Milestone Studio Session Preparation Guide

I’m so excited to be a part this special time in your child’s life! Whether he or she is just learning to push up, sit, stand, or is celebrating their birthday, this is a time to be cherished and I’m glad you’ve decided to capture it in photographs.

At the time of booking, I encouraged you to pick a time of day when your child will be at their best. This is ideally when they are well rested and well fed. If anything has changed with their schedule, please let me know and we can select a better time.

Most babies have very little patience for “modeling”, so I try to move quickly to get as many good photos as possible. We have 45-60 min window for shooting time, so please do not plan to feed your child once you arrive, as it will “eat” into that studio time 🙂 That being said, it is a good idea to have a bottle/snack available in the event that your child becomes fussy and needs food to continue.

* Please note– As a parent, I know that food works wonders for getting children to do what you want, but I try to hold off on using puffs/gummies/goldfish/etc. as motivators during the session unless you are okay with your child having food in their mouth in the photos. Standard retouching (as included in the session fee) does not include removing food from baby’s mouth/face/clothing. We will use food/treats as a last resort.

Before The Session

Make sure baby is fed & well rested (as much as you can). If possible, please do not let your child fall asleep in the car on the way to my studio, as kids often have a hard time transitioning from a short car nap.

Please make sure nails are clipped or filed and face is clean and free from food and/or boogies!

Do not dress the baby in tight clothing that may leave lines in the skin. Be careful with hats that may be tight and create a line on the forehead.


When selecting outfits for your child’s milestone session, I recommend keeping the outfits simple. Neutral color palates (cream/beige, tan, grays, light pinks and light blues) photograph well. Please avoid clothing with large logos, characters, words, etc. Clothing with small touches like lace, buttons, suspenders, etc. add a nice element, but don’t take focus away from the baby.

I recommend bringing 3-4 outfits to the studio for us to choose from together. Some outfits may look nice on baby, but may not photograph well, so I can help making final selections. We will do only 2 outfit changes while (you are always welcome to do diaper only and/or naked shots as well), as any more than this will likely frustrate the child. I recommend dressing your child in a comfortable, easy to remove outfit, for the car ride to my house. This will make it easy to change. I do not recommend bringing your child to the session in one of their session outfits, as it may wrinkle, get spit up on, etc.

* I have a few studio clothing items for each stage (0-3, 3-6, 6-12, 12-18mo) for boys and girls, but these may not suit your taste. Please be prepared with enough clothing from home, but feel free to use mine instead/in-addition if you so choose. I also have a variety of headbands, hats & bonnets that you may use as well!

What You Should Bring

  • 3-4 outfits (as outline above)
  • Diapers
  • Wipes
  • Snacks, to use if really needed
  • A toy that will make your child smile, to be held behind me, if needed (see note below)
  • Any sentimental item that you many want included in your photos (lovey, blanket, stuffed animal, etc.) We will include these at the end of the session (see note below)

What You Should Not Bring

  • Anything that you do not want included in the photo. Once an item is revealed (toy, blanket, food) it may not escape the clutches of your child, and could therefore end up in the photo. Please keep this in mind!
  • Food items that will cause a big mess (blueberries, strawberries, yogurt, chocolate, etc.)
  • Anyone who is not a parent or sibling; ideally anyone is who is not being photographed. My studio is very small and we will be crunched for space. Siblings, grandparents, and friends can be a distraction to the baby as well, and will take away from their photos.

Teething/Sickness, Reschedules & Re-Shoots

If your baby is teething, please consider giving them a pain reliever before you arrive. If your baby is sick, please call me and we will reschedule. A sick baby does not want to be photographed, and you will not want photos of a miserable, red-cheeked, runny-nosed baby (no matter how much you love them!) I am generally very flexible during the week for Milestone sessions, so finding a new date will not be hard. If you arrive to my studio (which is in my home) and your baby is visibly ill, I will ask you reschedule.

Some babies, especially at the 1 year session, can be wary of strangers. I will spend 5-10 minutes before I start the session playing with your little one, to get them feeling comfortable with me. Rarely, but it happens, babies will not separate from their mom/dad and can become upset. If this happens, I will spend more time playing, trying to ease their fears. If this does not help, we may need to get creative in how we take the photographs (I once did an entire session of a baby on her mom’s lap and you couldn’t even tell!)

I want you to be as happy with your photos as possible, so if your child is not feeling it, or they become hysterical, crying, red-faced, etc., then I will call the session and we will reschedule. If you decide to push through and ultimately feel that you are unhappy with your photos, I will not be able to do a re-shoot. So again, if your child is badly teething, ill, or otherwise completely out of sorts, just let me know and we’ll figure out a solution that works for the both of us.


If you have any questions on any of the above, please do not hesitate to ask! Otherwise, I will see you at your session. I look forward to working with you soon!