Colors to Wear for Family Portrait

August 17, 2020 – 11:49 am
Outdoor Family Portraits What To Wear image tips

If it's an outdoor photo session, then consider sticking with clothing featuring medium to dark colors, such as blues and browns. You might also consider the following:

  • Beach photo shoots might require lighter tones, especially if the photographer wants to create a contrast between you and the sky or water.
  • If the majority of your outdoor shots will be taken with a light background, then avoid wearing white colored outfits so you don't appear washed out or blend into the background.
  • Traditional earthy tones, such as tan, gold, brown, and beige also work well for outdoor group shots.

Indoor photo sessions tend to be more formal than outdoor ones. Therefore, you should consider wearing darker colors. Your photographer can tell you what color backdrops he has in stock, and which colors he recommends your family members wear to the shoot. In general:

  • Formal shots in which subjects are wearing suits and dresses typically look better in darker shades, such as black or navy blue.
  • Males and females can coordinate outfits by choosing solids from the same color family.
  • Jewel tones, such as burgundy, rich reds, and maroon, work well together.

Skin Type

Consider how the color of your outfit matches your skin tone.

  • People with very fair skin should avoid wearing bright white as it may make them appear washed out in the photograph.
  • Those with very dark skin should avoid wearing light colors, such as pale yellow or lavender, as the contrast in colors will appear distracting in a group shot.
  • Regardless of your skin type, you should not wear extremely bright colors. Neon colored clothing is not recommended for family portraits.
  • Outfits featuring bright shades of red and purple, or those made of reflective material are best left at home on the day of your photo shoot.


Your choice of color may also depend your own personal preference, and family members should be allowed to make their own selections within reason:

  • Consider discussing several choices that offer a harmonious look, even if they don't include subtle shades.
  • Visual harmony can be achieved even if you buck the traditional color scheme of blue and brown and dress in pinks and grays.

Large Groups or Generations


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