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  • Kerry Goddard

Picking the outfits for your outdoor session

Updated: Sep 5, 2020

What works best? It can be daunting to prepare outfits for a family of 5, but I do it every year because outfits can make a photo that much better! Here are some helpful hints.

1. The colors: Consider what colors you use in your home decor. Soft browns, tans, creams, and sometimes navy blues pared with a pop of color like a mustard or an orange or a bit of burgundy work really well. Usually I try to come up with 2 main colors and weave those throughout the group. Last year was grey and burgundy, the year before it was blue and gold (go bears!), and this year I want to try for brown and mustard. But blue keeps calling me. Try to keep the bright colors away from faces. Bright colors leave a color cast on skin when they reflect back onto the skin, and that can be tricky to remove completely in editing. So opt for a bright pair of shoes, a headband that doesn't reflect down onto the face, a skirt, or a tie for dad. Whatever your pop of color may be, try to make sure we see it just a bit on multiple people.

2. Try not to be too matchy matchy. I have gotten my two girls the same dress on occasion, but honestly keeping colors in the same family and having a variety of textures works best. You want to coordinate, not match.

3. Keep things solid. If someone has a pattern, that's fine, but try to keep the florals and patterns to just one person. Distracting logos and big patterns can date a photo instead of keeping it timeless.

4. Textures look great on camera, a ruffle, something with a thick lace, a crepe material, etc.

5. When you begin to plan, consider who the hardest person is to dress. In my family, that's me. I never wear long sleeves in the real world, but I do in my photos, because my arms look a LOT better in them. I choose an outfit that works for me and plan my kids and husband around that.

6. Expect a little wind. It happens. Be prepared. I can do a little for fly away hairs in post, but consider this when you are doing your hair, and your kid's hair. A little gel or hairspray can help a lot!

7. Accessorize! Have fun with it. Chunky necklaces and bows for girls, a hat maybe for your boy. everyone doesn't need accessories, but a fun belt, or a scarf can do a lot for a photo and help you tie all the outfits together.

8. Lay out all the outfits on a big bed, and make sure you like how they go together.

9. And of course keep it comfortable, easy to move in, and fun!


Look at those light creamy colors and the texture of her dress!

I know that was a lot. These are just helpful hints, not laws, but hopefully they will help to guide you. Go get styling!


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