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  • Laura Purdy

What to Wear for Fall Photos

Looking through my Fall Family sessions from last year, honestly, everyone did such an amazing job putting together photo worthy wardrobe. This was mostly luck on my part. In the past, I have generally only given wardrobe direction when asked. I've come to realize that this is a part of my job, and I should at least be offering up some general information, even when not directly asked. I've photographed a lot of families, and while I'm not a fashion expert, I've developed a pretty good eye for this, and know that some things just tend to work better in photos than others.

So here it goes with my personal wardrobe advice for Fall family shoots, and some examples of what works well. No piece of wardrobe advice applies 100% of the time, but if you have doubts and want a second opinion on your choices, I'm happy to give pointers.

Also, as a disclaimer, I struggle to dress my own family of 5 for photos, but when I see the final product of any shoot, I know what looks right and what doesn't work so well. So sending me wardrobe photos beforehand never hurts!

Some tips:

1) I get excited about all the seasons. Pick seasonally appropriate clothing and colours and it will look amazing with the Fall leaves. Mustard and burgundy are great for fall. If you want to try something different, hunter green would be a nice contrast against the trees. A dark red is great for a pop of colour. I also love a rusty pink for Fall. Burnt orange is great too. Also, I love neutrals for any season... Think cream, brown, and grey. If you plan on hanging your photos in your home, the colours you choose might want to coordinate with your decor. Generally, I'd save pastels for Spring or Summer Beach session.

2) Choose cream/ivory over pure white. This is a personal opinion, but I think it has merit to it. Ivory compliments the colour of a person's smile better than pure white. Pure white can also take on colour casts of surrounding colours (like green from the trees).

3) Avoid neon colours. Neon just doesn't photograph well. If you love colour, a pop of bold colour can look great, I'd just avoid neon tones.

4) Avoid logos and character clothing. These generally distract away from the subject. Again, this is just a general suggestion. I did Christmas photos one year of my girls in vintage character shirts and I loved it, but that was the vibe I was going for so it achieved that goal.

(I know sometimes teenagers insist on wearing shirts with logos, or toddlers insist on a character shirt. Better to pick your battles and work it into your shoot than not have them in the photos, right?)

5) Avoid multiple patterns. Sometimes it works. I think if a pattern is subtle, two prints can be great (see images below). In general, multiple patterns is overwhelming and distracts away from the subject. I highly recommend one or two patterns in the group, and the rest solids.

6) Remember your feet! I tend to like neutral footwear as it looks great and footwear isn't really the focus of the photos so you don't want something that's going to draw too much attention towards your feet.

7) Say no to baseball hats...unless it's a baseball session.

8) Pick what YOU like. Ultimately, these are YOUR photos. If you love your wardrobe picks, than you'll be more likely to love your photos.

These are just general guidelines and I've seen several clients rock wardrobe that didn't fit with my typical wardrobe advise.

And here are just a few great examples from last Fall for inspiration.

I'm limiting this to a small number of images to keep the post short.

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