The Newborn Prop Guide

As much as I love Pinterest, it can be overwhelming – especially when you’re planning a newborn session. With tens of thousands of photos to reference, how do you know what your clients want, or what YOU as the photographer want to offer and keep on-hand?

Big bows or small flowers? Colorful blankets or neutral wraps? There are a lot of options out there!

I’ve been in the newborn photography game for a long time, and I’ve seen SO many styles come and go. Today, I’m sharing the classic, timeless props that work great for just about every session. If you’ve ever wondered exactly what I have on hand in the studio, keep reading for all the details!


Baskets & Blankets

Call me crazy, but there’s no photo sweeter than baby all wrapped up and tucked into a basket! There’s such a small window of time where newborns will be small enough for this shot, so I always make sure to include it. While I realize it’s not for everyone, I’ve got a great wall of baskets and have something to fit every style – from modern gold wire to a dark grey weave.

Baskets also give me a chance to shoot details like fingers and toes, which makes them pretty essential!

The combinations with different textured blankets are endless and, even if you just stick to basics, your clients can mix and match to create their own unique basket look.

Wraps, Hats, Headbands, and More!

As you can image, I’ve spent years curating all the sweet little bits and pieces you see around the studio, from the big pieces of furniture right down to the tiniest headbands! 

When you book in a newborn session, be sure to chat with your clients beforehand about any specific colors, textures or styles they love (like shades of pink, or rustic wood tones). It can be overwhelming to open a drawer and see hundreds of hats and bloomers, so before your clients arrive for their appointment, pull out pieces that you think will work great with their vision to give them a good starting point.  

Just like with baskets, I’ve got clothing and headwear for EVERY style. Make sure your clients know there’s plenty of time to try out a few different options (this is one of the reasons I schedule newborn sessions for 4 hours – so we can fit in all the cute hats!)

Even though the studio is fully-stocked, sometimes clients will want to include something unique in their session.

It can be a cute onesie, an heirloom toy like this giant teddy bear, a special handmade blanket, or something that matches the nursery theme (this is a great moment to talk about artwork, and how they can bring something to compliment the nursery and then frame that image).

If the baby is born in the winter, it can be fun to bring in a seasonal outfit, which always makes for great holiday cards! 

At the end of the day, the most important part of any newborn session is… you guessed it, the beautiful new baby. I love all of the endless wrap and hat combinations and the darling ruffled bloomers, but the props should never distract too much.


Props can add color and fun, but my advice will always be this: wraps and hats are sweet, but baby is even sweeter. Include what feels right for you and your clients, and never put on pressure to add a bow when that’s just not their style! The photos you take should be a true reflection of your clients, whether that comes with a lot of props or just a few.


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