7 Tips To Style Your Next Family Photo Session
You made the call and scheduled a family photo session! Congrats on keeping memories alive.
But if you’re like a lot of my clients, there is a feeling of overwhelm when trying to figure out how to style your session. Have no fear, friends. I’m here to take you through some of the common questions I get and share some of my best tips to style a session that not only fits your personality, but makes everyone feel confident and excited to get the cameras rolling.
Start with the wardrobe for one person.
If someone in your session knows they want to wear a yellow dress, or a green hat, etc. you can start there and then work around that color for everyone else. Usually, there is one person in the family with an idea right away of what they want to wear. That’s a fantastic place to start if everyone else is kind of unsure. In this family, they started with their youngest son’s nice and colorful plaid shirt and then each family member picked one color from that shirt for their own outfit. How cool is that?
Bright colors make for beautiful photos.
And that goes for anytime of the year. The photos above were taken in the summer, but can you imagine a backdrop of fall leaves or even a wintry wonderland?!
One thing to remember when choosing bright colors is that each person in your session should choose a different color, or a variation of colors, so not everyone looks like they match. You are choosing a color palette, so think about when you go to find new paint and hold all those little swatches of colors to see what looks good together. Essentially, you are doing the same thing with your clothes.
Pattern mixing is okay…sometimes.
Pattern mixing can be tough to navigate. Plaid and stripes? Leopard and polka dot? While I think mixing patterns can work, it’s best to stick with one big print and then a few tiny prints. Multiple big prints usually do not photograph well.
I suggest laying out the pieces of clothing on a bed or floor from each person’s outfit. That way, you get a great visual of your overall color theme and pattern mix. You can even send me photos and I will let you know what I think. I am always here for your questions so when you get to the session, you feel super prepared.
Layers are always a good idea.
You see above in one photo, mom is wearing a cute denim jacket over her dress and in another, she is not. What a great way to get a totally different look with one small shift. This can be done with jackets, blazers, open button downs, you name it. It could be a great way to add a pop of color, too. Just be careful of anything bulky or oversized. While it might look fab in person, the angles of certain photos could make it look unflattering. If you are unsure on any of your choices, just check in with me and I am happy to offer my opinion!
Think from head to toe.
Accessories and footwear are a big part of your overall look. That great necklace, that fun purse, the chunky heels. Whatever screams your personality should be included.
The pictures above give you a great idea of how to mix patterns! I love the way this was styled and fun fact, this family even matched their outfits to the decor in the room where they planned to display the photos. That is next level planning and I absolutely adore it.
Maybe you have a really colorful frame, or piece of art, in your home that’s a true centerpiece. It would be pretty neat to have a family photo session with similar colors to really create a cohesive look for your room.
Stick with your family’s true style.
You don’t have to wear something because it’s trendy right now or because you think you have to “dress up” for photos.
Wear what you feel great in, what makes you feel like you and what you feel the most confident in. This not only helps during the session, since you will already feel comfortable, but you are going to be looking at these photos for a very long time and you want to capture that organic moment and special time in your life.
This family totally rocked their session with leather jackets, chucks, knee high boots and a great color palette.
These ladies were crushing it in their band T-shirts and this family looks stunning in a casual look, including ripped denim and shorts. Dressing up is not what makes a photo great. It’s the smiles, the laughter and the fun we have during our time together and when you dress like you, the results come through.
A monochromatic color palette can also work if you are styling it with interesting fashion choices and the shades are all totally different/and or include prints. Note the different blues for this family, including prints and Mom in that uber cute romper.
You can also go for a whole vibe like the kids above who did a super fun and artsy session in the woods.
7. And last but never least, try everything on before the big day!
We’ve all been there. We buy a great pair of shoes and we try them on quickly in the store, but we haven’t walked around in them. If we are doing a session in the city or even out in the park, you and the fam might be walking around a bit, so you want to ensure everyone has comfy shoes.
And it’s not just shoes. Whether it’s a new dress, pants, a jacket, and you, or your family member, hasn’t worn it yet, try it on and leave it on for a few minutes. Test all the zippers and buttons. See if the collar is how you want it, check if the straps are how you want them, see if sizing is good, etc.
Your family photo session should be low stress and lots of fun. I hope these tips help you style one incredible session. I can’t wait to see what you come up with. If you want to book a session with me, you can do that right here.