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What to Wear for Family Holiday Photos


Hi! I’m name is Corey Best and I’m the owner of Best part photography. Kristin is one of my favorite clients and she asked if I would write a little diddy with tips on picking what to wear for family holiday photos this year. Of course I’m honored. I will leave the actual outfit suggestions to the Bon Bon Rose Girls, since they are pros, but below are some things to keep in mind as you decide what to wear for this year’s pictures.

Rule #1: Mom picks her outfit first.

I’m a mom. And I know how hard it is to shop for myself. I either hate everything in every single store I visit or I get distracted by the cute kids matching ensembles in the kids clothing store window and end up with a thousand things for my kids and another pair of yoga pants for myself. Find something you love first. If you feel good in what you’re wearing, you will like the way you look in the pictures. If you aren’t crazy about your outfit, it will show in the pictures. So for once, shop for yourself first (at the store or in your closet)!

Rule #2: Comfort.

Whatever you decide on for yourself and your family need to be outfits everyone is comfortable wearing. Most often the best family photos are sitting down on a blanket in the grass where everyone is laughing and relaxing. Everyone needs to be able to move around, sit down, and relax. I would avoid stilettos, short skirts (princess underwear is tough to photoshop out), and ‘stiff’ outfits.


Rule #3: Layers, Textures, Accessories…

Photos are made more interesting and pleasing to the eye when you add layers, textures and accessories. A statement necklace on Mom, a fabulous bow or headband on a little girl, and even a cute tie on your little guy goes a really long way in making photos look fab. Throwing a cami under a cute v-neck shirt and adding a vest for some layers makes an outfit look complete. Don’t be afraid to roll up Dad’s sleeves or throw some boots and leggings into the outfit mix either. Anything you can do to give an outfit a little more depth is a great idea.

Rule #4: Shoes…

Unless your outfits are ‘beach inspired’ I would avoid flip flops. And Rule #2 applies to your shoe choice as well. Make sure whatever shoes everyone ends up in, are comfortable. If a kiddo is messing with their shoes the whole shoot it’s going to be a rough shoot.

Rule #5: Get in the picture.

This is the most important rule in my opinion. You are paying someone to take pictures of your family. Chances are, this isn’t something you do every month. You probably only do it once a year. Get in the picture. I can’t tell you how many people say to me “Oh, we’ll just do the kids this year, I hate pictures” or “It’s just the kids this year, the husband hates having pictures taken.” Here’s the thing. In 10 years. In 20 years. In 50 years. Your kids are going to want to see family photos. And they want to see their parents in those photos with them. Think about how many pictures you were in with your family this year.

I would bet you took most of the photos of everyone this year and are only in a select few blurry ones shot from the camera on your iPhone. Decades from now, no one is going to notice if you were 10 pounds heavier than you wanted to be or if someone’s hair didn’t look just right. They WILL notice that you were together. And happy. And enjoying the moment. It’s about moments. Moments you can hold on to. Moments your kids will hold onto someday. This year, get in the picture (and tell Dad to suck it up, it’s only once a year).

what to wear in family holiday photos

All photos via Best part photography.


  1. Heather says

    I love your rule of letting mom pick her outfit first! I love the last picture where the kids are laughing! That’s so perfectly candid! Its awesome!

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