Family cohesion for the holidays!

The holidays!!! A time to go to festive events and create lasting family memories…a time for traditions, food, family, and magical moments…NOT a time to stress about how to dress the kidlets.

Many of my clients use this special time of year to take family photos for an annual Christmas card. I get asked all the time how to create a cohesive look among the family. I get it… it’s hard enough dressing ourselves sometimes, let alone 2, 3, or even 4 other little people for photos.

I’ve put together a list of very simple tips when deciding on your holiday photo wardrobe. It’s much easier than you think when you follow a few little tricks.

  • It’s not about matchy-matchy

Gone are the days where everyone wears white shirts and jeans.  It’s less about matching, and more looks that “go” together.  The easiest way to do this is to select one outfit you really like, and build around it. In the case of this pic, I selected my dress and then picked everyone else’s outfit based on the colours in my dress.

image found in Ottawa At Home Magazine, taken by

Another way is to select two main colours, then select garments in those colour pallets.Take the example shown here: I picked two very popular colours – burgundy and pink. I then selected two neutral secondary colours and picked outfits based in that colour scheme.

The inspiration board I created for my family using two colours (burgundy and pink). I also used  two neutral sub colours (navy blue and grey)
  • Shop collections

Most retailers create collection in the same colours and themes. I love buying my children’s outfits from affordable stores like GAP Kids, Old Navy, Joe Fresh and H&M. If you buy all the kid’s outfits from the same retailer, chances are you will find pieces that will go together.

  • Stick with classics

You might just get that perfect shot that truly reflects your family; that one pic you end up framing and placing over the mantel. If so, you don’t want trendy outfits to render that photo outdated too quickly.

  • Add dimension with fabrics and props

Use different fabrics and textures to ensure your photo doesn’t fall “flat”. Adding wool scarves, faux-fur, interesting textiles will give your pic dimension. You can also add props like wreaths, wagons, bells – anything that speaks to the scene you are trying to create (tip – call your photographer ahead of time. Chances are, they have a variety of things you can use.)

I added faux-fur, metallic boots and a mini-tree to ensure the pic wasn’t one-dimentional.
  • Make sure everything fits and is clean AHEAD OF TIME

Save yourself the stress of finding out outfits don’t fit or need to be cleaned 20 minutes before a photo shoot.  Try all the outfits on (including your own) with plenty of time to make the necessary fixes.

image1 (1)
Had to try on Alessia’s outfit a week ahead of time because she grows out of things so fast! Pic by
  • Consider the background

Will you be taking the pics in a studio with a red background, or outside against a snow-y landscape? Either way, you will need to ensure you don’t clash or blend into the background.

  • Let your loved one’s personalities shine

At the end of the day, you want your children’s adorable selves to be reflected in the photos. The best pics I have are the impromptu ones where the kiddos are laughing at something funny or making crazy faces. And if little Johnny wants to wear his favourite Peppa pig shirt to the family photos, let’s find a way to make it work :).

We’re always laughing together, and it was great to get a pic that truly captured our (especially Mikhaela’s) personality. pic:

I wish you and yours a wonderful Holiday season,



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