To Match or Not to Match

2:02 PM

Katie Heaney aptly opined about "matchy matchy" group attire in her book, Never Have I Ever: My Life (So Far) Without a Date:

"It has often been hard for me to know if people are serious when they talk about making T-shirts. Just to be clear: Nobody ever means it, ever. Making and wearing matching, themed T-shirts is embarrassing. Unless you want to make some with me right now, or something."
 When taking group pictures, even if just the kids, it is often difficult to decide whether to match or not.  If you decide to match, how much is too much? And if you don't match, how do you compliment each other without looking like Bert and Ernie?

If you opt for really matching (twins, for instance), go with neutral colors.  This will eliminate the distraction of matchy-matchy colors or patterns that may overwhelm the subjects of the photos.

 Additionally, it allows you to play with accessories that can be matchy or slightly different.

You can also be matchy with just the accessories.

Maybe you want to be complimentary, but not matching.  
Pick outfits that have details of the same color.

Notice how bright colors against light colors stand out and allow you to see where one person ends and another begins.

Patterns don't have to match; you can choose a color theme to compliment each other.  Do be aware that too many patterns can be visually overwhelming though.  Downplay patterns by adding solid sweaters, and other accessories such as scarves or vests.

If you want to go all rogue, be completely un-matching!

 You don't have to stick to any color scheme to have a great family photo.  I mean, most families don't walk out of the house on a Tuesday color coordinated, so maybe you don't want your photos to be either.  Things to keep in mind when going rogue: what colors look good with your skin tones (orange has never been my color), consider who you want to stand out more for the brightest color/pattern, and lay out the clothes next to each other before picture day to see how you feel about them together.

Whether you choose to match, or not to match, here are some universal tips for better family photo style:

  • For the love, stay away from logos (t-shirts, hats, hoodies)
  • Your shoes will show up-- neon colored Nikes may steal your spotlight
  • If you want to hang these on your wall, consider what style and colors your home is
  • Dress for the season (if you are freezing at a photo shoot, it will show in your face)
  • Be true to your own style - If you are a Rachel Ray, don't be a Kim Kardashian for picture day!
You're going to look great!

If you would like help figuring out what to wear for picture day, consider adding a stylist to your photo package!  Style packages for Tumbling Sparrow Photography are available through collaboration with Thr3eStyling.

Photos by Tumbling Sparrow Photography

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