Mom Has Glitter Maternity Photo Shoot to Honor Her Stillborn Daughter & Her Rainbow Baby

rainbow baby glitter photo shoot
Nicole DeHoff Photography/Facebook

In recent years, brave moms have been turning the unimaginable pain of losing a child into something that doesn't need to be shied away from with amazing rainbow baby photo shoots. After losing a child and becoming pregnant again in the same year, this mom staged a photo shoot to honor both of her little ones -- and the glittering results are just as beautiful as they are moving. 

  • Samantha Gadd lost her first baby -- a little girl named Victoria -- on February 1, 2017.

    "Victoria had a prolapsed cord, and was born sleeping," the mom's friend and photographer, Nicole DeHoff, told Love What Matters. Already a mother of two boys, Gadd was absolute devastated. So when she found out she was pregnant again in April 2017, "she was flooded with emotion." 

    "The beginning of the pregnancy she was detached, paranoid, scared, and while she wanted to be excited that she was having a girl, she didn't want it to feel like Victoria was being replaced," DeHoff shared. "We began planning her maternity session because it had to be something special." 

    DeHoff wanted to make the shoot as perfect as possible but was low on ideas. "Then one day I was at the craft store when I passed the glitter section, and it hit me," she explained.

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  • "We were going to honor Victoria with the sparkle that she left behind with all of us," the photographer shared.

    DeHoff says that from that moment on, "it all fell into place." 

  • Actually getting the glitter on the expectant mom was surprisingly easy.

    DeHoff covered Gadd's skin with Vaseline on one side, then sprinkled on the glitter in a rainbow pattern. The entire effect was completely DIY. 

  • The experience was incredibly emotional for both the mom and her photographer.

    Having experienced two miscarriages of her own, the photographer fully understood what Gadd was going through. "Watching a close friend struggle, you feel some of those emotions as well .... Losing a child is the most awful feeling -- you're filled with so much anger, and you're so hurt. You have questions that really can't be answered and an internal struggle that is never really resolved. No child can ever be replaced, no matter how many kids you have after that," she said.


  • Still, covered in glitter and with emotions in overdrive, Gadd handled the shoot beautifully, according to DeHoff.

    "This session fell together better than any session I could have planned in my head," the photographer told Love What Matters. "The images turned out exactly how I had hoped, and we were able to capture the beauty of pregnancy, and honor Victoria."

  • Gadd and her husband Steven welcomed their rainbow baby, Abigail, on December 14, 2017.

    A rainbow baby is a term used to lovingly refer to a little one born after a loss; it represents the light after an awful storm.

    It wasn't long before Gadd signed her baby up for her own photo shoot with DeHoff. Following her mom's lead, rainbows were, of course, a pretty big part of Abigail's session as well. "This was yet another way to honor Victoria, as well as capture the true beauty of new life," DeHoff said. 

  • The love felt for little Abigail by her friends and family is palpable in her photo shoot.

    DeHoff told Love What Matters that the baby girl is "so beautiful, so perfect and innocent," a sentiment her mom shares as well. 

    "I felt accomplished and relieved. Holding her in my arms, it was just amazing. We felt like what we worked so hard for was finally here," Samantha Gadd said in an interview with People. "She's so perfect and she looks just like Victoria did." 

rainbow babies miscarriage & loss