What to wear to a family photography session

I think the number one question my clients ask me is “What should I wear?!”. This is totally normal.

Personally I’m fine with whatever you choose to wear.

Trackies and a bonds singlet? I can roll with it.

Kids in a superhero costume? Sounds like fun!

I get it though. You’ve chosen to have this moment in time captured by a professional photographer, you want your family to look their best. If you’re worrying over how to bring together your wardrobe here’s a few tips I give my clients when choosing their wardrobe…

 


1. Start with You

Let’s be honest. It was probably you who organised this photography session. It will be you who is charge of wrangling small people into cute outfits. It will be you who puts these images onto your walls so you can look back in years to come and smile at how lovely your younger family was on this day. So let’s start by choosing your outfit first. Pick something that you love. An outfit that makes you feel beautiful and confident. That you can move freely in to chase your munchkins and wrap them in huge hugs to give them as much love as you can. Choose something just for you, then build everyone elses outfits around that.

family photography session wardrobe inspiration
 

2. Coordinate colours (but no matchy, matchy!)

Keep your colour palette simple across the outfits. Maybe everyone is in a shade of blue - sky blue, dark blue, navy blue, pastel. Maybe everyone has a coloured item of clothing that ties into together - a pop of mustard or brown tones. Imagine what you will look like together in one frame. Will there be any major clashes? If you’re having trouble imaging what it might look like, try putting your outfit choices laid out on the bed together. Tying in your outfits so that there is a little colour coordination will make for a more visually appealing photograph. But if your family all turn up to the session wearing matching white button down shirts and jean... No. Just no. I will make you skip down the beach holding hands and sit in awkward poses because that’s what you get for turning up to a photo session looking like something out a nineties commerical. You don’t need to be matchy, matchy. Just a little colour coordinated.

baby photographer central coast

  

3. look at the colours in your home

These gorgeous photos will be framed and hung on your walls. So have a look around at home. Are you into bright colours? Neutrals? Let your home decor guide your wardrobe choice so that your photographic artwork matches seamlessly with your home.

family photographer central coast
 

4. ACCESSORIES ARE YOUR FRIEND

Accessories add points of interest to your outfit and are fun to have in photos. There is something so intimate about a little one sitting on mummy’s lap and playing with her necklace. Bracelets on your arm are always a talking point for little girls.

baby hand
 

5. use patterns wisely

I love seeing prints and patterns in families wardrobe choices, but if there’s more than two prints or patterns it can end up getting a bit distracting in the final image. Choose patterns wisely and use them sparingly.

pattern in little girls clothes
 

6. Say no to logos

T-shirts with logos are super distracting in photos. Dad’s wearing surf wear brands with big logos splashed across them or little boys with their favourite Lego or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle t-shirts really aren’t want you want to have in your precious photo session. Keep it plain and simple – save the printed tees for another day.

sunset family beach photos central coast nsw
 

7. Leave the fluro in the 80’s

The fluro phase is slowly passing by again, although I know my daughter still has a few favourite pieces in her wardrobe. Just to be on the safe side, fluro dresses are best saved for disco nights.

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8. avoid all black or all white

If you are wearing an all white shirt it easy to blow out the highlights, losing detail in your shirt. All black can have a similar effect. What does that even mean, I hear you ask? Basically when you and your partner wear all black or all white you end up looking like a double blob, there is no detail, no end of you and beginning of him. In saying this, black or white singlets under jackets or cardigans look great (because less is more). Add a layer and break it up is all I’m asking.

newborn baby photographer long jetty nsw
 

9. Layers and textures are flattering

Scarves, wraps, cardigans and belts help to flatter your figure and adds interest to the image.

pregnancy photographer central coast
 

10. think classic

These photos will be hanging on your walls and treasured for years to come. Choosing simple, classic clothes will help to give your images a timeless feel.

Putty Beach Katy Allen Photography-5328.jpg
 

11. Dress appropriately for the location

Be sure to be true to you and the environment of your photography session. There’s no need to dress up for cocktail hour if you’re having a photography session at the beach. Wear something that makes you feel beautiful, relaxed and comfortable. Jeans and a tee is totally ok.

long jetty family photography



12. Plan ahead

If your daughter desperately wants to wear her best party dress for the session, awesome. That’s one less decision you need to make. BUT - make sure you have it washed and put away hiding in a secret spot a few days in advance. There’s nothing worse than waking up on the morning of the session to find your outfit choices in the dirty clothes pile.

picking flowers in the garden
 

13. Rules are made to be broken

Take everything you read with a grain of salt - it really doesn’t matter if your outfits match, or if someone is wearing fluro, patterns or logos. We’ll still have fun together and make stunning images. So take what you will from this what wear guide. It’s more important that you and your family feel happy in yourselves.

cousins at the lake copacabana nsw
 

So that’s my top tips on what to wear to a family photography session. If you want more details about what happens during a session head over to my frequently asked questions page.

An afternoon at Long Jetty with Sticks

Family Photographer Central Coast

This is one of the sessions that was a little bit special. Amy had got in contact as she wanted to do an extended family photography session with four generations of her family together for the afternoon. A chance to bring everyone together to capture time with her nan, Sticks. Only a few short years ago Sticks was an outgoing octogenarian, a committed swimmer and avid walker. Sticks’ health had declined in recent years, much to Sticks’ disgust.

Sticks wasn’t as stable on her feet as she used to be, so walking on sand at the beach wasn’t going to be an option for our photo session. We decided Long Jetty would work as it’s level ground and a short walk from the car for Sticks, with plenty of open space for the grand kids to play.

These guys had come prepared for a picnic with cheese, wine and nibblies. The had games, footies and scooters, so plenty of things to keep everyone happy. The whole afternoon was super relaxed, we did a few posed group photos, then let the kids run wild, exploring the foreshore and the jetty. Sticks is a determined woman and no way was she going to miss out on the action, so she made the journey out to the end of the wharf as well to watch the gorgeous sunset. I hope when I get to her age, I have the same stamina and zest for life, enjoying time with the great grand kids.

It was so good to spend with this awesome tribe.

sunset photography long jetty nsw
holding hands with nan
looking at the water at long jetty
kids playing at long jetty
extended family photography long jetty nsw
cuddles with mum long jetty

short n sweet... with Nelli, Asti and Jelli

Central Coast Family Photographer

This is the third year I have photographed this gorgeous family - from the time Asti was just a bub taking his first steps and Jelli was a big ol’ bump in her mummies tummy - through to now, with these two sweet siblings running wild through the forest and down to the beach. It’s pretty special that we get the chance to do these sessions - these guys now live five hours away, but they always make time each year to catch up for a family photography session with me when they are visiting the Central Coast.

Sunset photography sessions are fraught with danger when you’ve got toddlers and preschoolers, it’s universally accept that this is the meltdown hour, and both the kids had fallen asleep on the car ride over. Lucky for me, they got into the spirit of adventure quickly enough and the promise of ducks to see and dogs to pat was enough to lift them out of their afternoon grumpiness. The chance to watch the birds, throw a few rocks in the water and then get wet themselves made for a great afternoon out. Mum Nelli is an old hand at these sessions, she’d packed towels and snacks so that when they had had enough of the water and were cold and hungry, she was ready to refuel their tired little bodies.

The sunset was sublime, making for more beautifully memories to add to their yearly family album.

kisses with mummy macmasters beach nsw
playing in the lake  cochrone lagoon copacabana
sweet little girl portrait
sunset swims copacabana beach
watching the ducks copacabana