Tuesday, April 25, 2017


Wow!  Spring is CRAZY!!!  I feel like I've been going full speed since February, with no sign of life slowing down anytime in the foreseeable future.  Lots of school performances, charity events, outdoor festivals, collaborations, and new clients have filled my calendar, and most of the new clients are calling me because they, too, are incredibly busy.  I've recently had a few families contact me to help them choose outfits for family portraits.  After their initial pat on the back for having finally booked the photo session, panic ensues!  "What in the world will everyone wear?  I can barely manage to pick out my clothes for a day of running errands!"  Sound familiar?

Fret not!  Remember those "collaborations" I mentioned?  Well, here's a little sneak peek of one I'm working on with Sarah Kane Photography and Emily Hudspeth of Real Life Beauty hair and make-up.  We are creating a Style Prep Guide for Sarah's photography clients with detailed, but simple,  information about how to get yourself (and your family) ready for your upcoming session!  In advance of the prep guide's release, I am going to have a little series of "Do's and Don'ts" to get you thinking!  (If you haven't gotten around to scheduling your family portraits, let this post be your impetus, and get on the horn with Sarah asap!)

So, without further ado... (adon't?)...


DO have fun with color!

Gone are the days where everyone has to wear white shirts and khaki pants.  BORING!  In fact, depending on your complexion, all white could be a really bad choice.  Because white reflects light, too much of it could add an unwanted glow to a fair face.  So branch out a bit and try for other colors that you like and that look good on you and your family members.

DON'T get matchy-matchy!

Wearing matching everything feels a little hokey and dated to me.  As a person who likes to express her personality through clothing, it also feels a little stifling.  If you are looking to have some cohesion, find a color scheme with 2-3 main colors, and incorporate some other "pops" of color with accessories or one-offs.  Let each person's personality shine through while keeping a little bit of order.


DO add layers, texture, and timeless accessories!

Layers and textures add depth and interest to an outfit, and therefore, add interest to a photograph. Think jackets, sweaters, scarves, hats...corduroy, chunky knits, seude.

DON'T let the extras be the focal point!

You are having these family portraits taken, presumably, to document your family at this moment in time, so it's important that the clothing doesn't overshadow the people.  Fashionistas beware!  This is not the the time to pull out your big, bold, trendy statement pieces!  In this type of photo, you're better off keeping things a bit more classic, so that you can enjoy the pictures for years before they look dated.


DO incorporate patterns!

A few complementary patterns within the color scheme can add interest to the photo.  Offset larger prints with smaller, and create a balance by having a mix of solids and patterns on the subjects.

DON'T go overboard!

No head-to-toe patterns, no graphic prints, no logos, and no characters, please.

More "Do's and Don'ts" to come in May, but if your portrait session is scheduled earlier -- or if this is all too much to put into practice in your already hectic life -- I'm happy to come over and help you create personalized and cohesive looks for your photos!  Let's connect.

All photos courtesy of Sarah Kane Photography (and her super-stylish clients make great examples for my suggestions;)
As a personal stylist and personal shopper in Richmond, VA, I strive to make wardrobe choices clear and easy for women who are short on time, overwhelmed by their closets, or transitioning from one period of life to another.  Let's connect!  


  1. Love all the Do's and Don't's! Especially like the "no logos/characters". A family photo shouldn't be an ad for manufacturers ... unless they pay you! Also ... you're so right ... it's time to toss the "white shirts/khaki"!

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