In Home Newborn Photography Session in Northern Virginia: How to Prepare!


March 21, 2022

In home newborn photography sessions are my absolute favorite to photograph because they allow me to get private and unique photos of my clients in their most comfortable and relaxed environments. Here are some of my favorite suggestions for how to prepare for an in home newborn photoshoot!

A baby boy posed on the master bed during a newborn photo shoot with Northern Virginia newborn photographer, Stephanie Honikel Photography.

Make a checklist for you: In home newborn photography in Northern Virginia

Pick some things that you enjoy doing with your baby that excite you or make you feel the most attached. Whereas yes, I will always provide poses and recommendations, these photos are ultimately your keepsakes! I want you to have the photos you want. What are some things that you want captured during your in home photography session in Northern Virginia?

  • Reading a book to your newborn
  • Sitting in a rocking chair
  • Snuggling on the couch
  • Laying in bed together

These are your forever memories. I want you to have the ones that mean the most to you.

A new mom holding her wide awake baby during a newborn photography session with Stephanie Honikel Photography in Northern Virginia.

A baby boy looking at his mother during a newborn photography session with Northern Virginia newborn photographer, Stephanie Honikel Photography.

Tell me about your family before your in home newborn photoshoot in Northern Virginia

Something I find valuable about an in home photography session is the time spent getting to know you. When you first reach out, tell me about your family! Tell me about your newborn (that’s if he or she has been born yet), siblings (if there are any), their personality, your personality, etc. Interacting with me will assist us in determining the focus of your shoot and provide you with amazing memories!

Perfectly ordered mess of a home

Do a little tidying up and decluttering before your in home newborn photoshoot in Northern Virginia. In no way do I expect to walk into a spotless home, but for your sake, you’ll likely feel the most calm when you’re not surrounded by a mess. Consider the areas you’re wanting to spend most of the session in and prep them. You could lay a light blanket over the top of darker bedding or even just wipe down the light fixtures. Adding just a few of these little details may have a significant impact on the mood and style of your photographs.

I want to capture you in your natural environment, not your “show ready” one!

A smiling baby sleeping on his tummy during a Northern Virginia newborn photography session with Stephanie Honikel Photography.

Stay calm during your in home newborn photography session

These sessions are meant to capture images of your newborn as they are, not as the world thinks they should be. It’s okay if you have a fussy baby and you aren’t sure if they’ll behave. Let me worry about that. Your job is to have the model ready to go and the areas of your home set for photos! I’ll handle the rest.

Have any needed toys on hand!

Sometimes, your newborn just needs some comfort items ready and available just in case! Determine which items are best at soothing your little munchkin. For example this could be a pacifier or a specific stuffed animal. Make sure you have it before the day of shoot.

Prepare your family for your in home newborn photography session

If your family will be part of the newborn shoot, that’s great! You want to be sure they are all aware of how the process goes and what is to be expected of them. Since this is not a family photoshoot, the focus will always be on capturing the newborn. However, sometimes it’s okay for little sister or big brother to peek in with the baby! Even your dog can pop in for a quick hello!

A father holding his newborn baby during a newborn photo shoot in Northern Virginia.

A couple holding their newborn baby during a Northern Virginia newborn photography session with Stephanie Honikel Photography.

Final Thoughts:

Preparing for an in home newborn photoshoot is not something you need to stress about. Your only job is to ensure the main areas you want to shoot in are clean and prepared to your liking. Additionally, making sure your family is prepared and knows what is expected of them can also be highly beneficial. I handle the rest!


Be sure to reach out to me to discuss your in home newborn photography session! I’m eager to help you capture your favorite memories!

  1. Stacey says:

    Beautiful post Steph! Love all the recommendations, definitely makes the in-home newborn session more stress free. Well done!

  2. Alex D. says:

    What a great post! I love how you outline all the details to focus on.

  3. Catherine Refo says:

    Such a great read!! Thank you for all the tips!!

  4. Christie says:

    Such great tips! These are all gorgeous portraits!!!

  5. Nina says:

    What a gorgeous family! That little smile and the way he looks at his mamma is priceless!

    • Stephanie Honikel says:

      Thank you for stopping by, Nina. Baby boy looking at his mama happens to be one of my favorite images from their session. I love the connection there.

  6. Alec says:

    In Home newborn sessions are so beautiful and intimate! Love your tips on how to best prepare my family to have a photographer in my home!!

  7. Love it! Such good recommendations for people preparing for their in-home sessions too. Your work is beautiful!

  8. Courtney says:

    These are such great tips! Especially tidying up and thinking about the mood you want to set for your photographs.

  9. Ashley says:

    I absolutely love this post!! These are simple, doable things that won’t overwhelm parents; but will absolutely help to produce some great images!! Great advice!!

  10. Andrea says:

    Your newborn photos are soooo amazing! I’m in awe!

  11. Rachael says:

    Great recommendations for preparing for an in-home newborn session.

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