Kids at the holidays -- what could be cuter? Everyone loves girls in fancy dresses, little boys in suits, and babies who look sweet enough to eat. But while you'll want to make your child look like the angel he or she (sometimes) is, it's obviously necessary to stay practical. Here are some commonsense pointers.
For starters, don't get too attached to the idea of your child looking "just so." The best you can hope for is that he or she arrives at Grandma's looking close to perfect, and that may mean putting on the outfit right before you head out the door. After that, remember that part of the charm of seeing children dressed up is watching them get a little disheveled. You'll also be able to relax more if you stash a spare outfit in the car. Think of it as a potential opportunity to showcase yet another barely worn ensemble!
The clothes you should choose depend partly on age. Some tips:
The holidays are prime time for studio portraits -- photos make great gifts and greeting cards. But parents tend to go overboard when dressing children for a sitting. "Remember, you'll likely be in the studio for 20 to 25 minutes, so kids have to be really comfortable," says Lisa Berman, president and CEO of Picture People, which has 300 locations nationwide. Consider something dressy but casual; khakis, corduroys, overalls, or a jumper.
"The easiest way to help a photographer capture a child's personality is to have that child dressed in whatever she's most comfortable in," Berman says. "Ask yourself, 'What clothes represent my child's personality?' Chances are it's not a tuxedo or a crinoline."
Keep the focus on your child rather than on what he or she wears. "Avoid something like a Santa suit, which dominates the picture," Berman says. And don't try anything radically new, like putting a bunch of barrettes in your daughter's hair if she doesn't normally wear them. Need to calm baby? A prop that means something special, like a favorite teddy bear or toy, will look good -- mainly because it will get a smile.
Plenty! American Baby has dressed countless babies for their close-up. Here's a little bit of what we've learned:
We know, it's exhausting to get ready for every possible scenario when you leave the house. But at holiday time, it pays to be overprepared, since shops may be closed and activities are frantic enough.
You'll be taking plenty of photos yourself at this time of year. Here are tips from experts at PhotoWorks.com:
Originally published in American Baby magazine, December 2003.
All content here, including advice from doctors and other health professionals, should be considered as opinion only. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.