5 Steps To Perfect Santa Pictures + Best LA Locations

kids ugly santa sweaters cute smiles
  1. Santa looks so nice, I packed mine twice! Yep, we’re packing an extra outfit. Dress up the kids in some regular clothes that won’t make them feel restricted or weird. Fancy clothes makes mom nervous too. When you roll up to the mall after shouting at the kids in the back seat the whole way there “Don’t spill that dress! Not on your new shirt!”.. It tends to rattle the nerves. That doesn’t make for pretty pictures. Instead: LAYER. Pack the perfect christmas sweater, snowy jacket, or Wintery cape and simply bring it with. Right before you get in line at Santa’s House, toss on a top layer of fabulousness and like a flash, your pictures will be mantle-place worthy.
  1. Use the promised after-the-picture candy cane as a bribe. Yes, I said it. Kids get a little sugary treat after a picture with Santa for a reason. Don’t forget to use this to your advantage! The sweet incentive works miracles on picture-day, plus you never want to feed kids an energy-causing snack until AFTER the big moment. Fidgety irritated kids on a sugar-high do not a good picture make. I always slide a couple candy canes of my own in my coat pockets during the season because they are so useful. Smart move Santa!

Book Your Santa Pic at The Americana. I recommend! 

  1. Don’t let the Christmas craziness get the best of you!  Instead: PLAN AHEAD. Sure, sometimes I’ve been whirling through the mall with arms full of bags and eggnog lattes when we happen upon a short line for Santa.. and I think “Hey! Let’s just jump in there!” Hold up, turbo. Check yourself. Don’t risk it. Be smart. Take a breathe. Go get yourself a free chocolate sample at See’s Candies instead. Then when you get home, make an appointment for “Picture Day”. Schedule it in Cozy. Put it on your fridge. Know it like it’s your job. The whole experience, and the pictures, will be a whole lot better thanks to your hard work. #MomBoss

smile pictures hollywood christmas parade                                     Don’t forget to smile, no matter what! – That’s me Hosting the Hollywood Christmas                               Parade on a cold December night. Ready to ride the KOST 103.5 Morning Show Float down Hollywood Blvd

  1. SMILE! Sounds simple, but us moms know that catching the perfect smile on camera can be as rare as catching Santa himself on Christmas Eve. The answer? Practice makes perfect. Start now. Summer, Spring, whatever. When I take pics with the kids I always help them to feel comfortable smiling, let their personalities shine, and express themselves. I also promise they’ll get a chance to make a “nice face” and then after we get a good shot, they can make a “goofy face”. We take one of each. Use this technique for Picture Day with Santa too.

Order The Perfect Handmade Skirt From My Fave: TinyTwirl

  1. Look for that “digital copy” purchase option on the photo booth menu. It’s sometimes hidden. You may have to order off-menu, so be sure to ask Santa’s elf helper about it. The hi-def digital copy is the best because you can print all your own sizes as you need them, or you can order prints from a site like Shutterfly , or even the 1 hr service still offered at most Wallgreens (my fave). Bonus time-saver is that your picture is ready to be uploaded for the Christmas card you’re designing. Oh yeah, and it’s immediately ready to be posted on Facebook- because let’s face it, that’s really how we share our proudest moments with the most people. After you follow these 5 steps, your Santa pictures will be no exception!

snow malibu winter family picture

Now check out some of the best places to get some face-time with Santa. Here’s a great list of local destinations in LA for the Best Holiday Photo Experience, thanks to my friends at LA Parent Magazine.

GOOD LUCK! And no matter how crowded the parking lot , or how long the lines, just remember, Santa’s watching. 😉

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