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DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot

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posted: 05/08/15

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy
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This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy

Take those cute pictures of your baby’s first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

 I’m not going to lie.

One of the main reasons for this post is to show off my baby.

Isn’t she adorable??

Okay, moving on.

So I love all those cute cake smash photos I see popping up on Pinterest and Facebook . . . but I didn’t want to pay for one. So I did my own! Here’s the caveat:  I have some experience behind a camera. I don’t want you to think the average Joe who picks up a point and shoot camera and the supplies I have listed is going to capture similar pictures. But! It is totally possible to do this at home.

Here’s my set up:

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

The supplies:

  • White Bulletin Board Paper – I got mine at JoAnn’s with a 40% off coupon for about $5.
  • Duct Tape – It’s what I used to hold the paper up to the wall. I only had it on my wall for about two hours and it came off perfectly without taking off paint, but if you are worried, you could use painter’s tape.
  • Two DIY Reflector Boards – Get some foam core boards at the dollar store and while you are there pick up some aluminum foil. Then tape the foil to the foam core boards. Place them on either side of the paper.
  • Decorative Banner – Go to a party store and grab a decorative banner of some kind. It adds great color to the picture. (If you buy the one linked, keep in mind that I pushed the tassels much closer together.)
  • Cake
  • Baby

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

Like I mentioned, I have some experience using my camera. If you are just starting out with a DSLR, I would recommend this book, Plate to Pixel. Even if you aren’t shooting food, it is so helpful with the basics. I have a Nikon D5300, which I love. And for this photo shoot I used a 35 mm lens on manual/automatic focus. It gave me a lot more room to work with than my fixed 50 mm which I typically use when shooting food.

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

Other tips:

It’s important to put your set up in a well lit area, but not in direct sunlight. Keep an eye on different areas of your house leading up to the photo shoot and get a sense of what area has the best light and what time of day.

Before you put your baby in front of the cake, check out the lighting and take a couple test shots to see if you have the settings on your camera right.

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

We started out with the cake on a cake stand I got at Target . . . . and Piper had zero interest in it.

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

We gave her one of her spoons, and then she just wanted to stab it. Still no interest in eating it.

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

We finally took it off of the cake stand and started ripping chunks off for her.

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

She still wasn’t really sure  . . . . but she did love feeding us.

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

She finally had a little taste.

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

 

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

And then she was spent.

Take those cute pictures of your baby's first birthday and them eating their cake right at home with this DIY Cake Smash Photo Shoot!

And I could not have been happier that we did the Cake Smash. :)

This post contains affiliate links, if you click on them and then make a purchase, I make a small amount of money at no additional cost to you. Thank you in advance for supporting Wine & Glue.

GENERAL QUESTIONS

What do people mean when they say cake smash?

A cake smash is a when you take photos of your baby around their one year old birthday with an entire cake. It is fun to let them loose with a cake as you take pictures.

What is best for a cake smash backdrop?

You can make a cake smash backdrop out of so many different things. A bedsheet would work, but I love this white bulletin board paper best.

Why do a cake smash?

A cake smash is such a cute way to commemorate your baby’s first birthday. Getting through the first year of parenting is a milestone you should celebrate!

Can you only do a cake smash for first birthdays?

The sky is the limit with cake smashes. I think this would be cute for second birthdays and very funny for 32nd birthdays.

Hi! I'm Lisa Longley, and I am committed to giving you simple dinner ideas and recipes that are easy to make; recipes that will fill your home with joy. I am the owner and author of SimpleJoy.com and I'm so glad that you are here.

Reader Interactions

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  1. christina says

    Is bulletin board paper the same as craft paper?

    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m actually not sure Christina. I would ask at your craft store. The reason I like the bulletin board paper is because it is in expensive, it comes in a nice big long roll and it works perfectly for this. If craft paper is the same, I say go for it.

  2. Susie says

    I found your post ahead of my daughter’s first birthday and took some truly adorable- and affordable- photos (smash cake and others) to celebrate!! Thank you so much!!

    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m so happy it worked for you!

  3. Geetanjali says

    Hi
    What’s the size of bulliten board paper you’ve used?

    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m so sorry, I made this a long time ago, and don’t have the paper anymore so I can’t give you the exact dimensions. If you are in the U.S. it’s just the standard bulletin board size.

  4. Becky says

    Hello,

    Love your cake smash pictures! Just wondering what you used for the banner and also what lens you used for your camera?

    Thanks!

    • Lisa Longley says

      Hi Becky! The banner was purchased at Party City – but it was about 5 years ago now. And I believe I used my 50mm lens for these photos.

  5. Apoorva says

    Planning to do this coming weekend for
    my daughter. Good tips for reflector boards. Will try it out. Where was light source, do you remember?

    • Lisa Longley says

      The light source was behind me as the photographer and in front of my daughter. I hope this works for you!

  6. Apoorva says

    Thanks a ton, Lisa! I tried your tricks, and the pictures are wonderful. We had two sizable windows, 1 study lamp, and lots of aluminum foil! Wish I could share a picture here.

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