Preparations for the Day of your Session:
It's best to feed your baby right before we start the session. Either right before you leave home for my studio or as soon as you arrive. This will help your little one sleep better as they will be fed, changed and toasty warm. It's best to keep your newborn in a zip-up onesie, even two if you need (during cooler months). Avoid anything that goes over their head as it stirs them awake and disrupts their sleep when we're undressing them. Over dressing will only make them fussier as you'll have to wake them to undress them. Avoid little socks and restricting items that leave imprints on the skin. Even if you have not yet introduced a pacifier, please bring one with you just in case we need it for soothing.
Keep in mind that babies in their first few weeks of life feed constantly, especially if they are breast fed. Make sure you have allotted time for baby feedings and cuddles. Bring your pump with you, or extra formula if you're not breastfeeding. It's better to be over prepared than under prepared if your baby is overly hungry. A happy baby leads to a happy session. Sessions typically are up to three hours of time. Please do not schedule anything right after so you can relax and not worry about running late somewhere.
Between the baby shower and all the cute clothes you just couldn't pass up at the store, your newborn probably has a very large wardrobe. Having said that, a baby in their "Birthday Suit" is the best option. I have plenty of newborn sized knit items from pants, hats, bands, wraps and diaper covers (too many to fully list). It's all about preference, choose the option that you are most comfortable with.
If you want to also have family photos taken in addition to your baby's portraits, make sure everyone is dressed in clothing with complimentary tones. Your outfits don't need to be matchy-matchy by any means, but they should coordinate well enough that no one looks out of place in the picture. Many moms prefer to dress in darker colors post-delivery and this is perfectly okay. Choosing a black, brown, dark blue or a gray color are all great options. Then simply have dad coordinate to compliment mom. You do not have to come dressed in your outfits when you arrive. The studio is kept VERY warm so that your little one sleeps soundly and comfortably. Dress light and bring your clothes with you to change into (also in case of accidents).
Poses and Props:
Props are a great way to add variety to your session. I have a wide range of props available, including beds, baskets, crates, headbands, hats, clothes, etc. If there is a family heirloom or an item that is very meaningful to you, please mention this to me ahead of time and we can figure out a way to include it into the session. Avid sports fans, dancers, careers and hobbies are just a few to name that can be incorporated to include with your little one.
As a parent of a newborn, you're probably still struggling to get into a solid routine with your baby. Try to keep expectations for your baby's first photo shoot manageable. It is more than likely that your little one will be fussy or even cry during the session. We allot time for lots of snuggles and soothing. Your baby runs the show and will very clearly let us know what they like and don't like. Safety and comfort are my number one concerns when working with your newborn.
Are you looking for a Chicago newborn photographer? I would love to work with you! I offer a fun and unique experience in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago in Wheeling, IL. I also service surrounding areas, including, Buffalo Grove, Deerfield, Northbrook, Vernon Hills, Mount Prospect, Mundelein, Lincolnshire, Libertyville, Glenview, Des Plaines, and other surrounding Chicago suburbs. To book your session, use this form.
Alina Renert Photography is a Chicago newborn photographer, and is a member of The Bump Society by Beauty
& Lifestyle Mommy, a hand picked community of elite businesses nationwide.