What to Wear for Your Maternity Portrait Session

I’ll be honest with you, choosing what to wear for your maternity portrait session can be tricky! Your maternity session is usually between 28-35 weeks of pregnancy. You might not know exactly what size you’ll be or how comfortable you’ll be feeling. Plus, you might only need the outfit for the day of the session. (This is where a studio wardrobe comes in handy.)

I’m here to help! I’ll offer some guidance on what to wear for your maternity session and why you should really consider a maternity photographer with a wardrobe! 

Choose Your Maternity Session Style

Before sharing tips on what to wear, I want to back up for a second. First, start with the end in mind and envision what you want to do with these portraits. Are you hoping to print a portrait to hang on the wall? Wanting to add some of these images to your baby’s first album? This will help you start. Second, think about what overall style you’re going for. Do you want a glamorous maternity session? Something more contemporary? Magazine Style? I have a whole guide on just choosing your maternity session style here. 

What to Wear for Your Maternity Portraits 

Here are a few ideas of what you can wear for your maternity portrait session!

Fitted Dress – This is a beautiful and classic look for your maternity session! A fitted dress shows off your beautiful bump and all your gorgeous curves. I tend to suggest a solid color for this type of dress so that a pattern doesn’t distract from you at all. 

Flowy Dress – A gorgeous option for the mama who wants the glam goddess look. We’ll still show off the bump along with your beautiful self with this look. Different poses offer different looks with this style of dress. 

Jeans and Top – This is more casual but still so beautiful! We can show off your pregnancy in a way that’s comfortable for you. This simple yet classic look offers the perfect peek at your glowing baby bump!

Barely There – All we need is your gorgeous pregnancy! These are the portraits that you’ll look back on and think, “Wow, my body can do incredible things.” Your body is doing an amazing job growing life. Now is the time to celebrate your superpower.

Insley Photography Studio Wardrobe 

This is where the benefit of a studio wardrobe comes into play! Instead of stressing and shopping to try to find the right outfit, you can use one of mine. I have sizes and styles for every mama. On the day of your maternity portrait session, your outfit will be clean, pressed, and waiting for you. How easy is that?! You get to feel like the stunning goddess that you are without having to spend money on an outfit that you’re going to wear once. Bonus you can arrive in your pjs on the day of your photoshoot 😉

Fort Mill Maternity Photography 

Mama, I believe that your motherhood journey should be documented and celebrated without adding any to-dos to your growing list. Once you arrive at my Fort Mill studio, you will feel pampered and loved. I want to help you celebrate your sweet baby and be part of your story. The best part is that you can let me do all the work! 

What about hair and makeup? I’m so glad you asked 😉 I will coordinate that too. A professional hair and makeup artist can meet you at the studio before your session and help you get ready and feel pampered on your portrait day.

If you have any questions for me or want to schedule your maternity session, give me a call (803) 336-5125 or send me a message here. 

Check out my friend Vanessa’s Delivery Bag Checklist blog post.

She shares all the things you need to have in your bag and it’s a lot less than you probably think.

https://www.vkeophotography.com/post/delivery-bag-checklist

Which Maternity Portrait Session Style is Right for You?

stunning maternity portrait

As you prepare for your baby, you’ll find yourself researching everything from cribs to monitors to daycare and so much more.

While it can be a lot of fun to research everything your baby needs, it might feel overwhelming. That’s why I wanted to put together this guide for maternity portrait sessions. Your maternity portrait session should be stress-free and suit your style. Did you know that there are different maternity portrait session styles? Finding which one is your favorite will help you get professional photos and portrait artwork that you will love. 

First, I would think about which type of maternity portrait session style you’re interested in, and then I would choose a maternity photographer. A bonus is when you find a maternity photographer that also offers newborn photography for one less thing to worry about!

                 

Different Types of Maternity Portrait Session Styles 

Glamorous Maternity Photos – You’re still your beautiful self, just all glammed up and ready to shine. After some much-deserved pampering, you’ll put on a gorgeous maternity gown, and it’s time for your maternity photo shoot. You’ll feel like you’re shooting for the cover of a magazine. 

Casual Maternity Photos – Perfect for the mama looking to freeze this moment in time to treasure forever. You’re still pampered and styled, but you’ll be more comfy and casual. I love this type of session if you are including older children in your session. Trying to wrestle a 3-year old into a 3 piece suit sounds like a hard sell. 

Barely-There Maternity Photos – Pregnancy is intimate, so let’s embrace it! A barely-there maternity photos session allows you to feel beautiful and show off the miracle of pregnancy! I mean you are growing a new life that is a reason to celebrate. We can have a lot of fun with this type of session with different fabrics and poses. This is a very artistic leaning option that is great for including your partner. 

Nude Maternity Photos – So gorgeous and perfect within our private, temperature-controlled studio. After some pampering, all you need is your baby bump for this session. As a photographer, my artistic expression shines as we highlight your pregnant body. In fact, there are many benefits to a studio maternity photo session near Charlotte, NC. 

Which Maternity Style is Right for You?

Now that you’ve learned about the different maternity portrait session styles, which one is right for you? If there’s one that you gravitate towards, follow your heart! If you’re torn or unsure, my best advice is to dream about how you want to display and treasure these portraits. Are you hoping to hang a portrait on the wall? Or look through an album of your maternity photos? Envision how you want to hold and enjoy your portrait artwork and that will help guide your decision. Still very stuck? Please reach out to me and let’s chat! I’m always happy to help a fellow mama. 

Maternity Portrait Photographer Near Charlotte, NC 

As a Certified Professional Photographer and a mom of two myself, I have the skills and experience you want as well as the loving touch that you need. I want to empower my mamas to love their pregnancy journeys. Pregnancy isn’t always easy but it’s worth celebrating this time in your life with a stress-free portrait experience that’s tailored to your desires. If you’re ready to chat, you can reach me right here. 

Looking for more newborn portrait inspiration check out my friends latest blog post for a newborn baby girl named Everest

Why To Choose a Studio Maternity Portrait Session near Charlotte, NC

how to find a maternity photographer near you

The moment you find out that you’re pregnant, all the emotions, body changes, and planning kick into overdrive! There’s so much to do from setting up the nursery, going to prenatal appointments, and everything in between. 

No matter what, it’s so important that you take the time to have maternity portraits taken. Why? Because trust me, you are so beautiful, and you will want these photos to look back on and remember this special time in your life. 

You may enjoy a relatively easy pregnancy (lucky you!), or you may have to endure some not-so-lovely symptoms while growing a human. Either way, I think choosing a maternity portrait session that aligns with style and comfort will make all the difference in your portraits. 

Plus, once you know what type of session you want, it’s much easier to choose a Charlotte maternity photographer. I will share the top five benefits of a studio maternity portrait session. 

maternity portrait session

5 Benefits of a Studio Maternity Photography Session 

 

  1. It Won’t Rain on Your Parade 

Rain or shine; we’re able to capture your beautiful pregnancy. The window to take breathtaking maternity portraits is relatively short. We can take them whenever you are most comfortable, but I usually recommend taking your maternity portraits between 28-34 weeks. This is the best time to capture your gorgeous bump before you feel too uncomfortable. That being said, if your maternity photos are scheduled for outside, and they are rained out, you might have to scramble to find a new date. 

studio maternity portrait session

  1. No Heat Waves in Here

Mamas, you don’t want to walk around taking photos in the July heat. Besides overheating (which is not safe for pregnant women), we don’t want to worry about your hair and makeup suffering in the humidity. We don’t have to worry about the heat and humidity inside the temperature-controlled studio. It’s always the perfect temp. Plus we can always create a breeze in the studio for that hair tossed look.

 

  1. Need the Bathroom?

Because we all know expecting mamas have to pee… a lot. Luckily, there’s an available bathroom right here in the studio. One of my friends had her maternity photos taken at a local park. Unfortunately, the bathrooms were locked! She remembers having to pee very badly by the end of her session. That’s not the way you want to remember your maternity portraits.

why choose a studio portrait session in charlotte, NC

  1. Wardrobe Availability

Instead of worrying about which outfits to bring, where to change, etc., you’ll have access to my client wardrobe to find something you will love wearing. No matter how you’re feeling about your body right now, I know that you are so beautiful, and we can find you an outfit that you’ll feel confident wearing for your session. Plus, you will love having a comfortable place to change into your wardrobe! And this also allows you to have multiple looks during your session. 

 

  1. Privacy

If you aren’t sold on a studio session, this might be the reason for you! The studio offers total privacy. We don’t have to worry about anyone being goofy in the background or feeling uncomfortable if you want to show off your beautiful bump. 

why choose a studio portrait photographer

Best Maternity Photography | Charlotte, NC 

Additionally, another reason I love offering studio sessions near Charlotte is because I take your comfort and safety very seriously. I never want mamas to exert themselves by walking around too much or overheating during our stifling summers. I love welcoming my beautiful mamas to the studio for the maternity session. Once they walk through the door, they know that I have it all handled for them inside my comfortable studio. If you think a studio maternity portrait session is right for you, I would love to chat with you. Please send me a message here.

 

 

Looking for more maternity portrait inspiration check out my friends recent and very vibrant maternity session 

How to Choose a Maternity Photographer in Charlotte, NC

finding the right maternity photographer for you

Pregnancy is such a special time and it goes by way too fast. Well, it might seem slow to mom when she’s nine months pregnant and waiting for the baby to arrive. But, I can almost promise that you’ll look back on photos of your baby bump, and you might miss it. 

This is why it’s so important to find the right maternity photographer for you. You only get one chance to capture such a sweet and short moment in your life. Maternity portraits are a beautiful way to capture your glowing pregnancy and that precious time before your new baby is in your arms. 

I want you to find the best pregnancy photographer for you, so I’m sharing five tips on finding your perfect photographer. 

5 Tips for Finding Your Pregnancy Photographer in Charlotte, NC

  1. Style
  2. Experience 
  3. Offerings
  4. Full-Service
  5. Personality Match 

 

  1. Style – The first tip for finding the right photographer for you is to find a photographer whose style you love. If you love gorgeous studio portraits, work with a studio photographer. 

  1. Experience – I’m not knocking new photographers by any means. I know everyone needs their start. However, this is such a precious time, and you only really have one chance to capture your maternity portraits, so you want to choose someone with experience that you can trust. 

 

  1. Offerings – I highly recommend working with a maternity photographer that offers newborn sessions and milestone sessions. There are so many reasons for this, but the best reason is that you only have to book once and you know all those sessions are properly taken care of. A full service portrait photographer who covers everything from wardrobe to printing your custom products. This leads to my next tip. 

  1. Full-Service – Mamas, I cannot emphasize this enough! Find a photographer who will take the entire process off your plate. You don’t need to worry about finding an outfit for your maternity session or stress over choosing which products you’ll want. Work with a photographer with your interests in mind. Letting the professional guide you through all the details will save you a ton of stress.

 

  1. Personality Match – My final tip is an important one! Find a maternity photographer that you really like and feel comfortable with throughout the process. It may sound silly, but it’s important that you can find a photographer that you can trust and that will treat you more like family than a client. This will make everything so much more enjoyable!

Your Maternity Photographer | Charlotte, NC 

As a mom of two boys myself, I know how special the season of pregnancy is and how fast it goes. My mission is to make the maternity session process as easy and stress-free as possible. The Insley Photography studio is temperature-controlled and comfortable all year long located just outside of Charlotte, NC. My clients have access to my gorgeous client wardrobe, so they don’t have to worry about finding an outfit. After the session is over and you’ve selected your images to display, I even hand-deliver them to your home, and a professional art installer can hang them on your walls, all without you lifting a finger! How’s that for full service? If you have any questions or want to know me, send me a message here. 

How to Choose Your Newborn Portrait Photography Style | Charlotte, NC

sweet newborn girl poses for her newborn portrait session

You spend nine months waiting to meet the love of your life. All those months, you dream about this little person who you can’t wait to hold in your arms. It’s a surreal and beautiful moment when that moment arrives, and you get to hold your sweet baby for their newborn portrait.

Charlotte mama holds her sweet newborn during a newborn portrait session

Those first few weeks with your newborn are a crazy blur as you get to know each other. It’s so important to capture this important milestone with newborn portraits. An essential part of planning your newborn portrait session is to decide which type of newborn portrait style you wish. I’d love to walk through the different styles and help you decide which one is right for your family. 

Family meeting their sweet newborn during their studio photography session

Baby Photography Styles

There are two styles of newborn portraits to choose from and they are studio or lifestyle. Both are beautiful, but you need to understand the difference and choose the right style for you! We want to start with the end in mind for every portrait session. How do you want to display and love on these portraits? Are you going to display them in your living room or create an heirloom album? Maybe both! Knowing this helps us plan your style. 

newborn twins during their portrait session in Charlotte, NC

 

Lifestyle Newborn Portraits 

A lifestyle photographer will come to your home after the baby is born to capture lifestyle newborn portraits. The photographer works within your home to take photographs of your baby and usually doesn’t bring props or wraps. Instead, they use your home and decor as a backdrop for the portraits. For this reason, parents need to clean and prepare their home before the session so that it’s portrait ready! These portraits can feature the rest of your family as the photographer captures your family’s big milestone. 

Studio Newborn Portraits

All you need to do is bring your beautiful new baby to the studio for this style of newborn portraits. Everything is perfect and ready for your peaceful session within the studio setting. Something special about studio portraits is that your newborn is the primary focus of the studio portraits.

Newborn girl poses for her newborn portrait in the studio

I have everything we need for your baby’s session, including props, wraps, and even a wardrobe for mama. The studio-style offers the ability to sweetly and safely pose your newborn to get the perfect photo. 

Studio portrait photographer Alicia Smith has all the props needed for your newborn session

If mama has a specific pose in mind, I have training and experience to pose your baby. However, your newborn runs the show. If your sweetie isn’t feeling a particular pose, sometimes I can use some Photoshop magic to create the perfectly posed portrait for you. This is a much safer option than trying to force a pose that might be uncomfortable for your baby. Of course, if you have other children, you’re welcome to bring them to the studio for this special session. I love creating sibling portraits, and they are almost always one of mom’s favorites.

siblings pose during a studio newborn portrait session

Charlotte Newborn Studio Photographer

Your newborn portrait session is such an important milestone to capture, and you only get one shot to get it right! Newborn portraits are best to capture between 5 and 14 days old. Trust an experienced newborn studio photographer located right in Charlotte, NC. I’m honored when families choose me for this precious time, and I don’t take a moment of it for granted. If you think I may be the right fit for you, let’s have a conversation. 

Why Work With The Same Maternity & Newborn Photographer | Rock Hill, SC

studio maternity session near Rock Hill, SC

Meeting my newborn clients will never get old! I absolutely love when mamas book their maternity and newborn sessions with me. Not only do I get to relive that special time over and over again, but I find that I’m just as excited to meet the new baby as I am to see the mama again. 

Sweet studio newborn portrait session

There are so many reasons why I highly recommend using the same photographer for both your maternity session and your newborn session. I have my reasons, but it’s really a great thing for mom. Let me share a few reasons with you!

gorgeous studio maternity portrait session

Using the Same Maternity Photographer and Newborn Photographer

These are just a few of the best reasons why you should consider booking the same photographer for your pregnancy photos and your newborn photos. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. 

maternity photography Alicia Smith shares this sweet session

  1. No Strangers Here – At your newborn session, you won’t be meeting a new photographer for these precious portraits. You’re already confident and comfortable with your photographer, and you know exactly what you’re going to get. Instead of saying, “Nice to meet you,” you’ll say, “It’s so great to see you again!” 

why use the same maternity and newborn photographer

  1. Easy Newborn Session Planning – You can plan out both sessions when you have the same photographer. Instead of wondering what poses you want or what props you’ll need, you can work through that during your pregnancy.

parents holding their newborn daughter during their studio portrait session

  1. Priority Scheduling – My newborn clients have priority scheduling. Of course, babies come when they want, but I have my booked in newborn clients’ due dates on the calendar and make sure to be available around that time. Mamas just need to let me know when their baby is born to finalize the date of the session within the ideal two-week timeframe.

Beautiful mom during her studio maternity session

  1. Don’t Be Camera Shy – For some of my clients, their maternity portrait session is their first professional photos since their wedding. Whether you love being in front of the camera or not, having the same photographer means you and your partner have an opportunity to get comfortable in front of the camera. 

Couple posing for their studio maternity session

Displaying Your Portrait Artwork

  1. Style Your Session – The best part of my job is to deliver my clients amazing portrait artwork they can treasure forever. You see, my job isn’t over until your portraits are displayed in your home. It’s that important to me! When I work with my clients for their maternity and newborn sessions, we can style their sessions so that their portraits match their home’s styles. We also offer installation for your wall art. I want to do this for you so that you can focus on bonding with your baby and not asking your partner to hang the art. That way after your baby arrives you can focus on bonding with them and we can get your portraits on your walls for you. 

newborn boy in a belly cast during his studio portrait session

Maternity and Newborn Photoshoot | Rock Hill, SC

Honestly, I can hardly wait for when my clients walk into the studio with their newborns. Meeting your sweet babies is such an honor, and after getting to know you at the maternity session, I am genuinely excited to hear the good news!  I love that I am able to get to know my clients and be part of their growing families. As a maternity and newborn photographer, I’m here to capture your most precious moments. Please send me a message here if you want to schedule your session with me. 

 

Interested in something different for inspiration? Check out this milk bath maternity session a friend of mine created. 

Charlotte NC Maternity Photographer | Unexpected Surprise

I would love to hear about your pregnancy journey. Have you had any surprises along the way?

 

Charlotte NC Maternity Photographer, modern art portrait, black & white

Charlotte NC Maternity Photographer, Unexpected surprise, pregnancy portrait, color, red hair Charlotte NC Maternity Photographer, Unexpected surprise, pregnancy portrait, black & white


My partner and I were trying for about a year and in the midst of our infertility work up earlier this year, we discovered we were pregnant! It was truly the happiest moment and though pregnancy has (and will continue to have) it’s challenges, I am loving this journey and watching my body change. We are thrilled to meet our little girl and would love to document this experience!

What do you like to imagine for your child’s future? Tell me all your dreams for baby.


I want my daughter to live a life she’s passionate about, whatever that looks like for her. Her dad and I will be there to support her in every step of the way.

Charlotte NC Maternity Photographer, classic & timeless portrait, color lace dress Charlotte NC Maternity Photographer, Unexpected surprise, pregnancy portrait, color lace dressWhat would you like your baby to know about YOU (their beautiful mama!)?

I want her to know just how truly wanted she is. I want her to know that her Dad and I managed to find our way to each other through one failed marriage and many other obstacles in life, and we cannot wait to be her parents and watch her grow.

Why are beautiful photos important for you and your family right now?


Simple answer: we are terrible at taking photos! We cherish all of our moments together but sadly always forget to document our experiences. I want us to have beautiful photos to document the memory of starting our own family.

Charlotte NC Maternity Photographer, Modern pregnancy portrait, black & White Charlotte NC Maternity Photographer, Modern pregnancy portrait, color red hair Charlotte NC Maternity Photographer, Modern pregnancy portrait, black & White

 

Thinking about modern maternity portraits to document your pregnancy journey? Not sure how to display them in your home? Check out this great article from my friend Nani’s blog here. She shares her wisdom on how to decorate with wall art in several different ways. Check it out and leave her a comment if you like it. 

Charlotte NC Newborn Photographer | Waiting For Baby: My Wish

Waiting for baby, creating a new life, wishing for his safe arrival

waiting for baby charlotte newborn photographerMy husband and I had been trying to get pregnant for 4 years and on our second round of IVF we found out we were pregnant.

Describe your pregnancy journey while waiting for baby. Have you had any surprises (good or bad)?

Yes we found out our son had a clubfoot. So it is another journey we will have to go through with him. But other than a fairly normal and easy pregnancy everything else is great.

What do you like to imagine for your child’s future?

That he is happy and thriving!

What would you like your baby to know about YOU (their beautiful mama!)?

That we had prayed and prayed for him and he is my best accomplishment.

Is there an encouraging message you would like to share with other expecting mothers who are also waiting for baby?

Keep a good mindset and don’t compare your journey with anyone else’s.

 

Why are beautiful photos important for you and your family?

To cherish those memories!

 

Thank you both for sharing your story with us. -alicia

Are you expecting a baby?

I would love for you to apply for the Newborn Love Stories Campaign.  Ready to share about your miracle baby click the button below to get started.

 

Rock Hill Maternity Photographer |Little Love Stories: Miracles do happen!

Miracles do happen, black and white pregnancy photo

My goal with every maternity portrait is to create a legacy for your family but lately I want to help more mothers. You see after more than ten years photographing motherhood I’ve found we are all in this together. And it’s hard work. I’m on a mission to share stories of real life. Of the messy middle, the beautiful beginnings and the truth that we are all in this together. Because miracles do happen even in this crazy world. 

Miracles do happen, b&W pregnancy photo, charlotte, NC

Why start with pregnancy?

It is extremely important for you to have a way to remember and connect with your child back to a time before he was born. What would you tell your baby now before he arrives  about your hopes and dreams for his future? What do you want to show him as he grows and changes throughout his childhood?

“He’s a miracle.”

you see she told me later, he was a baby she didn’t think she’d be able to carry. Pregnancy for her was something she had given up on. A dream she had put away in order to focus on the adoption journey they had just started. The doctors had told her it wasn’t in the cards for her. 

Miracles do happen, b&W pregnancy photo, fort mill SCMomma K was expecting a new baby boy and really surprised and delighted to be pregnant. She was calm and confident about the whole experience, she didn’t seem nervous about any of it, not the delivery coming up, the newborn stage, the lack of sleep. She is prepared and elated for it all! I truly believe that kind of calm, wonder and joy comes from her experiences. She dreamed of carrying a child, but she also expected to adopt. Once the door to pregnancy opened for her she was ready to enjoy every moment of it. To soak it all in and glow in the moment. 

Creating amazing images that her child will love seeing of his momma pregnant with him in her belly what an honor and gift for this mom to be. She was up for everything which is so much fun for a creative like me. 

Are you expecting a baby?

I would love for you to apply for the Newborn Love Stories Campaign.  Ready to share about your miracle baby click the button below to get started.

 

Thinking about hiring a photographer for your maternity portraits. Don’t take my word for it. Read this article about why to hire a professional Maternity Photographer 

For Expecting Moms Who Want To Feel Glamorous!

Why just get your maternity photo simply taken, when you can be pampered like a model on a climate controlled studio because moms can be glamorous too…

Posted by Insley Photography on Monday, November 9, 2020

 

Why just get your maternity photo simply taken, when you can feel like a queen for the day? For Expecting Moms Who Want To Feel Glamorous!

We’re offering an exclusive, maternity photo shoot package, where you’ll feel just like you’re posing for a magazine cover! You deserve to celebrate your pregnancy glow. Are you ready to remember this special time with a professional portrait.

There are only ten spots available! The package includes a professional makeover and pamper session, access to our maternity closet, including designer gowns and wraps, and a fully guided maternity photoshoot experience with Alicia Insley Smith.

Next step click here. Now are you ready to feel pampered and have a full day of pregnancy glam?  Contact me to reserve your spot today!  You know moms can be glamorous too!

Don’t wait spots are filling up fast and this time with baby will be gone in a flash. 

studio maternity session near Rock Hill, SC, glamorous

Want to learn a bit more about digitals versus printed artwork for your portrait session. Check out my friends article here!