Pregnancy brain is real!
If you are reading this, it’s likely that you are neck deep in planning for your sweet baby to arrive on the outside. Among the 1,345,567 things you have to think about when expecting a baby, planning a maternity photo shoot is one more thing to add to the list. And let’s be real, pregnancy brain is a total booger. I get it and I’m here to help. I’ve put together some ideas to help you decide what to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR.
What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR
In my studio, we usually have time for 4-5 outfits. So I recommend bringing several items, in varying styles, and I can help you decide which pieces would photograph best. Below, I’ll list out some different options to consider.
A formal dress
I don’t know about you, but I personally don’t get very many chances in life to dress up in a formal dress. A baby on the way is certainly a reason to celebrate and a great reason to get fancy. My hair and makeup artist will have your hair and makeup looking amazing, so a formal dress will fit right in with your look.
On the other side of the spectrum, I also really love maternity photos that look quiet and intimate. Pregnancy is such a personal and vulnerable experience. This look captures that side of motherhood. Wardrobe can include, pajamas, nightgowns, robes, and lingerie.
A loose flowy dress
Light flowing fabric is so feminine, which is obviously a good trait to have for maternity photos. The minor downside is that you have to always have a hand under your baby bump to bring the fabric in. Doing this reveals the cute shape of your bump, while fabric just loosely hanging down would make a woman look larger but not necessarily pregnant. This “downside” isn’t that much of a set back, though, because having a hand or two on your belly is great for showing connection to the sweet life you are carrying.
Dresses that are specifically designed for maternity photo shoots often have a slit in the front so that you can reveal your bare tummy. That’s another great way to get variety in your portraits. These types of dresses aren’t something you can find just anywhere. But you can find them easily on Etsy or Amazon.
A form fitted dress
A dress that fits snugly around your belly is great for revealing the size and shape of your beautiful baby bump. While we are at it, we can celebrate your other feminine curves, as well. One benefit to a snug dress is that we can have more variety in hand placement as your hands aren’t having to tuck the dress in under your bump.
Soft and sheer textures
I love fabrics with textures, such as lace, for all my shoots because they provide visual interest without being overwhelming to the photo in the way that bright colors or bold patterns can be. For maternity portraits, sheer fabrics, such as lace or chiffon are especially great if you want to be able to see through to your baby bump.
Another texture I love for maternity photos is softness. To me, a soft texture speaks of nurturing, gentleness, femininity, and comfort. All good things for a portrait of a mother. Oh, I know, there is nothing comfortable about the third trimester of pregnancy. But we can try! Soft cardigan sweaters and robes are a go-to in my studio.
Let’s talk about colors
I’ve already mentioned that bright colors and bold patterns aren’t my jam. They don’t tend to photograph well or fit with my portrait style. So I usually recommend solid colors and I prefer neutrals or pastels.
Pastels are particularly good for maternity portraits because babies also look so sweet in pastels. I do make exceptions occasionally for a pretty floral print and that can look beautiful in a portrait. But I do try to stay away from stripes, polka dots, or any other bold pattern, if possible (unless we are talking about pin-up photos).
I think it’s kind of sweet to have a pink outfit if you are having a girl and to have a light blue outfit if you are having a boy, if you want to pay tribute to the baby’s gender (if you know what it is). But really any pastel color look gorgeous. And it’s more than fine to wear pink, even if you are going to have a boy.
In addition to pastels and lighter neutrals, the color black works, as well. It doesn’t give the same feeling of brightness or softness. But in black, your curves really stand out against a light background, which is pretty cool.
For a totally different look
The tips above apply to a regular maternity session in my studio. However, I’d also like to share with you a totally different look that I also love. 50’s pin-up inspired maternity photo shoots. They aren’t for everyone. But if you want something a little different, you may be interested. You can read more about those here.
Let’s chat about what to wear for your shoot!
I hope this articles gives you some great ideas for what to wear for a maternity photo shoot. I have an awesome studio wardrobe closet with a number of maternity pieces that are available for you to use and to supplement what you bring in. Send me an email and we can start planning your maternity photo shoot near Portland, OR!
My studio is in Tualatin, OR, however, I have clients who come to me from Portland, Beaverton, Vancouver, Salem, and Lake Oswego.