What to wear tips for a Fall Family Photoshoot!
There are so many great seasons of the year to take family photos. I honestly couldn’t tell you which one is best.
But as far as popularity, the fall season is HUGE!
Some consider it to be the perfect time of year due to the cooler temperatures outside, the change in nature’s colors to those coveted fall colors and just that seasonal vibe of holidays approaching.
To make sure you have the absolute best look for your family portraits regardless if you’re the client or the photographer, we’ll discuss important points to focus on for a family photo session in the fall season.
Summary Preview: The main themes are sticking with earth tones, solids as opposed to patterns and ultimately wearing comfortable clothes in the elements. In addition, there are multiple tips to help you pick the perfect outfit for your entire family to coordinate.
Overall, the goal of this blog post is to help you with those outfit ideas from the perspective of professional photographers.
I would also suggest you read through all the way to the end (or click ahead through the Table of Contents) to have the opportunity to access my free photography prep session guide that I give to my clients when they book a photo shoot with me.
This digital form has helped improve every session that I have whether it’s a fall shoot or not.
Now without further ado, let’s get into it!
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One of the MOST common questions that I get regards not the type of outfit to wear but the color scheme.
For fall colors, I have found that simple is always best.
An absolute client popular color palette are earth tones. We’re talking colors that go well with the environment of nature at this time of year and have some shade of brown in them or go well with the color brown.
To help with this, think of the approaching holidays and the different events that are available for families to do together. A family photo session at a pumpkin patch or colors that would go well with holiday cards for example, can help give you an idea of what colors to aim for.
This means not just dark browns, but oranges, blues like a navy blue or a deep teal, reds, and yellows like mustard yellow.
A personal favorite of mine are the neutral tones.
Now, let me put a disclaimer here. At the end of the day, you need to choose colors that you prefer as a client. While a photographer can give their input, it’s YOU who will be in the photos and hopefully cherishing them for a lifetime. So pick what you feel represents you best and not what you think will make your photographer happy.
The worst thing I hear is when photographers get irritated with their clients for NOT doing something they strongly suggest. To each their own, but I’m not about that life.
Ok, off the soap box.
Back to the point, neutral colors are those whites, blacks and everything in between. Beiges, grays, even browns.
You can easily mix and match light to dark extremes within this color scheme and have a stunning effect for your fall family pictures.
It’s an easy way to be coordinated but not cheesy.
On the other hand, monochromatic is always a great option. Personally, I’m a huge fan of solid colors in shoots, fall or not. Dressing in similar colors but with certain colors as your main colors is a common theme as well.
For example, choosing blues on a spectrum for the whole family to coordinate. Someone wearing light blue, versus someone wearing dark blue, etc. You get the point.
I had a family that chose to coordinate a white and orange theme. Their photos were stunning with the fall colors of green, brown and orange in the background. The dominant color which was also their main color was orange and it was simple to pair her husband, son and little girl with it. The wife’s husband wore a white shirt with tan pants, son in a similar outfit and her daughter in a lighter orange dress then hers.
Due note, when I say “orange” I mean the fancy “burnt orange” color. Insert smiley emoji here.
This is a great way to have a timeless look with a pop of color at the same time.
This is also a great time of year to wear bright colors or bold colors.
If you have a bold personality and want to exhibit that, then do so. One of the best ways to do this is with a solid scheme as opposed to patterned, and let that one color stand out in contrast to nature’s surroundings.
While I’d be the first to say try to shoot for a contrasting color, at the same time, a solid bright color can be amazing outdoors even if it’s along the same fall color scheme.
Types of outfits
Now, let’s discuss the types of outfits that are best for a fall photoshoot.
Of course, keeping in mind dressing for comfort during the shoot is important as well, you can still look trendy with your family if you need to dress warm.
Dresses at this time of year are popular with the ladies. We’re talking a flowy dress to catch the breeze, the popular maxi dress and even a simple white dress.
Many times, it’s easier for families to coordinate their colors based off the main lady’s outfit.
You can never go wrong with keeping it simple and one of the favorite looks of my clients is to have the men, or the man of the house, pair with the lady of the house by wearing a white shirt with slacks that are a color that compliments hers.
To dress things up, a long dress with high heels can be amazing this time of year if you can handle the environment if it’s outdoors and the weather is friendly. Or a skirt with knee-high boots, classy but comfy.
Personal style is huge though, so you should always wear something that reflects you and that will be the most comfortable for you to be yourself in for your photos.
Now let’s talk about ideal locations for these photos to take place. To keep it simple, do your fall family photoshoot outdoors.
I mean, the theme of this discussion is centered around fall. You’re just not going to capture the true essence of fall if you don’t do it outdoors.
It’s the best way to quickly make a statement that this is a fall family shoot. Many of the color themes and outfits we’ve discussed can work at different seasons. What separates this from all of those general family photoshoots is plugging those family outfits into the colorful foliage of fall itself.
This is what turns your generic outdoor family pictures and outfit plans into fall family photoshoot outfits.
How to Plan
So what is the best way for you to plan your fall family photo outfits?
I have two words for you, my friend.
This is the best way that I can “see” my client’s vision for their fall session.
Encouraging them to start a Pinterest board of all the family photos that they would like for their photos is a great place for them to gather their vision. AND, it’s the easiest way for them to share it with me.
Pinterest is a great resource that provides a visual example of the different outfits, different patterns and possibly the perfect combination of both to inspire their family outfits.
It is also a great choice to spark visual interest from the less engaged or more difficult family members to plan outfits for. Sharing their vision board with those family members could help them take interest in the family picture outfits and increase family excitement and participation in what’s to come.
Dos and Don’ts Tips
Now let’s go over what I consider to be some of the best tips that are neglected until you’re in the middle of shoot or even after a shoot (for the photographer) and realizing some basic preparation could have saved you a TON of time.
Let’s just say that when it comes to these things, a little bit goes a looooong way.
- Use a lint roller if you’re planning to wear all white or all black or any solid color.
- Keep things simple. Subtle patterns are better than harsh, loud patterns.
- Keep your photoshoot location colors in mind and try to wear complimentary colors.
- Comfort over discomfort. If you have children, little girls and little boys, try to keep in mind that they’ll be antsy or can easily get dirty and dress them in clothes that is blemish friendly and for you as the parents, comfortable to move around in.
- Consider the time of the shoot to ensure the best opportunity for natural light since fall family sessions typically take place outside.
- Keep things fun. It’s ok to throw fall leaves up in the air as part of your shoot. It’s ok to use a wooden post as a prop. This is what separates your fall family photos from everyone else and truly makes it unique.
To conclude, there are multiple ways to find
The best wear for a fall family photoshoot.
The most exciting things can be the most simple things with a slight change for a subtle twist. Like taking a long flowy solid colored dress and pairing it with a denim jacket.
Or having the father of the family stand out with a plaid shirt and everyone else in solids.
If you have never taken family photos or are not happy with ones you’ve had in the past, try to book one with plenty of time before the holidays. That way you have a reason to take family photos that your family will concede with. I mean, who can argue with needing photos ready for Christmas cards?
In short, for beautiful family photos, you simply cannot beat the popular time of fall.
Fall sessions are an almost certain way to pick the one time of the year where it’s worth getting all the rest of the family involved, coordinating a great color scheme and outfits, and getting the best photos you could possibly get.
If in doubt, check out some of these ridiculous fall photos that I’ve had the honor of taking before writing this blog post.
Fall for family photos? Yes. YES. Yaaaaaaaas. EVERY TIME.