Newborn, Infant and Child Portraits – What to Wear

Working with children is one of the great parts of my job – I get to play for a living! However, many parents worry about what their child should wear and think that they will need to go out and buy whole new outfits for the session. Don’t (unless you really want to)! Here are a few tips:

-Bright colours photograph beautifully at any age.

-Matching outfits (i.e. jeans and white shirts) are not necessary. If this is the look you want to go for, then feel free; otherwise, please feel free to let your children dress in vibrant colours.

Newborns and Infants:

Is there anything cuter than a bare baby? Unless specifically requested, I usually undress newborns for their sessions, but I have a number of blankets and other items designed to keep your baby warm throughout the shoot. The heat gets cranked up during these sessions, so it’s strongly advised that parents wear lightweight clothing.

Go for: simple accompanying items – I have a selection of diaper covers, tutus, headbands, blankets and cocoons that work nicely for photos. I have also worked with clients’ foam hearts, baby blankets, headbands and even a monkey blanket, so feel free to bring your special items along. We all know that accidents happen, so please bring a few outfits and expect to use two of them.

Best avoided: overalls. I love them! However, overalls don’t always work well in photographs because they tend to rise up in front of the face and conceal the neck, chin and/or mouth of the child. If your child is not yet able to sit up, please avoid the overalls in the interest of getting the best results.

Toddlers/Big Kids

Go for: bright colors, ‘baby legs’/leg warmers/tights, hats, hair bows, tutus and bloomers.

Best avoided: logos, cartoon characters and anything not age appropriate. Layering looks nice on big kids and don’t be afraid of fun polka dots, florals or even stripes (in small doses).  Barefoot looks sweet for this age group as well.

If you’re feeling uninspired and need some ideas to get you going, try going online and looking at children’s clothing websites. Old NavyGymboree, and Carter’s/OshKosh are great places to start. You can also have a look at the treasures available through, which is a great place to find handmade accessories.

Remember that you want your kids to look natural. Your photos should reflect your family and their style. If you’re not big on layers or accessories, leave them out!


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