What to wear & Where to shop | Cozy outfit ideas for your family portraits this fall

It’s not easy planning for family portraits. You worry about finding the right photographer, choosing the perfect date and a beautiful location. Then you stress about finding something to wear, and you cross your fingers and hope for the best when it comes to your baby’s mood and the weather.

From our very first phone call, I reassure families and I let them know that I will take care of every single one of those worries. We’ll choose a date & time together, and a rain date (just in case!). I’ll share a few of my favorite locations with you that I know are perfect at the time of day we’ve selected, and I’ll also help you find outfits for every single person in your family. You’re even able to wear outfits available at the studio for mamas and babies!

Then during your session I will use every trick up my sleeve to keep everyone in a happy, playful, and relaxed mood. In the end, the whole thing is a piece of cake and you don’t have to worry about a single thing — leave it all to me, and you just relax and enjoy a fun hour with your family!

But of course, the most frequently asked question I always get from families is “What do we all wear?” Read on for tips for cozy outfits for your family’s portrait session this fall.

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8 things to look for when planning your family’s outfits for a fall photo session


Layers

Layers add dimension and personality to any portrait, and they also help keep you warm in the fall when the temperature starts to drop! Cardigans, rolled cuffs peeking out from under a sweater, lightweight jackets, boots layered over leggings or jeans, a lightweight infinity scarf. These are all great ideas to add depth and color to your photos.

PRO TIP: Start with a base layer on the kids for warmth — this can be a onesie or shirt underneath their outfit, something that won’t show. Then add their outfit on top! Warm kids are happy kids!

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Rich Colors

Fall is such a vibrant season, and you can add vibrant pops of color to your outfits, too! Plum purple, mustard yellow, navy blue, maroon. These are all gorgeous colors that really pop against other neutrals in your outfits. Plan to use 2-3 colors (including a neutral like white, cream, gray) in everyone’s outfits, and think about what will really pop against the scenery!

PRO TIP: I recommend avoiding neon colors, black, and green.

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Plaid

Plaid looks amazing in the fall, and it evokes such a cozy feeling! Plus, if you choose one plaid shirt or dress you can use all of those colors as inspiration for the rest of the family’s outfits.

PRO TIP: I suggest only having one family member with a plaid shirt because two or more can look too busy.

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Patterns

Solids look great, but having everyone in solids is boring! Bring in a pattern with a dress or a blouse to add a little more interest and personality to your portraits. Just like with not putting everyone in plaid, don’t put EVERYONE in patterns either because they can clash and just look too busy, taking the focus away from everyone’s beautiful faces. Do a mix of patterns and solids.

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Boots

Boots always look amazing in photographs on moms and little girls! For the kids, think beyond their colorful sneakers or casual shoes and find something a little more stylish. You can find lots of cute options at Old Navy and Target in the kids sections, and Gap also has so many adorable ones, too!

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Cozy Knits

Sweater knits look amazing in fall family portraits, especially ones with a little texture. They just invite everyone to snuggle up together! Plan on layering a sweater or two on a few people in your family for the picture perfect look.

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Jeans

If you’re looking for a more casual look, jeans are perfect. A darker wash is the most flattering, and I’d suggest avoiding distressed jeans if they have gaping holes in the knees so that when you sit on the ground your kneecap isn’t showing through at an unflattering angle. We’ll do a few family portraits sitting on the grass and playing in the leaves, so I want you to be comfortable!

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Don’t be afraid to glam it up!

Ruffles, tulle, sequins, a frilly skirt. These all look AMAZING on moms and little girls, and I love when families want to dress up for their portraits! I was so excited when this mama wanted to wear a gold sequin skirt for her session, and it looked incredible against the golden foliage.

PRO TIP: Amazon has a skirt that has become wildly popular for mamas in portrait sessions. Search “chiffon maxi skirt” and you’ll find plenty of colors. The waist is adjustable, and the length changes based on the size. If you’re short, order a Small. If you’re tall, don’t be afraid of ordering the Large or XL for the length. There are tons of colors available, and these look best with a fitted top. Some moms pair it with a white lace long sleeve top (also available on Amazon!). Others like a white t-shirt. Others do a buttoned up chambray shirt tucked into the skirt. Others like a cardigan over a tank top.

Nicole Starr Photography | Saratoga Springs Family Photographer | Boston Family Photographer | Upstate NY Family Photographer | Family Photographer | Delmar NY family photographer | Loudonville NY family photographer | What to wear for fall photos, where to shop for fall family photo outfits, fall family outfits, family outfits, family photos, fall family photo session, what to wear, client experience

where to shop

For mom:
Lulus
Amazon
Rent the Runway (rentals)
J. Crew
Loft
Chicwish
Gap
Old Navy

For the kids:
Cat & Jack at Target
Old Navy
Janie & Jack
Crewcuts by J. Crew
Gap Kids/Baby Gap
Zara
H&M
Amazon
Rainey’s Closet (fancy rentals)
Lulu and Roo
Mini Boden
Hanna Andersson

For dads:
Dads have it easy. Layer on a button down shirt, sweater or vest, and jeans. They probably already have all of this in their closet, or they can choose neutrals or a plaid or patterned shirt from their favorite store to coordinate with the outfits selected for everyone else.


Pin this image or any from the post above for inspiration for your family’s fall outfits!

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About Nicole Starr Photography 

Nicole Starr specializes in newborn, baby & family photography and has been serving families in New York and Massachusetts since 2012.  She has a portrait studio in Saratoga Springs, NY for families in the Capital Region.  Nicole also works with families year round at her Attleboro, MA portrait studio, and on location May through October in Boston and on Cape Cod.  Nicole has a clean and classic style, and the studio is filled with neutrals and luxe fabrics.  We use very minimal props to keep the focus on your perfect little baby.  Our sessions are relaxed and fun, and we’ll enjoy an hour together (or up to 3 hours for a newborn session!) laughing, cuddling, and capturing authentic smiles and belly laughs with your little ones.  

Summer Lovin' - Adorable brother & sister photo session at the Hall of Springs in Saratoga Springs

The Hall of Springs is less than two miles from the studio, and it is one of my favorite spots for quick family portrait sessions! The landscaping is always gorgeous, and the marble floors bounce so much light back up onto the subjects. Plus, there are lots of different areas to enjoy for great variety in the session!

I had so much fun with Austin & Avery during their sibling session at the Hall of Springs in SPAC this summer. They were all smiles and giggles, and we captured so many adorable portraits of this duo!

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This one is my favorite! Such a cute little hug!

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I love those two little teeth peeking through!

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Inspired by this sweet sibling session? Pin this image or any from the post above!

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A Tiny Ballerina Session at Boston Ballet School

On a chilly winter morning, I was lucky enough to be invited to Stella's ballet studio to capture some moments of this tiny ballerina in action.  Stella takes beginner ballet classes at Boston Ballet School in Newton, and I always love seeing her mama's posts and videos on Instagram of her little dancer.  

I have always dreamt of doing a tiny ballerina's portrait session in a light-filled ballet studio, so when we started planning Stella's session together and I saw the studio with their gleaming floors, exposed brick walls, and huge windows with natural light streaming in, I was in photographer heaven!

Saratoga Springs Children's Photographer, Children's photographer, Boston children's photographer

One of the things that Stella's mama and I were most excited about with this session was knowing that this tiny dancer will be able to look back at these images in 15 years and see her innocence, curiosity, and budding dance skills from the very beginning.

Saratoga Springs Children's Photographer, Children's photographer, Boston children's photographer
Saratoga Springs Children's Photographer, Children's photographer, Boston children's photographer
Saratoga Springs NY Family Photographer Boston Family Photographer -9 copy.jpg

Stella LOVED running around the studio and showing me her ballet moves -- did you know that she calls her feet a "pizza slice" when moving them into position?!?!  We did a few quick little outfit changes for this tiny ballerina, and my favorites were with her little ballet slippers, simple leotard, and classic wrap sweater & leg warmers.  

Saratoga Springs Children's Photographer, Children's photographer, Boston children's photographer
Saratoga Springs Children's Photographer, Children's photographer, Boston children's photographer
Saratoga Springs Children's Photographer, Children's photographer, Boston children's photographer
Saratoga Springs Children's Photographer, Children's photographer, Boston children's photographer

These next two might be my favorite images from the entire session!  Those little lashes, those tiny toes, and that cute way she has to reach up above her head to touch the barre.  

These are the moments you want to remember when looking back at her early days in ballet lessons.  

These are the memories that will forever come to mind when you watch your ballerina at her recitals 5, 10, 15 years from now and one day much later when she brings her little ones to ballet classes of their own.

Saratoga Springs Children's Photographer, Children's photographer, Boston children's photographer
Saratoga Springs Children's Photographer, Children's photographer, Boston children's photographer

Would you love to plan a Tiny Ballerina session for your little dancer?  Email me at hello@nicolestarrphotography.com and let's plan the perfect session for your ballerina today!  Now booking in Saratoga Springs & Boston.

Holiday Session Sneak Peeks!

It's that time of year again... holiday portrait season!  We hosted four days of Limited Edition Holiday Portrait Sessions between our Saratoga Springs studio and our Boston-area studio.  So many families brought their sweet little ones to the studio for fun & playful sessions, and I love all of the sparkly and snowy memories that we created together.

boston and saratoga springs holiday photo session

I absolutely loved being able to offer a unique portrait experience to my clients this year with two gorgeous hand-painted backdrops from Heidi Hope's line of artist's backdrops.  I can't even begin to count how many families "ooooooh-ed" and "aaaaaah-ed" when they walked into our studio and saw the set ups for the very first time, or how many moms sent me excited messages before their sessions to plan the perfect outfits for their little ones.  

These were a huge hit with our clients in Boston & New York, and I am so happy to have been able to enhance their experience with these gorgeous set ups! Plus, you know how much I adore creating magical scenes to lend that element of whimsy to our photo sessions, so these were everything I wanted and more!

Tomorrow is the day our galleries go out and families will get to see all of their images for the very first time.  I'm so excited to share these magical holiday memories with everyone, and I can't wait to create their holiday cards & portrait gifts for their families to enjoy!

For now, enjoy our photo overload, and be on the lookout for many more gorgeous holiday memories on our Facebook and Instagram pages in the coming weeks!  Actually, you should head over to our social media pages right this very second to enjoy one MORE sneak peek that isn't shown in this blog post for each family!  

Did you miss out on joining us for our holiday sessions at the studio?  Not to worry!  

We still have a few more openings for holiday sessions in November and the first week of December, and we would love to invite your little ones into our Saratoga Springs photography studio for a playful session that will give you gorgeous images for your holiday cards and stunning artwork for your home.   Email us at hello@nicolestarrphotography.com and let's pick a date!