One of my favorite parts of the holiday season doesn’t involve the gifts, food, and all the craziness. What I look forward to, is keeping in touch with family and friends. And one way we do this is by sharing holiday cards! I love sending pics showing how much my kiddos have grown. And I really enjoy seeing all of the other family’s in our life- how much their kids have grown, the new additions since last year, and even the family animals that make it into the photos.
We have started a regular tradition of having a professional photographer (and now friend) take our photos each Fall. I love being able to look over the photos every year and look back on the different stages the kids were in. You don’t have spend a lot of money to capture wonderful images and have the keepsake of the different places you are in each year. A friend or family member might be willing to help or even set up a tripod to capture the moments!
To capture great photos (both classic and silly), no matter who the photographer is, I think it comes down to a great location, and a coordinated look. For a location, I have found that being outside in natural light, captures the best photographs. Over the years we have picked a range of places from parks in the country to historic sights in the city. My favorites have been the locations with rustic structures and interesting backgrounds like old buildings or water sources. This year, we chose the historic Valley Forge Park in Valley Forge, PA. What a place! Beautiful fields, rustic buildings, old stone walls, a wooden bridge over a stream- so many great photo ops.
Once I think of a location, I work on coordinating outfits. I usually don’t look for exactly the same item or print for us to wear. But rather colors or prints that compliment each other and pop in the photos. This year I was focused on a color scheme and was deciding between navy and green, red and black, and white and black. My go-to store/online retailer for family outfits has been the Gap Brands year after year. I find that they have so many trendy and classic styles and colors to choose from, that I have lots of options to work with between the brands to find the perfect look.
I always look for the kid’s outfits first. I find they are the hardest to land on for style and price. So by focusing on them first, I find it much easier to pair back the grown up outfits since ours are usually more classic items (hopefully that we already own or mostly own!) After looking at all of the options online, I selected the navy and green color theme. We are a very casual family so I like our outfits to reflect that. We are always in jeans for the most part. But I love having my daughter dress up in a pretty dress (while she will still wear one) to make the photos look a little more special than our day-to-day. I found this adorable navy dress with bright colored embroidery from Gap. It has a nice pop of color but still neutral being grounded in navy. When I saw the green and navy plaid shirt from Old Navy, I envisioned that they could work really well together.
Here are the outfit details for the kids (affiliate links):
Once I have the kids all taken care of, then it’s easier to decide on the outfits for the grownups. Since I grounded the looks in navy, I knew both my husband and I would wear navy tops or sweaters. Keeping the casual look, we both paired them with jeans. Then to keep overall look of being more casual with our outdoor setting, we picked tan/light brown shoes so they wouldn’t stand out too much.
Here are the outfit details for the grown ups (affiliate links):
I usually do a quick lay down as a double check that all the items will go together like this:
Once I feel good about the options then I just let the rest go and trust our photographer! When the kids were little, I stressed so much about getting the perfect shot, if they would smile, and if we would all look good in the same photo! But now over the years I’ve learned to just enjoy the moment! Like so many other moments and stages, you can’t control it all. And if you try to (at least for me), the fun is all gone. Documenting these family moments isn’t just about a good looking holiday card, but also about enjoying having fun and being silly all together. The amazing photos are just the extra bonus!
I hope you enjoy capturing the photos with your family- whatever that looks like to you. Just enjoy being together!
Here is the final product! And of course our other favorite family member had to join in the pic:)
If you have not been to Loft lately, you need to!! They have really stepped up their game this season! From the beautful sweaters to the amazing outerwear to the super soft loungewear, they have it all.
Check out my favorite items from the current collection right here! I love all the textures you will find right now all over the store. For reference I am wearing a small on everything, which is my normal size in loft tops.
This is the outfit I will be dreaming of changing into everyday! Especially after I get home from work! It is unbelievably soft, I wish you could feel this fabrication through your screen!
This time of year you can never have too many of these sherpa tops!
This is just a handful of the amazing items to be found right now at Loft!! It all makes perfect gifts for the holidays too!!
To close out the month of October I am bringing you my top 5 Amazon finds! I find that my Amazon finds are usually full of hits and some misses, but this month I only have hits!!! Below are the items you need to know about!!
This is my absolute favorite Amazon buy yet! I actually purchased this at the end of last season but it is back in stock and you needed to know about it. It is an oversized fit but fitted in the arms (which I ❤️), super soft and cozy (not itchy at all) and has the largest cowl neck I have ever seen! I usually wear a size small, this item is one size fits all. Comes is 11 colors!
This may be one of the softest Sherpa fleece I own. I love the asymmetrical zipper, the cute cozy pockets, and the slightly roomy fit. I am wearing a size small. Also, comes in 11 colors & prints (yes there’s leopard!)
I reach for these joggers every weekend. I love the fit, the fabrication, the waistband (fits like a mid rise), the pockets, and the cuff at ankle. The waistband is a substantial 3 inches and has a tie. The cuff at ankle is also substantial and allows you to wear full length or pull up to wear more cropped. I am wearing a size small.
This sweater is VERY light weight. Almost more like a knit top. It is also very roomy to layer over a tank. Looks great off shoulder and not. I love the high low length which is perfect to wear with leggings. For only $17.99 it’s a bargain!! I am wearing a size small.
My family is head down to Disney World next week and we are SUPER excited!! This t-shirt is going to be perfect for this trip! This is more of a fitted tee, so if you want it to be roomy you need to size up one size. The sleeve detail is really cute!! I am wearing a size small.
What are your favorite amazing finds? We would love to give them a try and if we like them they may end up in our next Monthly Amazon Finds!!
Fall is the time to refresh my Denim options. For the past 10 years, at least, I feel like I have only been reaching for my skinny jeans. Remember when skinny jeans first were becoming a thing, after our boot cuts were becoming “old”? At that time I thought you had to be a certain body type to wear them, soooooo wrong!! We all can wear them and that is all I have been wearing since.
I have been wearing Old Navy Rockstar Super Skinnies for most of that time. I reach for them everyday, but now I feel I am ready for something new. I have been loving how The straight leg and those cute kick flairs have been looking on all the models on the websites but scared to try myself. Recently I purchased the Cigarette Straight Leg Jeans and the Cropped Boot Cut from the Gap. Check out my review and most importantly what shoes go best with these styles below!
SKINNY – First we will take a closer look at the Old Navy Rockstar Jeans. Like I said, these are my go to jeans of choice. You really just can’t go wrong here. The price, many color and fabric options, and levels of destruction available seems endless at times!
1) They offer low, mid, and high rise. I wear the mid rise and it hits me about a inch below my belly button.
2) These jeans are super skinny from hip all the way down to ankle opening. They also are very stretchy. They will hold their shape all day, so no baggy knees at the end of the day!!
3) I find skinny jeans par well with all shoe styles, but they are your go to jean to wear with tall or over the knee boots.
STRAIGHT LEG – Next we will take a closer look at these Cigarette Fit Jeans from Gap.
1) This particular pair I choose is a high rise. They hit me about a 1/2 inch above my belly button. There are many different styles to choose from.
2) This fit is fitted through the hip and thigh then a slim straight leg to the ankle.
3) In terms of what shoes work best with this style: higher bootie, pumps, and sneakers. I do not think tucking these into your tall boots will be an option…
CROPPED BOOT CUT – Last we will take a closer look at these super cute cropped boot cut jeans. I love these, but understand they may not be for everyone.
1) These are high rise with exposed button fly. They hit about 1/2 inch above my belly button.
2) They are fitted through hips and thighs then slightly flair out. They hit about 4 inches above my ankle.
3) This for looks great with a higher shaft bootie or tighter shaft tall boot, flats, and I feel they look amazing with heels of any type.
I would love to hear your thoughts!! Send in your comments! (commission links)
A pretty major trend that you are probably already seeing out there for fall is feminine tops or blouses. Think ruffles, rushing, lace, eyelet, floral and animal prints, pleating, and embroidery.
When I think of feminine details the first retailer that comes to my mind is Anthropologie. I just love going in there, it is a true experience for the senses. From the moment you walk in the door you are enveloped in the visual merchandising, which currently feels like you are walking through an autumn forest, then the scent of the amazing candles hit you, followed by the music which is always just perfect compliment to the season.
The first trend is the Plaid trend. You will find it in pants, blazers and tops. This plaid top is so pretty with buttons down the back and a simple fringe hem detail.
Next we have the Ruffle trend. The white tunic is so perfect for the summer and will be perfect in the fall layered under a duster cardigan.
This animal print blouse is gorgeous with ruffle detail on wrist & hem, and rushing at the waist.
Lace! Love lace! These tops are only a portion of what Anthro has to offer in lace!
Prints! Animal and florals! There are the most gorgeous prints.
This next top is just a simple sweet top for any occasion.
You will definitely get inspired by a trip to Anthropologie this season!!
Hey there!! I found some the cutest tops at Loft this week I just had to show you all!! Loving all the super cute, feminine details.
The lace and ruffle on these two style are a must for now and will be perfect to layer under cardigans in the fall!
This adorable sweater caught my eye right away!! I love the super cute embroidery! If you like it fitted go for your regular size, if you would prefer it to be more roomy, then size up 1 size.
I love the slightly oversized fit of this stripe number!! And love how it looks with this military jacket! This jacket is amazing! The fabrication is perfectly drapy. It looks great casual like here or dressed up with a blouse and cute heels!!
I had to throw in this look too! Love the wide leg pant with this duster cardigan. Such a great transitional look!