Cake Tutorial

I get a lot of emails and questions, mainly about all of my party how to’s. I think it’s time to start answering some of those. Soooo, if you have emailed me a question about one of my parties, I promise I will make it top priority!

Okay, first thing first—–Cakes.

Where do I get my cakes?

Backstory:  When I gave birth to my 1st and all of my mommy crazyness came out (nesting, creativity, a bit of paranoia…you get it right?), I couldn’t wait to channel the energy. I was in love with party planning and parties and I wanted to do it ALL…right down to the cake. So I went on a crazy cake making, decorating, bonanza. Fondant and all.

Epic fail. Way too much time and EXPENSIVE. But now I know why the ones you buy from the bakery are priced the way they are, cause’ it ain’t easy.

See example #1. My flopping, lopping, fondant cake. I spent an entire evening trying to do that while my family sat around and laughed at me.

It didn’t take me long to realize that this wasn’t going to work and although I would love a —stacked, bakery bought, decorated to the hilt, fondant and all–cake. It wasn’t going to happen. Not on my budget.  Enter my bright idea. And this was all of my idea. I have seen a few tutorials on this since….but I did not get mine from there. I guess more and more people realized it’s kind of common sense.

The secret to a very personalized but simple birthday party cake?

Buy a store bought (non fondant) iced cake from your local super market.  Yes, I said supermarket. Ours happens to be super duper fabulously delicious.  And tell them…LOUDLY…not to touch it with any decorations. You have to drill that in, they will insist on putting cheesy flowers and roses on it. Tell them to LEAVE it alone.  And then bring it home and make it your own!

Gather all of your supplies. For this tutorial I needed a quick cake for my daughter’s preschool graduation. I picked one packet of graduation stickers from Michaels and the letter “M”. The rest I just pulled from my stash of goodies at home. In this case, a simple black and white ribbon. (ps..yes…I forgot to take a photo of the blank cake….my bad.)

And ready, set, start the decorating.  I always keep it super, super simple. I like the look of a simple cake.

In this case, I wrapped the ribbon around the cake and then pinned it to the back.

I then embellished the ribbon with some stickers from my pack and then added the “M” and another cute sticker to the top.

And voila, you are done.

Remember, kids don’t need much. They thought it was the “BESTEST” ever cake! And because it’s from our favorite supermarket….they REALLY loved it.

Total cost of this cake: less than $12.

Total cost of bakery cake: $60-75. The stacked cakes were running around $160. I can get a stacked cake for $25 bucks from my local supermarket and pay nothing to decorate it.

My good friend, Mich, also had this bright idea all on her own (I love when great minds think alike). Check out her fanciful creation. She had a super fun and awesome “A Very Hungry Caterpillar & Butterfly Theme” party for a combo of her 2 little ones birthday’s. She picked up a blank cake at her local supermarket and decorated on her own. She picked up these edible butterflies from Tasty Prints.  She paid $50 for a 10″, 8″ and 5″ stacked  cake with filling plus the cost of her butterflies. The average bakery cost to do the same $150 for only 2 layers and NO filling. Ouch.

Great job, Mich!

Here are some other cake examples I have done:

My first go at cake simplicity. Firecracker’s 1st birthday.

The famous Princess & the Pea Party for the Princess’s 4th bash. More of the party here.

The Honey Do’s last birthday cake. The girls helped me decorate it.

The firecracker’s 3rd birthday.

The princess’s 5th Cowgirl Party. This one could have used a little bit more love but I was out of time and energy for that one.

The firecracker’s 4th birthday cake. You can see the rest of the party here. And in case you wondering, my favorite cake so far that I have done.

I am sure I think that’s all I have for now, the rest of the parties were in my cupcake tower phase. I am sure I will come up with something new for 2013 but for now these cakes are too easy and cheap not to use! And the BEST part–my kitchen stays clean. With all of the other crazyness that I invest my time and energy in, this is one less thing for me to worry about. And you can ask “Miss L“, I literally throw this together in like 10 minutes flat. Yep, can’t beat it. Now I am craving cake and must go find some to eat. 🙂