lorieleann Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 5:31am
post #1 of

I have a photographer acquaintance who proposed the idea of me doing up some very fancy little decorated cakes for some 'smash cake' mini sessions. the mom's would love it!!! and I could do up several for a day of back to back appointment and then getting them smashed. My cut would probably be $60 for the day of cakes. icon_rolleyes.gif

so i mentioned minimum orders, and the time involved and that kind of thing.

But what i didn't ask was if she thought if it would be super cute if we printed out some of her pictures and let the babies attack them with markers and paint? Now, wouldn't that be awesome!

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39 replies
ApplegumPam Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 6:35am
post #2 of

Think the only mistake you make is to allow the photographer to dictate how it was to run.

These 'smash' cake photography sessions are relatively new here in Australia but I know people that are doing them - they aren't giving their cakes away - are charging a FAIR price - making a CUTE looking cake (basically a giant cupcake with decorative buttercream swirls on top and some quick plunger cutter flowers or butterflies etc)

The cakers are getting more per cake than your photographer is asking you to work for the entire day.

AnnieCahill Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 1:16pm
post #3 of

Smash cake sessions. Make it stop.

m_mckinney1 Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 1:30pm
post #4 of

As a mom, I think the smash cake session photos are absolutely adorable. Wish I had thought to do a more personalized photo of my little ones when they turned one (instead of the hurried, we're in the middle of a party photos which I did get). As a baker (who is just an amateur & bakes for family/friends) I say it sounds great if you can get market value for the cakes. $60 for a day's worth of smash cakes=NOT market value icon_surprised.gif

louanne Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 1:51pm
post #5 of

odd that the photographer is ordering and dictating everything. Smash cake photos are really popular (especiall for 1st birthdays), before i closed i done at least two or three a week. It was usually the moms ordering to coordinate with the kids outfits though. i had one photographer that would order cute cupcakes on his own for some pictures, but he paid the same price as anyone would, and usually it was because it was a client from out of town so he took over the details.

btrsktch Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 2:43pm
post #6 of

I have an arrangement like that with my local child photographer. I provide a one tier 5" cake, iced in buttercream. Pink swirl for girls, blue lines for boys. Takes me about 5 minutes to ice. I charge $10.

BakingIrene Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 3:24pm
post #7 of

Well the photographer who propositioned the OP doesn't know anything about kids or cakes. I say this because the time and $$$ involved in "very fancy" little cakes would run over $60 per cake very quickly. And for what? to shmash it?
Many better places to spend MY time.

More along the same lines: What if the child decides to eat neatly? does the photographer plan to smear the cake in the child's face? I'm all for spontaneous pictures because they are priceless, but staging a smash-in is as bad for 1 year olds as putting cannabis into those cakes...

jason_kraft Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 3:48pm
post #8 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by BakingIrene

What if the child decides to eat neatly?



As the father of an 18-month-old, I'd say OP has a better chance making a profit on this transaction than a 1-year-old does of eating cake neatly.

sweetpea223 Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 3:57pm
post #9 of

I think it's a neat idea. I just hope the photographer gets the shots and not use up all the smash cakes for one photo op.

I've done a few smash cakes for family...somehow, there are people around the little kid that prevents them from smashing the cake on their own. They pull the kids' hands away from the cake... does that happen to you too? Sorry for the off track on this post.

DeliciousDesserts Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 4:10pm

FYI...some of these photo sessions run $600 or more.

I would jump on the chance to work with the photographer, but not for that price.

A gentle approach is to counter offer. "I love the idea! We could make it a bit more personal for your clients by personalizing the cake. I can offer you a price range of $-$$ and a list of options from which the parents can choose."

BakingIrene Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 4:13pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeliciousDesserts

FYI...some of these photo sessions run $600 or more.

I would jump on the chance to work with the photographer, but not for that price.




Actually, I would jump on a chance to work with a photographer who knows that $60 won't cover more than the cost of the groceries. If each family group pays $600 then the cut to the cake should be $90 PER CAKE (15%) not per day.

jason_kraft Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 4:19pm

It really depends on how complicated the cake is. We can easily make a profit on a basic 6" cake at a price of $30, but add in complex decorations and you could push $90.

Ideally the photographer would include a basic cake with the package and try to upsell fancier decorations for a higher price.

AZCouture Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 5:11pm

I get hit up for these every so often. Uh, no. Smash cakes are $10 at Target, go knock yourself out.

louanne Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 6:05pm

when i done smash cakes it was $25 for a 6 inch buttercream simple design, wanted more elaborate or faondant it went up accordingly.

But of course I will (embaresedly ) admit that when my daughter had her 1 year pictures I paid $165 for a two tier cake (sqaure bottom round top-fondant bow, very lovely cake) for her to smash, little stinker wouldn't dig in, daintily picked at it, my mother had to litteraly shove her hand in the cake, then she got mad and the rest of the pictures she is mad. With the right marker smash cakes can be quite profitable, especially if you get the crazy doting parents who do not really think things through ahead of time (like myself ). icon_redface.gif

BakingIrene Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 7:03pm

See? a year old child can recognise something nice set in front of them.

I think it would be more fun to give them a plainly coated cake and some corner-cut ziplock bags of coloured icing to squish--then they will get in the mood to make a glorious mess.

.......

That's right: one year old is not to young to start decorating...

costumeczar Posted 28 Aug 2012 , 7:40pm

I wouldn't care what the cake was going to be used for, but I wouldn't sell a smash cake for less than what I'd sell it to an anniversary bride for, which would be $40 for a 5" cake. $60 for the whole "day of cakes" wouldn't be worth the time or effort, or cost of ingredients.

lorieleann Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 4:15am

Great to see a variety of responses! As with most people outside of the business, i don't think that she 'gets' what is involved with making and decorating a cake. She was going for a mini session of under $200 with three shots included (maybe a storyboard?) and then extra shots could be ordered. That way should could line up 5 or 6 clients to have a go of it one day back to back. I don't think this is something that I'm too eager to pursue--unless there was a fair price for a 5" cake, and enough to meet a minimum order.

but i still think she could level up her 'adorable baby' photo offerings and have a storyboard of all the things baby can destroy: her birthday cake, a white wall with with a sharpie, a bag of flour on the dog, a tub of duplos down the toilet. Why limit it to just cake? icon_lol.gif

AZCouture Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 7:04am
Quote:
Originally Posted by lorieleann

and have a storyboard of all the things baby can destroy: her birthday cake, a white wall with with a sharpie, a bag of flour on the dog, a tub of duplos down the toilet. Why limit it to just cake? icon_lol.gif




Excellent observation. I have thought about this at times, even though I have always turned them down. It wouldn't take much to make up a small 4" or 5" tier with left over batter from orders on any given weekend. Wouldn't matter the flavor, wouldn't matter if it was fresh by the time they were collected for the 'smashing'. Ice them, put some pretty SIMPLE decorations on them, and in the freezer they go. Huh.

costumeczar Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 11:33am

Am I the only one who thinks this whole smash cake thing is ridiculous? A storyboard for a baby photo shoot? People are nuts. It's like when my son was in preschool and a couple of hte moms wnated to have a full-blown graduation ceremony with gowns,speeches and mortarboards. For pete's sake, half of them hadn't graduated from pullups yet, just relax. (I told them to relax,too. The teachers laughed but the crazy moms weren't on board with the relaxing about it part.)

On a related topic, did you see the story about the trash the dress bride who drowned? Trash the dress, in my opinion, goes along the same lines as the smash cake thing...something else to spend money on because you think it makes you look cute and clever... http://kdvr.com/2012/08/28/bride-drowns-in-wedding-dress-taking-pictures-in-canadian-river/

southerncross Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 12:35pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by costumeczar

Am I the only one who thinks this whole smash cake thing is ridiculous? A storyboard for a baby photo shoot? People are nuts. It's like when my son was in preschool and a couple of hte moms wnated to have a full-blown graduation ceremony with gowns,speeches and mortarboards. For pete's sake, half of them hadn't graduated from pullups yet, just relax. (I told them to relax,too. The teachers laughed but the crazy moms weren't on board with the relaxing about it part.)

http://kdvr.com/2012/08/28/bride-drowns-in-wedding-dress-taking-pictures-in-canadian-river/




I concur, Smash cakes are a sign of the decline of civilization (along with the Kardashian fetish, small dogs in Burberry coats, and people who make a sucking noise with a straw when the cup becomes almost empty). I harbour fears that these tykes with smash cakes will grow up to be the sort who have no manners whatsoever. I see them never saying "thank you" or "if you please", pushing to the front of lines, being rude to wait staff, etc.

paulstonia Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 2:18pm

In my family, on their first bday the kids were always allowed to dig into the cake first. I first became an aunt at 12 so I can remember all my nieces and nephews doing this, cute photo op. Of course my kids did too. I thinks it's more a tradition (ok, not one everyone may be familiar with) than the down fall of society. I think a small cake for the child so everyone doesn't eat cake their hands have been in is cute. I make them to match the big cake for 1st bdays, kind of like getting the top tier on a wedding cake at no charge to save for anniversary. The photographer thing, I don't know, always thought of it as a candid thing, but $60 for a day full of cakes wouldn't happen because of the $ not because of what they were doing to my cakes,lol.

AnnieCahill Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 2:48pm
Quote:
Quote:

Am I the only one who thinks this whole smash cake thing is ridiculous? A storyboard for a baby photo shoot? People are nuts.




Again I repeat:

Quote:
Quote:

Smash cake sessions. Make it stop.




Ok it's one thing to give the child his own cake for his birthday, but for God's sake, a storyboard and photo shoot? Really?

To me, it is insane. It's like the people who have to have the EXACT shade of pink for a godawful ugly zebra striped cake for their kid's first birthday. Or for the people who have to have an Amy Atlas-esque party. And this is just for the pictures. The kid doesn't give a rat's a$$ about any of it. It's all for the parents. The kids won't remember it.

When I got married in 2010 I came across a photographer who did "trash the dress" sessions. Yeah, because I want to destroy a beautiful dress that my grandmother bought me as a gift. The whole world is turning into egotistical spoiled brats.

costumeczar Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 2:52pm

I wouldn't go so far as to say it's the downfall of civilization, but that's funny...

southerncross Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 3:09pm

Smash cakes....first world problems

LoveMeSomeCake615 Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 3:28pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by southerncross


I concur, Smash cakes are a sign of the decline of civilization (along with the Kardashian fetish, small dogs in Burberry coats, and people who make a sucking noise with a straw when the cup becomes almost empty).




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traci_doodle Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 6:50pm

Wow, calm down people. I have friends who did smash cake sessions, and I think it's cute. And believe me, my friends are not spoiled, and do not need the exact shade of pink on their zebra striped cake. I've considered doing it myself.

Is it really that much different than the trend 20 years ago to dress up the kids in animal costumes, or have them lying on a flower, Anne Geddes style? Or the trend later on to have those black and white pictures with the kids dressed up in adult themes, and have 1 or 2 spots of color in the photo? It's a trend, and one I happen to agree is based on tradition. Most people I know let their kids have cake for the first time on their first birthday, and usually kids smash it up. And it's cute. And with the ease of digital photography and "photog"s popping up all over the place, it has suddenly become more affordable for people to have something a littler nicer than some department store taking pictures of your kid in front of a photograph of an outdoor scene. You may not agree with capturing it with a professional photographer, but just because someone does something you don't agree with, doesn't mean you should trash talk them and assume they are spoiled brats.

HalifaxMommy Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 6:51pm

I can't stand smash cakes. Mainly because the second the cake touches the babe's tongue the mom is freaking out that their child had refined sugar. Makes no sense to me. My son was given a chunk of slab cake (I know better now) and he started to hyperventilate and drove his face into the icing. At that moment I knew he had a sweet tooth.

Cupcake breakfast is the tradition in our house. Boy wakes up on his birthday and gets to have a cupcake - he loves it. We then send the rest of the cupcakes off to work with his father for the coworkers to enjoy.

Don't get me started on Maternity pictures.

southerncross Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 7:05pm

One baker's cute is another's foolish quirk. and 20 years does not a "tradition" make....craze, fad, caprice perhaps...but not tradition.

HalifaxMommy's sugar rush comment is interesting and so on point.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=scDZbyiNVjo

Perhaps we should just cut to the the eventual "Baby's 1st Line Snort"

traci_doodle Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 7:08pm

I'd hardly call giving your kids a birthday cake a fad.

costumeczar Posted 29 Aug 2012 , 7:18pm

I think dressing your kids up Anne Geddes style was pretty dumb too, but whatever.

When I was a kid we didn't get any cake...we got a pile of dirt on our birthdays! And we liked it!

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