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First Birthday Cake Smash

I can’t even tell you how much I’ve enjoyed the wonderful First Birthday Cake Smash sessions I’ve been doing in the studio. This is something that we just started offering this fall and they have quickly become one of my favorite types of sessions! It’s no secret that I love kids but I have to admit there is something so wonderful about the 6 -18 month range. They are so expressive and I love the variety of faces that we capture in every session.

I believe that the First Birthday should be celebrated. It’s a BIG deal! Surviving the first year of babyhood and transitioning into a toddler are really big deals. So I feel the portraits done at a year should be a bit extra special. While you could just show up at the mall and get a few okay images of your one year old I feel that it’s worth the energy and effort to put a little more into these images and create something that you know you’ll still be showing off at your child’s high school graduation party.

There are several stages of our Cake Smash Sessions that ensure you will have fantastic images. Before we start with the cake, we start with a regular outfit. Maybe it’s a fun dress for your little girl or handsome button down shirt for your little man. We want to have one great choice to make sure we have a solid traditional portrait before we start to really play. Often Mom, Dad and siblings join in for a fun update to show just how much your family has changed in the first year.

After we complete the first birthday portrait we’ll change into our Cake Smash outfit. For girls a fun tutu or a cute dress are adorable; little boys look fantastic in overalls, suspenders or blue jeans. We’ll get a few shots of them in their outfit and then we’ll give them a few balloons. The expressions that the balloons give us are absolutely priceless. These typically give us some great laughter images as they have fun playing with their new ‘toy’.

When the balloons start to lose their excitement we’ll remove them and bring your child their cake. The reactions we get with the cakes range from hysterically excited to hilarious tear-filled drama. I’ve seen it all and it’s always so funny to watch. Some kids really get into their cake and some want absolutely nothing to do with it. Either way I love capturing how each child is so incredibly unique and their reaction to their first birthday cake. We make a big fun mess but that’s part of the fun (and we clean it up for you!).

Every single session is unique. Before your session we plan with you and coordinate the outfits your child will wear, the color of their hair accessories (or hats!), the backdrop and even the cake. Sometimes we base things off the colors found in your child’s nursery or colors that you enjoy. If you don’t have any ideas don’t worry! We have lots of options and are happy to make any suggestions as we go along in the planning process together to create these one of kind memories.

Each cake is unique to your session. I’m so thrilled to be working exclusively with Susan of QT Cakes as she creates these one of kind art pieces (that we have so much fun destroying!). Many of my clients tell me she designed their wedding cake and it’s so neat to see a continuation of such a wonderful relationship.

Many of our Cake Smash Sessions are done before your child’s birthday but often they are done afterwards too. We typically try to schedule these sessions right away in the morning since that is when your child is the happiest. This also sometimes allows both parents to be there for a bit too and maybe head into work just a little later than normal. Grandparents are also welcome to join the Cake Smash Session and often many grandparents will purchase some of our fun products as a gift for the birthday boy or girl.

At the studio we offer a full line of printed products and digital files are available to purchase as well. There is a really fun canvas college offered especially with our Cake Smash Collections as well as a beautiful 5×7 heirloom album. Canvas wall groups and metal art portraits are also very popular with our Cake Smash Sessions.

For a limited time your custom cake is included in your Cake Smash Session. In addition, if you purchase your child’s birthday cake at QT Cakes, Susan will make you a special cake for your child to smash again at their birthday party! There are so many fun options and we’d love to share more information with you and plan your First Birthday Cake Smash Session at Julie Prairie Photography.

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To schedule your First Birthday Cake Smash Session give us a call at the studio at 605.359.6640 or send us an e-mail at We’d love to celebrate this milestone with you and your little one!

Julie Prairie Photography


400 N. Main #203

Sioux Falls, SD 57104



Sioux Falls, SD Portrait Studio

Julie Prairie Photography

Sioux Falls South Dakota

Portrait Studio


400 N. Main #203