My Other Blog

What's a Wreck?

A Cake Wreck is any cake that is unintentionally sad, silly, creepy, inappropriate - you name it. A Wreck is not necessarily a poorly-made cake; it's simply one I find funny, for any of a number of reasons. Anyone who has ever smeared frosting on a baked good has made a Wreck at one time or another, so I'm not here to vilify decorators: Cake Wrecks is just about finding the funny in unexpected, sugar-filled places.

Now, don't you have a photo you want to send me? ;)

- Jen

Sunday Sweets: Get OUT - That's Cake?!?

I've seen a lot of amazing cakes, people, but even I can't believe my eyes on this one:

According to these news articles, this life-sized Barbie doll is actually cake. Seriously.

That's pastry chef Jean Michel Raynaud there, too, unveiling his chocolate mud-cake Barbie in honor of the doll's 50th anniversary. (According to an interview he did here, Raynaud is the creative director of Sweet Art in Sydney.)

But let's get back to this "cake", shall we? (Still wrapping my brain around this - bear with me.)

Obviously not all of this creation is edible, but that's true of all cake masterpieces so I'm not going to quibble. Especially because in addition to the gold tulle skirt, two thousand Swarovski crystals were used. Sweet and sparkly - me likey.

Considering that the skirt base is most definitely cake if any of it is, I am particularly wowed by the super realistic "fabric" draping and stretching around the "knees":

When you consider that was carved out of a dense chocolate cake, it truly is a jaw-dropping work of art.

That's Australian model Erika Heynatz "cutting" the cake. Really, I think they just had her stick a knife in to show it's not a mannequin. Unless anyone has photos of this being served up? Let me know!

And thanks to Angela R. for being the first to send me the story.

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Reader Comments (135)

Not to be a spoilsport about this...but I think that the dress, from the hips down is the actual cake part, which doesn't take away any of it's awesomeness. The top looks like actual fabric with the crystals and it is definitely a mannequin. There is still an amazing artistic ability in sculpting the bottom half of the dress and the train(which appears to a have a tulle overskirt attached). Oddly, there are no photos of the Barbie as they are cutting into it, which leads me to believe that the cake was built up around the mannequin, which is also why she isn't falling over.

Sorry to rain on your parade, Jen. The work is still lovely, but in reality, the baker that made the Bride Cake that Tometheus linked showed an extraordinary amount of talent in sculpting the whole face and arms over the stacked cakes(regardless of how wrecky the concept was).

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterwolfmom

Wow! if all cakes were like this, I'd be a thing girl as I wouldn't want to cut into it!

Hm, FreedomFirst - are you willing to give up your internet connection and send the money you save to feed those starving kids? Life is hard, it's OK for people to have some fun with cake, really!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Now thats how you do a Barbie cake instead of a toilet roll cosy skirt!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterClair

Sorry, what? My inner six-year-old has been stuck on "oooooh, pretty Barbie cake!" since I clicked on this post.

Lovely piece-though like dottiepark said, heat+humidity+sugar= disaster. I hope they finished pictures and started serving before things started slipping too much.

Beautiful cake, and a lovely birthday tribute to the girl who has been everything we big and little kids could dream up.

Still a Barbie lover,


March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

wolfmom- the bride cake's head and upper body were also sculpted separately, and were not cake.

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterbutcherbaby

WOW! That's just AMAZING.

How tall is this Barbie, by the way?

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDangGina

I've gotta say that it's AMAZING...I had to pick my jaw up off the floor when I saw it!

My only problem is the way the cake is presented. I understand that the cake was made by a Sydney baker, but why is the Sydney Opera House and the the Sydney Harbor Bridge featured predominantly in almost all of the shots? They're Australian icons, yes... but Barbie isn't. The background kind of takes away from the celebratory nature of the photos, but maybe that's just my opinion.
And that model? Get 'er out of there!

Still, it's a beautiful, BEAUTIFUL cake, and the "artist" did a fantastic job !!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTatersmama

That's amazing!! and if THAT is what the 50th anniversary barbie looks like I'm getting the doll! Both the cake and the doll are beautiful!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterGlitter-Bug

ummm, wow. That is amazing.

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterfuzzandfuzzlet

What I would like to see is Barbie after her skirt is eaten, and all that's left are crumbs and frosting glops stuck to her legs.

(Insert devil horns here.)

It's really good work. But I was watching Ace of Cakes with spouse the other night, and I can't help but wonder — are some of those magnificant cakes honestly meant to be eaten? I know wedding cakes are, yes, but some contest cakes I wonder about.

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterScritzy

that is so beautiful. wow !!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMad Hatter

eating would feel like cannibalism

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMella

you know, they don't actually show the barbie cake being eaten, just CAKE being eaten...

It would be nice (and maybe a little sadistic!) to see them actually cut up the dress skirt cake and serve it. Though, granted, I'm sure they did that behind a curtain since it would involve severing dear, ginormous Barbie in two. While, yes, 6 and 8 year old girls are not going to be traumatized by eating Barbie's dress, I'm sure there would have been a few minor freak-outs if they'd seen Barbie's top half get removed before her (chocolate cake) legs were sliced in to and divided onto plates. ... just like many a girl freaks out when she pops one of Barbie's arms or legs off, or her head...

It does look quite gorgeous though. And hardly anything beats chocolate cake!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenteralison

That is an amazing cake! WOWZERS!!! loving it!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterChristy

What's that sound? Oh, don't worry, 5 Aussie kids just started choking on the crystals in the Barbie cake.

How is this monstrosity any different from the life-sized Bridezilla cake?

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJ. Applebee

alison said...
"...just like many a girl freaks out when she pops one of Barbie's arms or legs off, or her head..."
Heh-hehhh....we used to do those things to Barbie just for fun.
(I had a play doctor's kit.)

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Sweet Art made my wedding cake about 12 years ago, and even though it's a work of art, you may consider it a Cake Wreck. I'll find a pic and email it through.
You should check out the rest of their work on their website - it's just amazing!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterPhilippa


I watch Ace of Cakes all the time and I remember watching one episode where they made the cake for the Harry Potter 5 premier. At the end, they were saying the purposely went to find a knife and plates to cut it because no one else at the party wanted to cut it and they feel that cake is meant to be eaten.

And Jessi, why would you not cut that cake? What's the point of making it out of cake if you're not going to eat it? Otherwise, it just goes in the garbage and that's a huge waste.

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

ack! who would cut that cake?!! I'd want to save it forever.. until it got all gross, then you can cut it up :) And Sydney is pretty warm, surprised that they'd unveil this outdoors- daring.

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commentersmiles :)

I saw them cutting great chunks out of her bottom on the news the other night. I know you can't see it in the photos, but it did happen!

Funnily enough, I immediately thought of you.

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterVeronica

Ekio Locatiare,

This has nothing to do with cake, but...
It's the Miss Universe scam that really gets my hackles up. I mean--sure, there are women from all over the world, but not once yet--EVER-- have I seen one single representative from anywhere else. Not EVEN from another planet in our own Solar System, let alone any OTHER planets in the universe!
Such blatant discrimination and misrepresentation is abhorrant, and for this it should be boycotted. At the very least!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Hi Every one,
My name is jean Michel, and I actually did this barbie from our kitchen in Sweet Art.
Thank you for this blog, I was a little worried when I saw the name of the site but am grateful for the compliments. It took a week of work but the final product came out ok.
Thank you again for the comments

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterjm66au

Being a Sydney Sider I wonder how they kept the Seagulls away - think the ones in Finding Nemo, and you've got the right idea. I hope they got some, I'm not a big Barbie fan.
Cake Barbie beats the 'Model'
(never heard of her to be honest) hands down, which is a tribute to the decorators and gives her some more respect from me - Classy Barbie, that is. :)

And its a habit here to show off by putting too many Swarovski crystals on anything :/

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNaktarr

There are pics here of them eating the cake. From what I can tell, they cut from Barbie's backside to serve the cake. Yikes. Or something.

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLaurie

WOW!!! That is unbelievable!! I's speechless. Barbie looks good enough to eat!!!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKimpossible

I like this cake very much, even though "only" the skirt is cake. Still awesome. And Barbie is too--really, it's not as if she's the sole source of poor body image in girls and the rest of society's ills. If you're actually trying to parent, you can probably combat 11 inches of plastic.

Go Barbie. Go Barbie cake.

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

That's unbelievable!

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterboliyou

This is exquisite! Great choice for Sunday's sweet, it was truly a treat.

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJenn J

That's so beautiful and amazing! It's more like art, shame to cut into it. That art, is the best art, of all the other art. ;)

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterHeidi 'n' Jeff

Haha, you have a doll cake on Sunday sweets, who woulda thunk it? Is it just me, or are Barbie's "assets" a little smaller than they used to be?

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermisketti

I love the irony of impossibly proportioned Barbie being made out of mud cake. If it's true that "you are what you eat" I think I should go on a mud cake diet and maybe then I'll have legs to my armpits and boobs that defy gravity.

Word verification: rucis

I bet there was a rucis over who got to keep the mannequin part.

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterWolvie Girl

Sweet Art is fantastic, so happy to see them featured on Sunday Sweets (I submitted their My Little Pony cake for the 80's theme). They made my 40th birthday cake using the colour and style of my favourite 1920s teaset - amazing. Such a gorgeous cake, and extremely delicious too.

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterjano

Holy Poop! that's probably the most glorious cake I've ever seen!
Amazing artistry! Seriously Amazing.

Well done, world. Well done.

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterstaceyrebecca

I haven't been able to find the video of it, but the story of the barbie cake, and Barbie's birthday celebrations where on the news here in Australia.
They cut the slices of cake out of Barbie's *ahem&* derriere, it was quite interesting.

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMardijo

Here's some video from the Sydney Morning Herald site.

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterit'sjustme

I don't think the top part is cake. I mean, we know the hair isn't, obviously, but I think the whole top IS something else. She's cutting the dress and not the top part.

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTrevor

It would be disturbingly interesting to watch one of the girls go at the head... I mean, it's an awesome piece of art, but I personally always have trouble eating food that stares back at me. Or points.

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterZelnor

what an awesome cake!... and i have to be bad and comment on Tometheus' comment....

while its totally cool to say eat barbie (because she's fake!) its so totally NOT cool at one's wedding to basically say "eat me"... or at least eat my cake that looks like me. ick

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMaire

Just to clarify, for the benefit of the Anonymous posters who took offense at my comment: It isn't the idea of a Barbie cake that got me upset. It was the 2,000 Swarovski crystals. That's why I was equating it with solid gold fixtures as being wasteful and excessive. And I stand by that. Excess is never appropriate in my opinion. No matter how important you are, or how much money you have.

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterFreedomFirst

But why are all the little girls so...caucasian? Australia is surely more diverse than that! Sends just the right message to the kids who aren't blonde...

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMardek

ah, as always, barbie stirs up controversy...
seriously people, this was posted as a testament to artistic endeavors in cake. get off your damn soapboxes and just admire it for what it is. as someone pointed out, this is truly the best example of a 'stick the barbie in the cake' cake. (and a great bit of promotion for the adept cake designer!)

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermp.

I love the look on the face of that little girl in the last picture. Sort of a frozen, freaked out smile, like she's saying "oh, what a pretty cake...I want my mommy!"

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNorkio

I love the horrified cringe I like to imagine the little girl in the foreground is doing as they stick a serrated knife into her beloved doll. If she were chubby this would be an entirely different story.

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterChristine

WOW! that's gorgeous!

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterbarbie2be

Lends a whole different connotation to "bite me". Funny how the model went straight for the arse. ;)

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

"... get off your damn soapboxes and just admire it for what it is."
(posted by "mp.")

SIR YES SIR ! *salutes*
I WILL admire Barbie Cake! (drops & gives you 10)
I WILL get off my soapbox! (drops and gives you 10 more)
I want to be JUST like her in my next life. Rich, sparkly, and cakey. But without the knife in the ass.

(Is "mp." for military police?)

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Oh, very pretty.
Why is it always the harbour, though? Can't anything ever happen in sight of Parliament House, or some other city's landmark?

@ Mardek, about 90% of Australians are white (compared to the US's 80%). Since there are 11 children, it's only just out of proportion to the general population. So too, I'd say, is the approximate degree of blondeness (as in, I think there's only about one more blonde than there should be statistically).
Having an Asian or Aboriginal kid would have been better, but probably they didn't think any of them looked Barbieish enough. After all, Barbie's standard friends of colour are African and Latina, neither ethnicity common in Australia.

March 16, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterkelly-holden

sendingtheclowns, I so hear that! *chuckles* I would love to see some outer rim of the galaxy gals show up. That would be the best day ever in the pageant world.

Back on the cake...I would have loved to have been the gal carving into the cake part. And I wonder how they kept up with all the crystals. 0-o

March 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEkio Locatiare

There is an article about it in today's Sydney Morning Herald. I spent my lunch break drooling over it. It's a huge dolly vardon cake we all had as kids!

March 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

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