2020 and 2021 have brought some difficult changes to our lives, there is no doubt. One thing so many families are facing is not seeing their loved ones for major holidays, birthdays, or even just summer visits. Extended family shoots have risen in demand with more families finding time to be all together for the first time in a few years. Documenting grandchildren with grandparents, beloved aunts and uncles, and even just gathering the cousins together is a great reason to hire a professional photographer to help you preserve these memories in an artistic, classic way. These pictures are the ultimate keepsake and serve as a great gift for all members of the family.

The number one question I get asked in preparation for these extended shoots is what to have the family wear for these sessions. In many cases there may be more than 20 members involved in the photo, so simply having everyone perfectly coordinating is often unrealistic. I am going to take a huge weight off your shoulders when I share this little hot tip: you don't actually need to stress about wardrobe. You know what makes your family wonderful and unique: the make up of all the people and their personal styles! There is NO need to rush out and buy a whole new family wardrobe for the photo session. What I will encourage you to do is talk about style with your family members...do you want casual or dressy? Indoors or outdoors? Field, flowers, or urban?

Focus on a few colors to be sure to weave in but keep it neutral and simple: creams, tans, soft tones. Not everyone in the family needs to be wearing the "theme colors" to pull off a great photo. I like images a bit "messy" and less matchy-matchy when it comes to larger family shoots. Think layers and tones, add a little visual intrigue with a scarf or hat. There is so much opportunity in larger family shoots to have a range of colors and textures in clothing and I have found that clothing choice actually doesn't play a large impact in the success of an extended shoot. Still a bit nervous about dressing your extended family? Consider a quick browse on Pinterest to look at different color tones that flow nicely together-remember to build in some of the naturals to your palette and you're all set!