Originally posted October 2012: I am so excited to welcome a guest-poster to the Belle Images blog today with some hot tips on what to wear for your family photos- my most asked question!

Hi there, my name is B and I write a blog called bbeingcool. My mission in life is to work out what it means to be cool and then BE cool before I need to wear sensible shoes and elasticised pants. I write about food, fashion, home and life; all things that mean a lot to me and inspire me everyday.

I love to write about fashion, I love clothes and how they show someone’s personality and part of their story. I love to use a website called Polyvore to put together little sets of clothes that tell a bit of a story or answer a question. Angela asked if I could put together some outfits for a ‘Spring Family Photo Shoot’. I decided to take her up on the challenge and have put together four sets of outfits.

Before we get on with the talking about clothes, here are some tips on choosing what to wear for your photo shoot:

1. Be Comfortable – if you can’t walk, sit or bend over in the outfit you have chosen, reconsider what you are wearing.

2. Be Yourself – wear clothes that bring out your personality. I would even suggest wearing things you already have.

3. Be Matching but not Clones – you want your family to look like a ‘pack’ but you still want to bring out the individual personalities. Try to ensure that each child’s outfit matches the parents and that the parents are keeping with the theme.

4. Don’t be tooooooooo trendy – avoid ruffles, lace, neon colours, florals, faded denim, short shorts, too much cleavage etc. These photos will hopefully end up on your wall for years to come, you don’t want to cringe in shame in two year’s time! Go for classic styling, neutral, black or grey tones. If you want to wear colour, use blocks of it {see the lookbook on colour below}.

5. Be Prepared – talk to your children in the days leading up to the photo shoot. Explain the behaviours you expect, remind them that they will have fun and make it all sound like a really fun family outing. On the day, pack some snacks, drinks and a ball.

6. Be Listening – the photographer knows how to get the best out of the light and the setting and the angles. Trust that he or she will have thought through some shots and poses, just roll with it. {If you have some suggestions, you should talk to them, I am sure that they would love your suggestions!}

Just as a final note: if you are not sure where to start with choosing outfits for your family photo shoot, I think you should start with the mother’s outfit and build from there. If the mother is comfortable and feels fabulous, she will then be able to put together outfits for the rest of her pack.

Right… let’s get down to some look books…

What To Wear To A Spring Family Photo Shoot?

I love this set! I think denim is a great choice for a family photo shoot; it is relaxed, comfortable and it is fun. All the denim is dark {mostly} untreated and quite classic cuts. I have given each member of the family some black and white and I have included some spots for fun and some red for a bit of colour.

Where these outfits could take you? This would be great for a city shoot. Think alley way, cafe, a lobby of the cinema or cool hotel.

What to wear to a spring family photo shoot

If your family loves picnics you might like to have a family picnic photo shoot. This set again uses some denim and also stripes. You will notice that the little boy and the dad are both wearing stripes? Well, they are very different stripes but in the same kinds of colours. When choosing outfits, think of how each family member will look when photographed with another. If dad and son are photographed together, they will both be in striped polo shirts {heart pop} but they will not be too clashing or matchy matchy.

I love that the mum’s scarf is striped using spots and pics up the colours from the son’s polo shirt. The daughter’s outfits match everyone elses’. So… that is a set – using stripes and some splashes of teal.

Where these outfits could take you? In a pretty park, on a rug, with a picnic. Think of children running through grass, parents clinking glasses, butterflies, bubbles etc. A relaxed fun family shoot.

What To Wear to a Spring Family Photo Shoot

Remember how in the rules above I mentioned not wearing anything too trendy? Well, it is important to look kind of timeless. These neutral outfits will not look outdated in 5 years’ time, they are classic yet current at the same time. This set is a little dressier than the first two, and no denim in sight. Everyone matches each other without all looking the same. The mum and daughter will look gorgeous together as would the daughter and the son.

Where these outfits could take you? I think this set would lend itself to a country garden or scenic spot. Think tall grass or rustic fence. Think horses in the fields or a historic house.

What to wear for a spring family photo shoot? Bright Colours

I would not advise wearing too much colour for a family photo shoot, for the simple reason that it dates. As much as you are rocking that neon necklace in 2012, it will be something you hide away in a year’s time. BUT, I understand that you may want to look happy and joyous and wear bright colours, so here are my suggestions… Wear solid blocks of colour, as opposed to heavily patterned colours. Avoid too many logos, plain is best.

Where these outfits could take you? I am thinking somewhere where you would be having lots of fun… like the beach, or a sideshow or a theme park. This could also work in a park or a garden.

A few months ago, we had a the privilege of having Angela take our family photos. I did think long and hard about what we were wearing and I did take my own advice. Our photos were taken in Winter, and I had us all wearing black, greys and denim. I think it worked. We all match, but we are not clones. We were all comfortable and we all had lots of fun!

B Being Cool

I hope that this collection of lookbooks has helped you work out what to wear for a spring family photo shoot.

Thanks for having me Angela! I love your work!

To find out more about photo sessions with Angela, click here.