You’ve booked your Family Photos… Now what do you WEAR?  

Atlanta Family Portrait Photographer

One of the most frequently asked questions that I receive once we have booked a photo session is a panicked “What should you wear for family photos?”    It is the hardest of ALL the questions and by far the most difficult part of the whole process!   Before we launch into what to wear, I first want to share my goal as a photographer:

  1. I want to make the PEOPLE be the main subject.
  2. My wish is to flatter you and make you look your BEST.
  3. I want clothing to be a non-issue and do not want it to date the photos or draw attention away from the people. Be comfortable, timeless and coordinated.

What to Wear

Sample Idea Board for What to Wear for Family Photos

My first bit of advice is to plan ahead.  Do NOT wait until the last minute to figure out what you are going to wear.   With that in mind, I have compiled a few


tips for you to help you decide.  Should you have questions after reading this post (or even before!), please reach out.  I am always happy to help you work toward a fun and casual shoot!

Peter Hurley is one my favorite Headshot photographers and he shares some advice in this video that you WILL benefit from watching.  If you find yourself  somewhat uncomfortable with a camera pointed at you, please take a few minutes and watch this wonderful Ted Talk about how to bring your best self to a photo session.  It will be worth your time.  I promise!!


  • Be comfortable and Stay True to YOU.  Pick something you AND your kids are comfortable in and LIKE.  If you have an itchy tutu on your daughter (though it is DARLING), she might not be very happy.
  • Coordinate colors.    Choose a color scheme and mix and match!! Pick a base color (like grey, black or blue) and select one or two POPS of color like orange, yellow, green or turquoise for an accent piece.  It should coordinate and not everyone in the photograph has to wear the accent color.  For example, mom and daughter can wear pops of yellow or turquoise and dad and son can wear neutrals.
  • Choose one piece and build around it.  If you are stumped, pick your favorite item and build around it.  What are you comfortable in?  What do you love?  Start there and the rest will come together.


Accessories & Personality. Bring your Sample Idea Board for What to Wear for Family Photos amilies personality into the photograph.  This is about YOU!  Layer with your favorite accessories like scarfs, hats, necklaces, sweaters, vest, jackets… anything that reflects your families style and personality.  This adds visual interest and character.   Though don’t go overboard!  You don’t want anything to be a distraction from the photograph.

Choose a similar tone for your top and bottom (both light or both dark) so one does not look bigger than the other.  White top, dark pants will make your top look bigger.  White pants, dark top will make your bottom look bigger.

Limit Patterns.  Do not have everyone wear various patters as it will distract from the faces and the people.

Props. If you have special props you want included, feel free to bring those too!   I want these photos to be YOURS and if there is something of meaning you want included, then bring it along!

Sample idea board for what to wear for family portraits

Think classic and timeless.   My hope is you will be hanging on these images on your walls for many years to come.  Pick something that is not trendy and a fad.  Classic is best.

The Basics on What to Wear:

  • Choose a top with sleeves at least to the elbow.
  • Choose dark socks and shoes
  • Do you hair as you normally wear it
  • Wear your make up as you normally would
  • No short skirts or short shorts on anyone!
  • Darker colors are more slimming
  • Iron your clothing… wrinkles and folding creases do not look good



 Do Not Wear Low Necklines –  Frequently I shoot from above (especially for women) and low necklines can be distracting and not in a good way!

Do Not Match– Do not have everyone wear khaki pants and white shirts!  BORING!

Do Not Wear shirts with logos, characters or writing.  This can be distracting in a photograph.


Do NOT Wear all white, especially during a daytime shoot.  You will lose detail in the photograph.  (Thanks to Sherry Rosenan award winning photographer for this important tip!)

Sample Idea Board for What to Wear for Family Photos

Do Not Wear tennis shoes, anything is better than tennis shoes!  Trust me.

Do Not Wear short skirts.  It is likely you will be sitting down in some images and short skirts are even shorter when you sit down.

Do Not be too busy with too many accents and colors.  Keep it simple with a pop of color.


  • You and your family are free to bring as many outfits to change into as time allows.  This is very popular for senior portraits.  .


Ready to book your shoot?  Email me at

Thank you for stopping by my blog, I would love it if you left a comment and let me know you were here! You can see more of my family work by clicking on my Family Portfolio. Are you looking for a Atlanta GA Photographer? Brookhaven, Chamblee, Roswell or Sandy Springs?  I would love to meet your family and capture your memories. To book a session, contact me via e-mail at, or call me at 770-722-9045. I look forward to meeting you!

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Kristin Boyer
Atlanta Family & Children’s Photographer


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Kristin Boyer, K. Boyer Photography Atlanta, GA Premier Newborn & Children's Photographer