I always recommend that when putting together outfits for your session, you choose at least 3 main colors and work from that palette of colors to compliment. If you have children, it can help to start with them and choose 1 person to be the "standout" pattern and then bring in everyone else's accessories to coordinate with that. Another way to do this is start with some neutral tones and add in some brighter colors or go with a softer palette and work with ranges in shades.
Textures: Tweed, corduroy, embroidery details, lace, ribbons, ruffles.... you get the idea
Layers: Sweaters, scarves, sometimes a jacket or certain hats that may go with the style you are going for.
These are the items that make your photos unique and add depth to your images. These details are especially important in black and white images but also provide a pop of color depending on your vision as well as what works with your subject.
on your feet...
Please don't wear sneakers. The only exception for this would be something fun, like Converse or Vans, that would tie into your style for the session. Shoes can truly make or break your outfit and draw attention away from your put-together choice of outfits. If you found some bright shoes, maybe coordinate that color of shoe with a color in an accessory, such as a scarf or chunky necklace of mom's. Sometimes, no shoes are a better option, especially with siblings or child-only photos. If you're going with a bright color option, sometimes fun socks could be added for some extra pop!
& thinking outside of the box...
For example, in this image, the mom sported her tattoos as a colorful accessory matching shades of her dress and put a fun bow to contrast with her daughter to give some added dimension to this photo.
Other accessories to think about for girls: scarves, hats, flowers in the hair, jewelry, sweaters... for the guys: bow ties, fun socks, vests, hats... The thing to think about is a balance. You don't want the attention to be drawn away from you, the subjects, by too many, or misplaced accessories. My goal is to bring the focus to you and your family and whoever is in my shot. Your clothing and accessories should simply complement the focus of you.
Having a good amount of accessories and layers also gives us the freedom to provide different looks without having to take too much time to change clothes.
creating a natural flow in your photos
This aspect is especially helpful in photographing kids as it lets them move freely and do what they love to do: jump, twirl, dance and generally be wild... it creates the fun and organic photos that we all love!
A long, flowy skirt or dress for moms is also a good prop and accessory as it lets you have an easy option to provide similar movement but in a more casual and classic way. Other fun options for boys that provides movement are using scarves or bringing a hero cape (if that is in the vision of your session).
Clothing and accessories that provide movement also ensure that everyone is able to be comfortable and allows me to accent that movement in your photos.
1. Patterns are good... in moderation... try to keep it to one person in a louder type pattern. And try to balance this with more solid options with textures for everyone else.
2. Think about your session location and make sure your outfits complement the location type. For example, if your session is near an old barn, vintage or muted clothing colors would match that location but might not be the best outfit choice for an urban setting with wall murals or graffiti.
3. Avoid things with logos, graphics, or character type clothing. It distracts and takes away from the finished look of your photos.
4. Remove watches or jewelry that is not intended to be part of your timeless look or vibe in your session.
Please let me know if I can help in any way! I am happy to make suggestions on locations for certain pieces if you can't seem to find what you're looking for. Once you have everything together, feel free to send me a quick picture from your phone and I'm happy to give additional suggestions.