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December 1, 2022

Getting the Perfect Picture With Santa

Helpful Hints to get the best pictures of your little ones for Christmas


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Are you planning a photo session with Santa this year? Make sure you get the pics you’re hoping for (i.e. ones you want to display on the mantle, not tuck away in a drawer). You never know what you’ll get with kids, but if you follow these tips, you’ll have the best chance for precious perfection. 

Don’t do it at the mall. 

Long lines and chaos don’t bode well for beautiful photos. When possible, book a local photographer (many offer mini sessions with Santa at their studios—which also means perfect lighting and cute setups, too). If you can’t book a photographer, you might be able to book a Santa to come to your home! If all else fails—head to the mall when it’s likely to be quiet. 

Do pictures with wee ones early in the day. 

You know things start to unravel around naptime and before meals. So book your pictures when it makes the most sense and your child is likely to feel refreshed and happy. 

Acquaint kids with Santa beforehand. 

The fact is that Santa is kind of a stranger…so make sure kids have an idea of who he is to avoid a meltdown. On the day of, take a few moments before handing your kids over to walk by, let kids watch him interact with other kids, and finally actually  introduce them to Santa. You could even take a picture or two all together first to make sure they’re totally comfortable. 

Don’t dress them in red!

We know it’s the color of the season, but if your kids wear red they’ll just blend into Santa. The trick is to keep it neutral or complementary. Try white, gray, or tan, or work green or plaid into their outfit. 

Make sure everyone’s well fed. 

Hungry kids are hangry sitters with Santa, so make sure they’ve eaten a meal or had a quick snack before they climb on his lap. Santa will appreciate it and so will your scrapbook. 

When all else fails, break out the lollies. 

We don’t encourage making this a habit, but holding up a candy cane or lollipop to entice your kiddo to crack a smile can do the trick in a bind. 

Bring their favorite lovey. 

Not only will their special teddy bear or baby doll make kids feel more comfy with Santa, but it’s also an adorable and meaningful photo prop.

Bring their wish list or a letter to give Santa.

This gives kids something to focus on at the appointment, and also captures a special moment when they hand the list to Santa himself. 

Don’t force the lap. 

If kids seem distressed about sitting on Santa’s lap, letting them sit next to him or stand can help save the entire photo session. 

Remember to roll with it.

Sometimes the most magical pictures seem like outtakes in the moment. Keep spirits up and don’t stress, and you’re sure to end up with a pic to treasure.