Whether you’re getting ready for work, school, or a big date, there’s probably one question on your mind: what should I wear? When you get ready for a family portrait session, the intensity of that question is multiplied by the number of people in your family, and (hopefully) it starts long before you wake up on the day of the shoot.

Not to worry. When we discuss your shoot details, you’ll be able to narrow your clothing choices. From there, we’re going to find the perfect outfits by following these tips:

Wear Something

We’re all clear on that being the most important thing? Good. Moving on.

To Match or Not to Match?

Chances are you’ve seen a lot of family photos where everyone is in jeans and white button-up shirts, or the women are in black skirts, the men are in black pants, and everyone wears a blue sweater or t-shirt. The matching outfit was a huge trend in family photography. It has faded out, but some families still choose to do it. It’s really a matter of personal preference, and we’ll get some great photos whether you match or not.


If you don’t match, you should still coordinate a bit. If Mom is in stripes, maybe don’t put Daughter in polka-dots and Son in plaid. Speaking of patterns…

Solid Colors Are Good

That’s not to say you can’t wear patterns, but be a little picky about them. Keep it simple, and if one family member wears a pattern, the other members can choose clothing in colors found in that pattern. Cartoon characters count as patterns, so enjoy this rare Paw Patrol-free day.

A word about one particular color family:

The neons. I know your daughter is sold on that electric blue dress, and your son loves the near-to-glowing orange zig-zags on his favorite shirt, but you want to steer them to calmer colors for your portrait. Bright colors are great, but when they tip the scale into neon, it’s time to rein it in.

Location and Backdrop

The beautiful thing about studio portraits is that you don’t have to consider the weather. Not only is there no danger of rain, bugs, wind, or sun in your eyes, you also know you’re going to be comfortable in jeans or shorts, sweaters or t-shirts, and any type of shoe (or no shoes!).


When we discuss your shoot details, we’ll talk about backgrounds, which can help you narrow down your clothing choices. I love to use hand-painted canvas backdrops, which come in a wide variety of tones and colors.

So let’s get creative! Black clothes on a black background? Gorgeous! Every family member’s favorite color against a green backdrop? Let’s do it.

You’ve Got Options

If you’re really undecided, talk to me and let’s make sure we have time for an outfit change. (Nothing makes you feel more like a model than that!)

photo of girl in studio

Be Comfortable

I could have started and stopped with this tip alone. This is the key.

Your family portraits are about you. Don’t wear clothes you never wear in real life. You won’t be comfortable and you won’t feel like yourselves, and that will come across in the photos. Wear clothes and accessories that make you feel good: it gives you confidence in front of the camera, and it helps the whole family let loose and relax.

This is especially important for younger children who have, you know, different priorities. “Taking the perfect photo while wearing a perfect-but-uncomfortable outfit” is usually not one of them.


If you’re feeling good and smiling big, it doesn’t really matter what you wear. Choose your clothes, then forget about them and focus on the love and connection you have with your family. After all, that’s what you want to see in your photographs.

What are you waiting for? Book your portrait session with Marcus Anthony today!