I have our family photos taken at least once a year usually in time for our holiday cards. Some years I find myself running all over town looking for the perfect items to wear, but often times I try to use what we have at home for a casual look that really reflects who we are in that moment in time. My husband always likes it when I choose from our current wardrobe, because that equals comfort & saves on the pocketbook. However, I do have a weakness for getting something new from the current trending fashion. To keep it simple & inexpensive, I try to focus on just a couple new tops & accessories that make it feel new & exciting for all, without breaking the bank.
This was our 2012 Holiday card.
Click the read more for a few tips to consider:
Special Note before we get started:
If you & your children aren't comfortable in what you're wearing it will show through the photographs. Please keep this in mind while reading through these tips:
1. Choose a Color Scheme
The first thing I ask when someone seeks advice on what to wear, is “where do you plan to hang the portrait in your home & what colors are in that room?” For some, this doesn't make a difference. But for others that plan to hang the prints in their family room it can make all the difference. For example, if the room is painted red & black & you plan to wear orange & brown, it won’t work very well. If your room is neutral & you’d like some color pop from the portraits, but aren't sure which colors to go with. Check out this helpful site to aid you on colors that jive: CLICK HERE. Design Seeds, is a site full of fabulous eye candy. The artist finds beautiful images & picks a color palette out of those images that you might not otherwise notice. It can be applied to home decor or clothing, I think of it when picking out color schemes for portraits. It helps your eye to see color patterns that go together.
You can do a search by color palettes or themes (spring, fall, ocean, edible) & you can sit there for hours drooling over the beautiful photography, but find an image/colors that resonate with you & go with that!
If you have a color palette in mind, or even if you don’t…shop around to find one patterned piece that you love. It can be a little girls patterned dress or a boys plaid shirt, but if you find one central piece, it helps to plan everything around that. Since us moms like our kids to be the focal point, I’d suggest this focus piece to be on one of the children. That doesn’t mean that they will stand out the most, after accessorizing it will all flow together.
3. Pick 3 colors
It’s a good idea to pick 3 colors to work with as your main colors, then consider grays, whites, blacks, or browns as freebie’s. Not necessarily all of them together, but one or two that work with the 3 colors you chose.
4. Layers & Accessories
Cardigan, necklace, headband, scarf, button up shirt, tights, hats, ties. Layers & accessories add dimension, pizazz, fun, texture & therefore richness to the overall look. Keep them schemed, but not matched. If I have 2 girls, they don’t both get yellow headbands, but one yellow & one blue to spread out the colors. Boys have fewer options when it comes to layers & may seem more difficult to dress. Try to put one in a button up with t-shirt underneath, the other a polo type with T underneath & maybe sleeves rolled up into each other.
You know how some moms will go around the dinner table to make sure everyone has all of their food situated before they sit down & then their food is cold? Don’t be that mom when it comes to clothing for your family portraits. Don’t pick everyone else’s out, then just grab something from your closet that only looks “ok” on you, but matches the color scheme. You need to feel AWESOME in your family pictures! If anything, I’d pick something that you think looks fabulous on you, then plan around THAT! It’s tough enough to get mothers IN pictures, so when you are in them, you want to feel & look good!
After you have selected 3 main colors, think about how you don’t want all of those colors on top, nor matching the people that are close in age–split them up. Place some color towards the bottom in one or two of them as well. Do this with shoes, skirts, & pants. There are so many more options now with those fun colorful jeans. You aren’t just investing in a photographer, but in the clothing to enhance your Family Portrait.
You’ve seen the fashion/clothing boards on Pinterest. They’re great, but don’t always have the perfect configuration for your family & you may not care for some of the pieces. Have you wondered how to make them? This is one of the websites CLICK HERE. It searches from a database, you can even type in from the stores you shop from & filter by colors.
8. Lay it on the floor
Once you have gathered items in the colors you’ve picked, try to find a spot in your home that you can spread it all out. Lay the pieces on the floor or your bed & look at it all from afar. Take a picture of it, so you can see it in a photograph. Then send me the picture & I’ll let you know from a photographer’s perspective.
9. Split up the pairs
If you have natural pairs in the family, ie.: mom & dad, brothers & sisters, mom & baby; try to split up the colors, as they will often be standing near each other. When I have babies, I know I will want to be holding them, so I see my baby as my “pair” & aim to not dress us alike. My husband is my obvious other pair & as the two tallest, I make sure he & I are also not “matchy-matchy.” This part can get complicated, so do your best, then let it go!
10. Plan ahead
Make sure you start this planning when you book your session. Be thinking of it, look around in your home/closets to find some items there & then shop well in advance for the remaining items, so you aren’t stressing at the last minute!
Lastly, give me a call or send me a text photo of your clothing selection & I'll aid in whatever way I can. (760) 672-7615