What To Wear For Summer Family Pictures
| by Dawn Danko | Pictures By Mom | Learn How To Take Better Pictures |
Ahhhh summer. Hot, sunny weather and tons of great options for summer family pictures.
Summer is a wonderful time of the year to take family pictures – but it can be a challenge to find outfits to wear that are both fashionable for family pictures, and comfortable.
Summer Family Pictures
All of the best colorful outdoor locations are available in the summer.
The blues and neutral tones of the beach. The deep greens and browns of the woods. Colorful urban streetscapes bustling with people.
Summer is also the best time of the year to be a bit more…shall we say risqué in your pictures – especially if you want to ditch the kids for a few shots and have some fun with your husband…
Summer Weather for Photos
For summer photos, you have to make sure that everyone is comfortable.
If its too hot and everyone is sweating, your photos are not going to look that good anyway.
Make sure you choose a location that has shade available.
If you do want to do your summer family pictures at a location that doesn’t have shade – like the beach – use the time of day to your advantage.
Schedule your summer family pictures either very early in the morning (just after dawn if you can get up that early), or just before sunset – as an added bonus – the light is the best then too.
And of course, make sure you have plenty of water and sunscreen on hand.
What To Wear for Summer Family Pictures – Ten Summer Family Picture Clothing Tips
To me, summer family pictures should be fun, light and breezy – so we are going to focus on clothing that creates that kind of atmosphere.
1. Wear Light and Bright Colors
We generally associate light colors such as whites, linen’s and pastel’s with warm weather.
Certain bright colors such as turquoise, emerald, lime, fuchsia, violet and nectarine also have definite associations with hot, breezy weather.
Think tropical – if you can associate a color with a fruity tropical drink, exotic tropical flowers or the decor at a luxury Caribbean resort – its probably a great choice for summer family picture outfits.
2. Wear Breezy Outfits
By breezy, I don’t mean loose or unfitted.
I mean outfits that are meant to have some flow to them.
Like a cute dress with a fun flowing skirt.
Or linen cargo shorts on guys. Button up shirts with a few of the top buttons left open (chest hair permitting) and the sleeves rolled up also look great on guys – and little boys.
3. Wear Light and Comfortable Fabrics
You want to look comfortable in your summer family pictures, and a big part of that is wearing fabrics that are light and comfortable.
Linen is the quintessential summer fabric. But, you can also go with a light cotton, pretty sheers and even satin and light lace if you want to spice things up a bit.
For guys, natural cotton and linen look great.
Try to stay away from heavy knits or heavy fabrics like wool or even too much denim.
4. Coordinate But Don’t Match
Start with a few colors that coordinate well with each other. Fortunately, most male and female summer colors coordinate fabulously without much effort.
Mix pops of bright summer colors with coordinating neutral colors like white, charcoal and linen.
You want your coordinating summer colors to be spread out fairly evenly through everyone in the photo. You also don’t want to have everyone wearing neutral bottoms and colorful tops – you have to mix your coordinating colors up.
But try not to match!
Don’t all wear matching bottoms (skirts / pants) and tops – that look is just tacky and died back when Friends was still cool and fresh.
One final tip on coordinating your clothing for summer family pictures – it is usually better for guys to wear neutral pants and colorful tops!
Girls can balance the neutral pants on the guys with colorful skirts, leggings and pants – but its pretty hard for a guy to pull off a pair of lime green pants!
This also gives the girls the option to accentuate colorful bottoms and a neutral top with colorful accessories – such as costume jewelry, a scarf, purse etc.
5. Accessories MAKE The Photo!
Accessories are for everyone!
Guys and boys can wear hats, belts and sun glasses.
Moms and girls can wear scarves, shawls, hats, jewelry, belts, purses and hair accessories.
As long as your accessories coordinate with your outfits, you really can’t go wrong.
You can also use accessories to tie outfit colors and themes together. For example, a cute dusk blue flower accessory in your little girl’s hair can tie into the Monaco blue polo shirt her little brother is wearing.
6. Do Not Wear Clothing with Logos or Text
Avoid logos and text at all costs!
Any recognizable branding or logos are very distracting in family pictures. Text is even worse – if there is text in a photo, viewers automatically try to read it.
Logos and corporate branding also tend to instantly date a photo – what is “in” right now will be seen as tacky and dated in just a few years.
7. No Shorts, Golf Shirts or Short Sleeve Dress Shirts for Men
I’m going to be brutally honest – most men wearing shorts just look silly.
Men wearing shorts also creates a problem – because most men wearing sandals also look silly.
The only men who look good (errrr great?) in shorts and sandals are young, fit and tanned. If your husband can’t quite pull off that look anymore – sorry – no shorts.
I should mention that boys in shorts are perfectly acceptable – as long as they are not bathing suit type shorts.
No golf shirts either. For some reason men seem to think they have to wear a golf shirt if they want to look semi-respectable outdoors in warm weather. Golf shirts are tacky and cliché – don’t let him wear one. Even a nice t-shirt is better than a golf shirt!
Finally – this should go without saying – but no short sleeve dress shirts. Casual button up shirts are great – but if he can wear a tie with it and it has short sleeves – no! no! no!
8. Wear Fabulous Heels and Sandals
Summer is the time to pull out your hottest heels and sexy sandals for your photos!
Don’t hold back – go with bold colors and high heels. Unless you’ll be on the beach for your summer family pictures, then a cute pair of sandals is probably a better bet than heels.
Little boys and little girls look totally cute and fabulous in sandals too – and there are tons of sandal options for kids available.
I am generally not a big fan of sandals on men, but they can add a nice casual touch.
One final point – do not let the guys wear running shoes! No exceptions! Simple black or brown casual shoes or stylish sandals are best. If they complain, pick them us some Sketchers – they’re almost running shoes – but way better looking.
9. Coordinate With Your Decor
One thing you really have to consider when choosing clothing colors is where you are planning on displaying your photos.
If you are going to put up a gorgeous canvas print collage in your great room, make sure your accent colors mix well with the colors you are wearing in your photos!
If you have a fun turquoise accent wall, add some pops of coordinating colors to your summer family pictures.
10. Have Fun!
Plan your summer family picture session around an outing that your whole family will enjoy.
Go to the beach, go for a walk in the woods, take a picnic to a meadow full of summer flowers.
Wear fun, practical clothing that you feel good in and you will look fabulous in your summer family pictures.
Let the kids play and be themselves while you are out.
If your kids are misbehaving and don’t want to sit still for pictures – bribe them with ice cream, then just go with it – and try to photograph them while they play.
Try very, very hard not to turn taking summer family pictures into a chore – because if you and your kids are not having fun, you will quite simply not get the fun, active, natural summer pictures that you want.
Let Us Know How Your Summer Family Pictures Turn Out!
Leave us a comment below and let us know what you did to create your summer family pictures. Tell us what summer picture clothing ideas you used!