How to Prepare for Your Newborn Session

Congratulations on the sweet new addition to your family! There’s nothing more special than welcoming your baby into the world. Newborn sessions are the perfect way to celebrate the growth of your family by preserving this stage of life for years to come. It’s essential to know how to prepare for your newborn session ahead of time so that you and your little one will have the best session possible. Keep reading for all of the tips on how to prepare for your session.

Tips for a Stress-Free Newborn Session

During your newborn session, we will follow the lead of the baby. Though we schedule 3 hours for the shoot, we typically don’t go over 1.5-2 hours. Things that will add time to the session are whether or not your baby needs feeding during the shoot. Here are four easy things you can do to ensure your session goes as smoothly as possible.

#1 Feed your Little One Before You Leave

Plan on feeding your baby right before you leave the house for your session. This way, your sweet babe will be nice and full before you arrive. Most babies arrive at the studio already sleeping; my goal is to keep them that way! You may need to give yourself more time to get ready before you leave for your session so you have time for a full feeding before you leave.

If you’re a nursing mama, avoid spicy foods that may upset your baby’s belly for at least 24 hours before your session. Eating foods like tacos, pizza, or hot sauce may cause fussiness or discomfort to your little one’s digestive system. You want your precious babe to feel their best during their newborn session!

#2 Try to Keep Your Baby Awake Before Your Session

Another tip to help prepare for your newborn session is to keep your baby awake for as long as possible before their session. We want them to be good and sleepy upon arrival. When your little one sleeps through their session, it is so much easier to document the images you want to capture. Otherwise, you may spend more time soothing little one to sleep instead of photographing them.

If you’re unsure how to keep your newborn from falling asleep before their session, try giving them a bath to wake them up. You can also strip them out of their clothes, down to nothing but their diaper. Getting them naked helps them stay more awake and alert.

#3 Dress Baby in an Easily Removable Outfit

With a full tummy and plenty of awake time before their session, your newborn will likely fall asleep before or upon arrival. Make sure to dress them in an outfit that you can easily remove for their session without disturbing them too much in their sleep. A simple zip-up sleeper or button-up jumper will work best.

#4 Prepare for a Warm Studio Experience

And not just the warm, welcoming environment here! I keep the temperature of my studio as warm as possible to keep your newborn comfortable and sleepy during the entirety of the shoot. This is why I always capture the family photos first so that you will not be too warm for your portion of the session. Nevertheless, it’s a good idea to dress in layers or bring an extra change of clothes for the session.  

What to Bring to Your Newborn Session

Having an arsenal of your baby’s items at the ready can help you be as prepared as possible for your newborn session. There are a few things I highly recommend packing in your diaper bag so that you can be ready for anything your little one might need while having their photos taken.


Whether you plan to use a pacifier for your baby or not, it is still encouraged to bring one to your session. The short amount of time you may need to use a pacifier to soothe your baby will not be long enough to form any long habitual behavior of needing one. Sometimes, all it takes is a quick 30 seconds on the pacifier to calm your little one down.

Sentimental Nursery Items

If your newborn has any sentimental nursery items such as handmade hats, blankets, or baby toys, don’t forget to bring those along to your session! Documenting your little babe with these special items will help tell your baby’s story of their first few days of life. If nothing, in particular, comes to mind, no worries! I keep plenty of props in my studio that we can use for your newborn session.

Extra Bottles

Being an adorable little baby model is a lot of work for your little one! Sometimes, they can be more hungry than usual during their newborn session. In order to be as prepared as possible, pack a few extra bottles of milk so that we can keep your baby comfortable and well nourished.

An Extra Shirt for Mom and Dad

There is no need to bring any outfits for your baby for their newborn session. I have a plethora of wraps, blankets, and bloomers that they can wear. However, when you’re holding a naked baby, accidents can happen! You’ll feel much better knowing that you packed an extra shirt for yourself or your partner in case your little babe has an accident and you need to change.

Embrace the Experience

Knowing how to properly prepare for your newborn session before the day arrives can make all the difference in the experience for both you and your little one. I want you to be as comfortable and stress-free as possible! It is so important for you to enjoy this experience and really soak up your little one during their stage as a newborn. You’ll look at your babe’s newborn photos with sweet, fond memories of this day when everything goes smoothly. I hope you found these tips and tricks helpful so you can prep for your newborn photos with ease!

If you liked this post, you might also enjoy:

What to Expect at Your Maternity Session

What to Expect: 6 Month Session

Client Feature: Charlie’s Baby Plan and Baby Plan Graduate


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