As some of you may know( or not know) I am not just a blogger but a photographer as well! I fell in love with photography many years ago. I realized I needed to take professional looking photos to make my blogging business grow, nobody would look twice at my blog or instagram without pretty professional photos, so I dove right into the learning process. I started out just teaching myself and then found Amy & Jordan Demos! They changed my life and helped my photography knowledge grow, the difference was night and day and I realized I had a passion to create beautiful photos!
Around this same time Kyle and I came into the heartbreaking reality of infertility. We had been trying for years and got the unfortunate news that IVF was going to be our only way of conceiving. It was so hard for me to process, I had always wanted to be a mama & infertility was not in my plan for life. Coming to this reality was completely heart wrenching for me and I sunk into a deep depression. Photography brought back the light. I worked tirelessly perfecting my trade and started taking clients to help ease the financial burden that IVF brings! This was my way of helping to work towards the family that I had always wanted. It was hard though, every family photoshoot made me realize what I was missing but with that also came great hope for a family of my own. I felt a since of peace knowing I was doing my best to help ease the pain of not only the finacial aspect but the sadness I was feeling! Photography truly saved me. I love capturing beautiful moments in time and making people feel like their best selves in their photos! Fate has funny way of making everything come together and I am truly thankful that photography came into my life when it did.
With all of that being said, I am so excited to share a little bit of my process with y’all to help ease the stress of dressing for family photos! My most asked questions when booking a session always involves wardrobe….what do I wear for my session? How to I dress my family? What is most flattering on camera? What color pallet should I choose? Is this too matchy matchy? I am happy to help with all of these questions and take the stress off of the decision from a fashion blogger and photographers perspective!
BOOKING A SESSION & MANAGING YOUR EXPECTATIONS!
I first want to start off by saying that a family session NEVER goes as planned! 99% of the time its mama who is booking the session for her precious family! She has this idea in her head of how family photos are going to go & what look she is going for! She always wants her family to look their very best and prays for good moods and smiling faces all around. As much as we all dream of this perfect scenario typically baby brother is crying in the backseat from the short nap he got that day, sister is hungry and letting everyone know it, big brother got a stain on his perfectly pressed shirt and dad is in no mood to smile at the camera for the next hour. WE ALL KNOW HOW IT GOES!!!! I am a photographer and still deal with these type of scenarios every.single.session ( yes even my own)! Go in with the expectation that even though everything MAY not be exactly how you imagined it, your session will go on. everything will work out and you will get some beautiful photos! Don’t stress mama & bring snacks, lots & lots of snacks!
WHERE TO BEGIN?
I always start the process of dressing for family photos with the perfect color pallet! From a photographers perspective, light, neutral & non- distracting colors are key! Colors that accent your photos instead of distracting the eye from your gorgeous faces make my photographer heart SING! Ivory, white, cream, tan, blush, dusty blue, sage green & pastel colors are a few of my favorites! They photograph soooo well and look dreamy on camera! you can always add an accent color like, red, navy, mustard or wine depending on the season and go from there! for this post I am going to be showing y’all one neutral, one fall & one holiday pallet and how I would dress my own family for photos!
I chose Navy, Light Blue, Blush Pink & Gray as our first color pallet choice! For these photos I was was going for a more elegant look! Kyle’s main color was navy, mine cream with navy accents, & Miller Brooks with pink. My dress is from Ross but I have linked some similar options as well as the boys outfits below!
Outfit number two is all about those fall color vibes! I love the mauve with the green, as soon as I saw this pallet I knew it was the one! Fall photos are always a fav of mine! I just love everything about the fall & these colors give me butterflies!!! Outfit ideas linked below!
This one is all about the holidays! I love this color pallet for Christmas photos, it reminds me off all of the happy times that come with the season and I loved all of these colors together! outfits and similar options linked below!
FOR THE KIDS
PHOTOGRAPHY OUTFIT TIPS
Since mom is usually the one booking the session I always say pick out moms outfit and dress everyone else around her look. A few tips for mom….
1.) DRESSES DRESSES DRESSES!!! I will forever and always say stay away from jeans & pants! Put on that dress that makes you feel like million bucks! A long floor length or midi dress is my absolute fav! They are so flattering on camera & look so elegant. They help elongate your legs and honestly your entire body! A beautiful Maxi or Midi skirt paired with a blouse or sweater are lovely as well!
2.) KNOW YOUR INSECURITIES: We all have them, its just part of being a woman. Pick an outfit that flatters them instead of making you feel self-self-concious about them. You are beautiful and my number one goal is to allow you feel like your best self! Keep in mind, asking your photographer to photoshop your insecurities will cost you more so just take care of that from the beginning!
3.) PATTERNS: whether you pick a bold print ( which I LOVE) for your dress or decide on a solid I personally don’t think you can go wrong! If you do decide to go with a bold print or pattern keep the other family members in more solid attire so the photos don’t look too busy and distract from your beautiful faces!
4.) PROFESSIONAL HAIR & MAKEUP: It’s all about making you feel like your best self! If beautifully done make up and lashes help you feel confident then I say go for it! I like to stick to the same rules, light neutral non distracting colors and makeup that enhances your face instead of becoming a distraction! In other words I tend to stay away from crazy eyeshadow or a lip color that you wouldn’t normally wear on an everyday basis!
5.) ACCESSORIZE: Accessories are a photo fav! If you have a hat that you love wear it, want to add a flower crown to you session? love that idea! add a cute belt to your dress or a bow to your hair! whatever floats your boat accessory wise, don’t be afraid to bring it along!
keeping these tips in mind remember they are just that….tips! From years of experience this is what I would recommend. They are tried and true outfit recs 🙂
DRESSING THE FAM
Remember photos sessions are typically anywhere from 30 min to 2 hours, its not a long time and worth having everyone dressed to the nines! Matchy matchy is not ideal, pick a color pallet and have everyone choose the color they would like to wear. that way y’all accent each other but nobody is wearing the exact same colors!
TIPS FOR DAD:
1.) leave your cargo shorts, flip flops and graphic tees at home. I promise you will thank me later.
2.) A sport coat, vest or nice jacket is oh so very flattering on camera! it brings the eye away from those insecure spots and brings all of the attention to your gorgeous family!
3.) A well fit or slimmer pair of khakis or even a nice pair of jeans for your guy will work wonders! Dress him up a bit with a cute button down, nice pair of shoes and sport coat! something he is comfortable in but still makes him feel confident on camera!
TIPS FOR THE KIDDOS
1.) comfort is key. if their is an itchy tag remove it, if that sweater makes him hot, pick a new top. Kids will always be kids and if something is bothering them just pivot and figure something else out.
2.) don’t be afraid to dress them up. Elegant family photos are timeless!
3.) BRING SNACKS, i’ll say it loud for the people in the back again BRING SNACKS & A FAV TOY! it will help get your littles attention and those genuine smiles captured on camera!
4.) ACCESSORIZE: put a bow in sisters hair, put your little man in high socks, or try a sport coat or vest for big brother!
Lets have another scenario session….say your color pallet is blush, navy, white, light blue & gray.
Mom is wearing a long blush pink maxi dress. Dad is wearing khakis, a white button down shirt with a navy sport coat, a pink bowtie, & brown loafers. big brother is wearing navy pants & a light blue henly with brown hightops, sis is wearing an ivory tulle dress paired with a big pink bow & baby brother is wearing a white and light blue romper with white shoes. you want everyone to have their main color that goes with the pallet but nobody is too matchy matchy! gone are the days of everyone showing up in jeans and a white shirt, please I beg of you just say NO!
If y’all are anything like me the actual photos are the least stressful part of the process, once everyone is on location, dressed and ready things just seem to flow. its the preparation that gives me all of the butterflies so I hope these tips help for picking out that perfect outfit for you and your family!