Maternity Styling Guide

You’ve booked your maternity session! Now what to wear? Well, the fun part is, we can try a bunch of different outfits. I usually aim for three different looks during our time together. Why?

1. It’s fun to play dress-up.

2. Who doesn’t love a little variety?

Here are a few of my favorite idea & go-to suggestions for styling.

Color photo of young woman sitting on a bed in a rust orange maternity gown with her belly exposed and her hand resting on it while she's looking down. Taken during a maternity photography session in La Plata, Maryland


Flowy, Linen Dresses

Some of these can be un-bottoned to show your belly, if you wish. It’s a very simple, classic look.

Pair with underwear that matches the dress or some that match your skin tone.

Black and white photo of pregnant woman wearing jeans while holding her toddler over her exposed belly.


Style a matching bra/underwear set with your favorite jeans.

It’s such a cute & super comfortable look. Add your favorite tee (everyone has at least one, right?) for a few shots, too!

Color photo and close up of woman's exposed pregnant belly taken during a maternity photography session in Charles County, Maryland


Robes, tunics, kimonos, button-down shirts, kaftans & open cardigans. All of these are great options. They are all comfortable & are very baby belly friendly. They can be paired with a matching bra & underwear set or you can choose to forego the bra for these.  (Any excuse to take that annoying thing off, right?!)


More form-fitting items like body suits and tube dresses are another wonderful way to show off your body’s curves. 

Black and white photo of a pregnant couple whose faces are off camera sitting on a bench with the woman leaning on the man's body taken during a maternity photography session in Waldorf, Maryland


Crop tops, sheer tops, camis & bandeus can be a lot of fun. Pair them with your favorite jeans or maxi skirt.


Nothing at all. Some people are totally comfortable shooting completely or partially in their birthday suit! I’ve done entire sessions with just swaths of fabric instead of an actual outfit. I’ve also used bouquets of flowers or other props to strategically cover anything you wouldn’t want exposed. We can show as much or as little you want.

–Whatever style you decide for yourself, I highly recommend wearing seamless underwear & loose-fitting items to your session. Avoid any items that are too tight and dig in to your skin. (Think tight bra straps!). The marks left on your skin by constricting clothing items can take a while to fully disappear. While I can edit some of them out in post-processing, it’s much easier to avoid it if possible.–


Good news! If you book a session with me, part of your package includes access to THIS amazing personalized styling service. You can easily coordinate outfits for yourself and any family members joining you for your session. If I have an item in my Client Closet that fits your size & aesthetic, it’ll show up here as an option for you to choose!

You can use the site to gather inspiration or you can purchase items directly from the shop links on the site. Just click on the shopping cart symbol and it will take you directly to the retailer’s site for purchase. Super easy!

Not thrilled with those options?? Here are some of my favorite vendors.

Baltic Born

Jen’s Pirate Booty

Free People

Urban Outfitters


Nuuly -This is an awesome choice for maternity! You can rent items instead of buying them.

ARQ -I absolutely love them for matching bra/underwear sets.

SHEIN has great and affordable options. 

Amazon has a great wardrobe selection, as well.

I really hope this guide helped you! If you need any more ideas, check out my Pinterest board or just get in touch and we can go on a virtual shopping trip together.

Melissa Suarez Photography is a Maryland Birth, Maternity, Newborn, & Baby Milestone Photographer serving southern Maryland & the Washington, DC area.

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