Hello there!! If you are reading this, you have probably booked a session with me, or you are interested in booking with me! So, Thank you!
Typically the first question I am asked upon booking is, “What should we wear?” And I’m usually like, “Oh, I dunno....something coordinating, but not matching.....blah, blah blah....but what I really want to be telling them is alllllll that will follow this paragraph :-) This is just my personal opinion, and what I love to see my clients showing up in..... Like, whenever a family shows up coordinating with prints, and colors and layers, and they're walking towards me, basically in my mind, it's like a slow-mo mom whipping her hair around, kid popping the collar-dad removing his aviators scene where I’m screaming “THANK YOU!!!!!” At the top of my lungs.....but, in my head of course. Out loud it’s like “Oh my gosh you guys look amazing “ ;-)
So here we go.
I know from personal experience that choosing what your family will wear can be STRESSFUL!!! So that is why I am making this! To make it LESS stressful on you so you can show up knowing you totally nailed your choices in outfitting your adorable family.
So, number ONE and most important above and beyond all things, you and your family MUST be comfortable in what you are wearing. Period. Amen. Wear what you feel good in! Moms and dads, this tip is for you specifically. If you aren’t comfortable in what you’ve chosen for pictures, it will show. If you can’t find a dress you feel good in, but you rock a good pair of skinny jeans, do that. If you can barely walk in heels, then get yourself a pair of cute and comfy flat boots or pretty sandals, a wedge is a great alternative, too. If you have to constantly hike up your pants, or your kid is itchy or dad is choking himself to death with a tight collar, all that uncomfortableness will show up in your photos. Choose things that fit, not to big, not to tight, and not to itchy :-)
2. MOST of my sessions are outside in grassy areas.... so don’t wear a lot of greens in Spring and Summer, and in Fall stay away from brown. You don’t want to blend in! You want to stand out :-)
3. Stay away from fluorescents. Those colors on your shirt will show up on your face, and even in your hair! They are way to bright and way to harsh. Also, I know Coral isn’t technically a fluorescent , but avoiding that color will save me from a few grey hairs as well :-)
4. Start with one perfect outfit. Moms, if you are like me then pick yours first. We tend to forget about ourselves in the planning and we become an afterthought. Of course you want your kids to look cute, but you deserve to look and FEEL awesome in your pictures! Trust me. Take that time for YOU. You won’t regret it!! Pick your most favorite, most comfortable outfit and build everyone else's around yours. Pick that top or dress that flatters your waistline and color that makes your eyes pop!
5. Backing up to number 1 a bit. Choose clothes that fit. Do not put your kiddo in a shirt that is to big because they can wear that for Christmas in 8 months. Wear what fits right now. Maybe even something that is just right and maybe not going to fit in 3 months. To big, is messy and not flattering at all.
6. Coordinating is IN! Matching is OUT! I KNOW that matching used to be a thing. And it was cute while it lasted....(ok no it wasn’t) ;-) But come on! Each person in your family has their own unique personality! Let that shine! No one really wants to match you or Dad....seriously. So, NO matching jeans and white or black tops. Just no. Coordinating color is what really brings wardrobe together. I usually choose two to three main colors of wardrobe, and maybe one accent pop of color. Also, mixing stripes with plaids and tweeds is okay! Expression is important! Mix it up. Do not be afraid to mix prints and textures. Or styles for that matter! For example: You could choose a piece with polka dots and a piece with stripes. You could put a denim top with a corduroy pant. Your prints and textures don’t always have to come from your main pieces. You can jazz up a dress with printed or textured tights. Or dress up a t-shirt with colored or patterned suspenders. From here, you can go a step further and start mixing “styles.” For example, I might have a client wear a plaid button up, a blazer and a slouchie beanie (mixing dressy and grunge) or a short a-line skirt, blousy top, and military style boots (mixing edgy and chic). By doing so, you will begin to showcase the different styles and personalities of each member of the shoot. White tops generally wash people out in photos, so I suggest staying away from white altogether unless it’s just an accent color. Also, keep in mind that not every person has to have on every color you have chosen. Split the colors up. It makes the photo more playful and less uniform.
(Side comment, unless Momma and daughters want to do some amazing session that involves a magical forest and matching custom dresses in amazing light, then we can chat about matchy :-)
7. WORDS WORDS WORDS WORD PICTURES…..Anything that has LARGE font and graphics on the front is a no-no. The first thing someone will look at is what your shirt says.
8. Lets talk about Jeans. Skinny jeans are flattering on most women, even the curvy ones! Pair them with cute heels or wedges, and your legs look a mile long. I’m 5’4 and 1-something pounds, and I love my skinnies! If you’re overweight and don’t feel comfortable with the tighter fit, I recommend a fit called “skinny boot cut.” You can find them at American Eagle or Gap. Kids in skinny jeans...oh my heart! I love jeans, and they are the number one bottom choice...but if you all wear jeans, lets mix up the styles and colors!
9. Don’t be afraid to wear something you would have NEVER thought you’d wear…specifically… a DRESS! GAH! WHAT??? A DRESS?? But everyone else is in jeans and…won’t that look weird??? NO!!!! Oh my goodness…get your daughter in a dress....put yourself in a dress...Maxi dresses are soooooo versatile! They are flattering on every body type. Add a belt or a statement necklace with strappy sandals for the summer, or a belted fitted cardi and a scarf in the fall. Now, a fancy black dress and a dress shirt and tie wouldn’t be the most appropriate wardrobe for a forest or grassy setting. More formal wear would be more appropriate for an urban or “big city” feel. So keep it casual for those grassy or forest settings.
10. Shoes are a very important part of wardrobe. If you have the cutest little trousers and button down for your son to wear for pictures, but slap his favorite pair of Disney tennis shoes on him, it makes the whole look lose cohesiveness. Stay away from character shoes, tennis shoes, flip flops or crocs. My recommendation for shoes are boots, leather sandals, Converse All-Stars, Toms, Sperrys, Joyfolie, Mary Janes, and Willits. And always, barefoot is an adorable option, especially with babies. I’d much rather see bare feet than the bottom of their shoes. Make sure the shoes are clean and if I must see the socks, steer clear of white....add some print and color... even to your socks!
11. Layer, layer layer! Layers add dimension and depth. In the summer? Layer your dress with a cute belt and pendant necklace. In the fall and winter? Cardigans, belts, statement necklaces, scarves, blazers, etc. Accessories will really bring your outfit together. A chunky necklace, bangle bracelets, glasses, vest, cardigans, tights, leggings, suspenders, hats, and bow ties (oh my heart I love a bow tie) on Men, boys, and babies!
12.Hair piece tips. For babies, toddlers and older girls, I always recommend keeping hair accessories simple. When they are too big (think “gerber daisy” big), it distracts from their faces. The only time I think you can get away with a bigger hair accessory is when the child has lots of hair, or long hair. Even if your baby girl doesn’t have a ton of hair, don’t feel the need to hide that adorable head behind a huge whoppin’ head piece that makes her angry because she’s pulling it off every few seconds. Simple and dainty is just as pretty and understated.
13.Dress for the weather, and be flexible. If you’re from any state in the Midwest, you know that it can be 40 and cloudy one day, 75 and sunny 12 hours later. So, be prepared to be flexible with wardrobe, in case you have to switch it up last minute. If you have plans for a cute sundress for your daughter, and the weather ends up being 20 degrees colder than you were anticipating, switch it up a bit by adding layers. Tights, boots, scarf, slouchy hat, cardigan. Dress appropriately for the weather that day, even if it doesn’t go with your original plan. If your child is sweating profusely in a sweater during his shoot, he won’t be happy. And on the same token, if your child is wearing a tank dress and the weather dips too much in the evening, she’ll be a grump, and it’ll reflect in the final images. I speak these words from experience!
14.The most important part of putting together your child’s wardrobe is allowing their personality to come through in what they’re wearing. If your daughter has a favorite pair of boots, let her wear them (at least in a few pictures). If your son prefers to run around naked to being fully clothed, we’ll let him strip down at the end of the session. If your child loves to wear hats and sunglasses, bring them! Whatever makes your child their own adorable, individual self, let’s focus on those things. Yes, we all want our children to look adorable and fully polished for photos. I’m not recommending you don’t brush your daughter’s hair or forget wiping off the smudged PB&J off your toddler’s face, but allow them to have a little bit of input when planning their wardrobe as well. And never say “no” to bringing their favorite things along. Photographers want to capture those, too.
15.Go on and check out Pinterest! There are sooooooooo many fantastic ideas and it will give you something to start with! I'll add a link to get you started! https://www.pinterest.com/fullofjoymomof3/what-to-wear/
So, that’s it! I hope this helps you choose what is just right for you and make your photos stand out! Please, please, please feel free to text me or message me your choices! Ask me if this is ok with this, or do these colors go together? I LOVE to heIp! Let me know if you have any questions at all! Thanks so much and I will see you soon!