Jacqueline Horning Photography

How to Prepare for a Newborn Session

newborn, Real Lifejacqueline horningComment

Happy Winter, folks!  

I'm happy to say that even though it's cold, wet, and pretty messy outside here in Philadelphia, I'm preparing for a few newborn sessions and anticipate them being as cozy as ever.  There are lots of ways to approach a newborn session.  I love images that have a casual, relaxed, every-day-ness kind of quality to them.  I thought I'd share some of the information I typically tell clients before their baby arrives.    

I shoot newborn sessions in client homes.  This keeps things comfortable for new parents and allows for client personalities to come through subtly since we use their house as a backdrop.  No preparation is required; you just brought a new baby into the world, so I'm happy to shuffle things around if need be.  If you have time before the baby comes and want to prep a bit:

  • Straighten or clear off nightstands.  I like to use the master bedroom and clutter detracts from images.  
  • Crank the heat.  If you're willing and able, a house set to 75 degrees or so gives us the most flexibility.  We're asking your newborn to hang out un-swaddled wearing a diaper (maybe!) so they'll feel a chill quickly.  If the whole house is warm, we can move around without waiting for a space heater to kick in.  I bring a space heaters with me as well and can use as needed.  
  • Put light, solid color linens/blanket on your bed.  I love how clean and soft it looks and really highlights the subject.  Or, if there is a special quilt you'd like to use, that is great too.  Baby Cole looks adorable on Mike and Wendy's quilt, don't you think? 

Preparing your baby:

  • Some photographers recommend feeding your baby just before I arrive or at the start of the session to keep him or her full and sleepy.  I have no problem stopping in the middle of a session, so do what works for you!  
  • Dress baby in (only) a plain white diaper.  This brand fits the bill too, since plain white disposables are hard to find.  If you have special bloomers or diaper covers you want to use, that's great too.  Please leave clothes off but do wrap that babe and keep him warm!  
  • Have any baby blankets you'd like to use out and available.  I'm happy to weigh in if you're looking for help!

What to wear:

  • Solid, light colored solids are a good choice.  Shirts free of buttons and logos are best. 
  • Yoga pants or wedges?  Messy bun or makeup?  Totally up to you.  Dressing up (from dark jeans and a statement necklace to dressier outfits) lends to a more formal look while cotton dresses, tanks, or shirts tend to keep things Saturday-morning-casual.  Dress for the kind of images you'll want later on.      

It's also helpful to think about how you'll want to use these images.  Will you want an album for your coffee table?  Framed images in the living room, nursery, bathroom, hallway, or laundry room?  Something for your office desk?  

This time, I'm thinking about this along with you!  I'm planning on getting an album for this baby, our first, and adding "editions" for future children we may have.  I'm thinking the grandmothers may want a little accordion book to keep in their purses.  A single print is never enough for proud grandmas!  :)  I'll have to remember to let you know what we end up doing.

Expecting a new addition?  Head over to the contact page to start a conversation and book your session!