I love studio newborn sessions, but there is something pretty special about incorporating siblings and just getting to be in a baby's own space during the in-home sessions. It's extra sweet to get to step inside a family's home and see a small glimpse of their life…big brother or sister's toys, baby gear (all that stuff for someone so tiny!), beloved rocking chairs, etc.
A few things to remember when preparing for your lifestyle newborn session:
1.) Do NOT clean for me.
Seriously, there is absolutely NO need to clean for your in-home session. I always feel terrible when I walk into a new mom’s house and smell cleaner! You have so much on your plate already, use your time to get ready and make yourself feel good/put together, NOT cleaning for me! We can always de-clutter certain spaces if we need to as we go, but I'm going to be focused on making you and your sweet family look good—a dust free house isn’t what I'm looking for!!
2.) Don't fuss over what your baby wears, instead, make sure YOU feel good.
A simple onesie or wrap will be perfect for baby, but it's worth it to give the extra attention to finding something for YOU to wear that will make you feel comfortable and relaxed! Don’t try to “fit into” something fancy— flowy dresses or a long top with leggings work great. When picking colors think about the colors in your home and what you might want to do with the images—if you will be printing them, think of what room they will be in for example. Since we will be in your house, a simple outfit change is fine if you prefer; but, honestly, simple, neutral options are always best because they work anywhere!
3.) Think about location(s).
Typically, we use the family room for these in-home sessions, but any room with enough space and plenty of natural light is fine with me! Some families also like to use the master bedroom or the nursery, but don't feel like those rooms have to be "picture perfect" or fully finished -- we can always fake it by just using a small portion of the room and making it look complete in the photo!
4.) Prep the siblings
One of the best parts of choosing the in-home portion newborn package is incorporating the new baby's siblings into the photos! The lifestyle in-home sessions aren’t meant to last hours, so this is a great way to get the whole family on the fun in a less intimidating setting. Depending on the age of the siblings, I typically start by letting them get acquainted with me and my camera/light etc. It’s always helpful if you talk up the session and let them know I’m coming ahead of time so they know my name and are looking forward to pictures! I will make them feel like a BIG part of the sessions by having them help me and by making sure they know what a great job they are doing!! Even though the session is about the new baby, I want them to feel super important so they are more excited to be involved (and more generous with their smiles) in the photos! If you have any tips or tricks for your own kids that I need to know about before hand, please let me know!
**Again, these are in your home, so if siblings need a quick break or a snack, this session is very relaxed and allows for those kinds of breaks!!
I hope these little tips are helpful—please remember that these pictures aren't about capturing the perfect house, outfits, etc., but they are about capturing those tender early moments at home together, that tiny baby, and the love of your family!