candyfox studio

What to wear for family photos

What are the key elements of a successful photo shoot? There is no doubt that tender expressions, genuine emotions, and warm feelings of your friendly family are the most important. However, choosing the right outfit for all family members can also play a major role in the final result.
Choosing a wardrobe for a family photo session should be treated carefully. Cleverly picked outfits, accessories, and props give an opportunity to convey a sense of unity, emphasize your unique style, and highlight the personality of every family member.
In the article, you will learn in more detail how to find the right clothes for a photo shoot and how to make successful choices in regards to the color and style of the outfits.


Opt for clothes which make you feel comfortable. If you cannot move easily on high heels or you have to draw in your belly because of a tight dress, it will be visible on your face, and on the pictures.
For an outdoors photo shoot, you should pick clothes in which it would be comfortable to sit and lie on the ground. It is better to choose clothes that your children can get dirty because they will probably crawl or sit on the grass. Also, nothing should limit your movements.
Do not force your kids to wear something they do not really enjoy, unless you want them to be grumpy and upset during the session. Let your children help you select the outfits – it will allow them show their personalities. Prepare no more than 2-3 clothing options for the kids, because long changes of clothing can be tedious for them.
If your family is comfortable, then the family photo session will be successful, and all people in the photo will look beautiful and natural.


The style of clothing should match the theme and idea of the photo session, as well as complement the surroundings. It is necessary to consider the style of the location where the photo session will take place to pick the right clothes. Keep a theme of the photo session in mind when selecting clothes and choose style based on that. It can be a street, casual, business, festive or romantic style.
It is advisable to put on universal and casual clothing for an outdoors photo shoot. If you are planning a studio photo session, bring clothes that match the studio interior. A family dressed in formal apparel will look misplaced in a park. It would also be inappropriate to come to a studio with a classic interior wearing sport costumes.

The general style of clothing and the right combination of colors.

The sets of outfits that match in style and color will help create an image of a united family and will emphasize its team spirit. Pick clothes with the same style, and even texture, if it is possible.
Pick the outfits that go well together and combine their color palette with the color of the interior or natural location. Pay attention to the basic colors of the interior of the studio or available backdrops and try to choose clothes that go well with these colors.
Choosing clothes is the favorite part of photoshoot preparation and can be a great joy for mothers. When it comes to picking the clothes, they can select outfits in the color scheme they love first. Then they can coordinate everyone else’s outfits around what they love.
Many of my clients like the idea of a “family look”. Family Look is a single family style. It looks good in the photo and shows the connection between generations. Clothes should match in style and color, but they do not have to be the same. Only the tones must harmonize with each other to correctly distribute the accents on the photos. There are quite a few techniques for creating a common family image.
Same clothes

All members of the family are dressed in the same clothes, regardless of age. And the simpler these things are, the better. For a walk, it can be, for example, pants and light-colored shirts or polos.

- Parents and children are dressed in two different color schemes.

- It would be exciting for father and son to put on the same t-shirts, and for mother and daughter to wear the same dresses.

- Everybody is dressed in the same style but in various harmonious pastel shades (white, pink, soft blue, pale yellow, pale lime, and also peach, violet, etc.).

Color palette

To ensure that everything is in harmony in the picture choose solid, light pastel colors within the same tonal range. Try a soft palette and go for such colors as white, beige and gray, peach and light lemon yellow, sky blue, pink and light lilac, natural tones of brown and terracotta are excellent colors. Soft tones look beautiful together and complement each other. Use such bright colors as red, orange, purple or yellow as color accents for accessories to complement the image.
Do not use black as a dominant color because it will look somewhat dramatic. Try at least to mix it with clothes and accessories of lighter tones. For example, gray, white, navy, orange, yellow, warm brown.
Also, make sure that patterns of your clothing do not get mixed up with the background. Solid colors work better against busy backgrounds. I would recommend wearing a coral or rosy dress to add a color pop to the blue-green land of irises. Alternatively, a floral pattern would complement a solid yellow or purple studio backdrop.
Consider the season in which the session will take place, and choose the type of the clothes appropriate for this time of the year. Light lemon yellow or aqua are excellent choices for the summer but probably will not work that well for autumn.

Tip: Take a photo of your set of clothing and send it to your photographer. Photographers are happy to cooperate and will gladly give you feedback. It is their work to ensure that everyone looks great.

Exclude the following items from the wardrobe for the photo shoot

- Clothes of acid, neon shades, as well as very bright or very dark shades. Not only they distract attention but also cast a tint on the skin. For example, a reflex from a bright scarlet scarf can give unnecessary redness to your face.

- Clothes with sequins, paillettes, rhinestones. They usually look like white or black dots in photos.

- Clothes made of iridescent or shiny synthetic fabrics or garments with reflective surfaces. Glossy or shiny synthetic fabrics cause a moiré (ripples) effect in the pictures to appear.

- Bold stripes, big plaids (either a pattern or fabric structure), as well as fishnet stockings. They also create a moiré effect in the pictures.

- Clothes with large patterns, catchy prints, logos, inscriptions, characters, drawings. Such garments draw attention away from people in the image.

Add layers and textures. Pick accessories

Find things that will decorate your image. They play a key role in adding depth to a photo. Pick scarves, hats, waistcoats, jackets, ties. The choice of textures and layers will give your image a new dimension, individuality, and uniqueness. These details are especially important in black and white photography. Sometimes even a simple accessory can make a big difference. Also changing them throughout the session will allow you to create multiple looks.

Watch out for the combination of materials

For example, if the mother chooses a cotton sundress for herself, a cotton shirt would be a good option for her husband, and the children would be dressed accordingly. Your goal is to show unity in your family, and different fabrics will only look distracting in the photo.


If you know that you will walk on the street, then it is better to give preference to soft and comfortable shoes and not the new ones that can rub your feet, especially if you are going to walk a lot. And if you decide to set your feet free, you can take the shoes off and make some pictures barefoot.

Follow these tips and you will have beautiful family photos which you will treasure for years to come. You can put frame them and hang on the wall in your living room.

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