So your little one is about to turn the big ONE, and you're thinking about having milestone pictures done or even a fun cake smash!
This is my most favorite milestone. They are typically sitting up or even walking at this point. And if not- no biggie! Every child is different. This is a time to celebrate their first year on this earth!
It's a time for you to capture their unique personalities at this age, and what's a better way to celebrate then with a milestone photo shoot and a fun cake for them to smash?
Schedule the session when you think they will be at their best and the happiest. Early morning or right after their nap is the best time. You want them to be in a great mood so you can capture them at their best! This is important. Little ones at this age are not going to want to participate or may be fussy during their session if they are tired or hungry! Trust me on this this. Reschedule if you believe they aren't feeling well. Sick babies aren't going to want their picture taken, and I like to keep my studio space super clean for other clients.
Have them try cake a week or so before their session. This is to rule out allergies and for them to be a little used to the texture. If your little one has allergies, and you would prefer to bring the cake then please let me know in advance, and I absolutely don't mind! I've also had client bring pumpkin pie or other fun foods for them to eat instead.
What if your little one won't smash the cake? Some babies are actually scared of the cake. That's why I recommend you showing them a cake and having a few bites at home first. If they are still a little scared, I will ask one of the parents to push their hand into the cake a little or wipe icing on their lips and sometimes that is all it takes for them to dive right in!
The cake. If you book one of my cake smash packages then I provide the cake. I pick a frosting that I know your little one will have an easier time to eat and break through so they can actually smash the cake. Most babies (and adults) don't like the taste of fondant and can deter your little one from even wanting to proceed with eating or smashing the cake. Pick a color icing/cake that will photograph well. This is something that I know I wouldn't normally think about until I became a photographer. If it has red icing or cake, it may look like your little one just murdered something. Maybe not quite the look you're going for. A simple vanilla cake is best or something like banana works well too! Not to say you can't have other colors on your cake- just think about the overall look. Once I capture the first picture of your little one with the cake, I remove the topper and anything that might be a choking hazard to help keep him/her safe.
Props. Little ones love playing. At this age their curiosity is through the roof! I have a variety of wooden props available for them to play with that photograph well and the kiddos tend to love to play with. I incorporate these into their milestone portrait session right before the smash. I also have so many adorable props for them to sit in or use during their session- even a swing! I like to typically recommend for the parents to bring a favorite item in such as a blanket or toy that we can incorporate into the session as well.
Have FUN! This is a big experience for your little one! Sometimes they might be going through their stranger-danger phase which is SUPER common at this age. NO worries- if they need some time to warm up, I don't mind at all. We can let them play with some toys, eat a snack, play their favorite music or show, and just crawl around. Try not to stress. Kids can feel stress from their parents. During the session, feel free to act just as silly as me to get them to giggle and smile! We are a team, and the goal is to capture all of the great pictures!!