What to wear for a family session | Familienfotografin Zürich

Many, many times I am getting asked: What should we wear for our family session?

I know that this is super important, as you are not having your pictures taken every day. You want these pictures to be perfect, and they should be. BUT perfect does not mean: looking immaculate -like a family in a commercial ad… Looking perfect means: Looking just like yourself.  You want to be and see yourselves in these photos, and not a dressed up and alien version of your family.


So my first advice is: Choose outfits that reflect you and that make you feel comfortable. Do not force anything on yourself, your husband or your children, they would normally not wear. Choose something a bit more chic than your goto everyday outfit. Something you would maybe wear on a sunday afternoon when going out, or something you would pack for your family vacation.


Some tips when planning your outfit:

  • Choose natural colors- neon rarely looks good in a photo.
  • Try to avoid logo words or graphics (eg. comic figures) on shirts.
  • Remove any temporarily tattoos from your kids hands, arms, legs etc.
  • Coordinate the outfits, but do not match!
  • There are two ways to coordinate, so that the whole family looks unified: either choose outfits of different colors that blend well, or choose 2-3 colors and and work those colors into each outfit (Have your daughters dress match dads shirt, and pick a pants for babyboy that matches the color of  your scarf.) You can always add pieces in neutral colors, such as white, beige and grey to your color combination. Look here for some inspiring color combinations or try one of these gorgeous combination: shades of blue + neutrals, yellow + light blue +  pale green + neutrals, rose + blue + neutrals, blue + kaki + red, shades of white + beige (+ a pop of color)
  • You can also mix contrasting patterns. To do so try mixing large patterns with tiny prints in similar colors.
  • Choose outfits that have the same style, you do not want to have one person wearing a ballgown while all the others are dressed super casual.
  • Another great thing is layering and  adding texture. Wear a scarf and a cardigan over a simple shirt. Do something unexpected by  pairing a tulle skirt with a denim or leather jacket. Use chunky sweaters, a fur vest or boots.
  • For men and boys outfits, it is best to keep it simple and timeless. For example a pair of jeans  and a shirt in basic/ neutral colors.
  • I encourage moms and girls to wear dresses, if they feel comfortable doing so, as a dress will always look very flattering in the images. 
  • When the weather is cold make sure to wear warm enough clothes. Layering comes in handy in these cases. You can take off a layer for some pictures and put it back on later- this adds a nice variety to your gallery. Wear a dress with warm stockings (legwarmes can be fun, too) and boots, a cardigan or west plus a jacket on top. Bring scarves and heads, or even a blanket for the kids. 
  • The one thing that is often overlooked when planning an outfit are shoes!!! Please check if they go along well with the outfits.  Simple shoes eg. neutral colored sneakers, boat shoes, sandals, ballet  flats boots, or even being barefoot are all great choices. If the location allowes and you feel comfortable, this is the time to bring your most impractical fantastical heels to complete your outfit.
  • Keep your hair style natural and if you have long hair, just let it down, as this adds a lot to the pictures, the same goes for your daughter. If you do not feel comfortable with your hair down, or have no long hair wear the best version of your everyday look. Kids hair should be styled in an easy way that will last the whole session and does allow them to run and play.
  • Try your outfit before the session and sit, stand and pose in front of a mirror, to make sure everything fits and flatters.
  • Plan your outfits well ahead of the session, to make sure you have everything you need.

A very good way to gather all the pieces for your session is to start out with the piece that will take center stage- the ROCKSTAR piece ;-). Most times this will be (lets just be honest and admit it), moms dress. The rockstar piece will determine the style and feel for all the other outfits. As soon as you have settled on your dream outfit go ahead and find simpler pieces that have coordinating colors and patterns.


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