It’s a Jewelry-Making Party!

Time to make jewelry! My challenge was to create a cake that is inspired by the invitation, and pulls Bailey’s jewelry-making party all together. I was excited to create something beautiful and delicious for her 12th birthday. Bailey’s party was held at The Metal Smithery in Ithaca. This studio is SO cool! You can take classes to make your own jewelry, hold a party like Bailey did, and so much more! Definitely check it out if you are in the Ithaca area. Just looking at the pictures on their website makes me wistful for my college jewelry class days.

Invitation

Bailey chose a tan-themed invitation with some fun colored flags to complete the look. The kids planned to create jewelry at the party! I decided to stick with the theme of the invitation, instead of branching out to full-on jewelry cake, cupcakes, or cookies. I also decided it was important to keep the color scheme that Bailey had selected for her invitation, just to pull things all together.

Sometimes giving yourself a constraint like that makes the design process more fun. Think, “how can I create something that keeps things pure to the invite while not exactly copying each and every element?” I also like to focus on creating things that are repeatable. For example, if I’m going to make 2 dozen cookies and need to make a necklace chain, I could create this with hand sculpted gum paste OR I could try to find a sprinkle or other adornment that may make the process go a little more quickly. I used gold sprinkles for one chain and then white sugar pearls for another of the chains on the invitation. I like the depth that they gave to the cake.

Cupcakes

Bailey wanted to celebrate with cupcakes and cake. Perfect! We decided on a dozen vegan cupcakes along with a dozen traditional cupcakes. It made for a good canvas for writing Happy 12th Birthday Bailey and letting the cake use the “Let’s Celebrate” words from the invitation. I love working with cupcakes for display. Leslie arranged them around the cake to create a lovey display for the kids.

Cookies

Custom sugar cookies are fun but also really challenging. You always have to remember that you need to repeat the design A LOT of times. As you design, think ahead to how you will feel when you are completing cookie after cookie. For these cookies, I decided to incorporate the flags from the invitation to make them fun. Originally I thought I’d just do the chain and the child’s name and I briefly even considered just doing a field of tan with a name in navy. I’m so happy I went with the flags though. It was worth it to go through all the steps for the finished product.

To create the cookies I used a ravioli cutter to cut out triangles and then decorated each flag with either royal icing accents or edible marker accents. I kept it simple, selecting 4 colors that worked and choosing the easier styles from the design. I was going for the spirit of the invitation vs a replica of the invitation. The longest part was applying the golden chain and the white chains in sugar pearls. Luckily my daughter works for me and she was willing to help me create the flags and chains! I love how you can see the look come together between the invitation, cake and cookies in this picture.

Are you creating a themed party around an invitation or color palate? Just keep things simple and focus on the aspects you want to pull together. Perhaps it is color that matters most, or the font style you want to highlight. Whatever you do, make it your own and have fun!!

 

How to make a tractor cake

A favorite among pre-school aged kids, the tractor cake has many forms. Kids want individual cupcakes with tractors on top, tractor shaped cakes, and tractors placed on top of cakes. Parents sometimes use the birthday as an opportunity to gift a toy tractor on the cake, and other times go with a fully edible cake. Crushed cookies are common as “dirt” for the tractor to be digging in.

This cake started as a tractor but turned into a digger after Vann’s mom and I exchanged a few emails to determine the cake’s plan. I started by sending her all the tractor cakes I’d done, realizing that I haven’t actually made that many!! Here is very small Pinterest board of tractor cakes. I also did a basic Google search for tractor cakes and sent it to her. Lilly sent me a cute picture of a digger cake that she found and asked me to recreate that cake. Continue reading