Smash the Cake Guidelines

Cake Smash Photo Shoots are a fun way to celebrate your child’s first, second or even third birthday.

We always get a lot of questions on how to prepare – so here’s our top tips;

1. The Cake

We have a local cake maker, who can supply a proper cake smash cake for you. The cost is already included on the price of the session and the cake is made freshly on the morning of your shoot or on the night before if the session is in the morning. Your cake can be made in a colour of your choice and it would be great if you could send some ideas about the style of cake that you are looking for the session.

If you’re making or sourcing your own cake, we have some specific guidelines on what works and what doesn’t!

– Fondant icing is a major no-no. It will go sticky and slimey immediately and will not create the desired effect.
– Chocolate is also not advised, as it can look like your baby is playing in poop. Yuck.
– Stay away from sweeties etc on the cake, as they can be a huge distraction to your little one.
– Be aware of chocking hazards, so avoid a lot of sprinkles and tiny decorations that wont melt on your baby’s mouth.

The ideal cake is a loose sponge, covered in buttercream icing. These cakes are fun, colorful, easy to smash and make the perfect cakes for cake smashes.
If these guidelines aren’t followed, the cake smash images will not look good (at all). If the cake is unsuitable for cake smashes, we will advise just having a normal photo shoot and that you take the cake home to enjoy.
Stay away from supermarket cakes!

2. What to Wear

We always do a mini-photo shoot at the beginning of your session. So, bring one outfit that you’d like your child to be photographed wearing. The initial photo-shoot will follow the colors chosen for the session.

I will only provide the cake and some decoration and I do not supply any outfits for the session as I want the session to be as unique as possible, so mums will need to bring anything extra if needed.

For the actual cake smash;

Girls – for little ladies, the best things to wear for the actual cake smash are little rompers, tutus or pretty shorts.
You’re more than welcome to bring pearls too and some headbands, just bare in mind that we don’t want anything that draws more attention then the baby, so keep it simple and beautiful.

Boys – for little men, we advise either nappy covers, swim shorts or for that smart little man look, jeans or denim shorts look fantastic.
Little birthday hats are cure, but don’t expect them to stay on for long.

If you’re just opting for the nappy then a nappy cover will need to be brought along for the session, as we don’t keep them at the studio.

3. What to Bring

Lots of wetwipes, change of clothes and a spare top for mum/dad/nanny etc…, favorite toys and a snack and drink for baby.

A flannel/towel (required) as there will be the super cute bathtub session after the cake smash and the child will be very wet.

A large wooden or plastic spoon to help little one tuck in.

A number 1 candle can also be helpful as little one may be intrigued by this and it’ll encourage them to get into the cake.

Balloon!! There are some cute ones at spotlight. Just keep it simple and stay away from the shiny ones please.

PARENTS – PLEASE DO NOT WEAR YOUR BEST CLOTHES, YOU WILL GET MESSY – We advise bringing spare clothes for everyone and a spare bag to put the dirty clothes in.

4. Before The Session

Please make sure that you have given your baby a taste of cake beforehand. If they haven’t tasted or felt the texture of cake prior to the session they WILL refuse to touch it at all, or will have a toddler tantrum as soon as they do touch it. Believe it or not the majority of children don’t like the texture of the icing on their hands so it’s always best to let them get to know the texture and the mess beforehand.

Don’t feed baby just before the session. If they are full – they probably wont show much interest in the cake.

If your child is ill on the day or has been ill for the previous week we advise rescheduling the session, as he/she will end up distressed as opposed to enjoying it. We understand that this can’t be helped and will re-arrange the session gladly for you, as long as you give a 48 hours notice so that I don’t order the cake.

5. What to Expect

Toddlers can be very shy, and have a dislike for strangers. It can take a little while for them to come around, which is why we try to interact with them before we bring out the big camera!
If your baby is walking – don’t expect them to sit and smile straight away. They have a habit of running away – it’s all part of the fun :)I don’t have an assistant so it will be up to mum and dad to run after the child and put them back in the set so that I can take the photos. It will be some work but it will be completely worth it!

Please don’t fuss your baby, let our photographer interact and let them explore. In our experience, if they are over-fussed they tend to get a little flustered which ends in tantrums and hardly any photographs taken.

Put yourself in their shoes; you’re in strange place, there are big lights, a strange person (photographer) with a massive black camera that flashes the big lights and there’s a cake that you’re being told to make as much mess as you want with. We spend the first year of their lives telling them not to touch, not to get messy etc and then all of a sudden we’re saying yay get messy? They don’t quite understand this and it does take time for them to come around to the idea of smashing a cake.

We do ask parents to just come with the birthday boy or girl as siblings will want to jump in to the cake and it’s just not fair on them to have to sit back and watch. There are parks and a big shopping center down the road from the studio and we advise that siblings have a fun couple of hours with dad while mum stays in for the session.

Not all babies will go straight into it and start enjoying the experience, which is why we need to create a relaxing environment for them to come around in.

When it comes to the cake smash, they tend to be a little wary of the cake at first. It can take some time for them to get in to it, and to realize they can make as much mess as they like. Once they realize that they are sitting next to a messy, yet delicious and edible cake – the fun begins.

Expect lots of mess. You will get dirty too.

To end the session we have introduced our vintage bath mini session. Not only does this create gorgeous images but it means baby will leave the studio squeaky clean. Don’t forget a towel!

If you do have any questions, please let me know!  I am really looking forward to the beautiful mess that we will make on our cake smash session!!