Helpful Cake Tips for your baby’s Cake Smash Photo Session

Helpful Cake Tips for your baby’s Cake Smash Photo Session

Gatineau Baby Cake Smash Photographer

Most parents who hire me to shoot their baby’s cake smash photo session have no clue of what to expect for their child’s photo session.  It’s totally understandable. I’ve had to learn myself over the years (even quite recently) of what works and doesn’t work for smash cakes. Thus, I decided to write some helpful cake tips for your baby’s cake smash photo session.

Helpful Cake Tips for your baby's Cake Smash Photo Session

I don’t provide cakes for cake smash sessions, due to liability issues (I don’t want to be responsible for any babies having an allergic reaction to any food.) Whether you choose to buy a cake or make one yourself, I’ve got several helpful tips:

Colour of icing:  The icing should match the cake smash colour theme.  With that said, the icing needs to show up in the photos, so stay away from white or cream coloured frosting. For example, if your cake smash colours are blue and white, by all accounts, use blue icing–not white. I shoot on a cream coloured floor backdrop, so the icing needs to be able to stand out against the light backdrop.  Also, digital is not as forgiving on white and creams. The details tend to be lost in the highlights. If you want to use two icing colours and have white as one of the colours, make white the secondary colour. No matter what, make the top layer any other colour, but white/cream.

Finally, if you want a light coloured icing (ie. light pink or light blue), don’t make it too light or else it will look washed out in the photos. In fact, use medium tones or darker. Remember that digital doesn’t hold detail too well in lighter colours. The best thing is to avoid light colours and go medium or darker.


Type of Icing:  Buttercream icing works best.  It’s thick, so it holds its shape and it’s gooey, so it will get your baby nice and messy.  If you’re not into making your own icing, the Betty Crocker/Duncan Hines icing will be fine.  Stay away from meringue icing as it starts to run and won’t hold its shape.  Don’t use fondant as it’s not gooey and it’s too hard for what we need.  You want really gooey stuff, so that it gets all over your baby.  The messier, the better.

If you decide to use cream, make sure it’s whipped until it’s thick. If going this route, consider a naked cake because I don’t know how well whip cream will stay on the sides of a cake, without sliding off.


Cake Colour:  A light coloured cake is always a good option (ie. Vanilla or lemon). Chocolate cake tends to look like #2 (you catch my drift?) Carrot or banana cake are good choices as well. Just make sure that it will be a flavour that your baby will like to eat.

If making a vanilla cake, you can add some food colouring to change the cake’s colour, like pink, blue, green, rainbow, etc. If you have several layers, you could do each layer a different colour.


Cake Size:  You can have several layers on your cake. However, make sure that it doesn’t stand too high.  I’d say no higher than about 8 inches in height.  You don’t want the cake to be so tall, that your baby ends up being hidden behind it. Also, a larger cake will be more intimidating to a baby.  Many years ago I had a client bring a large 3 tier cake for her child’s smash the cake session. It was so high that it came up to her baby’s chin. The child wasn’t impressed by that cake and didn’t really even want to touch it. She had actually brought a 2nd cake with her for some reason, so we ended up using the second cake because it was much smaller than the first one.


Check out this blog post about for smash cake ideas to help you to choose the type of cake for your baby’s cake smash photo session.

Cake smash photo sessions are one of my favourite types of photography.  I would love to photograph your baby’s smash the cake session. Contact me to book a session today.

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