top of page
  • Kerry Paradis

5 Tips for Choosing What to Wear for a Family Photo Session

Picture of family with the father holding the youngest upside down by Kerry Paradis Photography

One of the biggest questions that people ask me what should I wear for our upcoming pictures. Getting pictures done can be stressful enough for the parents, choosing what to wear should not. I get asked all the time, “I have a photo shoot coming up, what should I wear?” I know this doesn’t apply to everyone because some are pros, but if you don’t get your pictures done frequently you may have a lot of questions.

When should I start preparing?

There is no right or wrong answer to this. I know everyone is busy and time is something that no one really has these days. My recommendation would be to start playing around/thinking about what to wear at least 3 weeks in advance. Try different colors, outfits and accessories to see what works best. You may think something is going to look good until you try it on or lay it all out and it doesn’t go together like you envisioned. You need to keep in mind where the photo shoot will be occurring as well. Is it in my studio, are we going to a special park, near water, etc. These are all variables to consider and can help inspire the color theme and style of clothing. You want to complement the background, but not blend in with it. You could try to find a favorite outfit and base all your choices around that.

Be Comfortable

It is very important to make sure the clothes are somewhat comfortable. This can be a very relative term because if you let a guy pick out comfortable clothes to wear he will show up in jogging pants and a t-shirt. Comfort allows everyone to easily be themselves without distraction. If you are comfortable in tight jeans, then by all means, wear them. From experience, comfort always gets put last on the list though.

Coordinate the colors

Pictures of a family that is coordinating the colors good for a family photo shoot by Kerry Paradis Photography

I always like when families show up with coordinating colors. You want to choose a few colors that will highlight your family’s features. These colors should go nicely together and be favorites among your spouse and kids. I know first hand that when I try and pick out my husbands clothes for our family pictures that if he isn’t happy with them, he isn’t into the pictures. So husbands/wives out there, make sure the significant other and the kids are happy with the clothes choices. When choosing the outfits thread the colors throughout the outfits and accessories for a look that isn’t too matchy-matchy. You probably want to avoid most patterns and it could either be distracting or clash with certain backgrounds. On the other hand, you also don’t want to all wear the same color. This can cause a loss of important detail. Sticking with a neutral color base and just using some accent colors can work well and make things easier. Here is a link to get some ideas.


Wear scarves, shawls, hats, jewelry, belts, purses and hair accessories. As long as your accessories coordinate with your outfit, you really can’t go wrong. Don’t forget about your shoes and boots! I love the look of stylish knee high boots and tights or a full length skirt or dress with some killer heels. Have fun with your footwear! (Ladies…it gives you a good excuse to go shopping)


You don’t want to overdue it with the makeup and accessories, especially if you normally don’t wear them. No matter how much your child loves a movie or theme, doesn’t necessarily mean they should wear a Trolls shirt. It may look good at the time, but if you look back at these pictures years later, the pictures may look very dated. I should also add that slogans or logos on t-shirts can be very distracting in pictures. People will pay more attention on trying to read what the logo says than appreciate the picture. If your kids are in shoes that hurt or clothes that itch, trust me, they will be grumpy and the pictures will not go well. You will have to use some extra bribes that day!

This is just some general guidelines. I have seen some step outside the box and it turned out great. At the end of the day, these are your pictures and I want you to be able to cherish them forever. Please contact me with any questions.

Picture of Kerry Paradis from Kerry Paradis Photography

I was born and raised in Perry hall (Baltimore area) and have been living in Harford County Maryland for close to 15 years. I have two daughters that keep me very busy and a very understanding husband that helps keep me sane :) I love all kinds of photography including Newborns, Weddings and Family. For the past several years I performed shoots out of my house, but recently opened a photography studio in Joppa, Maryland next to the “The Great Hall” Wedding Venue at the Millstad. My studio allows the perfect lighting to capture the best pictures and it is surrounded by 40 acres of property that is used by a ballet studio and gymnastics facility. There are plenty of places to photograph! I also have some favorite beautiful spots in the area that I like to photograph at as well. Whether you are looking to capture the first days of your baby’s life, the important times with your family, Senior Portraits for your High School Graduation, or walking down the aisle on your special wedding day, I would love for you to consider me! I do not take any of my business for granted and feel blessed to do what I love for my career. I invite you to check out my website and subscribe to my email list for exclusive discounts and updates. I try and write these blogs in a way that might answer some questions you may have. If you ever have any ideas for my blog, shoot me an email and I will be happy to see what I can do. Feel free to check out my testimonials.

91 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page