outrageously expensive!
Colors to avoid.
I totally understand that black can be flattering! However, it can also really take away from the bright mood and depth of other colors in the photos. This is also the case for super bright red, (burgundy is fine), or any sort of neon. My style of photography is light and natural, so therefore I love colors like pale pink, oatmeal, chambray blue, rust, sage, and grey.
It’s a good idea for the ladies to treat themselves to a manicure, hair blowout, or professional makeup before the session. Remember that makeup should look natural, but a bit heavier than normal. For the men, it’s a good idea to get a haircut a week or two prior to your session, and a clean shave or trim a couple days before.
Shoes can REALLY make or break the mood of your photos. I’m not just a ‘from the torso and up’ type of photographer. I love a variety of positions like some good sitting down shots (where most of the time your shoes will be showing), and some walking shots as well. Wear some cute Timberlands or boots for a winter session or comfy & cute wedges/flats in the summer. For certain locations in the summer, I might even have you go barefoot! For the guys, throw on some professional, classy, or nice looking footwear – don’t just wear sneakers, I promise you will thank yourself later!
You will cherish your photos for a long time. Some of my best advice is to pick outfits that aren’t super trendy and will be enjoyed for the time to come. Pick from organic color palettes where you can still incorporate your own personality with accessories. I recommend avoiding neon colors, graphic tees, logos, etc.
Bring another outfit.
Can’t decide on an outfit? Bring two! Sessions usually last about an hour which is more than enough time to do an outfit change if you want to. I encourage it! (Mini sessions only include 1 outfit).
I recommend choosing your outfits shortly after booking! This way if you need to order clothing, you’re not stressing about when it will get to you before your session. I also suggest dressing everyone up beforehand just to make sure you like it. I’m happy to help and I’m always an email or phone call away. Best of luck! I can’t wait for our session together.
Favorite places to shop for outfits if you want to buy new: