Six Tips for Styling Your Family Photos Featuring The McKinneys

March 21, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

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The biggest compliment I can receive as a photographer is when clients come back to have me capture milestone after milestone. If you don't recognize The McKinney's already, I highly recommend getting to know this amazing family starting from their Backyard Engagement SessionDurham WeddingSunset Maternity Session, and their adorable Newborn Session with their twin daughters, Rooney & Navy. 

This six month milestone session tops the cake as my favorite family photos I've ever photographed. Shannon is a stunning picture of fresh motherhood, and our morning together was so sweet and relaxed. 

Melissa DeLeon (fashion blogger at Mel In Chanel) did an amazing job styling the whole family for a seamless look. Below, Melissa was kind enough to share six amazing tips to pull your family's look together, too! 


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1. Find inspiration. Choose a color scheme, a pattern, a perfect setting, an image or a theme that will be the inspiration behind your photos. This will be your constant reminder of what you aspire your photos to look like. 

2. Know your subject and your setting. Although you may have reserved a gorgeous space or venue to act as the backdrop for your photos, you are the subject of the images! Knowing your exact setting for the photoshoot is key, so that you can plan outfits accordingly. You do not want to fade into the background! Dressing in a color or pattern that contrasts with the setting will allow people to see you in the photos. I highly recommend doing your homework and even visiting the venue or looking at photos of it online, if any. Keep in mind seasonal changes, and remember that trees and plants change throughout the year. If you’re wanting a fresh green background, you want to take photos in the spring - not the winter.

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3. Start with one item of clothing and build off of it. Find one piece that you love and that stems from your inspiration. Then, like a puzzle, work on finding pieces that fit around it. From that one item, it’s much easier to search for others that complement and look good together as a whole instead of working on several all at once. If it helps you, I recommend making a mood board.

4. Be cohesive. Choose an attire and a season and stick with it. You want to make sure everyone in the photo is dressed similarly, as if you are all attending the same event. Is the event black tie? Casual? Dressy? Is it summer or winter? Everyone in the photo should be dressed within that attire and within that season - whichever you choose. 

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5. Find a photographer who understands your vision and communicates well with you. Every photographer has his or her own style, and you need to make sure that their style and your style pair well together. Find one who is willing to listen and will offer up suggestions. The more they understand what you’re wanting, the more they can fulfill your wishes! After working with Rachel and Taylor on so many projects, I can tell you that they are the first photographers I call for all my photography needs. Both of these women have spurred on even more inspiration because of their communication and creativity. I’ve entrusted them with many projects and hope to work on many more. They’re the best of the best!

6. Wear something that you love and that suits your personal style. You need to look like yourself! This is my last and most important rule of thumb. Wearing something you wouldn’t typically wear will make you feel and look uncomfortable in the photos. If you don’t look like yourself, you won’t feel like yourself, and that will show in the photos. You want to be comfortable in what you’re wearing so that you exude confidence and look your very best.

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As a bonus, were sharing the McKinney's style inspiration board below! Melissa and Shannon decided on the gorgeous Anthropologie dress as the base for the family's look, and pulled together pieces that would look cohesive, and relaxed with the natural outdoor setting. I'm a huge fan of all the timeless neutrals and blush tones that are soft and feminine, with just a touch of girly. 

And PSST! We've partnered with Melissa to offer her styling service within several of our packages! Contact us for more information. 


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xo Rachelxo Rachel


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