What to Wear: How to Dress Newborns & Infants for a Portrait Session


What to Wear {Part 1: Infant and Newborns}

As a photographer, it can help your customers when you direct them on what to wear. The next number of weeks, guest writer Kelsey Anderson will be providing information to help you coach your customers on what to wear.

When booking a portrait session I think it is almost always a given that the client is going to ask for suggestions on what to wear. I struggled with this question when I was first starting out. My clients would come dressed in matching outfits or in the same color head to toe. These clothing choices do not make for the most visually appealing image, right?

I knew that I had to change my clients way of thinking when it came to choosing outfits for their portraits. I personally believe that is part of my job to help style a session. This gives my clients another reason to hiring me over going to a chain portrait studio. I always tell them to choose items with good color, texture (ie, knits, ruffles, denim) and accessories. I tell them to think coordinating not matching. I even go as far as offering to come to their homes and dig through their closet with them or tell them to bring a trunk full of options and we can put together outfits on location.

Newborns are pretty easy to style as we typically photograph them in the nude. However you and I know there are some amazing hats and head bands out their for these precious newbies to wear for their first portraits. I also like to bring a lot of different wraps to swaddle baby. Hit up your local fabric store and get a yard or two. I ask the parents to bring me all their baby blankets and usually wrap baby in a few of those as well. To add a more personal element to the images I have even used some of mom’s colorful scarves.

newborn on a blanket

Infants are great to photograph nude as well. They are so chubby and not too mobile. If the parents are comfortable with baby being naked there are some amazingly cute diaper covers available and even ones with cute ruffles for little girls! Again accessories can be so much fun with babies. Headbands, scarves, hats, or string of pearls. I love placing babies on colorful quilts.

Here are a few items I love for newborn, and infant sessions!  I like to keep ideas of clothing choices fresh in my clients head and don’t want to have to have them dig through my blog to find them.

nude baby on a blanket

swaddled baby

cute diaper covers for infant photography

cute blankets for infant photographyHere are some great places I recommend shopping for clothing and accessories that newborns and infants can be photographed in:




Knit Wit Woolies

Pink Peppermint Design

Peachy and Pip

Puddleton Baby


Mini Boden

The Children’s Place

Janie and Jack

Ralph Lauren Baby

Dimples and Dandelions


My Baby Rocks

Cutie and Patootie

Tutti Bella

Kelsey Anderson is a natural light photographer in Las Vegas, Nevada. Specializing in maternity, newborn, baby, children, senior and family photography.

Jodi Friedman, MCP Actions

Jodi Friedman is the founder of MCP Actions. She designs popular Photoshop actions and Lightroom presets that make editing faster, easier and more fun.

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  1. 1
    Patti Martin says:

    Nice job Kelsey! Thank you so much for all of the links!

  2. 2

    Great post! Extremely helpful, I’m a portrait photographer, and *always* help in styling the shoots, but I’ve never done infants and will be expanding to infants soon, so these are fantastic tips!

  3. 3
    Julie says:

    Thanks for the ideas, they’re great!!

  4. 4
    Melissa says:

    Great post! Thanks, Kelsey!

  5. 5
    Heather says:

    Awesome and helpful!! Thank you so much for the words of wisdom. I just have to know though, where are those quilts from in the last images?

  6. 6
    Heather says:

    Also, how do you make the “What to wear” blog collages? I love this helpful idea to provide to clients!

  7. 7

    Thanks everyone! Hope it is helpful!

    Heather the quilts are from Etsy and here is the link

  8. 8
    Bex says:

    Thank you Kelsey! Great tips! Well done!

  9. 9
    natasha klein says:

    hi I was wondering where those beautiful blankets are from?? thanks

  10. 10
    HollyB says:

    Great information! I think helping to style your clients before hand is crucial to getting a final image. I love all your tips! Can’t wait to hear more. :D

  11. 11
    Denean Melcher says:

    Thank you for the great article! And thanks for the links!!

  12. 12
    Shannon says:

    Great article and photos! Where did you buy those patchwork blankets? I have to get one!!!

  13. 13
    Jennifer says:

    Great tips and really cute clothing suggestions :) But where are the cute little skirts/diaper covers from that are in the picture in your post?

  14. 14
    Jolie says:

    Love your guides Kelsey!

  15. 15
  16. 16
    dalia says:

    great post Kelsey!! thanks!

  17. 17
    Sandi says:

    I really enjoyed this article. Thanks for the great read!

  18. 18
    Sherry says:

    Used your ideas on my latest newborn shoot. Thanks.

  19. 19

    Great article Kelsey!
    How do you put together the “What to Wear” collages?

  20. 20
    forex robot says:

    Great information! I’ve been looking for something like this for a while now. Thanks!

  21. 21

    […] your customer: Expanding on the educating concept, create materials for them, such as what to wear guides, showing styles and color choices. If you want control over clothing, as them to bring multiple […]

  22. 22
    gate opener says:

    Keep it up, nice job! This was the thing I had to have.

  23. 23

    Great info! Many thanks.

  24. 24
    Send Load says:

    All the honey a bee gathers during its lifetime doesn’t sweeten its sting. – Italian Proverb

  25. 25
    BabyMoos says:

    Awwwwww some of these photos are too cute & those ruffled diaper covers… :)

  26. 26
    UGGs Kopen says:

    You speak with so much opinions, so much spirit, even though I become aware that you have definitely hit the nail on the head. Good job with this! I will directly grip your rss feed to stay abreast of any updates. authentic work and much success in your business efforts!

  27. 27
    AKO Login says:

    I was reading throught some of the posts and i locate them to be altogether attention-grabbing. sorry my english is not exaclty the actually best. would there be anyway to transalte this into my vernacular, spanish. it would in reality better me a lot. since i could compare the english lingo to the spanish language.

  28. 28
    Praluartoor says:

    I wish to are grateful for the initiative you’ve got manufactured in setting up this web site post. I hope the same decent written content within you at some point on top of that. In reality ones own ingenious creating qualities has got moved everybody to get started on mine website. Really the blogging for cash might be distribution its wings quickly. A person’s formulate ?s really a first-class sort of this.

  29. 29
    Jamie says:

    Great post and a lot of cute pics!


  1. How to Keep Artistic Control as a Professional Photographer | MCP Photoshop Actions & Training | Learn Photoshop Now! - [...] your customer: Expanding on the educating concept, create materials for them, such as what to wear guides, showing styles …

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