This family definitely knows style.

What to wear… I get asked all the time what a family should or should not to wear to a family photo shoot. It’s no surprise, either. Figuring out what outfits will work best for your family can be difficult. Sometimes it works best to explain what not to wear, so it makes more sense what TO wear. Here are 10 of my fashion faux pas to consider when attending a family photo shoot. Of course, these are all suggestions, but they’re also based on years of experience. Let’s check them out:

  • Something New – When you get ready for your family photo shoot, you want to be comfortable and confident. While it’s perfectly okay to buy new clothes for your shoot, you don’t want to be wearing it for the very first time. Always test out your new outfits a couple of times to make sure you feel great wearing them.
  • Saggy, Baggy Clothes – Again, you want to be comfortable for your photo shoot. But there’s a difference between comfortable and unkempt. Dressing in clothes that are far too big for you may feel comfy, but it will translate poorly for the camera. Your best bet is to find clothes that fit you properly, but still feel good to wear.
  • Adorable little girl with dressed beautifully for what not to wear article

    This little darling is dressed to impress!

    Loud Patterns – Patterns in general can cause disarray as they clash for attention. In an ideal world, your beautiful faces should be the focal point of you photo. Not your shirt. So when in doubt, ditch the loud patterns, plaids, and go for simple solid colors instead.
  • Uber Matchy – While it’s good to coordinate, you don’t want to go overboard. Having the whole family in the same outfit, or matching outfits isn’t ideal. Instead, pick 2-3 coordinating colors (or variations of one color), and find ways to blend them together.
  • Shirts with Words – Expressing yourself in your daily life is one thing. But shirts with words, logos, or any other distracting element is a no-no for family photos. You want your family to be the focal point. In this particular instance, leave the vocal shirts in the drawer. Dawn on a casual, solid color instead and let your smiling face do the talking.
    Family of three dressed perfectly for article on what not to wear

    A great example of color and style from this family of 3.

  • Glasses – This may seem a little strange, particularly for those who really do need their glasses. However, if you can help it, leaving your glasses to the side can eliminate a bunch of issues. Glasses can reflect many unwanted things from the sun, to your surroundings, and even your photographer as they take the photo. It can be both costly and difficult to remove the imperfections in the lenses. Unless your glasses are absolutely needed, consider an alternative on the day of your shoot.


Check out this blog article for my tips for choosing outfits for your family photo session:


Julie Kubal family portraits Washington D.C.About the Photographer and Author:

Julie Kubal is a child and family portrait artist and photographer serving Washington DC, Maryland, and Northern Virginia. She is passionate about creating warm and meaningful artwork through modern portraits and lifestyle photography at a location of your choice!