Timeless, joyful portraiture for the crazy in love




client portal

SDP Journal

Mini Sessions and Custom Sessions– What’s the Difference?

March 1, 2018

The days are getting longer and the snow is melting. ‘Tis the season for portraits! As we gear up for many special mini-session offerings, I want to take just a few moments to clarify the different between mini-sessions and custom sessions.


Mini-sessions are just that– mini! They’re only 15-20 minutes in length and intended to be super quick, fun, and easy. Custom sessions, on the other hand, run 60-90 minutes and allow for many more poses, locations, outfits, etc.

Additionally, mini-sessions are only offered at pre-arranged dates and times, while custom sessions offer greater flexibility.


The location of custom sessions is personalized according to your style and needs. Prefer urban? We can do that. Country? I can find you a barn. Mini-sessions, though, are hosted at a pre-determined location. Because minis are scheduled back-to-back, travel time is not an option.


Mini-sessions are planned and organized with a theme in mind. Christmas minis are at tree farms and include holiday props, while fall minis are at a location with fall colors and foliage and require different seasonal props. Studio mini-sessions, too, offer seasonal backgrounds and props. Custom sessions don’t necessarily utilize a theme, though a theme can be incorporated in the planning of the location and props.


Mini-sessions are intended to give a small taste of what Ivy Lane offers. Due to the quick nature of minis, session fees are all-inclusive and provide a short turnaround time between the session and the availability of digital downloads. Custom sessions require planning and time. Clients booking a custom session get an in-home consultation prior to the session, a lengthy portrait session, and an image reveal/ ordering session. Clients choosing a custom session may choose from our portrait packages or order portrait products from our a la carte selection.


Ultimately, the custom portraiture experience is highly personalized and includes professional consultations to ensure wardrobe selection, location/ theme ideas, and portrait products are unified to maximize client investment. Because of this, the custom portraiture experience does require a larger investment. Mini-sessions range from $49-$129 each, while the average custom portraiture client spends $249-$499 per session.

Ivy Lane offers mini-sessions and fully custom experiences because we know not one option will work for all families. So what will it be for you? How do you want to commemorate this year in your family’s life? Contact Ivy Lane to discuss mini-session offerings or reserve your date for a custom portraiture experience.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *