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Fgs, please help me make a decision on a first birthday cake. It shouldn't be this hard!

(35 Posts)
JamesAndTheGiantBanana Wed 30-Jul-08 18:13:58

I want to make my ds's first birthday cake, it needn't be an incredibly big or fancy idea but I'm not 100% at the moment so can't think.

1) I have a 1 lb loaf tin, a 2 lb loaf tin, and a couple of 6 or 7 inch round deep tins, as well as a medium lasagne dish and a small roasting tin which would make a sortof 7 inch rounded-square TV sort of shape.

2) I'm going to do either a 8884 plain cake or the same but with the addition of some drinking chocolate.

3)I can ice it with either vanilla or chocolate buttercream, or coloured ready to roll icing if necessary, and decorated with writing icing pens/fondant icing/sweets/choc buttons or whatever. I'm pretty artistic so not daunted by decorating, but can't spend much.

4) My ds likes: igglepiggle (but tbh I can't be bothered ordering blue food colouring online at a price £5 inc p+p!) and ITNG generally, rubbadubbers, dogs, and anything colourful. We don't want/like teddybears or anything dull, brown, grey etc. He is one, so could do a number 1 cake but would it be boring?

So, any ideas of what I can do? Any help appreciated as I just can't make a bloody decision. <despair>

JamesAndTheGiantBanana Wed 30-Jul-08 18:26:35


Slouchy Wed 30-Jul-08 18:29:38

Do one that will look nice in the photos.

He is one. He won't care! Dont' fart about doing a themed one - save this for ages 2, 3, 4, and 5. By the time he is six he will want a violent coloured monstrosity from tesco with power rangers on.

JamesAndTheGiantBanana Wed 30-Jul-08 18:35:01

hehe, you're right.

What about just a simple plain cake sandwiched with strawberry jam and iced with some kind of white creamy icing (fancy something like carrot cake icing) with coloured smarties and a big number 1 or his name on it, and plenty of candles then?

Fancy candles, that'd be good. <googles>

katylou25 Wed 30-Jul-08 18:52:59

I would do ...

creamy butter icing with smarties round the edge as a border then make a no 1 shape in the middle - maybe edged in smarties again? with a row of candles down the no 1. I did something like this for ds1's 1st, and for ds2's I was very short of time so I did fairycakes iced with choc buttercream and decorated with white choc buttons and then arranged them on a big board to make a no 1 shape with a big 1 candle to blow out.

Go very simple for 1st birthday - I made lightening mcqueen for ds 3rd, and ds2 wants spot for his 2nd, and am sure the requests are going to get harder as we go through the years!

MsDemeanor Wed 30-Jul-08 18:54:34

Agree with Slouchy. He won't care at ALL!
Make (or...shhh....BUY) a cake YOU like.

lucysmam Wed 30-Jul-08 19:38:42

how about a numberjack if you don't mind wht it is? they're quite colourful and it doesn't really matter what colour you do them or you could decorate with bits and pieces like you suggested

IAteRosemaryConleyForBreakfast Wed 30-Jul-08 19:42:59

We had this dilemma last week. The Co-op do great caterpillar cakes grin and I can verify that not only do 1 year olds love caterpillar cake, parents of one year olds like it too [burp]

His Grandma ordered a lovely iced cream sponge with Tigger on it. It was beautiful but must have cost her a fortune. We took lots of photos!

lucysmam Wed 30-Jul-08 20:01:29

lmao@caterpillar cake! whatever you do dont go ott and do thomas the tank like we did for our lo's 1st this year, half was wasted as it was huge and it took her nanna ages to make. looked lovely but kids dont care at that age so prob something simple and easy would be best

AbbeyA Thu 31-Jul-08 08:33:57

My easiest was a farming one.
Use a square tin, ice with choc buttercream icing. Make grass by shaking up dessicated coconut with green colouring and put it over half the top. Put a toy tractor(with plough if you have one) where the grass meets the brown, as if it is ploughing and run a fork up the brown to make plough lines. Put a candle in one corner and scarecrow in another. Make a fence around the whole lot with choc finger biscuits.

Tommy Thu 31-Jul-08 08:39:51

I did a hickory dickory dock for DS1 - oblong cake with triangle on top. Covered in chocolate butter icing with a clock face cut out of fondant icing and a sugar mouse

Any of the ones you have described sound lovely though - and he is only 1 grin

mamadiva Thu 31-Jul-08 08:50:38

My mum used to make me a sponge cake with jam and buttercream in the middle, then put blue icing on top and decorate with white choc uttons as clouds and somehow fathom a little aeroplane on it too. No idea how she done that though all I know is it's what I asked for every year for about 5years LOL.

mistypeaks Thu 31-Jul-08 09:12:42

I did a plain square cake and decorated it plainly. made some mini square cakes and iced them and added sprinkles, buttons etc. and made them look like building blocks (A B C / 1 2 3) Really easy and quite cute.

JamesAndTheGiantBanana Thu 31-Jul-08 09:58:25

Great ideas folks, thanks a lot! I especially like mamdiva's aeroplane idea, that's cute.

I've bought some (probably rather tacky but dp set his heart on them) coloured flame birthday cake candles.

So I'll probably just do a fairly plain round or square cake, cover it in some vanilla buttercream, add the candles and ice his name or a number 1 on with writing icing, and stick some smarties all over it. Should look pretty good in photos even though it's not a themed cake. Got plenty of time for that though, eh?

stealthsquiggle Thu 31-Jul-08 10:05:49

I did a shape sorter for DS's 1st birthday and a flower for DD's 1st (very complicated and only because I made the mistake of letting DS choose what "DD would like")

I will see if I can find a photo of the shape sorter and stick it on my profile, but your plan sounds good to me.

stealthsquiggle Thu 31-Jul-08 10:13:39

OK, that was a mistake. I found lots of photos of DS's 2nd Birthday party and realised how elaborate it was and how much I was not planning anything equivalent for DD blush

I can't find the shape sorter - the others are on my profile, but basically it was a cube (several small square cakes stacked up) with a cut out shape on each side - except on the top was a '1' IIRC. I then made a couple of the matching shapes out of icing and used one them to stick the candle in.

mistypeaks Thu 31-Jul-08 11:02:07

Bloody hell stealthsquiggle - that r2d2 cake is amazing!!
Banana - I'd go with your simpler idea - chances are little ones will be far more interested in smarties than your artistic skills anyway grin.

stealthsquiggle Thu 31-Jul-08 11:47:02

I would say 'don't do it' about the R2D2 cake, as it was a killer, but the look on the recipient's face (and those of his guests) made it all worth it..

JamesAndTheGiantBanana Thu 31-Jul-08 17:20:00

Holy crap, your cakes are amazing squiggle! Wow, talk about labour intensive.

Fancy doing this cake for me? I'm so tired. lol

SorenLorensen Thu 31-Jul-08 17:30:41

I did an R2-D2 cake for ds2's 5th birthday - not an amazing standing up one like stealthsquiggles's (wow!) but I was quite pleased with it anyway (picture on my profile). Ds2's reactions was "it's good, but I would rather have had Spongebob" <<<thud>>>.

For his 6th I really couldn't be bothered (can you blame me?) so I made an enormous pile of buns (about 50 altogether), some chocolate, some not, decorated with melted chocolate, icing, cake decorations, sweets etc. and just piled them up in a rough pyramid shape and put candles on 6 of them. It was a doddle, looked really effective, and made dividing the cake between party guests really easy.

I'd save my best efforts for when he's a bit older than one - he really won't appreciate it grin

stealthsquiggle Thu 31-Jul-08 18:05:05

There is a lesson here Banana - whatever you make, your DC (or DP) will expect better next year.

In other words, start low - homemade cake with smarties in a '1' shape sounds fab to me - DD got a complicated cake because DS chose it, and DS's shape sorter was more complex because - well - I don't know hmm. Maybe because I'm nuts - and it was an excuse to buy cake-making toys for me. Oh yes and I was out of work at the time - it's all coming back to me now.

Whereabouts are you? I have a small lull in birthdays right now....grin

Littlefish Thu 31-Jul-08 18:21:14

The cake on my profile was from dd's 1st birthday.

I agree with everyone else - do something really simple! Things in this house have got more and more elaborate.

1st birthday - ladybird
2nd birthday - cake looking like a ball of wool with a cat sitting on top (took soooooooooooo long to make!)
3rd birthday - fairy castle complete with 5 different towers, sparkles, trailing flowers, battlements and a fairy sitting on top!

I'll see if I can find photos.

stealthsquiggle Thu 31-Jul-08 21:21:28

<<watches with interest to see if Littlefish finds photos>> - how did that ball of wool one turn out? It's on my mental shortlist for DD's 2nd birthday.

Littlefish Thu 31-Jul-08 22:02:41

They're on my profile under "Littlefish's photos" - at the bottom.

It looked brilliant, but it was incredibly time consuming. Also, as the icing dried out overnight, some of the strands broke off. Not sure what the answer is - can you help? Is there something I can add to the icing to make it more malleable?

stealthsquiggle Thu 31-Jul-08 22:15:09

It looks fab - definitely on my shortlist!

Were you using ordinary icing or sugarpaste - if the former, then you need tragacanth gum (sp) - aka SugarCell (or that my be an alternative?) - it is a powder which you knead into icing to transforms it into sugarpaste which dries harder and less brittle - then add shortening (white veg fat) to soften it enough to go through the sugar shaper. Only available (on the whole) from cake decorating shops.

If you were already using that then my guess would be not enough shortening mixed in.

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