The end of October brings the beginning of the busy holiday season, and with that, Christmas cards. Not only can the cards (and postage) themselves be a substantial chunk of the budget, but getting good, high quality pictures taken by someone who can work well with families or kids isn't cheap. Plus, you have to have something the whole family can wear that coordinates well and looks great in a photograph.
As a mom, I know that I stress a lot about what my family is going to wear for the big, annual, end-of-the-year photo shoot. And if I think that I have to go buy everyone a new outfit for it, I stress even more.
So, here are some budget-friendly tips for fall portrait sessions:
Last year, during our fall family portraits, and I had the photographer take a few of the kids in their Halloween costumes. They turned out fantastic, and if we hadn't had one with our whole family in regular clothes, we easily could've used a costume picture for a unique and adorable card. Did you get a good one with your kids in their costumes this year? Use it!
If you don't have it in the budget to hire a photographer, find a friend with a camera or use your timer and take one yourself. Or, use one that you've taken in the fall. Pumpkin patches are great places to take a photo, because of the vibrant colors and happy atmosphere.
Don't worry about matching outfits, and don't worry about being "fancy". Pictures of your family all dressed up can look very nice, but in my experience, it makes everyone uncomfortable. Instead, find a color combination that you like and let everyone pick out an outfit that they like. Prints, solids, or a combination of both can look fantastic. Try pink, gray and navy, brown, orange, and green, or a classic black and white with one other color thrown in as an accent.
You probably have the right clothes in your closets already. If you feel like you need to shop for some (or all) of the clothes, try a discount store or consignment shop with gently-used items, and make sure you get things that everyone can keep wearing. Like serving as a bridesmaid in a wedding....isn't it so much better when you can wear the dress again?
What are your favorite family portrait tips?