The People You Don’t Need to Include in Your Family Portraits

Have you ever wondered what the cutoff point is for the family photos?
by Sophie Ross

It’s not out of the ordinary to get your family portraits blown up and framed after your wedding (you’ll cherish them forever, after all). So do you really want that relative you’ve never spoken to or your brother’s ex-girlfriend hanging over your mantle? Probably not. The moral of the story is, you have to draw the line somewhere, and we’re here to help if you’re not sure where. Below, find the four types of people you don’t have to include in your family portraits.

Your Siblings’ Significant Others

It might sound harsh, but your sister’s boyfriend of two months doesn’t have to be included in the wedding photos you’ll keep forever (after all, you don’t want to feel silly looking back on them in a few years). It’s an awkward situation, yes, especially if your other sister is in a more serious, long-term relationship, and you decide you want to include her partner. And if you choose not to include anyone who isn’t officially in the family (aka married to your siblings), then that’s your decision. At the end of the day, it’s just important to be sincere about who you want—or don’t want—to include, and why.

Any Cousins

This one’s entirely to you, but your family portraits will, for the most part, simply include your immediate family. You’ll probably want shots with your grandparents if you’re lucky enough to have them there—and in some cases, your aunts or uncles for a nice generational shot—but you might not need or want photos with your cousins if you’re not particularly close with them.

Young Children (Yes, Even Nieces and Nephews)

Again, this is entirely up to you—but any children, like nieces, nephews and other young offspring in your family aren’t required to be a part of your portraits. Plus, they might be more difficult to reign in during the photography process, which could slow down and delay your itinerary.

Distant Relatives You Barely Know

This should go without saying. Even if your mom insists that you include your Great Aunt Susan who you’ve only met twice, you’re allowed to say “no” to distant relatives for the group photos (just make it clear from the beginning and do so tactfully as to not hurt anyone’s feelings). After all, you’ll keep these photos forever, and you have every right to choose who you’ll want to have in them.

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