Saturday, March 13, 2010

Portfolio: Littlest Pet Shop Cake

It's been a little while since I posted; I spent almost every weekend for six weeks baking and making cakes and I desperately needed a break!  I also needed to do some spring cleaning and my bedroom, closet, and master bathroom are now sparkling and organized.  [Happy sigh] Nothing makes me think better than a clean space!  And now that I am somewhat rested (because being mom to a rambunctious two year old is never restful) I wanted to show you the latest creation in my portfolio that was made for Sydney, who lives next door to our friends Madeleine and Cameron.  For her birthday, she requested a Littlest Pet Shop (LPS) cake that was based off my lovebirds cake.

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At first I was kinda bummed because she wanted it to be almost identical, with slightly different colors and LPS figures on top instead of lovebirds.  Now, don't get me wrong, I love the lovebirds cake.  I think it's ridiculously cute and wonderful, if I do say so myself.  But I love taking an idea and creating something that is singular to the person who is being honored, not to mention I thrive on the challenge of creating something different each time I go into the kitchen.  So when Sydney's mom Amy emailed me a couple of days before the party with some design changes, I got super excited.  Sydney got a cake that is what she wanted, and I got to create something new that was unique to her.
I baked a vanilla butter cake and dyed it pink, then frosted it with American buttercream icing, and then covered that with pink fondant.  Amy wanted a square cake instead of a round cake, to make it easier to cut, and I deliberately chose not to level it because it created a nice pillow effect.  Yes, some people will call it laziness, and while I level the majority of my cakes, for this one it worked out better not to, in my opinion.

The paw prints were made using a small round fondant cutter and a round icing tip.  I thought this would be painless and easy, but it took way longer than I imagined and I felt like I was a human hole puncher.  Just when I would think I'd done enough little circles, I'd count and discover I didn't have near enough.  Grrr.

The figures were made from fondant and they were actually easy enough to put together.  I tell you what, LPS has changed a LOT since I was a kid!  Just for comparison, I took a photo of one of mine from childhood (yes, I still have it after all these years!) so you can see what I'm talking about.  The new ones are almost kind of scary.   But I digress!  The hardest part on the figures were the eyes and making sure everything was balanced.  The heads are large which I had to dry them separately to prevent them from crushing the bodies.  The wings on the butterfly were also a bit of a hassle too.  I should have given them a full 24 hours to dry, but they only got about 12 and so they slowly drooped while I was trying to finish the cake this morning.  I ended up putting the butterfly in a small container with supports until we arrived at the party to make sure that they didn't flop completely. 

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Sydney requested a butterfly and a dachshund for the figurines on top

The eyes were a challenge, because they're those big manga anime type eyes.  At the cake show two weeks back I bought some Americolor Super White, which was really handy for this project.  It's like white-out for cakes!  In fact, I kinda almost wish they made it in a pen type applicator (Americolor, if you're reading this, you should totally run with that.  I'd buy it!).  I used it to apply the white part on the pupils, which completed the whole look of the figurines.

This was an easy design by my standards, but it was more time consuming than I had anticipated.  If any of you should decide to do something like this, be sure to give yourself plenty of time!  It was worth it in the long run; I am happy to report that Sydney loved her cake and so did all of her little friends. 

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Happy birthday Sydney!

Happy Caking,
Kelly

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