When planning for your newborn photoshoot, the number one source of stress is choosing what to wear, especially for mom. I wrote this practical, how-to guide to help you in the process of choosing your newborn family photos outfits for mom.
If you can take away one thing from this blog post, here is my number 1 advice: wear a DRESS!
Here is what the article will cover:
- Reasons why to wear a dress
- How to choose a beautiful dress
- Links to dresses to accommodate various budgets (last update: February 2023)
Why opt for wearing a dress as the go-to newborn family photos outfits for moms
Once I start recommending moms to wear dresses in my newborn photoshoots, the look and feel of the images improved so drastically. So, now dresses have become my go-to recommendation. Why?
Dresses are flattering
Dresses are the most flattering option as newborn family photos outfits for moms. If you want to look beautiful in your newborn photoshoot, you cannot go wrong with a dress. You simply need to find a style that fits your body shape well. You can read more about choosing a dress according to your body type in this guide.
Dresses are feminine
Dresses will give your newborn family photos that lovely, feminine, romantic feel, that cannot be replicated if you’re wearing jeans, shorts, or leggings. Think of your newborn photoshoot as a very special occasion in your life to celebrate the birth of your child. A special celebration like attending your best friend’s wedding, or celebrating your anniversary, when you’d likely wear a dress. Wearing a dress will add that feminine and celebratory look, elevating the results of your images.
Dresses are comfortable
Dresses in the fabrics and lengths presented below are very comfortable to wear. This is especially important for moms who are still recovering from birth. A comfortable dress will allow you to move around, sit in different positions, and get down to play with your toddler. And you’ll look beautiful doing so.
Dresses add movement
Movement in photos adds an artistic quality to them that really brings the results of your image collection to a new level. And a flowy dress will help to give that sense of movement to your images.
Dresses give something for you to hold
A dress will give you something for you to naturally hold on to during those moments when you don’t quite know what to do with your hands. Holding something while having your photos taken, especially portraits, helps you feel grounded and more relaxed. And that feeling of confidence will naturally show in your images.
Tips for choosing newborn family photos outfits for mom
Choose a dress that fits your own style
The most important thing is to choose a dress that makes YOU feel confident and beautiful. And that is true to your unique style. The more confident and comfortable you feel, the more this confidence will naturally shine through your images.
Do the movement test once you select your dress
When choosing what to wear, ask yourself the following: can you sit, lay down, stand, and play with your children comfortably in your choice of outfit?
It is always best to avoid skirts and dresses at the knee or shorter, or overly tight, as they will NOT work well on sitting poses. And this will reduce the number of final images I’d be able to deliver to you.
Choose the right length
I highly suggest wearing a dress in midi or maxi length. If that makes you feel too “overdressed” in your home, making your images feel unnatural, simply opt for a relaxed, boho style to compensate for the length. You can also opt for a skirt, or a dress immediately below the knees.
It is best to avoid wearing a mini dress as it won’t be flattering during sitting poses. Plus, if you have a toddler, it will likely feel uncomfortable and self-conscious when you move around with your child.
Choose the right fabric
When choosing a fabric, opt for light, fresh, flowy, and/or with texture, like organic cotton, chiffon, organza, jersey, lace, tulle, eyelet, ruffle, seersucker, crepe, rayon, polyester, and linen. Flowy fabrics will give a romantic and delicate feel to your images and they will be very flattering.
Choose a color that will give you a timeless aesthetic to your images
If you dream about having newborn family photos with a timeless aesthetic as you see in my work, then the best option is to choose neutral tones: off-white, beige, and, grey.
A dress in a neutral tone will soften the overall look of your images. This is particularly a great option if you live in a dark home as a way to bring light tones to your images.
Alternative to neutral tones includes pastel and muted tones, such as beige, taupe, sand, light blue, grey blue, nude, dusty pink, coral, blush, lavender, aqua, mustard, olive, etc. But if wearing a non-neutral tone, make sure to dress some of the other family members in neutral tones to balance out the more colorful tone of your dress.
Things to avoid
Regardless of the style of images, you like (timeless or “dark and moody”), it is always best to avoid outfits with the following: stripes, large logos, writing, bold and colorful patterns, bright and bold colors (e.g., red, bright orange, bright yellow).
Because all of these outfits bring attention to your clothing – not you. Plus, the colors in your outfits can easily be cast onto your skin (or the skin of family members) altering the skin tone. And this is quite unflattering.
Choose your dress first
When coordinating newborn family photo outfits for the whole family, it is always best to start with mom! So, focus on choosing your dress first and then pick out the rest of the family’s outfits based on what you chose for yourself.
To help you save time finding that perfect outfit for your newborn photoshoot, I selected several beautiful dresses that match what I shared in this post. I selected options to accommodate various budgets. You simply click on the link to go straight to it. I also included a list of favorites in Revolve and Zalando.
Please note that I last updated this article in February 2023. At the time of the last update, the dresses in this link were available in various sizes. Dress availability and price might have changed since I last updated this article. Also note that I’m based in France and the selections were done in the EU websites. Most of these brands can be found in the UK and US.
A pro tip: when ordering online for your newborn photoshoot, it is best to buy 2-4 dresses to give you plenty of options to choose from and avoid having a dress that doesn’t fit your body shape well or the sizing is a bit off. Then, you simply return the dresses you didn’t select for your newborn session.
Also, keep in mind that some white dresses might be see-through and you might need a slip undergarment like this.
List of favorite dresses
Dress options below 150€
Dress options for 150€ or more
For more options of high-end dresses (300€ +), I recommend the following brands:
Here are some additional blog posts to help you prepare for your newborn family photos
Choosing your newborn photographer: The complete guide to your experience
Family newborn photos: Why I don’t pose newborn babies
How to choose the best newborn photographer for your family
What to do next
If you feel ready to hire me as your newborn photographer, or would like to meet me to discuss your vision, please visit the contact page to learn the different ways to reach out.
If you’d like to see more of my work, I invite you to look at my portfolio here.