A common question I get from clients inquiring about a maternity session is: Can I include my older kids in my maternity photos? The answer is a big, resounding YES! The arrival of a new baby is a celebration for the whole family, and family maternity photos are the perfect way to document the anticipation. Here are some tips to make sure that your family maternity photos go smoothly.
Planning Your Family Maternity Photos
When it was just you and your partner doing maternity photos before your first baby arrived, you likely had more flexibility in your schedule. There were no bedtimes or nap schedules to worry about, after all. When you’re planning to do maternity photos with a toddler in the mix though, the timing of your session becomes extremely important. Just like when you’re planning your family photos, you’ll want to choose a time of day when they’re generally happiest. I offer early morning sessions that are perfect for maternity photos with a toddler since they’re often happiest first thing in the morning.
Tips for Keeping Siblings Happy
Outside of choosing the right time of day for your family maternity photos, make sure you keep the mood light and playful. Nothing can result in an unhappy kid faster than feeling pressured to smile for every single photo. Approach the day of the session with an attitude of “we’re going to explore a park together” and the day becomes a special family adventure together before the baby arrives.
For even more tips on how to set your family up for a smooth photo session, check out my post on 5 Ways to Have a Great Family Photo Session Experience!
Family Maternity Photo Shoot Ideas
On that same note, while it might be tempting to cruise Pinterest for picture ideas, I’d encourage you to go with the flow during your family maternity photos. Kids of all ages who are about to welcome a new sibling can have all sorts of feelings about it (or just about taking pictures in general)! I like to follow their lead, letting them snuggle with you if that’s what they choose, or exploring a new place with you if they’re feeling more on-the-move. Just like with regular family sessions, the goal is to create and document a memory for your family.
That said, I do try to get a few particular shots at each family maternity photoshoot. Mom alone for a solo maternity photo, parents together if ages of the kids allow, your child with each parent, and the whole family together are all on my must-have list. Depending on the family, each of these images will unfold in a way that is unique to you and your family in this moment.
What to Wear for Family Maternity Photos
For family maternity photos, I recommend choosing mom’s outfit first. Look for longer dresses that nip in just above the bump to give you extra shape and add movement to the photos. Read more about what to wear for maternity photos here–this post has plenty of ideas for wardrobe that includes toddler and big kid options as well. And if you’re looking for the perfect dress, check out Nothing Fits But, my favorite spot for photo-worthy maternity dresses.
Ready to book your family maternity photos? Learn more about what I do as a Portland maternity photographer here. If you’re looking for more maternity photo inspo, check out this Guide to Outdoor Maternity Photos.