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What to Wear During a Family Photography Photo Shoot

Choosing the right attire for a family photo shoot is more than just picking outfits off the rack. It’s an opportunity to express your family’s unique style and create memories that will be treasured for generations. Whether you’re planning an outdoor session amid the rolling vineyards of Sonoma County or a cozy indoor shoot, outfit coordination is key. In this blog post, I will reveal essential tips on selecting the perfect ensembles to ensure your family looks coordinated and comfortable—all while capturing the magic through the lens of esteemed Sonoma County photographer, Diana Jex (that's me!).

a motherhood family photo session on top of Mt. Tamalpais in Marin. A mother and her four daughters are all dressed in various versions of ivory and cream outfits. They are standing at the top of a mountain looking towards the sun. The mountain is rocky and dry. The sky is blue behind them.

The Power of Color Coordination

When it comes to family photos, harmonious color palettes create a visually pleasing synergy that enhances the group’s connectivity. Opt for complementary colors or choose a monochromatic scheme with different hues and tones. Imagine the rustic backdrop of California’s scenic vistas paired with soft creams, muted blues, or warm terracotta. By coordinating colors, you manage to look united without the uniformity of identical outfits.

A mother is cuddled by her three kids while sitting on a rock at the beach in Big Sur. It is a windy day and the photo is taken during sunset, with gorgeous colors and clouds behind them. They are snuggled together and mom has a big smile on her face.

Timeless Comfort

Family photo shoots are about capturing moments of genuine interaction and emotion. Clothes that are comfortable and reflect your personality contribute to natural, relaxed expressions. I recommend timeless pieces like classic denim, breezy cotton dresses, or crisp linen shirts that not only photograph well but also allow for mobility and ease.

Drone photo of a family of four taken at Dillon Beach in Bodega Bay. They are all walking hand in hand down the coast line while the water touches the tips of their feet. Their dog is behind them. Taken on a cloudy day during sunset.

Simplicity is Key

While it might be tempting to don your latest fashion-forward apparel with bold logos or neon colors, simplicity goes a long way in family portraits. Neutral tones and subtle patterns tend to work best, letting your family’s faces take center stage. Bright or overly busy prints can distract from the inherent beauty of your family's bond.

Beautiful photo of a family of five taken in the desert of Sedona, Arizona. Their young daughter wears a jewel tone blue dress and twirls in front of her family. The family is behind her and they are are snuggled together. Mom holds her son and leans into her husband. Taken during sunset in Spring.

Seasonal and Location Considerations

In Sonoma County, the backdrop for your family photo session might be a lush vineyard or a serene beach. Dress appropriately for the setting and season. For chillier months, rich textures and layers not only keep you warm but also add visual interest to your photos. In warmer seasons, breathable fabrics and lighter tones resonate with Sonoma’s aesthetic. Trust my deep understanding of local scenery to guide your outfit choices for the best results.

Portrait of a young girl lying down in a field of wildflowers at Mt. Burdell, Novato in Marin County.

Layers and Accessories

The right accessories can add personality to your photos without overwhelming the shot. Think a dapper fedora for dad, an elegant wide-brimmed hat for mom, or playful bow ties for the boys. Scarves, belts, and simple jewelry can also complement outfits and help define your family’s style. Diana Jex advocates for layers and accessories that align with her photographic vision to encapsulate your family’s essence.

Mother and daughter portrait. Mom is holding her toddler daughter and they have their forheads resting together. Taken in the Fall during sunset at Helen Putnam regional park in Petaluma.

Personalized Advice from me, Diana Jex!

Every family is unique, and so should be their photo shoot attire. If choosing outfits seems daunting, reach out to me. My expertise as a Sonoma County family photographer equips me to offer individualized suggestions that will ensure your family’s attire complements the beautiful landscapes and my elegant photography style.

Portrait of a mother holding her baby son while gazing at the sunset in Crane Creek Regional Park in Santa Rosa. Beautiful clouds of pink and blue are behind her as she stands in an open field of green grass.

Inspiring Visuals for the Perfect Look

To help visualize these tips, I've prepared some mood boards and examples:

Sonoma Warmth: A selection of images that echo the county’s earthy tones, inspiring outfits that fit the golden ambiance of a vineyard at sunset.


Coordinated Looks: Visual examples demonstrate how to achieve a family look that’s coordinated but authentic, with just the right mix of colors and patterns.


Comfort in Style: Photographs of families looking effortlessly chic and comfortable in natural fibers that echo Sonoma's laid-back yet polished vibe.


Layered Elegance: Illustrations showing clever accessorizing and the impactful use of layers that build depth but maintain the focus on your family.


Your Next Steps

A family photo shoot is a beautiful way to capture the essence of your loved ones in a moment in time. With comfortable, coordinated outfits that reflect your personal style, you're poised for a photography experience that is both enjoyable and yields stunning results.


If you’re ready to create visual heirlooms with Diana Jex, a renowned Sonoma County photographer who specializes in capturing the spirit of families, then Book Your Sonoma County Family Photo Shoot Today. Diana’s approach to photography ensures that each shoot is personalized, relaxed, and, most of all, fun for the entire family.


I hope you’re inspired by these tips and look forward to seeing the beautiful moments I will capture for your family. Remember, what you wear is an integral part of the story your family photo tells, so choose wisely, comfortably, and stylishly.


Portrait of Diana Jex a family, maternity and newborn photographer in Santa Rosa. She is holding both of her cameras and standing in front of a redwood tree.



Diana Jex specializes in portrait photography including
maternity photography, newborn photography, children and family photography. Diana Jex Photography primarily serves families located in Sonoma County, Marin County and Napa County : Petaluma, Santa Rosa, Novato, Marin, San Rafael, Windsor, Rohnert Park, Napa, Cotati, Sonoma and other surrounding areas.

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