Client Guides

April 11, 2023

Top Newborn Photo Questions | Northern Virginia Newborn Photographer

top newborn photo questions by newborn photographer

Top Newborn Photo Questions | Northern Virginia Newborn Photographer

If you have questions about newborn photos, I’m here to help! As a lifestyle newborn photographer in Northern Virginia, photographing your little one in those early days is one of my specialties. Bringing home your baby is such a special time. Documenting those early, fleeting days is something you will never regret. But when do you take those photos? What does the process look like? I’m here to answer those questions and more.

What is the difference between a lifestyle newborn photos and posed newborn photos?

This is a big one! Simply put, lifestyle photos means the focus is on your natural connections as a family. Posed, in contrast, is all about putting baby in a very specific pose and taking individual photos of baby in that pose. All of my newborn sessions are lifestyle. While I provide posing guidance to capture the prettiest light and settings possible, I don’t physically pose baby or use any props.

Instead, my storytelling style allows you to be fully present in the moment, soaking it all in. I always get individual photos of baby, but I let baby lead the way. We’ll swaddle baby and put baby on my newborn bed at the studio, but I let your baby stretch out and simply … be your baby in the photos!  Learn more here.


Where should I take newborn photos?

When you work with me, you have two options: at my natural light photography studio in Sterling, VA, or in the comfort of your own home. Studio sessions take a minimalist approach, focusing on just your connection. White linens, the plain white wall or my neutral backdrop and plenty of natural light also make this space ideal for film photography if that’s something you want. You can see examples below!


On the other hand, in-home sessions allow you to document this unique time in a place you’re the most comfortable. If you have pets you want in the photos, this is also a great way to include them. We often take photos in the nursery as well so you can have photos of that special room.

A few things to think about: how much light does your home get? If you have smaller windows or you don’t get much light, let me know ahead of time. We can often make it work by staying right next to windows or getting creative, but it’s best to know this ahead of time. Also keep in mind your home decor will be in the photos. If your walls are painted a dark color, I can’t give you the light, bright look you see in my studio photos. At the end of the day, no matter which option you choose, you’ll love having photos of this special time!


in-home newborn photos

What’s the best time to take newborn photos?

I recommend taking photos in the first 1-3 weeks of baby’s life. Why? Baby is oh so tiny at this age. Having photos of those tiny little toes and fingers is always adorable! Newborns grow quickly in the first month, so if you want those features captured as they were in the early days, aiming for 1-2 weeks within that timeframe is ideal. Baby is also sleepier in those first couple of weeks, so if you want sleepy baby photos, it’s best to be on the earlier side of that timeframe. However, at the end of the day, there is truly no right or wrong. Baby will always look adorable, and you won’t regret having photos from this fleeting time as a family!

When should I book my newborn session?

Newborn photographers can only take so many sessions, especially due to the unpredictable nature of baby’s arrival. Babies always run the show! No matter how much you plan, baby will arrive when baby wants to. To ensure I have enough time for my clients, I limit the number of newborn sessions each month. You book based on your due date, and then we wait to pick your official date until baby is here. In order to plan on my end, it’s best if you book at the beginning of your second trimester. That way we can plan all the details like wardrobe and everything else ahead of time!

With that being said, I sometimes have last-minute availability for newborn sessions. If you didn’t get around to scheduling, but you really want photos, you can always inquire here to see if I can fit you in.

Should I get hair and makeup done for my newborn portrait session?

I highly recommend it! Getting pampered the day of your session is a relaxing way to get ready. Many hair and makeup artists even come right to your home, so you don’t even have to leave the house. You can often nurse or hold baby while they work, making these even easier. I provide all of my clients with a list of recommended hair/makeup artists in Northern Virginia / DC / MD so you don’t have to look for one on your own!

What should I wear for newborn photos?

Soft, flowy dresses are a client favorite. They’re beautiful – and comfortable – which is ideal for this stage of healing. They’re also very flexible, so you don’t have to worry about sizing as much. My client closet is filled with dresses that match this description. We have dresses with prints, solids, and a variety of fabric and textures so you can find what you need. I always look for flexible fit, such as wrap style dresses, so you can always be comfortable. Other great options include comfortable pants and a sweater or flowy blouse. I’ll also help you pick out something to wear for everyone else in the family!

What should baby wear during newborn photos?

Keep it simple and sweet with a white onesie for the first outfit. For the other outfit, we’ll do a neutral swaddle in white, ivory, or cream. This allows all the focus to be on baby’s adorable features. Anything more elaborate can often distract from baby’s face. If you want to add a bow or other accessory, keep it small and simple as well. The studio has swaddles, and I also bring them to you  for in-home sessions! So you don’t have to worry about that part. Some families also like to bring a sentimental item such as a special blanket to be in just a few photos as well. You can browse my newborn outfit Pinterest board here with links if you want onesie ideas!

Can siblings be in the photos?

Absolutely! Here’s a list of photos we typically get: individual photos of baby, the entire immediate family, siblings with baby, mom and dad with baby (together and individually). This gives you a gallery with variety so you can always remember this special time.

I hope this helps you plan for your own newborn photos! If you have more questions, or if you’re interested in booking a newborn session with me, you can inquire at the link below. I’ll be in touch with detailed pricing and availability.




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