What to Wear for Fall Family Photos in Salem OR

As a newborn and family photographer, I’ve found that fall is THE most popular season for taking family photos. The colors of the leaves change to vibrant yellow and fiery orange, the air is crisp and cool, and the natural light is golden and overcast. It makes the perfect backdrop for a photoshoot.

I’m asked the same question every year:

What to wear for fall family photos in Salem OR?

Should you match? What styles? What about colors – should they be bright, bold, muted, or monochromatic?

When you have a group of more than two people, it can be challenging to figure out what everyone should wear – especially when there are kids in the mix. To help make the process easier, here are my suggestions for how to put your family’s fall photo outfits together.

First, I’m going to start with what not to wear for fall family photos in Salem OR

  1. Don’t leave figuring out what to wear until the last minute. Instead, start working on what to wear as soon as you book your session, typically three to four months in advance. You may not think you need that much time, but keep in mind that you’re going to have to find outfits for your whole family. You may have to visit several stores and shop around for a while until you find the perfect clothes to fit your vision and budget. The last thing you want to do is rush around during the week prior or run into an item not being able to ship in time for our session.
  2. Don’t match. In most cases, photos where the entire family is wearing all matching clothes, are one-note and not very interesting. That’s especially the case if not everyone in your family has the same body type. No one outfit is going to look good on every single person in your family. There is one exception, though, and that’s when you have siblings that are around the same age or are twins. In that case, matching outfits can be an adorable option, as seen in the D family photos.
  3. Don’t dress too formally. The best family photos are those where you and the kids can move around and have fun. Choose tasteful outfits that look nice and feel casual at the same time. Comfort is key.

Here’s what you should do when planning what to wear for fall family photos in Salem OR

  1. Start with what Mom will wear first. For most family photoshoots, Mom picks the outfits for herself, her partner, and the kids. Moms usually struggle the most with what to wear themselves, so conquer this most challenging outfit first. Then work everyone else’s clothes around what she is going to wear.
  2. Coordinate and complement. You’ll see in the J Family photos that nobody matches precisely, but they coordinate and complement one another by wearing similar colors: olive green, mustard yellow, and ivory. This makes the family look cohesive, yet every individual is still distinct. The same goes for the W Family, who are wearing a mixture of neutral and dark colors, including off-white, brown, beige, and charcoal. These tones complement each other despite being represented differently in each outfit.
  3. Go with one of these two color schemes: neutral or jewel tones. Jewel tones include dark shades of green, purple, blue, and red. Darker colors look beautiful in the fall, as they show up better against the natural colors and dimmer lighting this season.
  4. Moms, consider having your hair and makeup done by a professional. Taking family photos can be stressful, from picking out outfits to getting everyone ready and keeping the kids’ attention at the shoot. If you hire a professional to do your hair and makeup beforehand, that’s one less thing you have to worry about doing yourself. One of my favorite recommendations for hair and makeup here in Salem is Amie at Allelu Beauty.
  5. Try shopping at these stores. Retailers like Nordstrom, ZARA, H&M, Anthropologie, GAP, Banana Republic, J. Crew, Madewell, or Janie & Jack offer options for the whole family that are trendy, stylish, good quality, and strike a nice balance between casual and formal.

Another thing you’ll want to keep in mind when picking what to wear for fall family photos in Salem OR is the weather on the day of the shoot. Average fall temperatures in Salem can range from the 50s to 70s. If the day is going to be cold, that may affect how many layers you decide to dress your kids in. It’s a good idea to have sweaters on hand if you need to add them to make everyone comfortable on an especially cold day.

The most important thing is to make sure everyone is comfortable in their clothes and pleased with their look. The best family pictures are where everyone is having a great time!

See what other families have worn for their fall family photos in Salem, OR, below.

What to wear for fall family photos in Salem OR
W Family
What to wear for fall family photos in Salem OR
D Family
J Family
S Family

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