The invitation is the first glimpse guests will see of the party’s vibe and can set the tone for the rest of the party. When hosts use their invitation as a starting point for thoughtful, imaginative details throughout the celebration its the icing on the cake (we had to). We sat down with cake decorator Melissa Torres of Brooklyn’s Cake Hero to learn how she turned several Paperless Post invitation designs ––including illustrations from Anthropologie and Happy Menocal––into memorable cakes for baby showers and birthday celebrations.
On Cake Hero and where she finds inspiration
As a self taught cake decorator and owner of a Fair Trade and organic custom cake business, I pull inspiration from many places, including Paperless Post. Between the edible art that brings everyone at the celebration together, and the photos that help that special treat live on, the work at Cake Hero is truly a family business and a labor of love.
On the special request behind her Dino Fest cake
The directive from the birthday boy was to only include “nice dinosaurs”, so Dino Fest from Happy Menocal was a perfect fit for the party. From the invite I hand painted a watercolor rendition of the jungle, and used fondant to create 3D ivy, to help the jungle come alive on the cake.
I finished the cake with hand-cut “nice” dinosaurs, wearing jolly little hats. My photographer is also my husband, so having him bring his artistic eye to the capture all of the details I put so much time and thought into is such a gift.
On creating a sweet forest creatures for her Folk Tails cake
This was one a labor of love. The time consuming process that really shows you the time that goes into the original art! Painting a pattern straight onto a cake with edible paints takes a lot more time than you’d think, and the fact that the canvas is vertical rather than laying flat in front of you certainly presents its own challenges. The sweetness of this Folk Tails design from Anthropologoie was just too good to not use, though, and the handmade pink sugar dahlia on top really brings the cake to life. It was the perfect accent for a baby shower for a little girl.
On the genius update she made to the Vine Print design
This is a favorite of mine. I love the juxtaposition of the jungle behind the animals, made with hand textured buttercream, and the 2D fondant hand-painted animals hanging on vines. It was fun to take the design and make it into a mommy-and-me theme, giving each animal a baby counterpart.
Tips on how to coordinate your cake and your invite
Share your invite with your local baker for inspiration––they’ll be able to take the design and run with it in a way that works for your party. If you’re going the DIY route simplify your cake design by referencing the invitation’s color palette or shapes rather than taking on an illustration in fondant. Add a finishing touch with coordinating cake or cupcake toppers. Some of our design partners, like Meri Meri make it especially easy to tie everything together.
To find inspiration for your next celebration check out our baby shower and kids’ birthday party invitations. For more guidance check out our guide on easy kids’ birthday cakes—and the invitations to match.