How to style your family for a Michigan photoshoot

Client Experience

Choosing what to wear to your photo shoot can be hard! But don't stress it; I'm here to help. I created this style guide to help you decide what to wear to your photo shoot with Becks Photography. 

Be Comfortable and Confident in Your Photo Shoot Outfit

The most important advice I can give you is to wear something you're comfortable and confident in. Confidence looks great on everyone! 

Secondly, dress up! Have the mindset of creating magical and whimsical photos. Flowy dresses, knit sweaters, linen shirts, overall on babies, etc. You should avoid outfits with logos, brands, or any wording. Also, keep in mind the location that you choose, you don't want to be wearing a tux in a local park. It's not every day that you have your photos taken. Wear a dress or your favorite nice sweater as your outfit for family pictures!

Please keep in mind that most of your family session will include playing with your children so please wear something you are comfortable playing in.

CHOOSING outfits with movement and texture

To create family photos that are full of love and emotion it's important to choose outfits that let you move, play, and love on your family. Wearing a suit or a tight dress will not only hinder your movement but also portray your family as tight and uncomfortable. A family session with me will involve a lot of movement and play with your children and it's critical that you choose outfits that allow you to do so.

Why You Should Skip Matching Outfits

When it comes to styling a group of people, coordinating is ALWAYS better than matching. You want your family photo outfits to compliment each other, not to match. Meaning, it's best if the members of your family are not in the same exactly outfits/colors, and rather different shades of the same color or colors that compliment each other.

The easiest way to do this with a group is to pick a few colors and have everyone wear various shades of one of those colors. If you are a family of 3-5 people: pick 2-3 colors along with 1-2 neutrals. If you are a family of 6-8 people: pick 3-4 colors along with 1-2 neutrals. If you are a family of 9+ people: choose 4-5 colors with 1-2 neutrals. Below, I will give you the best color combinations for the season.

Remember, we don't want to match but instead compliment each other by choosing different shades of the same colors and colors that compliment each other. To really elevate your photos, be sure to add a variety of textures and layers. No two family members should be in the same outfit or same exact color.

Skipping Patterns and wearing Textures

When it comes to patterns, it's best to stay away from them. Textures however are very nice! Patterns tend to steal your attention away from the subject where texture enhance the photo. A textured sweater, dress or jacket will add nice depth to your photos where patterns can be too busy. Overalls, sweaters, dresses, and jackets (sherpa, shackets, cardigans) are also a great way to add texture to your children's outfit. Layering is a great way to incorporate depth and textures and to also dress up a seemingly normal outfit.

the right way to INCORPORATE patterns

While it is a difficult task to incorporate a pattern into your outfits there is a correct way to do it. If you'd like to add patterns I suggest a few things.

1. Do not match patterns. Like stated earlier, your family should never match, instead their outfits should compliment each other.

2. Choose small patterns vs large prints. For example, a dress with lots of little flowers vs a dress with three large flowers. The exception to this is buffalo plaid and stripes. Large checkers and stripes are better than small.

3. Choose a pattern with minimal color variances. A cream dress with beige flowers vs a cream dress with rainbow flowers.

4. Stick to the rules of 1 person wearing a pattern per 4 people.

5. Some patterns like small stripes and checkers create moire which is very distracting in a photo.

Just remember, the more "busy" your outfits are, the more distracted the viewer is. Your family photos are about focusing on your family.

Choosing the Right Clothing Colors for Your Photo Shoot 

For a timeless look, I recommend you wear shades of beige, brown, and cream. If you'd like to wear colors, pastels and muted tones look the best. Shades yellow and green always look nice. If you're like me and like to play it safe, neutrals and muted earth tones are generally the best colors you can choose. If you are more expressive with your wardrobe, I highly recommend pastels, muted, or dusty colors. Bold, bright, and neon colors do not photograph well, I highly suggest avoiding them.

Get the Perfect Pictures by Dressing for the Seasons

Each season brings something new to the lens, whether that’s the stark winter backdrop or the vibrant shades of summer. To ensure you’re standing out in your family photo outfits, I recommend wearing colors that contrast with the scenery so you can be the focus instead of blending into your surroundings. Remember to pair the colors you choose with neutrals like cream and beige.


Winter: Beige, cream, dusty blue, maroon, muted green, dusty pink, and mauve

Spring: Beige, cream and pastels (green, yellow, pink or blue)

Summer: Beige, cream, muted greens, dusty blue, mauve, dusty pink and pastel yellows

Fall: Beige, cream, brown, burnt orange, dusty maroon, pastel yellow, and muted greens

In-Home: Muted colors that are complimentary to your home or neutrals are best

Christmas Tree Farm Minis: cream, beige, brown, dark red, muted or evergreen

Spring Studio Minis: neutrals, muted earth tones and pastels


In the winter months, you can wear more bold colors since there’s a lack of natural colors for outdoor locations. Remember to pair the colors you choose with neutrals like cream and beige. If it's a chilly day, consider wearing a cute scarf or a fun hat to accessorize. In the colder months you should always wear a warm base layer under your cute outfit and add layers with a nice jacket!


In spring, it's important to consider the colors around you. Most locations are either still very colorless or are just starting to get some greens. Pastel colors look nice when paired with a beige or a cream. Layering with a chunky cream sweater or a shacket looks wonderful in the spring.


In the summery months of May to early September, the landscape is booming with colors. It's important that your outfit doesn't take away from this. If you want to include prints, small floral prints and buffalo plaid can look nice if done correctly but solid pastels, creams, and neutrals are my favorite! Just remember that no two people should be in the exact same outfit and only 1 out of every 4 people should be wearing a pattern.


From late September to early November, Michigan turns a beautiful yellow, orange, and red. Soft browns, tan, cream, and beige look great in the fall. Colors found in nature, like muted greens, dusty maroon, and burnt orange, and pastel yellow also look very nice for your autumn photo shoot. If you'd like to include a pattern, buffalo plaid and flannels can look nice if the print isn't too "busy." In the colder months you should always wear a warm base layer under your cute outfit and add layers with a nice jacket!


If you have booked an in-home session it is best not to match the tones in your home but to choose muted colors that compliment your decor. You do NOT want to choose the same tones as your walls or couch but you could wear a darker or lighter tone of the same color. If your home is very neutral, it's best not to wear neutrals. If you home is very colorful, it's best to wear neutrals. For example, my home is mainly tans, blacks, and grays with a slight splash of sage green. It would be best for us to avoid neutrals or we would blend in with our home, instead we would wear different tones of sage green. Another example-if your home has colorful 70's decor, wear neutral colors with fun textures. Remember, solid colors in muted tones are best, try to avoid patterns and incorporate textures.


For my November minis at Addison Oaks Tree Farm I highly suggest wearing something festive BUT also timeless. Please leave the Christmas sweaters at home and instead get dressed up in your best "Christmas at Grandmas or Sunday best" outfit. Shades of cream, beige, brown, dark red, and evergreen will look best with the background at Addison Oaks. Try to incorporate different textures and skip patterns altogether. Think warm and cozy chunky sweaters with jeans or khakis for the guys and warm textured dresses for the ladies. These photos will not include any "Christmas props" just the natural background at the Christmas Tree Farm. In the colder months you should always wear a warm base layer under your cute outfit and add layers with a nice jacket!

Spring outfits for spring studio minis

For my April studio minis at LMP collective in Pontiac it's important that you coordinate with the decor while also choosing outfits that you love. The walls are white, there will be a wooden bench, and boxes of flowers (whites, greens, pastels). I highly suggest wearing whimsical, flowy outfits. Think: boho dresses, linen shirts, khakis, cardigans, flowy long dresses, etc. Since the colors of my set up will be neutral you can wear colors if you'd like but neutrals tend to photograph best! If you would like to incorporate colors, muted earth tones and pastels will look nice.


First things first, please make sure that you are wearing the correct undergarmets for your outfits. I suggest nude colors and strapless if necessary. I cannot edit out straps and lines so please plan accordingly. On to the fun stuff, let's talk about your hair and make-up! Again, the best advice I can give you is to be you, and be comfortable. Now I'm not talking about laying on your couch after a long day comfortable, I'm talking about so confident that you're radiating, comfortable! Think about what how you'd do your hair and make up to attend a wedding, go to Christmas dinner. You want to look your best but it's not the day to try a new hairstyle or make up trend. Some tips for hair and make up...

  • natural colored and looking make up looks best
  • typically women look best with their hair down
  • less is more
  • avoid skinny heals
  • if this is a maternity/newborn session, keep in mind that you may be a tad "bustier" than your normally are

Please keep in mind that in you choose a nature setting, you will be in nature. There may be bugs, dirt, animals, goose poop, etc. We will also be taking photos standing on grass and gravel, which will make it difficult to walk in heals.


If you are planning a dress for your little girl consider a diaper cover or skin tight shorts for her to wear under the dress. A lot of my poses for families include sitting and play. This extra step will insure that her diaper/underwear remain private.


  • If you wear glasses, there may be a glare, especially if they are not the anti-glare glass
  • Iron or steam your clothes
  • Remember to brush your teeth
  • Put on the nice jewelry. Remove your everyday Apple Watch and rubber ring and put on your nice watch and gold wedding ring
  • Remove everything from your pockets
  • Do not wear a hair tie on your wrist before your session

In short...

  • Wear something you're confident in
  • Compliment each other, do not match
  • Choose outfits that aren't too "busy"
  • When in doubt, choose a nice outfit in beige, cream or brown

Please fill out the form that I sent you and I will create a custom outfit guide for you

Color Palettes

color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot
color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot
color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot
color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot
color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot
color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot
color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot
color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot
color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot
color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot
color palettes to help your family decide what to wear to a photoshoot

clothing inspiration

family of four wearing tan, cream and white outfits in front of the van hoses farm in Rochester michigan
family of five holding hands and walking down a field in October wear browns, creams and burnt orange
large family with cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents laughing together wearing blues, tans, maroon and cream
family of four wearing tans and beiges and playing together at Douglas Evans nature preserve
family of four wearing cream, tan, and pastels green and blue on the beach
family of five wearing traditional fall colors and smiling for a photo
family of three wearing beige, cream and black outfits in front of their Christmas tree
family of three in cream, white and beige posing for a sunrise photo at cranberry lake park
large family dressed in pastel colors and linen outfits in the summer
family of three sitting on a blanket at troy farm park wearing brown, tan and beige
family of four walking through a tan field of grasses in autumn
family dress in blue, tan and white smiling for a photo in Oakland county
family dressed in white and pastel pink playing on a farm
family of four wearing tans and blues posing for a photo in beverly hills michigan
family photos wearing greens, creams and blues
family of three wearing black, white and tan for family photos
family of four wearing creams, green and denim for a family photo
sisters wearing white and blue dresses
large family dressed in white beige and pink pose for a photo


Please fill out this contact form, being as detailed as you can in the message section, and I will email you back as soon as possible.