What To Wear To A Family Photoshoot With Me

Family enjoys time together in kitchen.

The good news: there is no need to go shopping for new outfits unless that’s something that will bring you joy!

If you’ve followed my work for a bit, you must have realised that I don’t want stress to be a part of the whole experience.

Here are a few tips I have put together if you’re not sure of what to wear on the day of your session.

Decide what to wear on the day

This is not for everyone, I know, but you can just get dressed on the day the same way you would usually dress, and that’s it. How more stress-free can it be?

Also, if your child loves to live half-naked, then why not let him/her? Remember that the photographs from the session are for you to enjoy.

Family enjoying a photo album together on sofa.

Be Yourself

If you’d like to be a little more prepared, then pick outfits that will allow you to be yourself and feel like yourself.

Dress nice, but don’t get so “dressed up” that you are uncomfortable.

Let your clothes reflect your family’s personality and style while keeping in mind your interactions and family bond is really the focus of the session.

Family strolling in park near glasshouse.

Something that makes you feel great

Try picking clothing that makes you feel good!

If you are usually critical about your appearance and struggle with the way you look in photographs, then definitely try to pick something flattering that will boost your confidence and help you relax.

Family enjoying countryside walk together at the hill of tara.

Wear colours you like

You will be looking at those photographs for years. It doesn’t matter whether the photographs are colour-matched with your walls, as long as you like the said colours.

A family from New York visiting Dublin with their children

Matching clothes – do or don’t?

Again, I’ll ask you: is it something you do in real life?

I know a few of my clients are big fans of Maxomorra and Rainbow Kids Boutique and I wouldn’t dream of telling them not to pick matching outfits.

We want the photos to reflect your family’s personality, so you do you!

Mother embracing two children outdoors on bench
Family enjoying picnic in the park.

Coordinate (if you like)

If clashing colours are something you are NOT into, then, you can plan everyone’s outfits a little in advance to make sure the overall look will be visually appealing to you. Pick 3 main neutral colours and add little touches of bright colours using accessories.

Note: This might only work with cooperative children and partner :)

Family enjoying a walk in countryside.

Toddlers and children

From a young age, some children like picking their clothes, so it might be a good idea to involve them in the process or offer an alternative.

It would be a shame to trigger a meltdown by trying to force something on them. Ask yourself if it is worth it, especially as the aim of a documentary family session is to be real and stress-free.

And you know what, five years from now, you will smile when seeing your daughter wearing her Frozen dress with her yellow boots, because it was just so “her”.

Family enjoys time together in kitchen.

Dress for the season and location

When you go to the beach, you might not dress the same as when you go to a fine-dining restaurant. The same concept goes for a photo session. A dressed-up outfit might look a little out of place if you are going puddle jumping, but perfect for a walk in the city, and if you’re staying at home, there is nothing wrong with wearing your comfies.

If the session is taking place outdoors, make sure everyone is warm and comfortable.

Mother and toddler playing in grass at the Curragh.

Soft “don’ts”

  • I would usually recommend avoiding big logos and labels, as they can be distracting and will date a photo quicker.
  • I would keep black to a minimum but that’s mainly because you can see every bit of crumb, loose hair, or dried-up milk on it, and I don’t retouch!
  • Lastly, when clothing with thin stripes or patterns is photographed, it can sometimes produce an unwanted visual effect called moiré. This effect occurs when the pattern on the clothing interacts with the pattern of pixels in the camera sensor, creating a distracting wavy or rippled appearance in the photo. To ensure the best possible outcome for your photoshoot, it’s often recommended to opt for clothing with solid colors or larger, simpler patterns that are less likely to cause this interference. By avoiding thin stripes or intricate patterns, you can help ensure that your photos turn out beautifully without any unwanted distractions.

As we come to the end of our guide on what to wear for your documentary family session, I hope these tips have helped make your photoshoot planning easier. Remember, the key is to wear clothes that reflect your family’s personality and allow you to feel comfortable and relaxed. Now that you have these ideas, why not schedule your session with me? Let’s work together to capture your special moments. Reach out today to book your session!


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