What's the number one thing on your mind after booking your family photo session? If you are like me (and 99.9% of my clients), it's "What are we all going to wear?!?!" Not to generalize here, but in my experience the outfit selection responsibilities for everyone in the family falls to you mamas, and that can be a lot of pressure. So this one's for you! :)
I'm pretty sure at some point in recent history I suggested total coordination for family sessions: with either all neutrals or exactly one patterned outfit and solid colors for the rest of the family that draw from that pattern. For the record, that's still not a bad idea, it's just not the only option. I don't know about y'all but own family looks perfectly coordinated about 0.0% of the time, so opening your horizons can make the pictures look a little more natural, and allow everyone to show their personal style! Before I begin, please note: I am not a personal stylist. I think I'm the opposite of that. I barely dress myself most days. So with that in mind, here are my tips!
1. Dress how you want.
Family photos do NOT have to be matchy-matchy! Gone are the days of worrying about if the color of your shirt exactly matches the pattern of your daughter's dress. My feeling is, if it looks like everyone is going to the same place, you're good! (As long as that place isn't to workout or do yard work or something.) If you like color, wear color! If you prefer muted tones, wear neutrals! If you like to dress up, go dressy! If you like to be casual, be casual! Do you notice a pattern here? My only hard and fast rule is, dress everyone in COMFORTABLE clothing that is WEATHER APPROPRIATE. Because, Mississippi.
2. Colors are good.
Don't be afraid of color, friends! Richly colored-clothing can make photos really pop, especially in the fall. I love jewel tones and primary colors! My only color no-nos are neons and bright red/orange/hot pink (as these colors can look reflective when photographed). Also, if you are wanting to use the photos for your Christmas cards feel free to wear red & green! Although if you want to frame the photos in your home, you may want to choose a less holiday-specific color scheme or go black & white when printing.
3. Neutrals are good too.
If you have all white walls in your home and always wear white/black/grey clothing (like me!) then by all means, go neutral for your session! Creams, tan/beige and grey are always good choices. I think lighter neutrals (like white, pastel blue and pink) also work for fall, as long as there aren't too many Easter egg colors mixed together. To add visual interest, you can always add layers and mix in texture and pattern. Which brings me to #4!
4. Mix in texture and pattern.
I feel like this is controversial, but I'm gonna go ahead and say it: I think it's good to mix patterns! Two (or more!) patterns with a similar color scheme or feel to them can add a lot of interest to your images. Layers and textures (especially sweater knit) always say fall/winter to me, although in Mississippi it's not always the most comfortable option. An easy way to do this is with the details, like cute socks or shoes, fun jewelry for mom, or any other fun accessories you or your kids like to wear!
5. Prepare for family fun.
Do your kids like having fun? Do they smile more naturally when they are having said fun? If so, prepare for it. And I'm talking about the messy, screen-free type of fun that may include running, jumping, swinging, and/or someone going upside down. Bloomers or shorties under dresses is a MUST, and also think twice about shirts that come easily un-tucked or anything else that needs to be constantly adjusted.
That's all I have for now!! If you're looking for even more advice, I post about this on my PINTEREST page: including outfits I like, where to shop online and things for sale right now! And for you expecting mamas, I have a WHAT TO WEAR FOR YOUR NEWBORN SESSION post you might want to check out. I cannot wait to see y'all this fall. :)