Crystal Lee 


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What Is The Difference Between A Swaddled Session And A Posed Newborn Session?

May 31, 2022

In my studio, I offer two types of newborn session experiences: a swaddled portrait session and a fully posed session. But I’m often asked, what is the difference between them?

Today I’m going to break down the details so that you can make the best choice for your little one’s first photo session.

What is a swaddled newborn session?

A swaddled session is somewhat considered a “mini-session” because it is only 60-90 minutes long, compared to the 2-4 hours needed for a fully posed session. These sessions are perfect for older newborns (3-6 weeks) and for families that just want a few images that capture the sweet, curled-up newness of their baby.

  • Baby is swaddled for the full session, using various wrap colors and styles. There are no naked, outfit, or tummy poses.
  • Swaddled sessions can be done with newborns between 1-6 weeks of age.
  • The session is 60-90 minutes long.
  • The studio will be heated at around 76 degrees to keep baby comfortable.
  • There are typically 4-6 sets designed for this session.

What is a fully posed newborn session?

A fully posed session is anywhere from 2-4 hours long and includes all of the poses that baby will allow us to do in that timeframe, including tummy poses, outfits, swaddled set, and family & sibling photos.

  • For this session, I follow baby’s lead to determine which poses we can safely and comfortably achieve.
  • Possible poses include tummy poses, knit newborn outfits, swaddled sets, and family & sibling photos.
  • Posed sessions are done between 7-21 days of life.
  • The session lasts anywhere from 2-4 hours.
  • The studio will be heated to around 80 degrees to keep baby comfortable and warm while undressed.
  • There are typically 1-3 backgrounds planned for tummy/naked photos and 4-5 basket/props sets. Not all babies will do all poses, so I usually plan for more sets than we will actually need.

Swaddled vs. Posed comparison chart

Need a little more clarification? This chart shows the session differences side by side.

Regardless of which session type you choose I promise that we will create not just photographs, but beautiful pieces of art that celebrate this momentous time in your growing family’s life. I can’t wait to meet you and your little one!

*As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Any affiliate links you see (Amazon or otherwise) are for products and services that I have used and loved. I may earn a small discount or commission to fund my coffee obsession if you use them to make a purchase.

I might be the newborn photographer for you if...

You want bold, true to color portraits. 

You're looking for a detailed but relaxed photo experience.

Safety training and a dedicated studio location are a priority.

You want more than just digital files that will live on a lonely hard drive.

You want an unforgettable luxury experience

Ready to book?
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Let us take the stress out of planning and ordering! You will leave this experience feeling confident and taken care of, instead of getting stuck trying to figure everything out on your own.

Because honestly, you have enough on your to-do list already.