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What to Wear to Family Photos – San Diego Family Photographer

What to wear to family photos tips and images contributed by San Diego Family Photographer Tristan Quigley Photography.

This is one of the most frequently asked questions by all of my clients. Family portraits are cherished keepsakes that capture moments in time, showcasing the love and bond shared among family members. Whether it’s for a holiday card, a special occasion, or simply to update the family album, what you wear can play a major role in the look and feel of these photos. It can also be one of the most stressful parts of planning a session. Let’s take that stress away! Here are some tips on how to dress for your family photography session to ensure everyone looks their best.

Layer Love

Layers add depth and interest to your photos. Consider incorporating items such as cardigans, blazers, or scarves into your outfits. Not only do they add texture, but they also allow for quick changes during the shoot, giving you multiple looks without the need for a full outfit change. For children, think about cute vests, sweaters, or even a stylish hat for a few photos.

Choose Light, Neutral Colors for this San Diego Family Photographer

This might be personal preference as a San Diego family photographer with a light and airy style, but opting for light, neutral colors creates a soft, timeless look that focuses attention on the subjects rather than their attire. Colors like beige, soft pastels, cream, and light gray complement each other and blend beautifully with most backgrounds. Avoid overly bright colors or large, bold patterns that can distract from the faces in the photograph. My aim when it comes to clothing, is to have it NOT distract from your faces and expressions! I want the focus to be solely on those dimples in your baby’s cheeks or your daughter’s beautiful blue eyes. 

Everyone Doesn’t Need To Match

Besides flattering colors, this is a big one for me. Everyone does not need to match. Instead of white shirts and jeans on every single family member, alter the textures and colors a bit. Even a different style shirt would make a difference. An example would be dad wearing a white henley, mom with a flowy white/cream dress, a child in a cute neutral sweater and skirt, etc. If you do like a more colorful palette, pick a few complimentary colors to start as the base. Don’t think “matchy matchy!” but instead choose colors that work in harmony with each other. Remember, the goal is to capture the essence of your family, so focus on coordinating rather than matching perfectly.

Don’t Forget Accessories & Shoes When Thinking About What To Wear To Family Photos

Accessories can add a pop of personality to your photos without overwhelming the look. Simple pieces like a statement necklace, elegant earrings, or a classic watch can elevate your outfit. For a cohesive look, coordinate the style of accessories across the family but avoid matching exactly. As for shoes, anything neutral, light and/or not distracting works! For beach sessions, most families prefer to go barefoot which makes the decision even easier!

Wear Well-Fitting Clothes

Clothing that fits well is key to looking and feeling good in your photos. Outfits that are too tight or too loose can be unflattering and uncomfortable. Choosing the right undergarment is important too. You don’t want to have to be worrying about a stray strap showing during the session. Choose clothes that flatter your body type and allow you to move freely. This is especially important for children, who should wear clothes they can easily move in to capture those candid, joyful moments.

Dress for Comfort and Confidence

Ultimately, the best outfit is one that makes you feel confident and comfortable. Choose clothing that reflects your personal style and makes you feel good about yourself. When you feel good, it shines through in your photos, creating a genuine and joyful representation of your family.

With these tips for what to wear to family photos, your family will not only look amazing but feel incredible, ensuring that every photograph is a beautiful representation of your love and connections.

About this San Diego Family Photographer

Tristan Quigley Photographer is a San Diego Family Photographer with over 10 years of experience. She loves watching the families she serves grow up in front of her lens. She has 6 children of her own! You can view more of her work and contact her on her website or via her Cradle & Folk profile.

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