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Preparing for your milestones or cake smash session

Preparing for your milestones or cake smash session

Thank you for booking your  photos with me, I know that there are a number of choices available to you and I want you to know that I appreciate your decision to book with me.

I am looking forward to your session, I have tried to include as much information as possible here, however if you have any questions at all please feel free to contact me. A lot of this info won't apply to milestones sessions...just read past it.

Your session will take place at my warm and comfy studio at our small farm in Taieri Mouth, I have attached directions further on in this info guide, please check these and print them out or copy and paste to your phone notes.

What to bring:

  • A change of clothes for everyone ...just in case

  • Water bottles (stay hydrated!)

  • special family items and taonga that you wish to include in photos

  • hair brush / comb / wipes

  • snacks for kids

  • THE CAKE! a two or three tier, six inch in diameter cake is the perfect size for a cake smash. White or light coloured cake is preferable to chocolate or red cake (looks like dirt or blood - not what we are going for!). I have some small animal decorations and a wooden cake stand which you are welcome to use.

  • I can provide a 6 inch, naked vanilla cake ( minimal icing as shown in most of the cake smash photos) for $30, the cake contains wheat flour, sugar, eggs, butter and milk.

Parents :

  • I will get down on your baby's level and chat with them, its important that I build rapport with them. 

  • I know you want smiles, but please don't call out to baby or shake things at them unless I have asked you to as it often has the opposite result and stresses baby.

  • The studio is calm and quiet (just some kiddie songs playing in the background), I will let your child explore and get centred before picking up the camera.

  • PLEASE do not be concerned that you are "wasting my time" if baby is grumpy and needs time, you are not wasting my time. This is part of the process. 

​Set up

  • I will use your questionnaire answers to plan for your session

  • usually the set up is very simple, if you have been here for your newborn photos I will try to use a prop or rug from that session to tie the two sessions together.

  • Please be sure to tell me if you want something in particular

Cake smash tips 

The week before your cake smash session
Pop baby on a rug on the floor with some cake (or whatever food we are smashing) - let them explore it and play with it and get messy.

If baby isn't used to a bath try giving them a bubble bath too.

Bring a special outfit for baby to wear before the smash,  and if you use special soap for skin issues/allergies please bring it with you.

(I use Child's Farm bubble bath )

Bring something your baby LOVES to eat!  If baby doesn’t want to eat cake we want them to want to eat something so PLEASE pack food your child likes that is small and easily picked up and placed behind/in/around the cake, it needs to be something solid. Think of things they like that are hand held and small that we can hide in or around the cake. Don’t be shocked if they don’t want to eat the cake, it’s completely normal! They are used to eating tiny pieces of food and we put a huge cake in front of them, most babies are totally confused! Some are extremely happy! Help make it easier by bringing small portions of their favorites!

Please give your child a snack and not a full meal if they wake up around the time of the session, we want them to be hungry (but not angry!) when we smash some cake! Please bring all their favorite treats, toys and items just in case they have a melt down! (It happens, they are one!) 

Prepare to work out a little or a lot! If your baby is mobile, you will likely be wrangling them and placing back in the spot where I will be photographing them. You might sweat but it will be worth it!

Just a little Warning - Sometimes the babies hate the cake, me, and well let’s face it, life. It's tough being one. Sometimes they love it. How they eat at home in a high chair has nothing to do with how they will eat a whole cake, sitting on the floor in a strange place in front of people being crazy in front of lights. Stage fright is a real thing, so just come in with an open mind and a relaxed demeanor. It could go either way so expectations for how long your little one will last during the entire session should be  reasonable based on their personality and ability to adapt in new situations.

Sickness *******PLEASE READ******
IF you child wakes up sick with a snotty running nose, coughing, and/or fever not related to teething or seasonal allergies please call me ASAP to discuss options. 
If you contact me asap prior to coming in we can reschedule your session without penalty.


After your session, I will get to work on culling your images down to the very best of the best  images, then editing those images and getting them up into your gallery. Once they're ready, I'll be in touch with your gallery link.

Directions to my studio

Taieri Mouth is approximately a half hour drive from Dunedin or Balclutha, you can take the coast road from Dunedin (which is very pretty) or the main highway.


We are at 113 Chaplin Road Taieri Mouth.


Chaplin Rd is halfway between Waihola and Taieri Mouth, off Finlayson Rd (the main rd between Waihola and T Mouth) if you programme 813 Finlayson Rd into your maps app, Chaplin Road is straight across the road.

Please do not turn off Finlayson Road onto any other road but Chaplin.


So, you are on Chaplin Rd - we are about 1.13 km straight down the road, there's a sign outside that says "Copperhead Farm", drive down to the carpark and I'll meet you there.


Thank you once again for booking!


021 834 810

Chaplin rd map
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