Guide To Choosing Your Family Minis Outfits
Updated: Oct 7, 2021
1. START WITH MOM’S OUTFIT.
It can be hard to know where to begin, but think of it as building blocks. Start with one outfit and then you can build upon that. My recommendation is to start with mom (or daughter), since women’s clothing tends to have more colours and prints. And let’s be honest, we are more picky about how we look, and moms are typically pulling the outfits together anyways.
My best advice is for you to wear a dress in your favourite colour. Not only are dresses flattering, but you will feel good in it. If you hate dresses, think about a skirt/top combo, but choose something that is slightly dresser than your everyday look. Opt for high quality fabrics (not t-shirt material) because they hang better.
2. CHOOSE A COLOUR PALETTE.
After you’ve chosen mom’s outfit, think about 2-3 coordinating colours, some neutral and one of which pops and brings life to the outfits.
Also, the colour palette you choose will affect your appearance and the overall look of your photo. Warmer colours like peach, cream, brown, will give your photos a soft glowing look, while bold and vivid colours will produce a brighter and sharper appearance.
3. THINK MUTED COLOURS.
Avoid overly saturated and bold colours, as they distract in the photo. Look for MUTED versions of the same colour. For example, if you have a bright hot pink shirt, try a muted dusty rose instead.
4. COORDINATE, DON’T MATCH.
Gone are the days when everyone wears matching white polos and khakis for family photos on the beach. Choose colours that complement each other but are not overly matchy-matchy. For example, avoid wearing the same colour top as your spouse or putting your girls in the same matching dresses.
After mom’s outfit is chosen, begin to find 2-3 coordinating colours that complement.
5. ADD VARIETY WITH SUBTLE PATTERNS.
They say that variety is the spice of life right? To add depth and interest to your photos, create dimension by having primarily solids with a few coordinating subtle patterns and textures. Patterns are great in small doses and add a lot of your photo. Avoid bold, large prints that can distract from the photo though. You want your family photos to be about you and not merely your outfits.
Layers are another way to add variety with cardigans, shawls, scarves, etc.
6. FITTED CLOTHING IS YOUR FRIEND.
While flowy shirts and dresses are currently in style, they can hide your shape and be less flattering in photos. Find clothes that are neither overly baggy nor too tight, and think about balance between your upper and lower half. If you have a flowing skirt, chose a fitted top, and with a loose top, choose skinny jeans. It’s all about balance.
7. DRESS FOR THE WEATHER.
You might have the perfect outfit on, but if you’re freezing or sweating to death, a family photo session can quickly unravel. Layering is the perfect solution for those chilly evenings or sweltering September days! Remember, little ones get cold more quickly than adults when temperatures are low, so pack a cardigan or sweater for them. Cold kiddos = sad photos…keep those kids warm!
8. JUST BE YOURSELF.
Don’t dress like someone else you saw on Pinterest just because you found an amazing outfit idea. You want these photos to represent the real you and your family and not be something that you aren’t. This might mean you wear shorts or torn up jeans or a boho vintage thrift store dress. Just be you!
9. INCLUDE YOUR KIDS.
Involve your children in planning and choosing outfits. They will be much more excited about family photos if they like what they’re wearing. This doesn’t mean that you should let your daughter wear her favourite princess dress. Instead, incorporate their favourite colour. Please don’t make them wear something they hate. You want your kiddos happy for your session!
10. ONLY ONE OUTFIT NEEDED.
Don’t overly complicate family photos by bringing multiple outfits for everyone. Kids usually HATE changing clothes and can end up cranky afterwards, not to mention it takes time away from your session. If you have a drooling baby, put a bib on them until you arrive at the session, or alternatively, change them into their outfit right when you arrive to ensure clean clothes.
11. REMEMBER THE SHOES.
Shoes have the power to complete an outfit or completely destroy it! Think about your session location. If you are in a field, for instance, you won’t be able to walk in those stilettos. Avoid bright white shoes, all athletic sneakers, and kids’ shoes with cartoon characters and sparkles. If you just can’t find shoes you love, consider having the family go barefoot for the session (just bring shoes to walk around at the location!).
12. DON’T WAIT TO TRY ON YOUR CLOTHES UNTIL THE DAY BEFORE.
Try on your clothes well in advance so you can switch it up if something isn’t working. Look at your outfit from different angles and move around to make sure it works for lifestyle photos. There’s nothing worse than a gorgeous v-neck dress that keeps gaping wide-open to show your bra as you cuddle and tickle your kiddos.
Most importantly, you want to feel comfortable in what you wear. You don’t want an outfit that keeps shifting out of place or falling down. Choose clothing that allows you to play with your kids, move freely and feels good on you. For guys this means that shirts that look good untucked are usually better since you will be playing and moving around with your kids and you don’t want to have to keep tucking in your shirt.
Don’t forget earrings, bracelets, hats, or other accessories that help complete your outfit! Ladies, please avoid necklaces as they have a hard time staying in place and can get tangled up in those cuddle and tickle moments with your kids.
Texture is a striking feature and adds great dimension to your photos and helps them stand out. Examples of texture include chambray, faux fur, chunky knits, lace, tweed, wool, etc.
Apply your makeup in natural light so that you know how it will look for outdoor photos. Apply just a little bit more than you usually would and make sure to blend foundation well with your neck. Stay away from nude lipsticks as they wash you out, but do make sure to wear lip gloss (chapstick for everyone in the family so they don’t have the dry lip look). If you’re comfortable with it, help your eyes pop with natural length fake eyelashes.
Steer clear of cargo shorts, baggy jeans, and oversized clothing.
THIN STRIPES OR PLAIDS
Thin stripes and tight plaids distort in printed photos and appear zig-zaggy and thus should be avoided.
Avoid outfits that are too formal for your setting. If you are in a natural area, a tuxedo, formal dress, tie/bowtie, might feel out of place.
White has the tendency to wash out complexions. Choose ivory and creams instead.
Neon colours can reflect onto your face, causing skin tone problems in your photos. That neon green shirt will reflect upwards on your face and cause you to look green!
Logos or text on clothing is distracting. Avoid shirts that have logos (even just a simple Nike check mark or Polo horse is distracting).
Guys, it’s best to avoid wearing white undershirts that hang out of the top of your shirt or sleeves.
LOW-CUT AND OVERLY TIGHT SHIRTS
Low-cut shirts can shift during the session and leave you a little more revealed than you intended. Clothing that is overly tight and clings to you is uncomfortable and can leave bulges and bumps in places you don’t want.
BABY OUTFITS WITH DIAPERS PEEKING OUT