Happy Birthday to ME!!!
Maybe you aren’t supposed to get this excited about your birthday when you turn 45 but I just can’t help it, I’m still a kid at heart. This is evident when you see the birthday cake I made for myself last weekend.
Yes, you heard me right, I made my own birthday cake. Now don’t feel sorry for me, it’s not that my family doesn’t love me. You see, I’ve recently started to learn how to weld and I had this idea for a cake design that I really wanted to try so what better excuse for me to make it than for my own birthday?!
As you may already know, I like to make my cakes interactive or give them some sort of “over the top” element whenever possible. Since this cake was going to have a welder in it, I wanted it to spark like a real welder. I have to admit that I wasn’t quite sure if the effect would come off quite as I envisioned so, as you will see in the video below, when it did I was so excited that I burst out in silly laughter.
This post doesn’t contain a tutorial on how to make this cake because, frankly, I wanted to enjoy making my birthday cake without the pressure of photographing every step and taking notes and all that. Plus, a lot of the basics for this cake, like the structure and some of the sculpting, I learned from Avalon Yarne’s Floating Unicorn Tutorial at her online cake school, Avalon Cakes School of Sugar Art. Avalon is a jaw-dropping cake artist and teacher. I highly recommend all her tutorials, no matter what level of decorator you are. They are so worth the money and will definitely up your cake game.
So instead of a tutorial, I’m going to give you the background of this cake and share some photos with you.
First, I always like to prove that my cakes are actually cake so here is a photo of the cake before I started decorating it. I colored the layers red, yellow, and blue in honor of Wonder Woman.
My favorite thing about cake decorating is taking something like the photo above and watching it evolve into the photo below. People always ask me, “how can you possibly eat that cake after all that time working on it?” The thing is, I don’t really care about the finished product as much as I care about the process. Each little piece of sugar that transforms into art is what excites me. I even love the mistakes and problems that come along because they are a new challenge that I learn from and another thrill when I fix them, or at least hide them the best that I can. Ha! Honestly, when it is done, I usually just see all my mistakes anyway so I am ready to eat it!
I have been obsessed with Wonder Woman since I was a little girl so anyone who knows me isn’t surprised at all that I would choose a Wonder Woman cake for myself. Half my wardrobe consists of Wonder Woman clothing. I even have a Wonder Woman doll that rides on the dash of my Jeep, Sugar High. And really, there is no better female figure to represent all those badass female welders out there than Wonder Woman herself.
Last year I did very little baking because I spent most of the year in Phoenix helping on an all-female build of a ’57 Chevy pickup truck, called the Chevy Montage. My other hobby/passion, aside from baking, is cars so this was an amazing opportunity to work with and learn from female automotive professionals from all over the country. It was headed up by Bogi Lateiner from Velocity Channel’s All Girls Garage. One of my favorite new skills I learned during the build was how to weld. My eyes were opened to a whole new medium that can be useful as well as artistic.
Then I was blessed by a dear friend who gave me a Lincoln Electric MIG welder. This was seriously one of the best gifts I have ever received!
I am still very, very new to welding but I love practicing and hope to eventually develop enough skill to use on automotive builds and also create some fun art….. I’m thinking maybe some cool metal cake stands?!
I was also give another fabulous gift this year (yes, I have some of the best friends ever!) by one of the incredibly talented painters from the build, Dez Ferrel. She surprised me by painting my welding helmet in this gorgeous Wonder Woman theme! I couldn’t not love any welding helmet more than this one!!
Since both of these gifts were so meaningful to me, I wanted to include them in my cake. It was a challenge to make my gumpaste version of the welding helmet look even remotely as good as her real helmet because I am far from being the airbrush master that she is. I was pretty happy with how it turned out though.
Then it came time to add that welding spark to the cake! I saved some sparklers from the 4th of July and used wire cutters to cut one down to a small size then inserted it into the end of the welding gun.
Then I lit it!
And, low and behold, it looked AWESOME!!!! It was one of the few times that everything went exactly as I had planned. (All my fellow cake decorators know what I mean by that.)
It even looked cool after the sparks died down and it was still smoldering on the wire. If you listen to the video you will hear my goofy laughter because I was both shocked and excited at how well it turned out.
After all that work, it was finally time to eat the cake. There is something a little disturbing about stabbing Wonder Woman in the brain.
Of course I also had to use some Wonder Woman napkins alongside my Wonder Woman cake.
And this is what the inside of a sugary superhero’s head looks like. The cake was all vanilla, iced with white chocolate ganache. YUMMY!!!
I always like to get photos of my cake recipients with their cakes so this time I got to take a photo with my own cake. Please excuse how I look, I had just gotten back from my annual birthday hike to a local waterfall.
That is the story behind my Welding Wonder Woman cake. I want to give a huge shoutout to all those amazing women welders out there. You all inspire me in so many ways. If you happen to be one of those ladies, leave me a comment and tell me how long you have been welding.
Here’s to sweet dreams and sugar highs.