Tips for Family Photos

Tips for Family Photos

Picture Planning – The Best Colors to Wear for Outdoor Family Photos

With summer coming to an end, now is the perfect time to plan an outdoor family photoshoot. Temperatures have cooled down, the bugs aren’t biting (at least, not as much) and you now have your pick of scenic spots that are guaranteed to provide dreamy photo opportunities.

Before you can pack up the entire family and get your photo taken at some gorgeous location, you first need to choose a color scheme for your family photos. The right colors can flatter the whole family and make everyone shine, while the wrong colors can do the exact opposite (whatever it takes, we do not want you to end up on this list).

To ensure that everyone in your family is captured looking their best, we’ve rounded up the most popular color schemes for family photos.

  • Neutrals

  • If you have no idea what to wear for a family photoshoot, lighter neutrals such as cream and gray will never let you down. These failsafe colors manage to look effortlessly chic against a variety of outdoor backgrounds, from picturesque grass fields to woodsy areas.

    If you’re worried about your neutrals being too plain or boring, consider pairing them with a seasonal accent color. For instance, light gray and cream are stunning with hints of pale orange for an end-of-the-summer look.

    Couple on Beach in California wearing Southern Tide

  • White

  • Although white is considered a neutral, this versatile color definitely deserves its own special mention. Not only is white arguably one of the most visually-captivating colors to wear for family photos, but it’s also the go-to color for photoshoots by the sea.

    Clean and classic, dressing your family in crisp, white tops and khaki shorts is sure to look amazing for a beach photoshoot. You can dress the girls in flowy, white dresses and outfit the little guys in boys oxford shirts and boys khaki chino shorts for a timeless look that never goes out of style. 

    Skip the shoes to give your family photos a fresh, natural vibe. Oh, and don’t forget to wear sunscreen!

  • Blue

  • If you want to add a bit of color to your family photoshoot while still keeping it classic, blue is a standard color scheme for family pics. This ultra-calming hue is a fan favorite all around the world and looks particularly stunning against green and orange backgrounds (think autumn leaves and lush meadows).

    To keep your photos from looking too dark, consider dressing everyone in various shades of blue. For instance, the ladies can wear collared shirts in navy blue, while the guys can look sharp in light blue sport shirts. Pair your blue tops with classic blue denim for a look that works perfectly for spring, summer and early fall.

  • Earth Tones

  • As a general rule, any “natural” color that fits in with the earth is usually a safe bet for photoshoots. Sage green, various shades of brown and muted shades of yellow and orange are all earthy tones that photograph well.

    Unlike neutrals, which are hard to mess up, you do need to be a little careful with earth tones in your photographs. Overdoing it on a single color (i.e., yellow) can throw off the entire picture and be too distracting. Be sure to make yellow (and similarly eye-catching hues) an accent color rather than the dominant color.

    Southern Tide Ambassadors at Beach in California

  • Patterns/Prints in Moderation

  • Okay, so patterns and prints aren’t actually a color. That being said, they can make your family photos look stunning when incorporated into the shot in small doses. The keywords here being “small doses.”

    For example, having one family member wear a gingham sport shirt while the rest of the family wears solid shirts can add subtle interest to the shot. Just keep it low-key with your prints and patterns and you really can’t go wrong.

    Classic and Comfortable Clothing Is Key

    Although choosing the right color scheme for your outdoor photoshoot is important, the most crucial task is finding classic clothing that is comfortable and timeless. Trust us, you don’t want to look at your family portrait and cringe at what you thought was trendy at the time.

    By investing in timeless pieces, you’ll never worry about your clothing appearing too outdated. Plus, your kids can wear their classic pieces for senior pictures, special date nights, church, school functions—you get the picture. (See what we did there?)



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