I am not a great cake decorator, but I enjoy creating some sort of theme from nothing. My mom almost always decorated, instead of bought, our birthday and other holiday cakes. She always did a great job, and my memories of what she created, make me want to do the same for and with my children.
Here are some ideas for you (assuming you, like me, are not a pro). If you have any tips or tricks that you have picked up along the way, please leave a comment - I'd love to improve!
- To make the football cake, I poured an appropriate amount of batter into a loaf pan, then after it had baked and cooled, I carved the corners down to make the football shape.
- Before icing the cupcakes, I like to dig a small hole in the center and then pipe icing into the center of the cupcake (think "Hostess cupcake" here). Then I spread the icing on top and decorate.
- If you have extra decorative/scrapbook paper, it makes a pretty base for the cake or cupcakes to sit on, and it can enhance the theme you are going for. For example, try grass-printed paper under a football cake, or water-printed paper under island-decorated cupcakes.
- I haven't tried making these cupcake holders yet, but they are very cute. In case you would like to try, the template from snowandgraham.com is here.