How to prepare for your in-home family session
You've just made a meaningful investment in your family archives.
I'll handle the logistics, the flow of the session, and the final product. All you need to focus on is being present as your fabulous selves.
In order to help you maximize your fabulousness and minimize your stress, I've put together some important tips on how to prepare for your session.
If you are here on this page, it means that you have chosen to do your family session IN-HOME. This. Is. Exciting!!
It means, no rushing to get into the car, no dealing with unexpected traffic, no plan B needed for inclement weather, and that you and your family can be authentically you in your own environment. It means snacks are at your kids' disposal as well as favorite toys and books. It means that snuggles on the bed and couches will happen and outfit changes are easy and doable. Want to do a toast with some champagne or sip on some hot coffee during the session? Do it!
Now, let's discuss how to prepare so it's the most epic...
WARDROBE - part I - clothes
Figuring out wardrobe options for your session can be overwhelming. Don't let it be! These photos are for you and your family, so they should represent just that.
Plan yours and your family's outfits (and make any necessary purchases) at least one week in advance so that there is time for adjustments if needed.
Pick up to 3-4 colors. They do not have to match, as matchy-matchy is a thing of the past. Colors can coordinate and complement each other.
Patterns are ok! As long as they complement each other and are in-line with the color scheme.
Avoid neon colors. They can cause unpleasant color-casting on the face.
Avoid lettering and logos for a more classic look. Sometimes, if understated, lettering can be ok, however, make sure it is intentional.
Don't be afraid to go fancy (or casual). Again, this session is for YOU. In-home sessions lend themselves to casual attire, however you can certainly glam it up if you please!
WARDROBE - part II - feet matter
Feet are created equal. Don't let the wrong footwear ruin your phenomenal outfit choices! Your entire body, including your feet, will be photographed. Here are some tips on how to make sure those feet are photo-ready.
Don't be afraid to go bare/shoeless! Bare feet are perfect for in-home sessions. If you do go bare, think about your toes and whether you want them polished or not. Both are fine, just make sure they don't have 4-week old chipped polish on them like mine do right now :). Shoeless with socks is also a perfect style for in-home sessions. If this is your jam, make sure you are wearing socks that are in-line with your outfit and that they "go" with the vibe of the session.
The style of shoe should be in-line with the style of your clothes. If you'll be wearing shoes for your in-home session, take note: Comfort IS important, yes, and sneakers are ok. But! All sneakers are NOT created equal. In general, athletic-type sneakers, even when you're dressed casually, don't translate well in photos. If sneakers are your jam, go for it! Maybe get a new funky pair, or wear some that are simple and neutral.
One more note about shoes & socks... If you choose to wear shoes and also socks, that is A-OK! But just don't forget that your socks WILL show. They will show when you are sitting down for photos, and sometimes when you're standing. Nothing ruins a nice dress shoe like an athletic sock. Don't let that happen to you. If you wear socks, make sure they're on point with your look. You'll thank me later!
PREPARING YOUR HOME
Your outfits are sorted out. Everyone has tried them on and is happy. You've picked out your shoes/socks/footwear, or chosen to go bare. Ready. Set. GO. But wait! Not quite yet. What about your home? Here are some tips on getting it photo ready.
Open shades, blinds and curtains. I am a natural light photographer. This means that the more natural light, the better. Ideally, I would like to walk around your house when I arrive to scope out the spots with the best light. It's helpful if prior to my arrival, you pull all shades, blinds, curtains to the MOST open position. Also, please turn off overhead lights. Twinkle lights are ok.
Tidiness. As a mom, I know how hard it is to keep a tidy house! Fear not - your house does not need to look like it just finished a makeover from The Home Edit or free of signs of life. BUT! Some basic tidying of the floor and horizontal surfaces can go a long way. Also assess lamp shades and make sure they are straight, as well as wall hangings. If there are nests of loose cords, do you best to hide them. A quick vacuum, especially if you have pets, is also a great idea.
Let's move around! The beauty of an in-home session is that we are in YOUR environment. Let's make the most of it and use the space. We can bounce around from the living room, play room, master bedroom, kids' bedroom(s), kitchen, dining area, porch, back yard, etc. If you're interested in using bedrooms, make sure your choice of bedding is intentional, just like your outfits.