The Ultimate Checklist for a Summer Mommy & Me Photo Shoot
As parents, we always want to capture those special moments. Photos like objects bring you back to that time and allow you to remember. Mommy and me photo shoots are the perfect way to capture those precious moments in time. Done right, you'll have incredible photos to be enjoyed for years. So grab your mini-me and enjoy this ultimate checklist for a summer mommy and me photo shoot.
Choose your mommy and me photographer
Photography can be your biggest expense with doing a mommy and me photo shoot. But it may be something you want to splurge on. But finding the right photographer can be challenging. So first, you can ask around to see if anyone knows someone.
Or, if you have a friend who is an amateur photographer, you can ask them to help you. Sometimes photographers are looking to expand their portfolio or do it as a favor. This is how I found my photographer. She was a co-worker that posted amazing photos on Facebook and Instagram. I knew I could work with her and feel comfortable.
When choosing a mommy and me photographer, you want one that puts you at ease and can draw out your little one's smile. In addition, the whole experience can be really intimate, so you want someone you can trust and open up to during the mommy and me experience.
Pick a mommy and me summer photo shoot location
Your photographer may have favorite beach locations for the shoot. If they take photos regularly, usually they have a few suggestions. My photographer recommended Windansea Beach in La Jolla. While we benefit from living close to the beach, you may not.
But regardless, pick a summer mommy and me photoshoot location you love or one you visit with your family. The mommy and me photoshoot experience is about capturing that moment in time, and a geographical area that means something to you will make the day even better.
Another tip when choosing a location is to think about how busy it will be and what time to go is best for the light or tide. You can check the sunrise, sunset, and tides online and plan ahead. Of course, fewer people are ideal, but your photographer can also edit out the people that may wander into your shot.
Shop for mommy and me dresses
I have to tell you, shopping for mommy and me dresses was so much fun. I knew that I wanted us to change into a few different outfits for the shoot. But I also wanted to find the perfect dresses that matched our personalities. My photographer recommended not wearing exactly the same clothing color because you can blend in together and not have definition.
She recommended picking complementary colors. For example, take one color from one dress to match the other dress. So, for two of the outfits, we did this, but I also love mommy and me matching outfits. I wanted the quintessential mommy and me matching outfits. So, I found a few places on Pinterest that offered dresses.
In the end, I chose Ivy City Co. They have a whimsical retro style that worked for my vision. I splurged on a few dresses for each of us and tried to ensure all the colors were complimentary between outfits.
I also got my daughter involved in the decision-making and let her choose one of her dresses. I encouraged her to pick one that she could wear again. The mommy and me photoshoot may be over, but the dresses may work for other occasions.
You could also borrow dresses from other mom friends for the big day to cut down on costs. And my photographer let me borrow a few dresses from her.
Think about mommy and me accessories
Like your dresses, you may want to think about headbands, bows, seagrass bags, necklaces, and any other accessories to complement your mommy and me outfits. Of course, I'm a little biased, but I love our Sea & Grass bags.
I thought about how the colors would coordinate with the matching mommy and me dresses.
It was a ton of fun changing outfits and accessories during the shoot. Straw bags are the perfect beach bags that can be dressed up or down with your outfits.
Get your hair and nails done
Beach photo shoots can have some wind. I wanted our hair to be loose and flowy to catch the breeze. My daughter loves headbands, so I got one in a creamy white to match all her dresses. For my hair, I got a Keratin treatment ahead of time to add gloss to the shots. Also, as a busy working mom, it was nice to take the time to treat myself.
The day before, we headed to the nail salon. I chose a blue color I wasn't exactly in love with afterward. I had forgotten to take my blue dress with me to match it better, but in the end, the nails weren't the focus of the shots but rather a detail. So, they were fine and went nicely with all the dresses from a distance.
Remember to relax
This is an essential tip for a mommy and me photo shoot. Having someone take photos of you can be nerve-wracking. It can take a lot of planning, which can add stress to your body and face.
But if you have the right photographer and the mindset of having fun, the photos will be much better, and you'll enjoy yourself more. But, of course, nothing is perfect, so why stress about it?
Get some shots of yourself
My photographer insisted I get shots just of myself as well. She wanted me to see my beauty. To be honest, this was hard for me.
I had gained a bit of weight and had a hard time seeing through this, but I'm thrilled she did. The shots are gorgeous, and like the ones with my daughter, I'm glad I have them.
Offer an award or incentive
My daughter was excited about the photoshoot and loved changing outfits, but depending on how she was feeling may not want to smile or look at the camera. This was true during the photo shoot.
I had to tickle her and promise ice cream afterward. Children are notoriously difficult to photograph, so you don't want this to ruin the day.
Create a mommy and me photo book
Once you get all the shots back, put them together in a mommy and me photobook. Then, you can enjoy the photos with your daughter for years; photo books are great gifts for close family and friends.
Putting together a mommy and me photoshoot can be one of the best things you've done. You get to spend time with your mini-me and have gorgeous photos to show for the experience. While we chose a mommy and me photo shoot on the beach, any beautiful location will do. Follow these tips, and you'll be on your way to the best day ever.