This post is sponsored by Marks & Spencer. All opinions are my own.
Our yearly family photos are almost as exciting as the holidays for me. And I know I might be the minority in my family, but luckily John and Jax plays along (to a degree). Holiday portraits mark a passage of another year and document the growth of little J. And for the last couple years our portraits have also showcased our amazing travels. Two years ago, we took photos in Paris and last year Verona, Italy. I must admit, there is something so extraordinary about seeing the joy and love of my family captured in time and amazing places. However, with taking photos abroad, I was always late in getting Christmas cards out. So this year, we decided to take photos a bit closer to home. And things are a bit crazy for us right now, and traveling internationally was not in the cards. Plus, 3-year-old boys are not big fans of museums, architecture and cobblestones. Weird, right.
With a location decided, I just needed to tackle the ever important question: What will we wear? To make my life easier, I usually try to pick out all our outfits at one place. Unfortunately there are very few places that carry fashionable and reasonably priced clothing for the whole family. That is where Marks & Spencer comes in. I have quite of few of their Spring/Summer pieces that I continually wear, so I knew I already loved their styles and they fit me well. I have never ordered anything for John and Jax there before but decided to take a chance on the men’s and kid’s wear, AND…I am so happy I did. I die over how good my boys looked!
Before you start browsing, I wanted to share a few of my quick tips on how I usually style and choose our looks!
(scroll below – – sorry, photo overload!)
Choose one main color and 2-3 complementing neutrals. I find it easier to choose pieces when you’re not going overboard on color and prints. I definitely love fun layers and accessories in photos, but not for family holiday photos. If the location calls for it, I sometimes will add a bold texture to the neutral pieces like a black sequin or tulle skirt, or velvet (for both women & mens pieces).
START WITH ONE PIECE
If you’re unsure what colors I want to choose for a photo shoot, select one piece and build around it. For one of the looks, I found this lace burgundy dress (you can never go wrong with dresses) that I loved and then built the rest of my family’s attire around it – adding an adorable 3-piece set in neutral for Jax, and a nice oxford shirt for John in the same color family.
Are you going to shoot by the beach, or cityscapes? More than likely, your location will determine your overall look. You can choose what you are wearing to accent the background, such as fall colors (deep reds, oranges and greens) to complement Fall foliage, or a brighter palette to enhance coastal and city views.
NOTHING TOO TRENDY OR SEASONAL
Holiday cards are meant to be framed, cherished and looked at all year long, and year after year, so definitely avoid being too seasonal or go overboard with a trend. I would say skip the Santa hats, festive Christmas sweaters or any type of costumes.
SKIP PATTERNS, GO TIMELESS
Again, trends and holiday novelties come and go. You want your family photos to be timeless, so I always aim for more of a classic look, not one that instantly dates me. But on the other hand, also try to have fun with it. Show your family’s personality and maybe surprise your friends and family with unexpected pieces. I don’t I’ve ever worn anything other than a dress in our holiday photos, but when I saw these silk trousers in the prettiest shade of pink (magenta to be exact), I knew I wanted them to be the bold piece in our second look. I kept everything else, including the boys outfits, classic…bow ties included.
Speaking of the boys’ attire, I was very impressed with the fit of John and Jaxson’s clothing. John is a fan of slim fit shirts and jackets (this velvet blazer is slim fit), and Marks & Spencer has a variety of fit sizing which was amazing for pickier guys. And also…I mean, just look at Jax in that double breasted vest. Just.too.cute!
Outfit Details Here:
Photography by Bleudog Fotography