DIY Cake Smash Photos

14956373_10153974174718038_1096094237862848731_nToday is my daughter’s 1st birthday (excuse me while I cry)…which means, time to let her dig her way through her own tiny birthday cake!

I loved the idea of doing a smash cake photo shoot for her to get some really beautiful photos…but did not want to pay the price of a professional.

Luckily, I treated myself to a professional for my birthday so I could take some beautiful photos myself. However, I still did my research on how to set up some nice smash cake photos…and got LOTS of inspiration from Pinterest.

If you do plan on doing a smash cake shoot on your own…I would highly suggest having reinforcements. My mom and husband were there to help…especially when the baby tried to escape, frosting covered and all.

(Let your helper(s) know that they could get messy…my mom was COVERED in icing by the end)

  1. Picking a theme

15000816_10153974169598038_6806175350198319669_oThis was the hardest part for me. I knew I wanted a theme that suited my little princess…but there were so many cute ideas out there. In the end I decided going with a “Sleeping Beauty” theme would be best…since her name is Aurora.

Going off of my theme, I knew I wanted pinks, blues and a dash of gold in the photos. I found Aurora a pink, ruffled diaper cover and a gold foam crown to match the whole princess idea.

Once her outfit was complete I had to figure out what to do with the back ground.


I bought some white bulletin board paper from my local craft store to use as my official back drop. I taped it to the wall and floor for the shoot. This also made for an easy clean up: Literally just crumbled it into a ball and tossed it in the trash when we were done.

I wanted these photos to add to my daughter’s beauty. So I chose for her background to be simple and elegant. I ordered different size tissue paper pom poms from online (the set I ordered were different shades of pink and blue). I also got some pretty butterflies to put with the flowers to add to the “Sleeping Beauty” theme.

2. Find a location

This was easy. My mom’s house has wood floors and big windows*. I knew taking the photos there would be best since I could get tons of natural light.

*If you plan on taking photos near a big window…make sure the window is BEHIND you or you will have a terrible shadow/glare in all of your photos.

3. Make/order the cake! 15025380_10153974165383038_76826374727163210_o

We went with making her a cake since we are on a small budget. Our little one LOVES chocolate, so we did a chocolate cake with blue icing.

Why blue? Well, she is very pale with hazel eyes, and reddish-brown hair. I wanted the contrast of the blue on her in her light pink diaper cover to stand out…and it did 🙂

15016408_10153974165513038_8748616088266580992_o   4. Make a game plan

We went Saturday morning to my moms for these photos. While I set up the background, my husband decorated the cake and my mom took a nap with the baby. (The nap was key to a happy peanut!)

While the baby napped I was able to get photos of the backdrop and the cake before she annihilated it all with blue icing.

This also gave me a change to see which angles would be best for photos of her and the cake, and to check my lighting.

5. Baby photos pre-cake smash15003324_10153974168858038_7405809242066432572_o

Make sure you get some photos of the baby BEFORE they are covered with cake. We tried to get photos of Aurora on her back drop…but she preferred the wood floor next to me. I just went with it…and ended up getting some beautiful photos of her.

This is also a good time to check different angles to get the perfect shots of your little cake eating monster.

6. Let them eat cake! 

My husband placed the cake in the middle of the paper. My mom sat the baby near the back. That way I could get a shot of her looking at the cake and crawling towards it.

She was not too sure about it at first, so we had Daddy put some icing on his finger and give it to her. After she tasted the icing she slowly went to get some herself. Took her a minute, but as you can see she loved the blue frosting!

My silly baby wanted nothing to do with the cake. And her interest in the cake only lasted about 15 minutes.

Make sure you move around to get tons of photos. I even zoomed in some to get some close ups…as well as far out shots. Anything precious, such as chubby baby thighs covered in blue, get a close up shot of.

I was pleased with how these photos came out…even with a one-year-old who does not like to sit still.

I will forever cherish these photos. Happy birthday to my sweet, beautiful Aurora ❤

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