Monday, 18 August 2014

DIY Cake Smash

You may or may not be aware of this first birthday craze called The Cake Smash.  You dress your one year old up, bake a nice messy cake and take photos while they smash it up.  It's completely unnecessary and over the top but, as you know, I don't need much convincing to get creative.  

Instead of paying a photographer hundreds of dollars to do Miss Ivy's Cake Smash, we decided to DIY it.  And I'm going to show you how...

We set up our 'studio' in the living room.  We moved the couch out of the way so we could use the wall opposite the sliding doors.  So technically we'd have plenty of light.  Unfortunately on the day it was really overcast but I think that's probably better than bright sunbeams through your backdrop.  We just had to play around with the camera settings and edited slightly on the computer after.  I am in no way a photographer so this really is doable by anyone with a good eye.   I realise these are not professional pictures but they're perfect for us and what we wanted.  

We used three dining room chairs to hang our backdrop from.  A pair of curtains became the backdrop and flooring.  I added a fitted sheet underneath he backdrop curtain so we couldn't see the chairs through it.  I stuck the floor curtain down with masking tape to keep it in place and used bulldog clips to hold the crepe tassel bunting in place.  


The doll cake is something I've wanted to make for so long.  This seemed the perfect opportunity so I bought a cheap doll, shoved her in the top of a round cake and used buttercream icing for her dress.  I've had a lot of lovely comments from people but it really was a very easy thing to do.  I feel a Doll Cake blog post coming on soon.  Watch this space!  

Now for this project you definitely need another grown up to be your photography assistant / prop master / cake smasher / face puller.  In this case it was my super patient hubby who is used to my weird and wonderful creative demands.  He was there to make Miss Ivy laugh, help her smash the cake (and smear it on her face when she wouldn't touch her), feed her Twiglets and sprinkle confetti over our studio.  All the while I just snapped away.  


The key is to take hundreds of pictures.  It was really hard to keep Miss Ivy interested so you have to work super quick.  Have everything planned out before you even start.  We took a few pics of her before we brought the cake out, just to get her used to the camera.  No need, she's a born poser and was in top form.  We got some of our best pics then.  In fact, I'd recommend bringing the cake out right away so you get the cake pics before the child loses interest.  The balloons were a good idea too! 

We managed to get a few costume changes in, only because Miss Ivy happened to be dressed in appropriate layers.  It wasn't actually planned but worked out quite well.  I did change her hair clip and used the birthday crown for a few shots.  

And here are the results, a few of our best pics.  I hope you like... 

You can get some more Cake Smash ideas from this shoot.  And check out some cool cakes on my Pinterest board.  


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