CAKE SMASH PREPARATION
- There are two outfits allowed: A first birthday outfit, and the cake smash “attire” (usually a diaper/cover or tutu set…see below). The first few shots we get will be portraits of your baby dressed in their dressier outfit for a couple traditional first birthday portraits. Then take a few minutes to change your baby into their cake smash “attire”.
- Let your baby have cake at least 2 times in the weeks leading up to the cake smash session. This way they will be familiar with cake enough to move past the exploration phase and they can get excited about it like the rest of us! Feeding them cake ahead of time also helps determine if your baby has any allergies or sensitivity from the icing coloring. But believe it or not, many babies think the texture of the icing feels weird. Some babies don’t like it at all and get upset when it won’t easily wipe off, and some babies are very interested in it and examine it very seriously. Another option for getting them accustomed to messy finger foods is mashed potatoes set directly in front of them without a utensil. ;)
- It is great to incorporate some decorations from the first birthday party or a theme you've chosen for your session in advance (such as a crafty banner, colors, etc.). I am usually not a fan of balloons because they do not reflect well and they tend to cast color & shadows but understand that many parents want to incorporate balloons. If this is the case, just let me know! As part of your cake smash fee, a banner, balloons and small cake are included.
- The cake smash typically takes place in studio and is extremely messy. Your baby will definitely need a bath after, (and you might also) so be prepared for a mess and the certainty that you may need to be sticky for a short while until you return home. I do have wipes and other things to clean up as best as possible but please note that I do not have a bathtub for easy cleanup!
- I usually have solid background colors of white, grey, pink and blue available. Please let me know ahead of time what color you prefer so I can make sure to have it in stock ahead of time. It takes several weeks to receive a new background order so the sooner I know, the better chance you’ll have of getting the background color you want.
- Most babies simply wear a diaper cover (like bloomers), a tutu or cloth diaper for the cake smash. Some parents prefer to do the cake smash with the baby fully clothed instead of in a diaper, and this is totally fine with us. Just be aware that the clothes and diaper cover WILL be ruined by the icing coloring. (which is why we don’t provide the clothing!!) You do have the option of having a custom made Onesie and Tutu made by us through our sister store, Kaleidoscope Studios.
- If your baby has a fever or is not feeling well on the day of the session, then it needs to be rescheduled. We will not get good results and good smiles if your baby isn’t feeling well.
- Have some puffs, Cheerios or your baby’s favorite dry finger food on hand to stuff into the cake in case they need help being a little more interested in it.
- Also have a sip cup or bottle within arms reach in case your baby gets thirsty. Your baby will need a little break.
- We will have a spoon handy in case we need to give your baby a little “help” smashing into the cake. Some babies are very clean and dainty with the cake and need some adult help getting messy.
- Have a small plastic toy (that can easily be cleaned) handy to give your baby when their back is facing the camera. Your baby will need a reason to sit still, and introducing a toy will help keep their attention for enough time to get some cute shots.
- Remember, a small smash cake is included in the session when you purchase the Cake Smash option. We typically go with White Cake and a Buttercream Frosting in the colors of your specified theme. It is your responsibility to know of any food allergies and we will not be held responsible should your child have any adverse reactions to their cake. If you are concerned about this, you may make or order your own cake but please go over colors, etc. with me before doing so (please see below).
- Please avoid ordering chocolate cake and please avoid fondant decorations (this can pose as a choking hazard).
- If you prefer to provide a home-baked cake yourself instead of from the bakery, please make sure that no toothpicks or other structural items are placed inside the cake. Also for home-baked cakes, please avoid lining the base plate with tin foil.
- You can have the cake smash outside at your home if you really want to. However, there are many things to consider about the possibility of an outdoor cake smash: The session must be scheduled according to the best natural lighting (usually around sunset), which may not coincide with your baby’s naptime. Outdoor cake smashes are usually on the ground and with no solid backdrop. A cake smash at a public park on the ground is not usually a good idea because there is just no thorough way to completely clean the ground….it leaves behind crumbs and sticky frosting residue that attracts rodents, animals and bugs where children play. It makes me sad every time I see a mound of mess in public left behind on the ground from an obvious cake smash photography session. That’s why indoor cake smash sessions are sooooo much better than outdoor!
- Please remember to take nap time into account when scheduling your child's session. We want him/her happy and ready to party!
© D. Willey Photography