It’s that time of year again, folks! As soon as the fall weather rolls in, photographer’s calendars fill quickly with family portraits. Now, there are plenty of legitimate reasons to put off scheduling a session with your local photog – finding an empty spot on the calendar, getting your kids to cooperate in a way that makes you all look genuinely happy for one millisecond in time, making sure your husband has had a recent haircut… I get it. However, not knowing what to wear should NOT be one of those reasons!
I’m gonna let you in on a little secret. When I was a portrait photographer, this was how I coached all my clients into looking amazingly put together and coordinated, without all wearing white shirts and khakis.
It’s easier than you think, I promise. First, I recommend shopping for your entire family in one store. Old Navy is perfect for this because they carry items for each department within the same color schemes each season. Not to mention that this entire set of outfits was less than $200! For a family of five, that’s pretty amazing.
Next – this is the most important step – pick out a plaid shirt. (Don’t worry – if plaid isn’t your thing, it doesn’t have to end up in your photos… Just trust me.) Plaid shirts are a ready made color palette. You’ll use this shirt as a basis to start building the other outfits. Once you’ve got a solid look going, you can ditch the plaid and replace it with something else if you’d like.
putting it all together
Each outfit only needs to coordinate with one color in the plaid. Feel free to mix it up with prints and solids and layers. The color palette will keep everything pulled together. It’s not important that every person in the photo be wearing every color in the palette, you can see here that this dusty pink dress fits in perfectly. And even without the plaid shirt that I started with, these outfits look great together.
By shopping in the same store, you’ll save yourself a lot of agony wondering “is that the right shade of green?” or “do these two really go together?” When in doubt, just pair the item in question with the plaid shirt and ask yourself if they match. If so, you’re good to go!
See? That wasn’t so bad, was it? So go out there and rock your family portraits this fall! Here’s a quick list of do’s and don’ts to remember…
do shop for everyone in the same store.
Do start by choosing a plaid shirt.
do match each item to one of the colors in the plaid.
don’t be afraid of mixing prints and patterns with solids.
Don’t feel stuck to a color palette that you’re not loving. Just start over and try again!
don’t rub it in when your portraits turn out way better than all your friends. Just share this post so they can look awesome next year too.
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