What Should I Wear for a Family Portrait?

What Should I Wear for a Family Portrait?

You have booked your family portrait, and then panic sets in… What should we wear?

I get asked this question a lot! But don’t worry it’s not as stressful as it seems.

Dress Code

First off, you need to decide on the dress code, especially if it is a large extended family group portrait. Agree on whether you want the photos to be formal or informal, or even both. I do allow time in between shots so you are able to change clothes if you like. I recommend that you all arrive ready for formal photos and then switch it up to more casual.

Also avoid wearing clothing with distracting logos or words on them as they too will be the center of focus in the photo.

Choose Your Colours

family2-700x465For groups it is important to avoid colours that will clash, such as reds. You should pick a complimentary colour palette, but you don’t all need to be the same colour. It is generally best to co-ordinate colours that work together.

You should make sure to avoid wearing all black from top to bottom it generally gets too dark. You can mix in a bit of pattern with some solids to break things up.

Avoid white shoes as white grabs your attention, and if one person in the group is wearing white all focus will go to that one person.

Outdoor Family Photos

williams-park-460x690For outdoor photos you can dress for the seasonal colours. You can also layer your clothes so that you can remove or add accessories to easily get different looks.

Studio Family Photos

For studio portraits I have an all white area I call ‘shabby chic’. Wearing white on the white is a clean classic look. Lighter colours, denim and textured fabric are all effective on the shabby chic area. I prefer bare feet for most studio photos especially for children. However, if you are more formally dressed and sitting on furniture shoes will look nice.

Please bring in dry clean shoes to help keep the studio clean.

The black drop is a big paper roll so shoes would tear this drop. Bare feet or black socks are best. The black drop is a dramatic look best for maternity photos. You can wear black tops or bold colours on the black. Do not wear turtle necks or you become a floating head!

These tips are just general guidelines. What you wear reflects your personality so be yourself and be comfortable. There are lots of photos in albums on my website that will help you decide what to wear for your family photos.

Enjoy your family portrait session!