Coordinating clothing for family photos is an important and can be overwhelming at times. I have been there myself. Part of a session with me is my knowledge and experience in what photographs well and what does not and to eliminate the stress of wardrobe planning. I am here to help make it all come together because my biggest tip for beautiful images is wardrobe, wardrobe, wardrobe! This will be the key to creating a polished and professional look so be sure to look over it thoroughly!

Wardrobe can truly make or break the look of your images.

You will do some of the beginning leg work and then reach out to me once you have begun selecting some contenders for your wardrobe pieces and I will assist in styling your family to bring it all together to create the best look for your session.

Watch the slide of images for some wardrobe inspiration and continue below for how to get started!

Step One: Start with You!

Let's be honest....the one booking the session (typically the momma, the wife, the girlfriend) is also the one coordinating and planning the photo session, am I right? Keeping in mind the other tips to follow, my first and BEST tip is to find something you love and you feel amazing in and let's build from there.  

Long flowing skirts or dresses photograph beautifully and I highly recommend them!

Before choosing an item, consider the season and location and determine the best color scheme to focus on:

  • Softer, light, neutral tones, pastels and floral for Spring and Summer
  • Darker, warmer, richer tones for Fall and Winter

If you are looking for a great place to purchase beautiful dresses for women of all sizes and shapes at a reasonable price, check out my go-to shop HERE! Long dresses show so much movement and really bring life to your images! As a bonus, they are comfortable for walking, sitting, dancing and all the things you will do during a session with me! Tip: Poshmark is a great option to get quality, gently-used dresses from this same designer and others for a discounted price. Like most of us, they purchased amazing dresses for a photoshoot but do not need it anymore. Win-win!

I have begun building a Client Closet with hand-selected pieces available to any of my clients (only offering long dresses in ladies sizes at this time) who book private sessions. I also have a few select pieces available for girls age 2 - 6. If you are interested in seeing if one of my pieces would work for your session, contact me for details on that option.

Step Two: Connect with me

Once you have selected one or two items that you love for you, reach out to me. Send me a message with a picture of the items. Bonus: if you have image(s) from online so I can clearly see the details of the item(s), even better!

I can give feedback and recommendations for choosing additional pieces for your family

Continue below for additional Tips and Tricks for finalizing the look and bringing it all together.

Tip #1 : Start with You!

Sound familiar? Typically outfits for kids, husbands, boyfriends, etc are so much easier to coordinate! Starting with just you and building around it will be a lot less stressful.

Tip # 2 Coordinate . . . but do not match

Dressing your whole family in the same colors (ex. white t-shirts and khakis) is a trend that has come and (thankfully) is now gone! It does not show any personality or style. There are various routes you can take when choosing how to coordinate outfits:

  • To create a timeless look, stick to mostly solid colors or neutrals. You can choose to add a pop of color with accessories or one patterned item.

  • Be sure to not bring in more than one pattern as it can become too busy and take away from the polished look of your images. If you want to incorporate a patterned item, pull some of those same colors into other family members' clothing with solid pieces.

You already have your wardrobe decided. Now for little girls, this amazing shop is one I have used personally for my daughter for years. They have great prices and fast shipping. You can see all their precious items HERE! For tweens and teens, this shop has gorgeous pieces that won't break the bank! You can see their items HERE.

For the men: You can never go wrong with jeans (blue jean or coordinating accented color) and a solid button up, collared shirt or a solid Henley t-shirt. It can get really toasty during our Texas summers so a solid undershirt on guys is strongly recommended.

For the young men and boys: Jeans and solid tops that tie into your color scheme are always simplest. Add suspenders or a button up shirt (left open) over a t-shirt to create more layers and textures.

Tip #3 - Comfort is Key

New clothing should be worn at least once before your session. You will quickly find out if it is uncomfortable. While a new dress or top is always great, it is not a necessity and you can definitely work with what you already own. Sometimes this can be even better when time or finances do not permit a new wardrobe. Why? Because your clothing reflects your true style. You also already know if it is comfortable.

The coordination of outfits is important, but so is fit and comfort!

Tip #4 - You can NEVER be over-dressed!

I absolutely LOVE when clients take their wardrobe to the next level and really dress it up! Don't be afraid to get a bit fancy for your images if that is something that suits (you see what I did there, ha) your style or desired look in your gallery!

Tip #5 - Think Sky Colors for Beach Wardrobes

When planning your wardrobe for a beach session, think of the vibrant colors of the sunset skies to build your pieces around. You can also never go wrong with varying shades of soft blues, pinks, sage and corals with white accents.

Details, Details, Details

Jewelry, scarves, headbands, hats, vests or jackets are also a great way to polish off your look and an easy way to coordinate outfits. Just don't go overboard.

  • Do not forget about the right SHOES! This may seem like an insignificant detail, but shoes and socks can make or break your outfit arrangement. Be sure to keep socks to solid neutral lights or darks (whichever best coordinates with the color of the pants being worn). When appropriate, bare feet are best (in-home and beach sessions). For those occasions, clean and pedicured nails are a must!

Please Do . . .

  • Play on your strengths. Choose clothing that enhances your family's best assets.
  • Avoid matching your surroundings too much (ex. a lot of green in a grassy/tree filled area).
  • Wear something you already own, if possible
  • Pay attention to even the small details: Clean, manicured nails, accessories, socks and shoes!

What about Holidays?

  • Most of my holiday sessions are more relaxed and casual (Pumpkin patches, Tree Farms, Vintage Trucks) so grab your most flattering jeans and your favorite boots and pair it with a solid top. You can add pops of color and textures by layering with scarves or jackets to really bring your outfit together.

  • For the gals: Long flowing skirts or dresses are options still to be considered. If you are wanting a more dressed up look, feel free to go as formal as you wish!

  • For the guys: As with any session, you can never go wrong with jeans and a solid long sleeve button up, collared shirt or pullover sweater. Go with a short-sleeved, collared button-up or solid Henley if it's still a bit warm out. You might be taking holiday photos but we all know that just really 'second summer' here in Texas. Ha! Regardless of the season, be sure to leave the sneakers and tennis shoes at home and grab something a bit more 'Sunday best' like a nice pair of boots or leather shoes.

Please Do NOT wear:

OVERSIZED CLOTHING Steer clear of cargo shorts, baggy jeans and oversized clothing.

TOO MANY PATTERNS If incorporating a patterned item, select solid pieces for other family members that coordinate

THIN STRIPES OR PLAIDS Thin stripes and tight plaids distort in printed photos and appear zig-zaggy and thus should be avoided. 

MEN’S SHORTS Guys, unless we are at the beach, leave the shorts at home and opt for pants

BRIGHT WHITE Too much overall white has the tendency to wash out complexions. Choose ivory and creams instead.

BOLD COLORS Overly saturated colors can distract from the photo, so look instead for muted versions. For example, if you have a bright yellow dress, think about a mustard dress instead; burgundy instead of bright reds; pastels instead of bright pinks, etc.

NEON COLORS Neon colors can reflect onto your face, causing skin tone problems in your photos.

LOGOS Logos or text on clothing is distracting. Avoid shirts that have logos (even just a simple Nike check mark), it takes away from the polished look.

STRAPLESS/SLEEVELESS TOPS Unless you absolutely love your arms, avoid strapless or sleeveless tops. Sleeves are typically more flattering for everyone!

ATHLETIC SHOES White tennis shoes, athletic shoes, and character shoes (think Disney princess shoes) should all be avoided. Leather shoes, nice boots, sandals and wedges are all great options.

LOW-CUT AND OVERLY TIGHT ITEMS Low-cut shirts or dresses can shift during the session and leave you a little more revealed than you intended. Clothing that is overly tight and clings to you is uncomfortable and can leave bulges and bumps in places you don’t want.

BABY OUTFITS WITH DIAPERS PEEKING OUT An adorably cute moment with your baby can be ruined by the green-lined diaper that is hanging out of a little romper or dress. Avoid baby clothing that doesn’t completely cover those little Pampers. Consider a romper or be sure to add some matching bloomers with dresses to eliminate the worry.

TRANSITIONAL LENSES If you typically wear glasses, wear them for your session. But if you have polarized or transitional lenses, consider taking them off. Dark glasses will cover your eyes in the photos.

Once you have reviewed these tips, connect with me and let me help you build the best look for you and your family!