Last summer, I had a mom reach out to me when her little one was two weeks old. She asked if she could book a newborn session. The new mom was absolutely blown away when I told her the best time for a newborn session. She was expecting to be able to get sleepy newborn pictures for at least a few months! While I assured her it could still be done, she regretted not having reached out sooner. If she had gotten the information earlier, she could have booked a session during the ideal window.
When is the best time for a newborn session?
My recommendation is always 5-12 days for full-term babies. If you find yourself with a premature baby (this was my experience with my oldest daughter), this will be different. I will work closely with you and your pediatrician to determine the best time for a newborn session. Your baby’s safety is always the priority. The reason for the 5-12 day window is because this is when your child is sleepiest. This timing is also ideal because baby acne hasn’t set in yet (yes, it’s a thing and it usually hits around day 14). Also, your little one will probably tolerate being swaddled better.
What if I’m “late” to book?
2020 definitely taught me that newborn sessions can be delayed (hello April, May and June babies!). However, it is definitely a different experience to have a session with a 3-month old baby versus a sleepy newborn.
Your 5-12 day old baby will also be more likely to fit into all of the props that I have in the studio when they are at this age. More alert, older babies tend to squirm around in props and not look as peaceful as a sleeping newborn. Again, that’s not to say that it CAN’T be done, just that it can make things a little more challenging for everyone involved.
Babies come on their own timeline, which is why I am careful with how many newborn sessions that I schedule in a month. If your baby is a little early or a little late, have no fear because I will certainly have room for you on my calendar with this built-in buffer. I always recommend that parents stay in touch with me after 36 weeks, especially if they are given an induction date or a C-section appointment because those can help narrow down the options for us.
Was your baby early, on-time or LATE?