Preparing for Your Newborn Session
Welcoming your sweet new babe to the family and becoming a mother for the first time or the fifth time can be both a beautiful and overwhelming time. My desire for your session is to not only leave you with images that will forever make your heart swell, but for the time to be one that is relaxed and filled with sweet snuggles instead of worry and stress. By far the most asked questions is "What do I wear???" First and foremost, simple is best and comfort reigns. Now this doesn't mean wear your sweats and a t-shirt with spit stains! If you have just given birth then the post-partum body is a body that is very new to you and you may very well still be experiencing pain, especially if you're recovering from a c-section and have an incision to be mindful of. Dress in such a way that you are physically comfortable with what you're wearing. When picking out outfits, start with mama's outfit and build from there. Whether shopping your closet or a store, think about the colors in your home and strive for colors that compliment. For example, if your bedroom is one of soft neutrals, whites, blues and grey, a hot pink top might be a bit shocking. Next, think about the texture or details of your clothing. A large buffalo print plaid, a dress with a small flower print, or a lacy top all can add something special to your images. Lastly, think about adding layers that compliment the dress or top you have chosen. Here are some example pairings: a subtle lacy top with a floral kimono or robe, a dress with a cardigan or even a tee or tank with a chambray button down can all be quite beautiful. Remember though, sometimes an extra layer might be too much so edit as appropriate. Here are some favorite brands that you can look at, not to purchase but for clothing inspiration: J Crew, Madewell, Free People, or the Gap. I am happy discuss and help plan outfits prior to your session. Or just ask me upon my arrival and we can quickly shop your closet. Once mama's outfit is picked, it's time for dad. Choose a shirt style and color that compliments mama's outfit. As for baby, again, simple is best! Simple onesies with woven pants or nothing at all but a favorite swaddle blanket are wonderful!
Some things to avoid:
Please avoid shirts with screenprinting or logos. Be mindful of pattern size. Very small patterns such as a pinstripe often do not photograph well and cause a "dizzy" effect when viewed.
I typically do not bring props to session because I want everything about the images to be all about you. When I think about a session, I think about creating a heirloom that will be passed down to the next generation, your child. So if you have family items such as a baby blanket that has been passed down then I would love to use it! Make sure favorite swaddle blankets are freshly laundered, they can be beautiful compliments to your outfits and the overall image aesthetic.
Preparing your Home:
Taking care of your baby and yourself during this new time in your life should be your priority! So please don't deep clean your home! I promise, you won't be able to see the dust and if there is something distracting within the photo, I will remove it from the scene. If possible, try to have your home picked up a bit but I will help clear clutter as needed. For many newborn sessions, the master bedroom is a focal point for images so try and have your bed made upon my arrival. You may be noticing a theme here with texture and detail, but as with clothing, adding some texture to your bed can lend itself beautifully to the overall image. So throw a textured throw on the end of the bed and call it good. Lastly, I am a natural light photographer which means I depend on all the natural light we can let in! Open up curtains and blinds and let that light shine.
Babies are babies, they come in all different shapes and sizes, with different personalities and temperaments. Embrace the mood your baby is experiencing that day. Babies are especially perceptive and if your stress level rises, often so does theirs. Try and feed your baby right before the start of our session, a full tummy generally leads to a happier and sleepier baby. Don't stress if baby needs to be fed during the session. If you're breastfeeding this is a great time to capture those images if you so desire or I use this time to capture nursery details. If you choose to have breastfeeding images taken, those images are never shared on any public forum, website or social media. You are welcome to share those images as you choose. About an hour or so before the start of the session, I recommend setting your thermostat a few degrees warmer than your typical setting. Warm babies also tend to be happier babies. Sometimes a change of scenery or handing the baby off to someone different can reset moods for a bit. My arms are available for soothing so don't be surprised if I offer to take a turn to see if trying something different will help.