How to Plan the Most Adorable Cake Smash

No one knows exactly where this cake smash photoshoot trend is coming from. But let me tell you, it sure is a trend!! And why wouldn’t it be?? The pictures are hands-down adorable! 

Planning a cake smash might look super simple, but there are a few easy things you must consider if you want to get the most out of your time and money.

So, besides showing you some inspirational pictures (scroll to the end!!), I put together 10 practical tips on how you can plan the most adorable cake smash with ease!! Ready? Then keep on reading! 

Tip 1: Lay the foundation

Before you do anything else, choose a theme! Believe me, this will make the rest of the planning so much easier! It will help you decide the color scheme and which props to bring. Without a theme or at least a color scheme, it will be harder to coordinate the look of the cake, the outfit, and the other props. The pictures will end up looking messy, which is not our goal when trying to plan the most adorable cake smash!! 

Tip 2: Prepare your little one

Next, think about the outfit! It shouldn’t be limited to a dress, pants, or diaper covers. Think bigger here like hair accessories such as headbands or little flower crowns for girls and bows or suspenders for boys. As for shoes, I wouldn’t worry about that! Baby toes are simply too adorable to cover up, am I right!? 

Important, no matter what outfit you choose for your cake smash, remember it will get stained! So an heirloom piece might not be the best choice. 

Tip 3: Consider the right timing

Plan the photoshoot in terms of nap times and meal times! You certainly don’t want to have a cranky or hungry baby during the shoot. 

Another thing to consider is the right light. If you are doing the shoot in a photo studio, light doesn’t matter, but if you do it at home or outdoors, natural light is everything! I would recommend taking the pictures either in the morning shortly after sunrise or in the late afternoon about an hour before sunset. The sunlight tends to be the best during those so-called golden hours! 

Tip 4: Bring plenty of props

As with the outfit, you want to make sure that the props match your theme and color scheme! Remember that everything will get smeared with cake. So don’t bring expensive stuffed animals that you can’t throw into the washing machine afterward. 

Here some prop ideas that are super simple to bring for an adorable cake smash: 

  • many small balloons or one giant balloon 
  • one or two stuffed animals that correlate with the theme
  • floral wreaths for the background (instead of the usual banner)
  • a “ONE” sign that your babe can play with
  • a teepee for a more bohemian look
  • wooden crates to complement a rustic theme
  • pillows and blankets for a picnic inspired shoot

Tip 5: Prepare the cake

If possible, go for a professional one! After all, it is called a CAKE smash, so the cake does play a vital role and adds this special extra to the whole event. And yes, by now you might have realized that a cake smash is more like an event than a photoshoot!!

As for the topping, buttercream is my top choice! It is super easy for little hands to dig into. I wouldn’t recommend fondant as it is hard to break so your babe might quickly get bored. 

For the dough, it doesn’t have to be anything fancy, and my preference is simple vanilla dough. Tip: chocolate or strawberry dough doesn’t look nice once wet. 

As for the buttercream color, pink, white, yellow, and light green work very well. When you choose a color, remember that red can quickly look like a Halloween disaster, and blue is very hard to clean. 

Serve the cake at room temperature for the perfect smashing texture!

Tip 6: Pimp your cake

In addition to that perfect cake, bring a cake stand! While they are certainly not essential, they do look adorable. You can get creative using wood slices for a rustic look, small crates work great for picnic shoots, or vintage-inspired cake stands for the bohemian, vintage, tea party theme! There are plenty of unbreakable mini wooden, plastic, and metal cake stands available that work perfectly for an adorable cake smash shoot!

Another way to pimp your cake is to decorate it with flowers. Make sure the flowers are edible, organic, and pesticide-free!! If in doubt, ask advice from your florist! 

Tip 7: Have a trial run

Seriously, have a trial run!! Sometimes baby’s are shy in situations they haven’t experienced before. Therefore, create kind of a mini photoshoot scene a couple of days before the shoot. Sit on the floor, have a cupcake that looks and tastes similar to the real cake, encourage your little one to dig into the cupcake, and make a mess! As with any other skills, cake smashing skills, too, come with practice 😉

Tip 8: Capture the moments before and after the cake smash

You spend so much time, energy, and money on planning an adorable cake smash, that the whole scenery deserves capturing! Ask the photographer to take some additional pictures of the setup and the cake before the actual cake smash starts. 

Bonus Tip: If you want to take the cake smash shoot to a whole other level, combine it with a baby bath shoot afterward. After all, you already need to give your little one a bath, so why not take super cute pictures of that too!?

Tip 9: Prepare for the worst-case scenario

Picture this: You have planned out everything in minute detail. Your cutie looks adorable in the new outfit. The props match the theme 100%, and the cake is incredible. Your baby is not tired or hungry. The photographer is ready to shoot. But then, nothing. Your little one could care less about the cake, let alone smashing it! So now what?!? Besides trying to motivate your babe with fooling around and funny faces, try these tips:

  1. Bring their favorite toy to the shoot. Even if you are not using it as part of the decoration, it can come in very handy for motivation.
  2. Have your babe’s favorite snacks with you like goldfish crackers or popcorn that you can sprinkle over the cake and let your baby pick them out with their fingers.
  3. If that doesn’t work, try to feed some cake to your baby. Chances are they get hooked on the taste and want some more.
  4. And finally, take your babe’s hand and put it in the cake yourself to get the cake smash rolling! 

Tip 10: Prepare for clean-up

To wrap it up, here is a short list of things I would recommend to bring to the shoot! After all, we are hoping that it gets very messy!!

  • baby wipes
  • kitchen paper rolls
  • extra pair of clothes for everyone who is there to help
  • extra pair of clothes for the baby
  • bags to take dirty clothes home
  • doggy bag for the leftover cake if there is any

I hope you have loads of fun planning and executing your adorable cake smash!! These pictures will surely be a memory for years to come!! 

Do you have any tips on how to plan the most adorable cake smash that I haven’t covered? As always, I’d love to hear them in the comments!!

x Michaela

PS. All photos of this cake smash were taken by the fun and talented family photographer Esther Schog Fotografie and Miss Baktaart prepared this super cute half-naked buttercream cake!

PPS. Are you planning a baby shower but don’t know how to get started? Then check out this blog post: What You Need to Know for Planning an Amazing Baby Shower.

How to Plan the Most Adorable Cake Smash // Lovely & Planned #cakesmash #firstbirthday

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