It’s been a while since I made a birthday cake with a girly theme. There was a time I was constantly making girly birthday cakes- and I loved it. From ladybugs and butterflies to Tinkerbell and the rest of the fairies- I truly enjoyed making each cake. Now, this might not seem like such a feminine cake, but for me, the bows, hearts, and all that pink was the perfect feminine touch.
I made this Monster High cake for my niece’s tenth birthday. She sent me some design ideas and I found lots of inspiration on the web…this is a really popular theme for girls right now. My niece was thrilled with her cake, inside and out.
The cake was made up of a 6 inch top tier and an 8 inch bottom tier. For the top tier, I used three layers of cake: chocolate, vanilla, and chocolate. For the bottom tier: vanilla, chocolate, and vanilla layers. I used both chocolate and vanilla buttercream for filling. The cakes were “ganached” as in this post and covered in fondant.
Here’s a tutorial on how I made some of the design elements: (note: photos are below instructions)
- First, start off by printing some templates (see photo below). The skull image was easy to find online as were the diagonal stripes. Some items need to be made one or two days in advance as they need time to firm up. Specifically, the skull topper and the mini bowsCut out the templates: one of the whole image, one with the black outline cut out, a bow, and the eyes.
- Cut out the templates for the skull: the whole image, one with the black outline cut out, a bow, and the eyes.
For the skull topper:
- Have the fondant ready in the four colors needed for this cake.
- Start working on the skull topper by rolling out black fondant and cutting around the skull template with an exacto knife.
- Set aside to firm up.
- Next, work on the skull shape using the template with the outline cut out and white fondant.
- Using black fondant, cut out the eyes.
- Using pink fondant, cut out the bow.
- For the nose, roll out a small ball of fondant then work into a tear drop shape and flatten out.
- Using a brush and some water, attach the fondant parts and set the skull aside to firm up for 24 hours.
The day of the party, I took the skull topper and applied a candy stick using some melted candy melts. I left that to dry for an hour and then placed it on the cake- but just for the photo. I carefully wrapped the topper in some tissue paper and placed it securely in a box. Since this cake was being transported to the party, having the topper in place on the cake would have been a disaster. I know this from experience. Another tip: always make a second topper, better safe than sorry.
For the diagonal stripes:
They should be made once your cakes are covered in fondant in order to get the exact height of the finished cake.
- Measure the height of the bottom tier- mine was five inches tall.
- Using Jessica Harris’ wax paper method, cut the wax paper to the exact height of your cake. I used my yellow gumpaste storage board to help me stay lined up.
- Roll out black fondant and use the fondant ribbon cutter to make about 1/2 inch strips.
- Place the wax paper over the template and secure with tape.
- Smooth a light coating of shortening on the wax paper, then apply the fondant strips. Use your ruler to line the strips up as straight as possible and cut out the excess.
- Apply more shortening with your finger, very gently, to the fondant strips.
- Line up the wax paper with the completed strips against your cake and gently tap and smooth the strips onto the cake.
For the hearts: (top photo below)
- Use a heart cutter to cut out blue and pink hearts.
- Using a fondant extruder/clay gun or just your hands, make a long “snake” of black fondant.
- Outline the pink heart with the black fondant string and make tiny teeth to apply towards the bottom.
- Outline the blue heart with the black fondant string and apply smaller pieces to create a stitching effect.
For the rest of the top tier design: (middle photo below)
- use a diamond cutter to cut out diamonds in blue and pink. (My diamond cutter is from a quilt cutter set however, I highly recommend the set by Ateco at the end of this post)
- I originally used a pattern of four diamonds on each side, then changed it to three.
- Using the ribbon cutter, cut out long strips and place on the wax paper exactly how you want it spaced- remember, using the Jessica Harris wax paper technique.
- Apply to the cake.
For the top tier flower design: (bottom photo below)
use any flower cutters you have and cut out a large and small flower.
- Place the small flower on the large and apply to the cake.
For the mini bows:
- Roll a thin strip of paper towel, about two inches by two inches, into a tube and secure with tape. (bottom right) This will provide the space to form the loop for each bow.
- Cut out three strips of blue fondant about 1/2 inch wide.
- Cut the third strip in half and discard the other piece.
- Place the paper towel roll in the middle of one of the long strips of fondant, fold over and pinch to secure. Use a brush with water to glue.
- Repeat with the second strip.
- Place the two bow loops on the small strip.
- Fold the small strip over the two bow ends and pinch together- use a dab of water to secure.
- Flip the bow over and allow to dry overnight.
And there you have it- a Monster High cake tutorial perfect for any little girl or pre-teen 🙂
Specialty products helpful to make this cake: