What To Wear In Christmas - Eight Tips Just For You

Get bold, get goofy, be classy.

With mini sessions fast approaching I’ve received lots of questions about what clothes look best in Christmas photos.  Instead of responding one by one with a quick text message answer, I thought I’d thoughtfully put together some recommendations for you.

Now, keep in mind, these are beginners tips.  If you are a seasoned pro at getting the family gussied up for picture day, feel free to go rogue.  Wear what you like.  If you are new at the whole pro-photo game…I hope some of these tips will give you some ideas and be a good starting place for you.


Dress for the same season.

This is my first an foremost tip when it comes to Christmas card portraits.  I’ve gotten lots of {very nice} compliments on the clothing Derek and I wore in the sample mini session shots.  But we went through a few options before we settled on the right thing.  Okay–I went through a few options, then told him that he should “…really put on the flannel–it looks cozier.”

We started with him in a cotton button down and me in a sweater I picked up in Norway.  Even if we threw on some gloves and hats it looked like we were dressed for different seasons {me for -10, him for 60’s.}  You can go super cozy or super breezy–just be sure your family looks like they could all be put in the same setting comfortably.

Jackets, hats, gloves, and scarves.

I’m totally behind sporting outdoor winter wear to an indoor Christmas photo session.  But–like most things, there are guidelines.  A cute coat on the dressy side is good.  Wearing your Colombia ski/sledding parka looks frumpy.  A fashionable hat…or even something on the super warm and silly side is great.  A ski mask is terrifying.

Don’t be over realistic.

Staged Christmas card photos are not meant to be a window into reality.  They are created to be a little whimsical and fun.  {At least mine are.}  So, although you wouldn’t normally wear a jacket inside, or snow boots with cute jeans or hats and scarves without coats–it’s totally cool to do in your Christmas photo.

It’s also totally cool to go classy in your Christmas portraits.  You might not want to go super dressy in a photo that will hang year-round in your home.  So Christmas photos are a great time to get a little fancy, even if that’s not how you usually roll.

Think about fabric and texture.

Cozy is the word I love to use when I think about winter portraits.  With that in mind, try to incorporate something cozy into your outfits.  Flannel is a classic choice.  It never gets old.  Textured sweaters or a scarf with an interesting knit is also a good way to cozy up an ensemble.  Layers are also a good choice and they add variety to an outfit.


Your photos are not work.  They aren’t private school.  They aren’t the military.  So please, please…don’t put your family in a uniform.  {Unless you are the VonTrapps.  Then, by all means do whatever you like.}  Your photos will be lovely if you use things from your closets that your family likes to wear–even if that means you aren’t all dressed identically.  This is a short session, to be displayed for a short time.  So be a little more relaxed.

Going neutral.

Sticking with a dress code of neutrals is a very safe way to make sure your family looks awesome in your photos.  Neutrals can mean a variety of things.  Mix any of these colors  and you’ll look great:  Cream, tan, brown, gray, navy blue, pale blue, black, muted yellows.


Adding color.

If you’d like to add color, but are nervous about it–this tip is for you.  Whatever you do, don’t panic and put everyone in black pants and a blue top.

Instead, stick with a mostly neutral pallet {see #6}, then weave a color or two throughout your family.  Use the color as boldly or as sparingly as you like, but make it consistent.  You can go with one bright pop of color, or weave a color throughout to keep everyone consistent.  Good colors to incorporate are red {classic Christmas choice}, green, yellow, blue.

Going colorful.
Like we said earlier, Christmas photos don’t have to be super realistic.  So, even though your family might not normally go overboard with color–if you are feeling vibrant this is a good time to make it happen.  The key to going with lots of colors is to make sure they have similar intensity {how vibrant they are}, are from the same color family {cool colors like blue, green, aqua, etc or warm colors like orange, yellow, red, etc.}, or they compliment each other.



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Women's Magazine: What To Wear In Christmas - Eight Tips Just For You
What To Wear In Christmas - Eight Tips Just For You
Get bold, get goofy, be classy.
Women's Magazine
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