31 Unique 1 Year Photo Ideas

Nearly every parent wants special 1 year photos of their little one and we understand why! They’re cute and fun and also help capture their bright personality and spirit. As your child grows, you can look back on their moments as a baby and remember all of the sweet times you had together.

To make your photos extra meaningful, choose an idea that matches your little one’s personality. A funny theme might be their style or maybe an outdoor photo shoot is more fitting. No matter your child’s personality, check out our inspirational gallery of 1 year photo ideas.

Once your photo shoot is complete, look for personalized home decor to display the love and joy you’ve captured.

1. Bring In The Props

Give your young one something to play with during their photo shoot, like toy letters, numbers or a stuffed animal. Helping them stay relaxed and natural will ensure you get the best photographs.

2. Sibling Love

Source: Amy Tripple

Gather siblings or cousins together on photo day. Encourage them to act naturally and talk with one another (if they’re old enough). Seize the opportunity to show off their family love.

3. Good Sport

Is your 1 year old a member of a sports-loving family? Choose a single sport to highlight, then create your cake and decorations to match, like this baseball-themed shoot.

4. Partied Out

baby on highchair

Source: Simply Mars

The scene of your toddler all “partied out” will be one that makes you smile for years to come. After a huge party celebration, everyone needs a nap.

5. Messy Baby

Snap images of your little one after they’ve just tasted their first birthday cake. Don’t be afraid to let them be messy, complete with frosting on their lips, hands and anywhere else it sticks.

6. Floating Bubbles

What 1 year old doesn’t love bubbles? Blow as many as possible above their heads, and allow them to watch intently as you click the camera.

7. Park Bench

Head to your local park or botanical garden for your 1 year photo shoot. Let your child sit on a park bench as you capture the surrounding beauty. You may want to have a flower or leaf handy for your child to look at or play with.

8. Little Swimmer

At the beach or near the pool, dress your baby in their swimsuit and sunglasses. Use a raft or other pool toys to bring this photo to life.

9. Toy Party

Arrange your child’s favorite toys for a photo celebration. Invite stuffed animals, dolls and any other toy friends to join the party.

10. Bursting with Balloons

baby with red ballons

Source: Life as Noel

Fill your crib with colorful balloons then place your 1 year old inside. Let the party begin as they enjoy their cheery surroundings. Remove any popped balloons in order to keep the area kid-safe.

11. Twinning

twin babies with matching shirts

Source: Shutterfly

Matching t-shirts are perfect for a set of twins! Show how fun mornings are with your bundles of joy. Double trouble!

12. Number One Sign

Create a sign that reads “one,” and hang it in a visible place. If you’re taking photos during their birthday party, place the sign on their highchair so you can capture the moment when they eat their cake.

13. With Mom

What’s sweeter than a special moment with mom? Head outside in the evening when the light is just right for photos. Ensure the photographer catches the natural moments between you and your baby.

14. Colorful Chair and Big Balloon

Design a vivid set-up with a colored chair and a large balloon that matches. This 1 year photo idea works best if the background contrasts with the chair and balloon’s color.

15. Cake Smash

Catch your kid in the act of enjoying their first birthday cake. A cake smash is perfect for a 1 year old celebration–it’s messy but tons of fun!

16. Flower Crowns

Using local flowers or a professional florist, create a crown for you and your child. The blooms and their beauty will create a delicate aura for your photos.

17. Dapper Baby

Dress your child in their best for their special 1 year photos. Consider an outfit similar to what you’d have him or her wear to a wedding, bar mitzvah or family celebration.

18. Box and Balloons

baby with mom and dad and balloons

Source: Ruthie Hart

This timeless photo setup is easy to construct with a crate and helium-filled balloons. Have your child sit or stand near the box, and be sure to join them for a few family shots.

19. Nighttime Sparklers

Play with your lighting options by taking photos at night. Use candles or sparklers to light up your little one’s face and show their curiosity for the world, just make sure to keep it at a good distance from child’s face.

20. Silly Animal Outfit

baby in lion costume

Source: Shutterfly

Bring out their playful side by dressing them in a silly animal costume. Your little one can make animal sounds and have fun being goofy.

21. Mommy and Me Matching Outfits

Match your baby by wearing a similar outfit. Choose clothes you both enjoy, like an outfit you can dance in. Mommy and me photos show the eternal bond between mother and child.

22. Blanket Time

two children sitting in park

Source: Shutterfly

Head to a park, orchard, beach or other favorite locale. Spread out a blanket and capture their joy of being in the great outdoors.

23. Movie-themed

Design a fun, cohesive look by dressing dad and mom in the same movie character outfit as baby–team Zissou! Pro tip: Incorporate similar colors into your backdrop.

24. With Dad and Siblings

Source: Shutterfly

It’s always a fun time with dad and the siblings. Go out and adventure and use nature for an amazing backdrop. This will be an awesome memory captured.

25. Get Clean

Rub-a-dub-dub! Put your little one in a tub. If you have twins or triplets, squeeze them all together for a memorable photoshoot.

26. Name Blocks

baby with name blocks

Source: Teri Lyne Photography

Find blocks with your child’s name on them, or make your own set using craft supplies. Line them up and let your little one play.

27. Angel Baby

Capture your little one in their age of innocence. Dress them with angel wings and a halo for a purely angelic look.

28. Solid Backdrop

baby with white backdrop

Source: Shutterfly

For a stunning and crisp photo, choose a single-colored wall as your backdrop. If you’re taking your own photos, this offers a more polished and professional look. Add color and character by adding a plant to the scene.

29. Creative One

baby with wooden letters that spell one

Source: Lena Wang

There is something so adorable about a baby knocking over the set pieces. It creates a wonderful candid moment and the baby will get a laugh out of it.

30. With Mommy and Daddy

Dress your young one in a classic set of clothes. Take them for a walk in a beautiful field or on a trail. Hold their hand for timeless family shots.

31. Don’t Forget The Headband

Bring out your 1 year old’s personality with a stylish headband. For a seamless look, make sure the band complements the rest of the outfit.

Capturing your 1 year old’s personality is a special, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Make it meaningful by choosing an idea that matches their style. Share your photographs as gifts by framing them or designing a personalized gift.