My best tips on what to wear for family photos.

Once your session is scheduled, we can work on outfit prep. Some families are happy to come up with their own outfits whereas other families would like some help. I'm happy to allow you to pick whichever works best for you. I offer an online web styling service, a comprehensive style guide and my own assistance. I'll share my best tips on how to style your family and also walk through how we came up with the outfits for this family's photo session.

Family photo at Marymoor park, golden hour, backlit
Sisters kissing each other, Marymoor park
Father tickling daughter at Marymoor Park
Redmond Family Photographer, candid smiles

Pick 2-3 colors for your outfits.

With this family, mom showed me a few options for outfits she and her daughters could wear. She laid everything out on her bed, snapped a photo and sent it to me. We went back and forth a few times over e-mail before deciding on the color scheme of blue, gray and cream. I love the blue whale pattern and how that tied in with the blue overalls. Both were such sweet outfits for her little girls. Also, Mom's cream dress complemented her younger daughter's pastel shirt. When deciding what to wear for dad, we thought a gray shirt and brown shorts were things he could wear over and over again; also, they would be easy to find anywhere. Mom found these at her local Old Navy.

Redmond Family Photographer, family hugging each other, backlit
Redmond Family Photographer, mother receiving a kiss from daughter
Redmond Family Photographer, golden hour, wheat field
Redmond Family Photographer, detail of mother daughter hands

Wear clothes that are comfortable and authentic to you.

If mom is tugging on her too tight dress or dad looks stiff because his collar is him, that discomfort will show in photos. When you pick what to wear for family photos, choose materials that have some flow/stretch and allow you to run, jump and sit in. If the trend is flowy dresses, I am all for it if it matches your style. But if you pick a dress you're not comfortable in, you're not going to be as relaxed as if you chose something that truly fit your style. If you want to wear a dress, do it. But if you want to wear jeans and a tshirt, that is amazing too! Don't pick what is trending on Pinterest, pick what reflects you! At the end of the day, these photos are for YOU. They aren't for social media... they are for you to cherish for a lifetime. Here, mama picked a knee length dress which provided the modest coverage she wanted and allowed her to play freely with her children.

Redmond Family Photographer, daughters playing with mother
Redmond Family Photographer, mother hugging daughters, black and white image
Redmond Family Photographer, family lifestyle photo

Avoid logos because they are distracting.

One thing you should avoid wearing for family photos is logos! When you look at your photo gallery, you'll be so busy trying to read what's on your shirt that you won't be focused on the beautiful faces in front of you. Large words and flashy characters can detract from that smiling face. Choose timeless, logo-free clothes. Instead, if you want to show some personality, pick patterns or bold colors! I love the whale pattern, heart shoes and polka dot shoes these sweet girls wore.

Redmond Family Photographer, individual portrait
Redmond Family Photographer, silly portrait
Redmond Family Photographer, golden hour
Redmond Family Photographer, father with daughters
Redmond Family Photographer, capturing eyelash details

Wear colors that will make you POP!

If you're in a forest and choose to wear dark green, you'll blend into your environment. If you're in a grassy field and wear yellow, you'll be swallowed right up. Wear colors that'll make you POP from your environment. The color wheel is such a great tool. One of my favorite combinations is complementary colors, or opposite colors on the color wheel, which make you pop. Here, in this grassy yellow field, the opposite color is blue. If you were in a forest, the complementary color would be jewel tone purple or bright fushia.

Redmond Family Photographer, daughter's hand on mama's cheek, lifestyle portrait

Find things you like in your closet.

Choosing what to wear for family photos doesn't mean you need to go out and buy a brand new closet. Some beautiful outfits can be made with things you already have. But if you do want a reason to update your closet, some reasonably priced items can be found at Old Navy, Target, Alice and Ames, and Baltic Born. Thanks for reading!