How to Get the Family Holiday Photo You Want


We love getting holiday cards in the mail. Especially the cards with photos. It’s fun to get a look at how your cousin’s family that you rarely see is evolving or get a glimpse of your old college roommate’s face since you now live at opposite ends of the country. Of course, we recognize that styling the perfect family photo to send out to friends and family near and far is no easy feat. The first thing to remember is that it doesn’t need to be “perfect”! The most important thing about your photo is that the finished product makes you smile when you see it. In other words, the picture should embody your family’s style and vibe. That said, we have some tips to help you curate outfits so the looks all complement each other and the whole photo looks more polished. Also, keep in mind that a little advance thought and prep work goes a long way.

  • First, choose an underlying color theme. Black, blue, berry, burgundy – all flattering colors that photograph nicely and subtly say “holiday.” Depending on how many people are in your family, you may want to choose a couple of complimentary colors (e.g., black & white or blue & burgundy) or stick to one color in both dark and light shades. Darker solids are always more flattering in photos (meaning more slimming). Less chance of a color collision. Subtle prints can work well, but again make sure that everyone’s colors and styles are complimentary.
  • Select a style theme. Dressy clothes or casual clothes?  Dad is going to look silly in his jeans if everyone else is dressed up and vice versa.
  • Also note, that just as you would not wear orange and green together in one outfit, don’t let Dad wear green and one of the kids wear orange. Total color clash. Don’t wear red and green together unless you are intentionally going for a Christmas theme, then make it obvious and a little cheesy.
  • Touches of metallic — gold, bronze or silver (pick one!) — can also be used to add a rich, festive feel to the look through accessories, including jewelry, hair clips, cuff links or shoes.
  • Next, have each family member try on their outfit from head to toe at least a week prior to the shoot and look at the style and color of clothing and accessories together with a critical eye. Think about where you are shooting the photo (inside or outside?) and what the lighting will be like. Determine if anyone’s outfit would benefit from tailoring. Does it need to be dry cleaned or ironed? Shoes polished? Make sure these tasks are done a day or two before to avoid scrambling around at the last minute.
  • Don’t forget to plan ahead and schedule hair cuts and colors, so everyone looks their best.
  • Have pets? Make sure to schedule their grooming appointments a few days prior to pictures. If you have more than one pet, you may want to make it easier on yourself and hold your photo shoot at home.
  • Lastly, we recommend having a friend on hand to help manage pets, the lint roller, blotting powder to eliminate makeup shine, and lend a critical eye at the shoot. This can be invaluable.

Here are a few Keller family photos from the last three years with different color themes and combinations for inspiration, including the above one from 2015. The Keller holiday photo for 2016 is coming soon! 






One response to “How to Get the Family Holiday Photo You Want”

  1. […] for an extra luxe look. Haven’t done your pictures yet? Get them scheduled and check out our tips on how to style your best picture. Snap to it — there’s only 39 days until […]

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