I started dreaming about what my baby would look like the second I found out I was pregnant with my daughter back in 2014. I got excited about seeing her pictures up on our walls and started thinking about baby announcements.
When I look back on my daughter’s newborn pictures I can’t help but think about how small she was, how much she has grown up and how little I knew about having a baby when I was holding my 7 day old during our portrait session. I laugh now because we’ve come a long way, had a lot of sleepless nights and our love for her has grown exponentially.
Newborn portrait sessions are exciting, but take a little planning.
Newborn Session Tips:
- Best time to take newborn pictures is between 5-10 days old. Any later, they become more alert and won’t stay in a deep sleep as we move them around or change their clothes.
- Feed the baby 30 minutes before your photographer arrives so your baby is sleepy for pictures. Fed babies are happy, sleepy and easy to photograph.
- Your baby is going to call the shots. Being flexible and patient is important. The best shots come from letting your baby move, stretch, yawn and smile. Your baby not like some of the poses that you pinned on pinterest, so be flexible with your baby’s preferences.
- Keep the baby warm! If you are going for “naked baby” shots, a small heater in the room will help keep your little one comfortable and asleep.
- White noise will remind the baby of being in the womb and keep he/she relaxed throughout the session. If you don’t have a sound machine, there are great (and free!) apps available for your phone.
- If you’re including pictures with siblings, do those pictures first. Older kids typically have short attention spans, so by including them in the pictures first will allow them to player watch a movie while the new baby is having his/her session.
- Relax. If you’re stressed out, the baby will be stressed out. This sounds silly, but it’s true! Trust your experienced newborn photographer, know that they’ve worked with many babies in the past and trust that they know what works/doesn’t work.
- For Mom and Dad:
- Don’t be afraid to be in some of the pictures! My favorite images from my daughter’s newborn session were ones that included my husband and me.
- Choose outfits that you’re comfortable in. Your body isn’t going to be back to normal before your session so it is important to dress comfortably in clothes that distract from your insecurities.
- Choose an announcement after you get your pictures back. Sometimes your favorite announcement online doesn’t look good with your favorite picture from the newborn session. Wait to choose an announcement until you see your proofs and decide which picture you want to use!
- Buy swaddles, hats, bows and headbands before your baby is born. You won’t want to go shopping right after you deliver and Etsy shops can take a while to ship the products.
- Ask your photographer if they have any swaddles, hats, headbands, etc. They might have some that you can borrow!
Favorite Etsy shops for Newborn hats, swaddles, headbands and bows:
Little Penny Candy Shop
Fancy Free Finery
Sugar Plum Lane Baby
Little Urban Gem
Get Your Craft On Shop
Turbans For Tots
Ellie May Designs