What To Wear For Family Photos | San Diego Photographer

Image depicting what to wear for family photos

The number one question I get from clients after they book a session with me, is what to wear for family photos. For some people, styling their family for photos comes naturally, but for others this feels like a daunting task. Below are some helpful tips I give each client to makes choosing what to wear for family photos, something that is easy and makes them feel (and look!) their best.

What To Wear For Family Photos

Image of family taking family photos at mission trails
Family dressed up and taking photos
Family of four showing what to wear for family photos in San Diego

Choose 3-4 Coordinating Colors

This is my number one tip for families when they are choosing what to wear for photos! I’m going to be really honest for a minute, I cringe when families show up in different shades of the same color. And by same color I mean the same solid color. You can definitely make various shades of blue or coral work, but there needs to be some variety in texture or patterns. I recommend 1 or 2 neutral colors such as cream or beige, and then 1 or 2 colors that pop such as pink, olive green or navy blue. Pulling together 3-4 colors that coordinate together, allows you to look cohesive in your family photos, but not blended together. Some of my favorite color patterns are:

*Cream, beige, blue, mustard yellow
*Cream, beige, dusty rose, coral, light blue
*Cream, beige, olive green, navy blue

image of dad with daughter during a family photoshoot
image of dad with daughters during family photos
image of mom and daughter during a family photoshoot at mission trails

Wear a Variety of Clothing

This principle is similar to the first one in that variety is important when it comes to choosing what to wear for your family photos. In order for your family to appear cohesive yet each person unique, try to incorporate a variety of clothing. If mom is wearing a dress, then put baby girl in a romper or shorts and a fun top. If your boys are wearing shorts, then have their dad in a pair of khaki’s. Layering on a jean jacket or chunky sweater is another great way to add variety. Some of my favorite stores to shop at for family photos are Madewell, Old Navy, Target, and Anthropologie.

husband and wife taking photos during family session

1 or 2 People in Patterns Work Best

Wearing patterns can make some people nervous, which is why I often think people default to wearing all solid colors for family photos. However, I LOVE patterns and how they add variety to the family wardrobe. Striped button down shirts for men, patterned blouses on girls, or striped linen pants for mamas all blend so well together. If one person is wearing a bold pattern, then make sure any other patterns are more subtle. One of my favorite fashion bloggers (and personal friend) has a great post here with lots of family photo outfit inspiration!

Choose Clothing That Is Comfortable and Easy To Move In

For those who have had a session with me, you know I like to MOVE! Even if we stay mostly in the same spot, I’m going to ask you to snuggle your partner, hug your kiddos, lift your baby in the air and sit on the ground to cuddle up to your people. It’s important to choose clothing that is comfortable and easy to move in. The more comfortable you feel the more natural your images will look.

I hope these tips are helpful for you as you plan what
to wear for your next family session!

XO, Desiree

Desiree Jacobs Photography is based in San Diego, CA