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We're an Illinois wedding photo & video team for joyful, classic Caitlin and Luke Brides, educators who teach business owners to be more than photographers, dog parents to our doodle Oliver, and a married couple living life in Central Illinois!

Tips for Preparing for your Newborn Session

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January 27, 2019

tips for preparing for newborn session

Hi friends… Caitlin here! 🙂 Newborn sessions are incredibly close to my heart, and they are, hands down, one of the most surreal & special types of sessions we get to photograph! Whether you are a past bride or friend of ours returning as a lifestyle client, or you’re totally new to the Caitlin & Luke brand, I want to walk you through everything you need to know about preparing you and your home for your in-home newborn session with me. Let’s dive in!

A Little Pep Talk | One of my very favorite parts about the fact that these sweet sessions take place in YOUR home is how personal they are! My vision for newborn sessions has always been to help you remember your baby and this season of life, just as they were… minus all the things that can distract from the precious little life that has suddenly become the center of your world! I love getting to photograph the nursery you spent hours pouring your heart into… using the same chair & rooms you will rock your baby to sleep in hundreds of times… and capturing the proud new big brother, sister (or even a fur sibling!) peeking through the crib at their new tiny bestie. My dream is for these sessions to bless you through how authentically they document this new season you’re in!

One of the tricky parts about the fact that these sessions take place in your home is, in fact, just that- they take place in your home, just days after your world has been flipped upside down by your brand new addition! Know that I understand this, and it’s my goal to make this session as stress-free and joyful as possible. The below tips will help you as you prepare your home, family and baby for me to spend some time with you!

tips for preparing for newborn session

First things first, we recommend photographing all newborn sessions during baby’s first week at home, so be sure to update me as soon as you welcome baby into the world… that way we can schedule accordingly!

Tip 01 | Prep Your Outfits – Often, selecting outfits can be the single most stressful part of planning for a session… can I get an amen? 😉 Not to worry… this may be one of the simplest sessions you ever get to select outfits for! I highly recommend opting for white/cream, light colors, neutrals, & pastel shades. These colors will photograph best for an in-home session. My favorite thing for a new mama to wear is a beautiful, flowy dress… they photograph the best!

Please select 2 outfits for baby: one solid outfit (such as a white onesie or cream swaddle), and a second outfit that’is a little more fun… still sticking to those preferred colors I mentioned above! Don’t shy away from some cute florals, stripes, or other patterns- as long as the patterns aren’t too small & busy. Please also feel free to incorporate a fun bow or hat into this outfit, as well. Lastly, please have a backup set of outfits for the whole family… blowouts and spit-up are real possibilities! 😉

Tip 02 | Beauty Tips for Mama – We highly recommend Mom having her hair & makeup professionally done for this session! It’s such a stress-reliever to have a professional come into your home and take care of this for you on the day of your session. Plus, professional hair & makeup photographs the best! Please reach out to us for recommendations for in-home hair & makeup artists we trust and love!

Lastly, we recommend Mom having a manicure & pedicure done before baby comes! As with outfits, we love neutral colors for nails. Polished nails add so much to photos!

Tip 03 | Prepping Your Space – We’ll likely shoot the vast majority of the session in baby’s nursery! I also use most of our clients’ bedrooms for some photos, and I’ll occasionally shoot some in the family room if it has more light than the other rooms. Please straighten up before I come… but don’t feel the need to go crazy! I’m all about keeping things looking lived-in and real. I simply suggest doing a small declutter of the unnecessary items until after the session is over, especially in the rooms I’ll be utilizing!

Lastly, consider bumping up the temperature in your home a few degrees! Often, if it’s warmer, baby will sleep more soundly throughout the session. If you have a space heater, we can also use that in the room where we’re shooting! The goal is to have baby very sleepy or sleeping, but I will roll with however her or she is feeling! 😉

Tip 04 | Items To Have Ready – I’ll bring along a cream blanket and a basket, but if you have a simple basket and some light-colored blankets, that would be absolutely fabulous! I always prefer to use items clients own, to ensure their photos are personal to them. Please also ensure you have a white or light neutral crib sheet on the crib! (Feel free to simply grab one at Target before I arrive- they aren’t expensive!) Colorful, patterned crib sheets will reflect funky colors onto baby’s face and can be quite distracting in photos, so I encourage opting for a simpler sheet!

Tip 05 | All About Light – I want allll the natural light pouring in through the windows in whatever room I’m shooting in! Since we’ll likely be in the nursery for the majority of the session, please keep those shades up and the curtains pulled back so I can get as much light as possible! Please also turn off all lights & lamps in the nursery, as those can mess with my camera! Don’t worry- I’ll bring everything I need in order to create the best light, even without lamps!

Tip 06 | Final Preparations – I suggest feeding baby around 20 minutes before my arrival! After feeding, you can do a quick diaper change and put them into their first outfit. It often helps older siblings and pets to be occupied when I arrive, whether it’s with a snack & book or movie for your kiddo, or even just containing your dog until I’ve been in your home for a little while! We can introduce both human and fur siblings after we’ve gotten baby comfortable and taken plenty of photos of him or her solo! It’s also not a bad idea to try to keep baby awake for a little while before I arrive, so they are tired & ready to nap during photos!

As always, please feel free to email us at hello@caitlinandluke.com with any questions or to run any outfit choices by us! We’re always happy to help… and I cannot WAIT to meet your little one!

Xoxo!
Caitlin

tips for preparing for newborn session
tips for preparing for newborn session
tips for preparing for newborn session
tips for preparing for newborn session
tips for preparing for newborn session

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In the meantime, please enjoy resources we've just created for you on our blog by clicking right here. We cannot wait to start this journey with you soon!

Congratulations on your engagement! Talk to you soon.

Get in Touch

Bride & groom's full names*

Email address*

Phone NUmber*

Your wedding date*

message to caitlin & luke*

SEND

Cue the confetti! We've officially received your wedding inquiry, and we couldn't be more excited to start this journey with you.

Here's when you can expect to hear back from us, based on when you submitted your inquiry:

∙  MON - FRI BETWEEN 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM | You can expect a response within 24 hours.
∙  AFTER 5:00 PM MON - THURS | You can expect a response the following morning.
∙  WEEKEND | You can expect a response when we're back in the office Monday morning.

In the meantime, please enjoy resources we've created just for you by clicking here. Congratulations on your engagement!!!