Tips For Great Family Portraits at JcPenny Studios

Twice a year I take the kids up to JcPenney for their portrait sitting. It’s generally for their birthday photo, but I always end up purchasing the photos of both of them together because they are just so darned cute!

Lately I’ve had good luck with our sessions. I guess 20 years of taking the kids in for their photos has taught me a few tricks.

  • EmmaEthanCloseHugTry to schedule for mid morning when bellies are full.
  • Never schedule right before or during nap times.
  • Bring a favorite toy to distract with. It may end up in the photo, but most times it’s adorable.
  • If your children startle easily, tell the photographer early on. I forgot once and she rattled keys at them… tears ensued.
  • Don’t bring more than 1 change of clothes. My kids get testy with multiple clothing changes.

A few other helpful tips include:

Dress for Portrait Success

  • Keep clothing simple. Try to choose solid colors for your portraits. Avoid large, bold patterns such as plaids and stripes. Remember, bright colors also draw attention away from your face.
  • Avoid short sleeves and tank tops. Long sleeves will draw attention away from your arms and helps bring the focus back to your face.
  • jcpportraits’ photographers may suggest a full-length pose. Make sure you coordinate portrait clothing from head to toe.
  • Darker clothing slims. Choose shades of black, brown, blue, dark green and other jewel-toned colors. Light tones tend to emphasize body size.
  • Scoops or v-necks flatter shorter necks and full faces. Turtlenecks or high-necked garments flatter longer necks and slender faces.
  • Keep clothing consistent. Dress everyone in the same style. Don’t mix casual and formal clothing in portraits.

Coordinate Colors

  • Wear light on white. Light pastel or white clothing looks best against a light-colored or white portrait background.
  • Wear dark on dark. Dark clothing looks best against darker backgrounds and creates a more formal mood in portraits.
  • Don’t mix light and dark colors in portraits. Show your style in small accents. Save stronger colors and patterns for accessories like scarves and neckties.

I found JcPenney Portrait Studios right after I had Ethan. A flyer arrived with a special I couldn’t resist, so off we went for his 1 month photos. I love how relaxed their atmosphere is, how natural most of the poses look, and oftentimes how they let my children lead the way. The photo to the right was taken when the kids decided to hug on their own.

Throughout the month of April JcPenney Portraits is offering a $20 for 6 traditional portrait sheets promotion (mix and match size and images) as well as one free $9 sitting fee. It’s a great time to give them a try!

To find a studio near you, simply click on schedule an appointment and a zip code box will appear.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of jcpenney Portrait Studio. I was asked to create a Pinterest Board and pin at least five (5) pins. I give jcpenney the right to repin any or all images/original content from this board. I received a promotional item as a thanks for my participation.


  1. Betty Baez says

    Aaaw that’s a cute pic great tips!

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