What to Wear for Family Photos

seattle indoor family session : cuddling on bed
Having been in business for over 16 years now, I can tell you that easily the most asked question I get from new Moms who hire me is all about what you should wear.  So today I’m going to tell you what to wear for family photos.  It’s actually not something you need to be stressed about.  It’s quite simple. Ready?  My best piece of advice I can give you is to wear what you love.  Wear what makes you feel good and is something that you are comfortable in.  Do you have a pair of go-to jeans you’d be embarrassed to admit you wore nearly every day (slowly raises hand)?  What about a top that makes you feel fantastic, and it compliments your body type, and you love the color and style and can dress it up or dress it down, or wear it at almost any occasion?  Then that’s the one for you.

in home candid family photo session | family on couch

Your family session outfits don’t have to be all matchy-matchy.  Is your family dressed all matchy-matchy at home on a Sunday?  I bet not.  While I highly recommend that all your family members wear what they love and are comfortable in, I would suggest that mom, you pick your outfit out first.  Then help dad and the kiddos find their most favorite clothes that “compliment” your outfit.  Not match.  If your favorite top is a beautiful pastel bohemian lacy tunic (because, hello, Anthropologie or Free People is right down the road), then see to it that your son’s favorite neon (insert green/orange/pink/blue/red) Underarmour sweatshirt is dirty that day.  Maybe he can opt for a comfy neutral t-shirt from Target instead.  Same goes for the rest of your family.

I also get asked about logos, prints and patterns a lot when figuring out what to wear for family photos. I personally don’t mind large prints on shirts as long as they’re not overly obnoxious.  Speaking from my family’s point of view, I think my son owns literally only one t-shirt without something on it.  Sure you could go on a shopping spree and buy some new digs (cuz, hey that’s fun!) but it’s not necessary.    Isaac is wearing a turquoise shirt that says AWESOME across it in huge letters.  But you know what?  I was wearing a bright fuschia dress, we have a colorful house, and my son is AWESOME so I thought it was totally appropriate for our shoot.  Also, go take a look at my About Me page from the last time we were photographed.

The same thing goes with patterns.  I think it’s appealing to mix solids with patterns so everyone is a little different but cohesive.  Too many patterns and they’ll clash, but one or two would be a-okay.

seattle newborn and family photographer :

Last, if we’re shooting your session at home, consider what you love to wear at home (as stated earlier) and also consider if you like the colors and patterns you are wearing with how your home is styled.

I have a few other thoughts and tips over on my FAQ page you can check out, and you can always text me with your outfits and I can help, too!  But whatever you do, wear what feels right and beautiful and that you can get comfortable and have cuddle time in, and please don’t stress!





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Hi, I'm Kim Hildebrand!

Photographer & Online Business Educator

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Kim Hildebrand