top of page
  • Writer's picturePurple Kite Photography


"What should I wear for my outdoor family photoshoot?"

This is a question I get asked such a lot when families book me for their outdoor photo sessions, so I've put together this handy guide to help you get the most fantastic family photos that you will treasure.

Hertfordshire family photography - 4 children sitting in long grasses with Autumnal foliage behind them
Sarah Whyte, photographer at Purple Kite Photography sitting on a bridge with her camera

Hi, I'm Sarah!

A Hertford based family photographer.

My favourite setting for family photos is outdoors. Children feel more comfortable and relaxed when they can play, and I love capturing families having fun together.

We are very fortunate that there are plenty of beautiful settings in Hertfordshire to explore and make new memories in!


So you've finally got round to booking a family photoshoot to update your picture frames, but what on earth should you all wear?

While making new memories together and capturing natural interactions is by far the most important element of your family photoshoot, what you wear can really elevate the images and make some stunning wall-worthy portraits.

Here are my 4 top tips to consider when choosing your outfits.

#1 Dress seasonally

If you've booked an Autumn shoot, choose chunky jumpers, boots, maybe woolly hats and scarves. A variety of textures always make for more interesting images. (and make sure that everyone is warm enough! Cold kids are grumpy kids!) Warm, rich tones look fantastic with the natural shades of Autumn. Think browns and greens, rust, mustard yellow, deep reds and oranges.

Bluebell shoots are some of my most popular sessions. The weather can be variable at that time of year, so again be sure you're dressed for the weather. As there is a lot of colour in the images already, keeping clothing colours plain and neutral can really make the bluebells pop.

Hertfordshire family photography - Blonde girls in denim jackets hugging on a path running through a sea of bluebells

#2 Keep patterns to a minimum

Think about how you look as a group. You don't have to wear matching outfits or all wear denim jeans and white t-shirts (though you can if you want to!), but do choose colours that work in harmony with each other.

If one of you has a patterned outfit that you love, then please wear it, but try and ensure that the rest of the group stick to solid colours that tone in with the patterned outfit. If everyone wears mis-matched patterned clothing it will look too busy and will overwhelm the photo. When we look back at the images we want the focus to be on your faces - alive with natural expressions and the joy of the day, not what you're wearing!

Hertfordshire family photography - 3 boys in white shirts and jeans jumping for joy in a rustic garden

#3 Avoid sportswear, big logos or branded clothing

Your photos will look so much smarter if you keep logos or branding to a minimum and avoid wearing sportswear or football strips. I suggest opting for timeless plain colours so the eye is drawn to faces rather than large text or distracting logos.

Remember to think about footwear too! You might put together the most beautiful colour palette but then spoil the look with some garish pink trainers. If you do choose trainers, make sure they're clean and ideally neutral or dark colours, rather than bright sports trainers, emblazoned with branding.

Hertfordshire family photography - Woodland family image of dad and toddler touching mum's pregnant tummy

#4 Be comfortable

This may sound obvious, but it's important to be comfortable during your shoot. Ensure clothing fits well so you're not tempted to fiddle with it throughout the shoot.

Children will perform much better if they're happy in what they're wearing, so make sure their clothing isn't too fussy or restrictive. If you've chosen a woodland setting, your kids will want to explore so please don't put them in an expensive party dress that you will worry about them ruining.

Dress for the weather!

Make sure everyone is warm enough by dressing appropriately in cooler months. You may not want big winter coats in your photos, but you can still bring them along to the shoot and leave them to one side when posing for group shots. Better still, layer up, finishing with a chunky jumper and maybe woolly hats and scarves too.

Wear comfortable shoes!

Many of the Hertfordshire locations I use for outdoor photography sessions involve a bit of walking, often over uneven ground, through woodland or grassy fields.

Hertfordshire family photography - Brunette girl in floral yellow dress climbing a tree

"Sarah was very professional with her approach. She took her time to bring us to some beautiful places in order for her to take the best possible pictures of us. She was very patient with both of my children. We managed to get gorgeous family photographs. I would highly recommend Purple Kite Photography and will use it again in the near future. Thank you."



Indoor lifestyle shoots

All of the above advice can also be used for indoor shoots. Choose colours that work well together and think about toning in with any strong colours in your décor too.


"We were delighted with the lovely photos you took. They were just what we wanted, really natural and in a perfect setting too.. Your patience and positivity helped all the children to relax. To get them all smiling and facing the camera at the same time is quite an art! Our frames are ready to be updated with our lovely new prints. Thank you so much."




bottom of page