Amazing Family Photos aren’t easy to achieve. There’s tons of planning, practice and learning that a photographer must go through before delivering final images to their clients that wow them! All of that effort and talent can be amplified with a well-styled outfit on each person in the photoshoot.
Family Photo Styling isn’t just picking out an outfit that you look good in, that fits your body type, or that is in your favorite color. It’s so so so much more than that. Let me explain.
What is Family Photo STYLING?
Family Photo Styling is the process of intentionally choosing outfits that will work best in a photo shoot. A well-styled family photoshoot coordinates the colors, textures, and outfit choices for each member of the family to look great both with each other and the backdrop. The styling must also work well with the editing style of the photographer. The outfits must also be appropriate for the positions that the photos are taken in and the weather. There is a science behind it, and it’s tough to get just right. You need to know what the common mistakes are so you don’t make them and waste the opportunity to improve the outcome of your photos. But, if you do your homework, you find that there are tried and true combinations that work every time.
If you are a naturally stylish person some of these things may come easy to you already. Your OOTD is well put together and ready to post on Instagram. I am not one of those people. I’m a busy mom. Most days I wear leggings, a t-shirt, and sneakers so I can get done what I need to get done…in comfort. So, when I attempted to style my family photoshoot for my own family I had to rely on my research skills to get it done. I didn’t want to guess…I wanted to know for sure that what I chose was going to work in pictures. If you spend the money and time to get Family Photos done with a professional, why not take the time to make sure that your outfits will give you the final result you want, amiright?
Steps for Styling a Family Photoshoot
- A color analysis of each family member to determine their best shades. Doing this one step not only helps you style your outfits for a Photoshoot, but for the rest of your life! Wearing the right (or wrong) colors for you makes a huge difference in your appearance. It’s the difference between looking washed out or healthy and vibrant, just by choosing the right shade to wear.
- Using color theory to choose the color palette of outfits based on the photoshoot location. This also must take into account the editing style on the photographer, because when they edit the colors change quite a bit.
- Body Shape analysis and matching. Choosing outfits that fit each person perfectly by using their body shape to make choices. This is mostly for adults, as kids just look cute in everything they wear!
- Choosing the right clothing. A collection of outfits from various vendors that provide the right colors, fabrics, details and textures.
- Coordinating just the right pieces together so that each member shines on their own but also together.
- Accessories and shoes to compliment each outfit. This step is often overlooked, but it’s oh so important and should be a part of the plan from the start.
- Trying everything on and making final choices (it sometimes takes a few options for each individual to get it all just right). This is the step that requires outside support. We are often the hardest on ourselves. An outside, and lovingly honest opinion will help to choose outfits that are flattering and photo friendly.
- Keeping in mind the age and stage of the kids so they will actually wear the right outfits! It’s important to choose comfy fabrics and styles that kids will be able to have fun in during the shoot. When they are comfortable you will get even better photos! Also, having some backups on the day of the shoot for kids is a good idea. Sometimes they get uncomfortable at the last moment (or babies have a blowout) and you will need something to change them into just in case.
The Benefits of Styled Family Photoshoots
The first and most important reason to style your family for a photoshoot is that you will get Better Final Photos in the end. The days of matching white t-shirts and jeans for everyone being the go to for Photoshoots are gone…unless your going for a retro look, which can be fun! But, if you are looking for beautiful images worthy of hanging on the walls, your going to want to make some different choices.
First, you don’t want everyone to match. Family Photoshoots often involve a lot of hugging and posing together, so if you are wearing the same exact color and texture, you will blend together in the photos and look like one big blob. I know this because I made this mistake myself in one of my maternity Photoshoots years ago. It was with a phenomenally talented photographer, and I still messed the photo up with that outfit choice. Luckily, we took a lot of pictures that day in many outfits so I still got a lot of great images.
Next, you want to chose a color palette for your outfits that coordinates with your background. To do this, you need to learn a little about color theory. Check out this blog post to learn more.
Choose outfits with interesting detail and flattering silhouettes, and make sure that each family member shines on their own!
Another benefit to doing a little shopping for your family photoshoot is that you end up with some really cute outfits you and your family can wear for special events, dinners, school pictures and DIY Family Films and Photos.
Finding the Perfect Outfits for a Family Photoshoot
So, I began to look and look for blogs that gave me the information I wanted. Some were helpful, but not quite what I was looking for. I continued my research on Instagram and Pinterest. Asked my photographer for tips.
After I made all of my final choices, I showed up at our Spring Family Photoshoot nervous about the choices…wondering if they would work. And I am so happy to say that they did! My photographer loved the choices and the dress that I agonized over for weeks, actually looked how I was dreaming it would look.
A Passion for Family Photo Styling was born
After that shoot, we booked our next and I began to get ready! I found that I loved it so much…and couldn’t stop talking and sharing about it…so I started a blog. Then a Pinterest, Instagram, and TikTok devoted to styling family photoshoots.
After months of researching and collecting resources, tools, and outfits…I began to create Family Photoshoot Styling Formulas as a way to pull it all together. Proven outfit combinations that work every time! They evolved out of a need for consistency and ease when choosing outfits. I wanted to make it less stressful for myself, but also others. I will be releasing tons of Family Photoshoot Formulas, one at a time, so stay tuned to the blog!
A winning combination
Family Photoshoot Styling Formulas + Real Links to get your shopping done are a winning combination. It’s going to make planning your family photoshoot a breeze!
Check out my LTK, devoted to curating outfits for photoshoots. It’s a great resource for shopping for any pieces you need.