It seems like I'm on a never ending quest to clean out my emails, organize the photos on my computer, meaningfully file the inspirational images that litter my desktop...I'd get it all done, if only there weren't so many forgotten treasures to rediscover along the way. So it is with this project today. I ran across these photos and they immediately made me want to make paper cakes again.
I made this papier-mache cake as a centerpiece for my aunt's 60th birthday party. The actual birthday cake was a sheet cake and too large to use as a decoration. I also harbor an unrealistic desire to decorate cakes, so this was the next best thing. It's much easier than breaking out the fondant and frosting, trust me. I ended up being very pleased with it, and afterwards, it was easy to simply repurpose the boxes and the topper. Here's how I made it:
3 papier-mache nesting boxes with lids (I found mine at Michaels)
Acrylic craft paint (I mixed 2 colors to get a custom shade)
Heavy florist crepe paper
Decorative edge punch
1/4-inch velvet ribbon
Quick-setting gel glue, such as Beacon 3-n-1 Adhesive
Printed numbers for template (I used a font on my computer)
Lightweight cardboard or heavy cardstock
Thin florist wire
White craft glue
White or pearl paper for banner
1. Paint the papier-mache boxes (lids included) in the desired shade and set aside to dry.
2. Cut strips of crepe paper to the desired height and carefully punch along one edge with the decorative edge punch. Repeat, for additional layers.
3. Turn the papier-mache boxes upside down and stack them on a cake stand. (I found that I didn't need to secure them to each other, but if you want to, you can attach them with double-sided tape, museum putty, or glue.) Glue the strips of crepe paper around the edge of each lid, then glue velvet ribbon over the bottom edge of each strip.
4. To make the topper, print out your number templates in the desired size and trace around the template onto the cardboard or cardstock. Cut out, then use the gel glue to attach a thin piece of floral wire to the back of each number.
5. Coat one side of the numbers with glue and then glitter. When the first side has dried, turn it over and repeat on the other side.
6. Make a paper sentiment banner (The font Exmouth was used for this one).
7. To assemble: Use a straight pin to poke 2 small holes in the top tier of your cake; slip the wired numbers into the holes and arrange as desired. Place the millinery flower in front of the numbers, then nestle the paper banner between the petals.
Heavy florist crepe paper available at Castle in the Air
"Pinking Scallop Edge" decorative edge punch by Martha Stewart Crafts
Felt and Velvet Flower from Tinsel Trading
Cake stand from Potluck Studios
All other materials available at crafts stores such as Michaels