Meet Chelsea. Corporate-America dropout, lover of all things old and firm believer in loving without counting the cost. 

MEET Chelsea

Choosing what to wear for family photos can feel overwhelming. Especially when the number of people to dress grows! But with these easy steps, you’ll be looking incredible in your next family photoshoot and know just what to wear for family photos.

Step 1: Choose a color palette

When planning what to wear for family photos, I always recommend starting out with a color palette in mind. 2-3 colors is best! I recommend selecting those softer, lighter tones and avoiding those ultra-bright, bold colors. The camera loves shades of soft pink and muted blues, mixed with sophisticated light neutrals like heather gray, creams, leather brown and white. Feel free to vary the shades of the colors, too. That softer color palette fits beautifully into a natural environment, and can easily be paired in so many different ways.

BONUS: to avoid busy patterns, sometimes they can look too busy.

Step 2: Coordinate, don’t match

Once you’ve chosen a few colors, start searching for your outfits based on those colors. You’ll want to creak up out the colors on each outfit so that not everyone is wearing the same colors on the top or bottom. The more you can mix the colors, the better!

For example,  if you’re wearing a blush dress, soft blue earrings and nude heels (blush being your dominant color), then he could wear a navy coat with a white button-down and gray pants, paired with brown leather shoes and maybe even a blush pocket square (making navy his dominant color). Your daughter could wear a soft blue top with a white tulle skirt (making a soft blue her dominant color) while your son wears light beige pants with navy suspenders and a white button down (making white his dominant color). Now each person has their own dominant color while still incorporating a few touches of the others that will pull all the looks together. This will break up the color visually and highlight each personality. Most of my moms choose their dress first, and then build the rest of the family’s outfits based around that.

Step 3: Dress it up

Don’t be afraid to go formal! Ladies always look amazing in flowy dresses and the camera loves the movement they bring to your photos. For the men, a jacket and/or collared shirt looks polished and intentional. Here are some of my favorite stores to shop!

For the Ladies:

For the Gents:

Step 4: Don’t stress

With every portrait session, I offer a client-exclusive Portrait Style Guide, as well as one-on-one consultations for outfit guidance. So you don’t have to worry about a thing!

So there it is, what to wear for family photos in 4 simple steps. I hope this helps! If you want to get your next session on the calendar, contact me here. I can’t wait to capture your family’s photographs.

Chelsea Sliwa is a Denver family photographer who provides an elevated and fine art portrait photography experience for families in Colorado and beyond.


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