What to Wear for Summer Photos in Boston

Oh hey there! It’s been a minute and I can’t believe we’re already halfway through July. That means us Boston family photographers are well into busy season! You might remember that back in early spring, I blogged some tips for planning spring photo session outfits. The feedback from clients was so positive that I decided it would be helpful for me to do this for each season. It probably would have been wise of me to whip up this blog post BEFORE summer actually got started, but here we are. Many of the tips I have for summer aren’t much different from those I had for spring, but there are a few differences outlined below!

Color, Color, Color

If you read my spring post, you may recall that I suggested light neutrals like ivory, oatmeal, and beige, as well as mauve and blush. These colors also work well in the summer, but there are some others you might consider in this season, too! Rust orange and a deep, rich yellow look AMAZING in a field of tall green grass. You can also consider certain shades of blue for a summer session. Much like spring, I STRONGLY suggest avoiding green as you will camouflage with your surroundings anywhere with grass. I also recommend avoiding really bright, bold colors such as magenta, bright red, and royal blue. These can cast colors on skin and look distracting. Speaking of distracting, avoid shirts with words or graphics! Patterns, however, can add visual interest to your images. I’d suggest no more than two people wear them though and make sure they don’t clash.


Do I Have to Wear a Dress?

As I said in the spring, there’s a lot to love about wearing a dress for family photos. For starters, long, loose dresses look flattering on most body types from all angles. There are also practical reasons to consider one. Loose-fitting dresses allow you to be active with your kids during our session. I also always tell people that long dresses can give your hand “a job,”  and I may ask you to hold one side of it for a few photos. Lastly, they are better than short dresses for seated photos and windy days. There’s nothing worse than a gust of wind sweeping through and lifting that dress right up! Some of the dresses in this post came from Free People, Baltic Born, and Amazon. There are certainly great options at all price points!

That said, you don’t HAVE to wear a dress. A jumpsuit totally works, as do comfy linen pants and a cute top. Feeling a little brave and off-beat? Consider a pair of overalls like this mom did! She looked absolutely ADORABLE and so many people commented on these images when I first shared them. Or if you’re really just a jeans person, we can make that work with a nice shirt. Just make sure the jeans have some good stretch in them!

What About the Kids?

I love dresses for girls as much as I love them for moms, BUT here’s a little caveat- you have to put shorts (or bloomers) on underneath! My sessions are action-packed and dresses often ride up, and you probably don’t want a million shots of your little one’s undies! If you want to avoid this issue altogether, you could consider a romper, jumper, or overalls, which I also love for boys. The best part about these three options is that if it’s a really hot day, you can just skip a shirt underneath. If it’s more comfortable out, go for a short-sleeve shirt. And speaking of shirts, collars sometimes get bunched or flipped up, so I highly recommend henley t’s instead (also a great option for dads!).

This baby boy’s jumper is from Old Navy, proving that you don’t have to break the bank to look amazing for your family photos ;).

Now that you have some idea about what to wear, you might be wondering where else you can shop. In addition to Baltic Born, Free People, Amazon and Old Navy/Gap, you can try Zara, H & M KidsJamie Kay, or Rylee & Cru . But also don’t rule out Target and Etsy! This list is just a starting point and I have a lot more that I love to recommend to clients, so if you have an upcoming session, please don’t hesitate to ask for planning help!



Oh hey! I’m Melissa, a Boston family & newborn photographer, but I like to refer to myself as a toddler-whispering, child-taming, photographic ninja.