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I get asked all the time, what should I wear for my family photos!?

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So, I have put together this blog of couples and families who I think I did it right — and will help inspire you for your photos this Fall! Read my little tips before and after images that describe why I think it works!

  • Coordinate your family’s outfits.  Find a common color and “weave” it through your family.  For example, let’s say you choose the color gray (awesome, neutral color).  An idea would be gray slacks for dad, mom wears gray scarf, son wearing gray polo, or choose a dress with small prints that have gray (or a similar shade) in them, etc.  Not every member of the family has to wear it, but you’re aiming to try to tie the look together, and color is one of the easiest ways to do it.
  • If you’re going for more subtle, softer colors, consider adding pops of color through your accessories (shoes, scarves, belts, hair accessories, etc.)
  • Consider allowing one person in your family to be the “wild card.”  Maybe that person is wearing a bold shade of green or a fun print.  If so, make sure that the other family members are complimenting that person and not competing with them.  In other words, you shouldn’t have other people also wear green or bold prints that might clash.
  • Layer up!  Fall is the perfect time of year to layer your clothes.  It adds texture, and also gives you more options of different looks without the hassle of changing outfits.
  • Wear clothes that you’re comfortable in.  Now isn’t the time to break in new shoes or wear anything tight or constricting.  If you’re not comfortable, it will show in the images.   Pick clothing that accentuate your best feature or make you feel good.  It will show in all the best ways!

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When choosing outfits for family photos, I always stick to a neutral palette first and then select one or two colors to feature. This year, I used cream, gray and navy and then added touches of rust and red for Fall. I love how they are laid back and comfortable yet stylish; it works in any location setting. Notice how there aren’t any logos or writing on any of the clothes? That helps to keep the photographs from being dated and the focus stays on the members of the family, where it belongs, instead of the clothes. These outfits would look amazing on the walls of any room and look good in any style home, not to mention they would make fantastic holiday cards.

* Don’t be afraid to add cute accessories. Love the cute flower crowns these little girls wore!

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I’m a little bit in love with plaid:)Love his plaid and navy shirt perfectly complimented by her navy dress with a brown leather belt!

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How fun is this hat!? SO adorable! Cute ankle boots. Perfect soft colors.

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Perfect color palette. Each member of the family has navy on in some part of their outfit. Navy plaid with the olive green, too cute! And love the use of layers.

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Cute scarf! Adorable cardigan. Perfect!

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How sweet is this little!? Tights, boots, skirt, sweater — perfect! (Way to layer!) And the little girls skirt coordinates with Mom’s sweater. Nailed it!

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ANNDDD here’s Nick and I last Fall:)Had to throw this in here when I was searching for images and found it! (Yes Nick has words on his shirt, don’t do this! We weren’t planning on a “photo session” just took a couple at the pumpkin patch)

But I love all the pumpkins in this shot, cute boots, layer a flannel and jacket, sweater and scarf. My scarf pulls out the navy in Nick’s flannel. And they are all complimenting colors. And I was reminiscing:)

SO excited to see you all this Fall! Hope this post helped!

 

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Meet the beautiful S family!!

I have recently fallen in love with in home lifestyle sessions. There is something so genuine and pure about photographing a new family in their home. Home really is where the heart is… Where we make so many of our memories, where we gather with our families, where we cuddle in bed on Sunday mornings, and where we bring home our babies at just a few days old.

I am so excited to share this sweet session with you!

I would love to photograph you in your home! Please get in touch:)

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I LOVED photographing Anna and Cory! These two share something truly special. Their love is so effortless – a true joy to witness and document.

Anna has such amazing taste! Her details were adorable – but her spirit even better! They were both so relaxed and just happy to be together. Anna and Cory had such an elegant day and I am so glad they chose me to be there. Congrats you two!!

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Welllllllllll hello everyone!

I literally tell myself once a day to blog more. Ashley, blog today. Ashley, blog tomorrow. Hey Ashley can you please blog this week? I’m trying I’m trying I promise!!

The last time I did a personal blog post was June 4th (you can view it here: http://ashleywestphotography.com/a-little-life-update-ashley-west-photography-and-some-personal-stuff-too/ ) — SO I am going to update you from this point forward…

This post is going to catch you up on whats going on in my life at the moment, business and personal! (see a little iPhone instagram photo below of my bridal guide and office workspace!)

Alright, so how’s life looking for Ashley West Photography?

 

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GREAT! We have been cruising through this Spring/Summer. Literally can’t even believe it is the end of August. We are currently in the midst of a 3 weekend break from weddings — yahooooo its been nice! After shooting 20 weddings in 17 weeks I can definitely say I was ready for a little break! I am still catching up on sharing all of those amazing weddings with you! Lots to share, don’t miss them. Stay tuned.

2016 is looking wonderful. I briefly mentioned on instagram that I will be taking less weddings next year. Instead of 30 I plan to shoot about 22 — only ten more spots left! 2016 brides, get in touch!! Once I meet that number I will be booked!

BUT – that’s what we have the adorably wonderful quirky cute Ashley Wallace for. We are a tad behind on blogging her weddings too — but I promise she’s been up to greatness. Ashley Wallace will take wonderful care of you and deliver beautiful imagery that you will have for a lifetime. I want to be at each and every one of your weddings, but if I can’t — I’m certainly glad she can. Don’t be shy, give us a buzz! We can’t wait to hear about your day.

Business life is great as usual and we are so grateful (as usual!)

THANK YOU.

 

And Ashley West!? She’s good too!! A little busier than Ashley West Photography at the moment with all this time off!:)All of the below photos courtesy of my trusty iPhone:)

Nick and I have talked about selling our house for awhile now. We LOVE it. We love this little thing we call home. But when we purchased it we saw it as a starter and an investment. It made sense for us at the time, close to family, low maintenance, cute — we loved it. But we are finally taking the plunge to sell! (We list tomorrow so please send your positive thoughts our way!) The first time I went to Granville, Ohio it was literally love at first sight. I would constantly beg Nick to date night there, walk through the village, get Whits ice cream, drive the 69′ Ford down country roads… The feel of this town is everything I would want in a community. It’s been a dream of mine to live there for awhile — and that is just our plan. We are in a completely crazy transition period here… Listing our current home with no home to move in to, are we nuts!? Maybe! But having faith that it will all work out. So the last month has consisted of patching holes, finishing DIY projects, painting walls and trim, scrubbing every inch of this place, having our dogs run through the house, and scrubbing it again. I am so excited to move. So excited at the thought of a new lifestyle in a beautiful area, but that doesn’t go without the heartache of leaving our first home. I’ve found myself just sitting in each room, just being. Appreciating it. I know I will miss it so much. Just want to thank this little house for keeping us safe and providing us with some pretty amazing times. Wish us luck!

I am so excited at the success of my garden this year! Last year was not as successful. I am still learning how to turn my thumb green — and I think it is slowly but surely working! We have been eating from the backyard more than ever and it makes me so happy. By the way, do any of you need any zucchini? MY GOODNESS. I love my veggies but even I have a hard time eating 60 zucchinis in a month, haha.

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After a long rainy June we finally got some great summer weather. We’ve been taking the top off the wrangler and breathing in that fresh (sometimes humid!) summer time air. Lately my heart has been yearning for Fall, but as soon as these Summer nights are gone I will miss them… So I have been resisting my urge to watch Hocus Pocus and burn pumpkin candles, I am going to live in the now and enjoy the lightening bugs and summer sunsets while I can.

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I turned 27 in July!!

Got one of my absolute favorites, a dip cone. Thanks babe!

“Do not regret growing older, it is a privilege denied to many.” – Unknown

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My Mexico trip with family was really fun! It was just my immediate family. Unfortunately Nick (and my sisters husband) couldn’t make it — but it gave us some family time and for that, I will be forever grateful.

Woke up at sunrise every day – and went to bed watching Disney movies with my sister every night. Add that to beautiful weather, sand in my toes, ocean sounds in my ears, and a nice little suntan and you could say I was in heaven.

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Nick and I are 11 months married. I am having such a hard time believing that our one year anniversary is a month from tomorrow! Pinch me? Can’t be real.

Here’s us practicing our PDA on date night at the drive ins.

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Nick and I are dreamers. I honestly cannot help it! I will wake up on a daily/weekly basis with some grand new idea for our life. Whether thats a business venture, a DIY project, a vacation, a road trip, a Sunday morning adventure, plans on where we’ll live — its endless! Sometimes it gets the best of me – I am so excited for the future that I forget to live right now, in this moment. (#1 goal of mine currently!)

We’ve talked a lot about how amazing it would be to live out west, live in the caribbean, live in my parents basement and travel for years at a time… But what I have come to realize very recently is that I always want to come home. And home for me is Ohio. I have been working to appreciate everything there is that Ohio has to offer, be happy wherever I am. See the beauty in this gorgeous state. Appreciate the corn fields and the cow farms, the short north and amazing food, the rainy days (just more reason to wear my wellies!), the fact that we have four amazing seasons — all of which I love for completely different reasons. Ohio has my heart. So we will travel and explore, but something tells me we will always come home.

My recent travels in combination with my birthday, time off, our fast approaching one year wedding anniversary, the sale of our first house, has all made me realize more than ever that all that really matters in life is happiness. I get better at making mine and everyone elses around me a priority every day. I will leave you with this quote… that is truly everything.

“Whoever is merry and cheerful has always a good reason for so being, namely the very fact that he is so. Nothing can so completely take the place of every other blessing as can this quality, whilst it itself cannot be replaced by anything. A man may be young, handsome, wealthy, and esteemed; if we wish to judge of his happiness we ask whether he is cheerful.” –Excerpt from The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (a must read if you haven’t!)

Until next time – XOX -Ashley

 

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