Raleigh, North Carolina’s Cake Smash Trend – Have your cake and wear it too!
Who doesn’t love cake? If you are expecting or already have a little one I don’t have to tell you about the biggest trend in baby photos right now; First Birthday Cake Smash photo sessions are more popular than ever websites are full of themes, smash outfits and cake ideas. Etsy vendors provide entire coordinating sets and Pinterest is overflowing with ideas. Moms are letting their little ones celebrate a big milestone in a big way – with a tiny cake all of their own. Allowed to dive in, eat up and spread the joy (and icing) as far and wide as possible, the messier the better! And NEW for 2019, add a Bubble Bath to the end of your session for a squeaky clean baby and some precious bath time memories. This photographer FAQ page will help you prepare for these special photos (or click here to see Pricing or here to see Raleigh studio cake smash photo session availability OR new themes we are working on!).
So what exactly goes into the perfect first birthday session?
You bring the baby and the baked goods (or tacos, or waffles, or skip the food all together!), we will provide a set that coordinates with your theme and matching balloons – and clean up the mess when it’s all said and done! When your session is booked we will discuss your vision for the celebration. Whether you have a specific theme in mind or just a general idea, we will create something special and unique to your child. We start with a 5-10 minute session before introducing the treats (if you have a first birthday outfit that you do not want messy, this is the time to pull it out!) and then we bring out the goodies. When it’s all said and done you take home your sugary baby and leave the mess to us!
What to Expect
Well, you just never know! Some babies dive right in and chow down and others take one look at that cake and burst into tears. Most babies fall somewhere in the middle; a little hesitant but with some coaching from Mom or Dad (and occasionally a big sister!) learn to enjoy their new treat. The actual cake portion of the session is typically short, 10-15 minutes, but these session times will vary. Whatever your child’s level of interest in their cake, the results will be priceless. If sticky babies isn’t your scene, we can build a set and shoot the entire session without the mess.
There are some things you can do in advance to ensure adorable smash memories. The cake takes center stage in these photos so have a professional baker make something beautiful. While grocery store bakeries do sometimes offer free 1st year birthday cakes keep in mind that this “prop” will be the main theme of the photos and choose accordingly. The design should be fun, creative and very decorated – stripes, dots, sprinkles, rosettes, unicorns – the more the better! A few helpful tips:
- White cake is a better option than chocolate
- Light/bright colors work better than darker/saturated colors (which will often stain the skin). If there is a dot of black icing on the cake, your baby will have black lips for their photos!
- Choose a whipped or buttercream style icing vs. fondant
- I have cake stands available for you to choose from in studio so no need to bring one unless you have something specific in mind (and often do a few photos with the stand and then remove it since they do tip easily).
- Have your baby try icing before the session in the weeks before the session – that is the only way you can anticipate how your little one will react to a sweet, new texture (and ensure that there are no allergies!)
- Bring along baby’s favorite bite sized treats; hiding a cheerio/puff/etc. in the icing can mimic “grabbing” shots even if your little one is less than thrilled with the sticky situation
- See my local bakery recommendations here.
What the best way to wash off cake? A Bubble Bath of course!
New for 2019, add a bubble bath shoot to the end of your cake smash session for a squeaky clean baby and some adorable bath time photos. While some babies may not love cake, almost all babies love bubbles and splashing – the results are precious!
The Studio Not Your Style?
Smash Sessions can also take place at area parks. These sessions take a bit more planning on your part but the results are precious and can be added to a half or full family photo session.
How to Schedule your Session:
Our online booking calendar will show you upcoming availability. We prefer at least a week’s notice to plan and design (and purchase supplies for) your customized birthday set. We will discuss your ideas (if you don’t have any ideas, leave it up to us!) and would love to see a photo of your cake design in advance to make sure we match just perfectly!