What to wear, what to wear….

Every session I am asked by my clients “what should my kids wear?”  Over time I’ve developed a nice little set of rules and I thought I’d share them with the rest of you. These are great things to keep in mind when you’ll be photographed, even if you’re just taking your own snaps.

Little ones are the easiest of the bunch, but they pose their own special challenges. Since spring is such a great time for a photo session, especially here in Sonoma County, I thought we’d start with the little kids.

1. Comfort is key! We all like to be comfortable, and little kids are no exception. Do not try to dress your little one in a stiff, starched, ruffly, dress if she hates it. All we’ll get is a grumpy kid in a cute outfit. If you have your heart set on a special dress or outfit, let them try it out a few times before photo day.

2. Think timeless. 20, 30 years down the line, are you really going to want that Dora shirt in the photos?  No logos, no characters, no overly bold patterns, please! I’m a huge fan of classic outfits. You really can’t go wrong with a little pair of jeans and a t-shirt, or a simple sundress. Overalls on babies? Adorable. Of course you want to capture their personalities, and get some modern trendy outfits in the shots… but the focus should be your kiddo, not the clothes.

3. Be loose.  I’m going to have the kids sitting on the grass and running around. We’re going to be playing a lot. They are also kids… and well, they can get messy. Don’t slick down the hair and get the super tight pigtails going. We really want them to be comfortable and look how they are. We’re capturing their personalities as much as their faces.

4. Coordinate, don’t match.  I like to get siblings in coordinating colors palettes. Wearing all white might sound good, but each child will get lost in the photo. (not to mention dirty!) I like to think about the location we’ll be photographing in and choose a color theme. Vineyard in the fall? Jewel tones!  Orchard in the spring? Bright colors!

5. Simplicity rules. Don’t over do it.  A hair bow is ok, but a hair bow and little earrings and a fluffy pettiskirt and a matching purse? Too much.  Again, we want the kids to shine, not be overpowered by all the accessories.

6. Throw out the rules.  With that being said… you’ve got to go with your personality. If your little guy is realllly into trains? Maybe he’s going to be wearing that conductor hat for a few photos.  Is your daughter living in princess town? Well, I know how to photograph that fair maiden. I allow for a few outfit changes, so we’re not going to be stuck with one look – let’s be flexible and just work together to capture those cute little faces.


For clothing inspiration I love to look at catalogs like j.crew (check out their “looks we love” ) and Etsy is always a great spot for adorable unique kid fashions. I also found this great roundup of spring clothing from a few years back on MightyJunior. Locally, Little Launch has a great selection of new and vintage kid clothes at really great prices.

Here’s my own little example of a cute outfit that can still be function and playful. Or maybe it’s just an excuse for a cute baby picture. 😀

Next week I’ll talk more about dressing for family photos!



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I don't post a lot, but when I do, it's pretty good.


Michelle Feileacan Photography