Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Homestead Craft - Woodsy Fake Cake

This fake cake can be easily made with natural things from the outdoors.

It is covered in bark from the white ash tree, and topped with pine cones. All it needs is a miniature shovel for the slice. The white ash tree bark is very thin, like paper, and peels off easily.

It can be made with silk flowers if preferred. Ingredients needed are: three small stryrofoam rounds (from the dollar store), tree bark, a blank side of a piece of paper, a pen, a serated spatula or a knife with a serated edge,  tacky glue or fabritack, or hot glue. Thin white glue does not dry as fast, but might work.

Trace around the styrofoam round with the pen. If you do not want to buy styrofoam, trying using a short, round box with a lid, and make the cake completely round, with no slice.

Cut out the circle you just traced, and fold it in half, then, in half again. Open it up and cut out one of the fourth sections.

Lay the larger section on top of the rounds, and trace the "V" shape with a pen, digging into the styrofoam a little to make a line to follow.

With the serated edged spatula or knife, slice out the section on each round. Drop big glops of glue all over the inside layers. Glue all three layers of foam together with fabritack or tacky glue. Hot glue works too. This is not a craft for children.

Then, slice off a little less than half of the small sections, as you see here. Glue all three layers together.

With ordinary scissors, or childrens scissors, cut the bark sheets to match the size of the cake, and start gluing them on. White ash has a lot of curly pieces, and you can use them to patch and embellish the cake. Squeeze big drops of glue on to the stryrofoam and then press the bark on it. Cover any edges that have styrofoam still peeking through, with extra curls of white ash bark.
Use the under side of the bark for the inside of the cake, as you see here. The inside is usually a dark brown, while the outside is white.

Place white bark on the ends and widesst side of the slice. Glue the dark side of the bark on to the slice.

In place of pine cones for the top, use whole cinnamon sticks.  Scent the cake with any choice of scented oil.
A friend of mine has decorated her home in a north woods theme. Someone gave her one of these and she has it on her entry table by the front door, where anyone who walks in can get a whiff of the nice aroma. The scent can be refreshed by adding more scented oil or scented spray.  This is a good outdoor craft because you can just let the scraps fall to the ground. It takes about an hour to complete.

Take a look at this real cake, made to look like a birch bark cake.  For more craft cakes, type in "chennille cakes" or "felt cakes" and see the hundreds of creative, hand made things people are doing.

There used to be some McCall's craft books that showed how to make potpourri cakes. The scented fake cakes are very popular now, being seen in show homes and other places where fake food is used. The scent is wonderful for the home.

Things like leaves, cedar branches, or pine cones, could be used in lieu of bark. There might also be some artificial materials such as scrapbook papers, and woodsy decorations, that look just like this.

You may also be interested in this floral scented fake cake.


Secondhand Blessings said...

Very nice! I've never seen anything like this before.
The possibilities for decorating could be endless!
I've seen pies done before, but never cakes.
Thanks for sharing this with us.

Lydia said...

If you are married to a woodsman, you can make this a lot easier. Just saw a round circle from a slim log of wood, and chop a wedge in it. Make a woodsy decoration for the top of the cake.

Lydia said...

I plan to make the floral one soon.

Regarding my previous post on daughters: there have been a lot of requests to print it, reprint it and use it for notebooks and daughters. That is okay. Anyone may print anything of mine if they are on my side and using it for what it was intended.

Lydia said...

You can get the stryrofoam and the scented oil at the dollar store. They even have one that is a wood scent, but I used the berry-citrus scent and it scents my home as people open the door and a breeze flows past the thing. I must admit it is quirky and unusual, but I had seen things like this made of pine cones and put in log cabins for scent. In old Victoria magazines, you can sometimes find pictures of this kind of cake in their spreads on mountain cabins or country vacation resorts.

Mrs. Kelley Dibble said...

The tiny hatchet 'makes' this!

Anonymous said...

Dear Lady Lydia...this is TOO cute! We here love your craft posts and The Princesses are despertate to get their hands on glitter because of you...but I am afraid of what they will do with will not just be on will be..on EVERYTHING! LOL.

Many Blessings :)

Lydia said...

Glitter should only be for adults. It is a special ingredient that makes you feel rich without the burden of jewels.

Lydia said...

I have entered these kinds of cakes in the county fair before and won first prize and cash prizes as well. You are certainly welcome to copy it and try your hand at getting a prize or seeing how it will sell on etsty. People buy these as accessories for cabin decor, or in show homes. I have seen them in several places, for 25 to 50 dollars.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful! For some reason, looking at this Woodsman's cake reminds me of a (real) German chocolate cake. It must be how the delicate birch bark frosting gives a fluffy appearance to the exterior.

I plan to make a floral themed cake to keep on display in my glass domed cake plate, which otherwise just gathers dust on top of the refrigerator.

Thank you for your continued inspiration.

Kind regards from Susan T.

P.S. Glitter is fabulous - I have always loved it.

Lydia said...

I hope to have the floral one posted today sometime!

I noticed that Martha Stewart had something called a glitter painting that you could print, which was like a paint by number, only larger sections.

Anonymous said...

For those interested in glitter, there is a glitter contest at Martha Stewart. Also, type in your search engine, "Glitter Crafts" and see what comes up. While we sat at home in the 40's and 50's using silver and gold glitter, there is an abundance of shade and hue of this medium. Rather than being used just for children's crafts, it is used on everything from ceramics to silk flowers. Some people are taking prints and glittering certain areas of them, framing them, and selling them in shops like Make Mine Pink.

Anonymous said...

Lady Lydia, that's a gorgeous decorator item! At first I thought it had been hewn out of a birch branch until I read your text!

Your mention of winning prizes at fairs with such objects reminded me of something. Some years back, I lived on a small farm, and a great deal of my late summer/early autumn income came from prizes at the county and state fairs. Sure, some of them were only a few dollars, but I entered many items, everything from vegetables I had grown to baked goods to craft projects. There were always at least a hundred competitions I could enter, and even third prize brought a dollar or two.

Some of your readers who are looking to supplement the family income might consider this. You don't have to live on a farm to enter competitions at your local fair - just contact the fair organizers for a list of the competitions available. At the time I was entering these competitions, some of the prize purses were as much as $100. Many years I was able to win enough in prizes to offset any Christmas expenses - and it was nice to be recognized as being a good veggie grower/needleworker/craftswoman as well!

Give it a try. You might just win, and if nothing else, a trip to the county or state fair is a wonderful opportunity to see beautiful products made by people with similar interests.

Lydia said...

You are righ about your local fair. I know one homemaker who makes things all year in different categories: clothing, quilting, baking, florals, ceramics, photography, crafts, jewelry and even some categories she makes up that do not exist---they let you do that when you have an unusual entry---and she makes a hundred dollars from accumulated prizes. She just takes some time once a month and makes one thing and puts it away.

Lydia said...

Has anyone seen the sea shell fake cake style? I have seen it in several decorating magazines, particularly the coastal chic type of decor.