November is here and which means it is time to start thinking about that Christmas Card. Every year I say I am going to be proactive and get those Christmas cards out early. Never fails that every year I always end up rushing trying to get our cards out the week before the holiday. This year I was determined to do better and send out our holiday cards early! Another goal is to knock out Christmas shopping in the next couple weeks, but let’s just take this one week at a time. LOL
Part of the battle that starts the procrastination thinking about what to wear, will my toddler cooperate, how will I have time to do all this. I wanted to share some tips that have helped our Christmas cards turn out great!
I love getting my boys and I dressed up for the holiday card, but it can be a daunting task trying to coordinate a family of 4 (and a puppy). I love our looks to be cohesive, and I also try to find looks that we can wear even after the pictures. I teamed up with Lands’ End to because they gave me that classic look that gives us that catalog look.
I start with this deciding our color for the holiday shoot. If matching is not something you are interested in then you can disregard this tip. I will say, I strongly recommend having a color theme in some capacity. Even if everyone is wearing a different color it is nice to still have a similar color family that can be cohesive. HOWEVER, since I love matching our families I start with searching color ideas also keeping in mind our previous year colors. Last year we did red, black, and white so I knew that I wanted to stay away from that color scheme. I then started putting together possible looks and see if there are enough options for each family member. Another major factor is not having our looks be to matchy. You want to be a cohesive balance.
I like our outfits to fit together like a puzzle. Typically, Cameron or Calvin will have the primary print, and the rest take pieces of each other that print. I fell in love with Lands’ End Hunter Green and Navy pants for Calvin that I knew this would be our color scheme for this year. I always make sure either myself or my husband will have a solid color to balance out the look. I also make sure that Rick and I aren’t wearing the same main color. This year I wore navy, and Rick is primarily in green, this keeps the photo from looking to busy. The boys don’t normally have on the same print, but I like both brothers to each wear the staple colors. As you can see I am pretty passionate about coordinating our looks. HA!
Here are a few of my favorite color schemes:
Red and Green: (just be careful on this you don’t want to look like Christmas lights. I also have been trying to get away from red and green as I felt it limits our photos to just the Christmas season. However, I like our pictures to be on display in our home.
Navy: I am slightly obsessed with Navy. I feel that it is such a classic color, and looks great with many colors. We paired with Hunter green, but the options are endless.
Golds and neutrals: If you want to glam it up, add gold to your color scheme. I’ve always wanted to do Gold and creams. This would be such an elegant look.
Red and Black: Last year we did Houndstooth, and it is probably one of my favorite holiday looks. So chic and classy!
Mustards with Earth tones: If you don’t want your holiday card to look like Christmas, consider Mustard. I would pair that color with burgundy and even Navy. This would also be a great color scheme if you wanted to do a casual look with flannels.
Color coordinating for me just elevates the family photo.
Choosing what to wear
This truly will vary based on your own personal preferences. However, there are a few items that never fail me.
A Skater dress: I love a dress that is simple not much detail and flairs. Midi length also adds an element of class.
Cardigans: This item is great for Rick and the boys. Cardigans look so perfect on my boys. Calvin and my husband are wearing cardigans this time around.
Plaids: If you are not use to color coordinating your using plaids is an easy way to do so. Plaids have a multiple colors in the print, and allows me to use that print as the staple piece for our outfit color scheme.
I was able to get our entire look head to toe from Lands’ End which made it easier for me. If you are like me with limited time it is always a time saver if you can get all of the family’s look from one store. It also ensures that the colors hues match. Consider shopping from a store that services everyone to save time and make coordinating a little easier.
Tips for the photo shoot
It doesn’t matter if you have the best outfits if the photo shoot does not go well. You have to be set up for success in order for it to execute well.
Earlier shoots are your best friend: My toddler cooperates a lot more first thing in the morning. He is a lot more smiley, and we reduce the risk of photo shoot meltdowns. Consider this if you are have children that don’t do well during photos.
Don’t skimp on the photographer: Choose a photographer that you have seen great consistent work. The last thing you want is to have everyone standing there looking great, and they photographed you squinting because you were looking in the direction of the sun. Sometimes it is also nice to communicate with your photographer beforehand to let them know what you are wearing and the vision. This will allow them to pick a location that will best suit your attire and style.
Be aware your weather: Last year we had to reschedule our shoot, because it was so cold and rainy. The year before that Cameron was shivering so much, all the pictures he looked really tense. If you are in area that quickly gets cold, consider taking your photos before the cold front hits. This will allow you to get the images you want without the dreaded element of bad weather.
*If you can try to get a variety of a family poses. Just in case you don’t particularly care for the way you looked in that one scene.
For the longest we didn’t use to take regular family photos because it just seemed like task I didn’t want to take on. I got out of that thinking because I like documenting our family growth over the years and increase in family size. It started with just Rick, Cameron and I. Now we have added to the bunch Calvin, and even our Labradoodle Conan. Be organized, and start with making a clear plan of how you want your photos to looks. Once you nail down your idea, this will allow you to start executing it!
I also have additional family photo shoot tips here.
SN: How festive are my heels! It was a great pop of holiday fun for the shoot! Don’t be afraid of stepping outside of the box for family shoots. These heels were so perfect!