I always do this…I play it cool, I act like I don’t really care about our family pictures being the most amazing ever. As long as at least half of us are smiling? Right? And then a few days before the shoot I PANIC because, actually, deep down inside, I DO care. I mean, I should have pictures half as awesome as my client’s do right!? So, I have been playing it so super cool that no one really has anything cohesive to wear for our shoot next week and, in an all out scramble, I am pulling together outfit ideas. Like a good photographer and friend, Sarah Sandel (doing a little portrait swap this year!) has talked me down from the ledge and sent me a few fabulous color palette ideas for inspiration. We picked ours and now I and wanted to do the same for you and give you some color inspiration to help take the stress and guess work out of picking family portrait outfits!! So, here is the Shay Cochrane Photography ultimate guide to family portrait outfit success and awesomeness!
1. Don’t match, compliment. You dont have to wear identical pieces of clothing or even identical colors (pretty please don’t!) Instead pick a color palette and just dress everyone comfortably withing that set of complimentary colors. See ideas below for fall/winter 2012 ideas!
2. Layer. Layers look great, add opportunities for more color, are more visually interesting, and if you lack inspiration for how to layer, you can check out a site like GAP kids and see how its done!
3. Accessorize. Again, it is all about adding color and visual interest. Accessories include hats, scarves, jewlery, etc especially when it reflects that individual family member’s personality! For example, if your daughter does not leave the house without a tutu on or your son has been wearing the same cowboy boots for 3 months straight – just pick items like these that are in the color palette. It may irritate you now but it will warm your heart 10 years from now to remember their quirky favorite things.
4. Make sure they are comfortable. I have made the mistake of buying the most stinkin adorable shoes EVER for Chloe to wear for a shoot and then put them on her the day of and they hurt so much that she refuses to wear them…on the way to the shoot. Making sure that everyone is comfortable will ensure that they are more relaxed and happy at the shoot. A win for everyone.
5. Don’t mix too many patterns. With a few well orchastrated exceptions, stick to only one or two patterns (a plaid shirt or floral skirt for example). Also, stay away from graphic or message Ts unless you really have a statement to make:)
6. When in doubt, ask your photographer! (Me hopefully!) Many clients of mine have sent me photographs of their outfit ideas/combinations for an extra stamp of approval.
And here are just few Fall/winter 2012 color palette ideas to get you started!! (Proof that Pinterest DOES make your life better…as if you needed proof!) Can you guess which one I am using?