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

I'm Looking Over My Wrecked Up Clover

Saint Patrick's day is this week, and to celebrate, Wreckerators are clearly getting into the Irish spirit. (And by "spirit," I mean "Guinness.")

Shamrock Clover Reference Photo:

(Because by the end of this post, you'll have no IDEA what one looks like.)

First up, "Oscar Lends a Hand:"


"Wasted Windmills:"

The care.
The precision.
The...triangle thingies.

"What Target considers print-worthy:"

I don't usually call out specific bakery chains, but c'mon, Target. Really?

[Seth: Really?
[Amy: Really! Really?]
[Seth: I mean, Reeeeally.]

"Something Vaguely Obscene on Something Vaguely Hat-Like:"

Never mind, Target. All is forgiven.

"The Right Hook:"

Why do they always curve to the right?

"The Sham...WOW":

You following this, camera guy?

Yeah, me neither.

"The Thing I'm Told is a Shamrock But I'm Not Buying It:"

And from the looks of things, neither is anyone else.

Maia G., Meg K., Lori B., Carrie M., Misty B., Trisha D., & Alex, I want you to know that my little Guinness joke does NOT mean I think Irish people are all alcoholics, and I would hate to have any of you lovely Irish readers think that. Especially considering your hair-trigger tempers and all.

- Related Wreckage: Rockin' Shams

Today I learned that there is a difference between clovers and shamrocks. As I understand it from your comments, clovers can have either 3 or 4 leaves, but shamrocks can only have three Epcots. [nodding seriously] Good to know, good to know.

« Patty Cakes | Main | Sunday Sweets: That Takes The Cake Part 1 »

Reader Comments (143)

Wow....don't these places train people?

BTW People...don't you guys read the comments before posting? 50 people don't need to tell Jen the difference between a shamrock and a four-leaf clover....I'm sure she got it the first time.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGiana

Heh, heh. What Andygirl said. :-)

Um, and I know the clover vs shamrock thing was explained to death. But what's the deal with these wrecktastic SIX leaf clovers? Was I sick that day in Catholic school?

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHobbit

OK - who in their right mind rounded the stem and put that extra line across the bottom of the RIGHT HOOK cake
I am glad, however, that they put the tiny plastic flotsam shamrock on there so that we would know what it is supposed to be! I wonder where the flotsam phallis is...

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

OK, so it's easy to make the smart-a** comments and all, but no lie: By the time I reached the last three I honestly thought "Wait a minute, what was the theme again...?"

I think I'd actually reached a point where I was de-sensitized to the wrecks. I'll be looking at those blobby six-fingered green thingies like "oh hey, that's nice..."

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLaurenH

Agree with Suzi, shamrocks have 3 leaves, while the 4-leaf clover you're showing is actually the 4-H symbol sans H's.


March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterThe Lili Effect

HOLY COW!!! You've just made my day.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBnE's Mommy

"Oscar lends a hand?" Haha-- my first thought was, "Big Bird, is that you?"

Thanks for including the Target ad! I knew it was only a matter of time when they started showing off their CCC handiwork at every holiday. They could probably get more money for that thing if they'd just cut a couple CCs off the stem.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterjj

It's been awhile since I saw some CCC's (ptooie!!) on this site. Thought maybe they went the way of disco or, better yet, horseless carriages. Alas, they are still with us.... (thanks, Target!)

wv: misit

if bakeries stopped making CCC's (ptooie!!), I doubt anyone would misit.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterryglights

The first one looks like someone painted the NBC peacock green.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterladycrim

Wow! That last one looks like a "flower" made by a drunken kindergartener.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPromise

I'm devastated. Someone beat me to the obligatory, legendary EPCOT reference.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAmapola

Here's a good photo of real shamrocks (the type that grow on the ground in Ireland):

And here's another photo of the shamrocks that are common as houseplants:

They are different types of plants yet both are called shamrocks. I have had a shamrock plant for 27 years and it's still very healthy. Each leaf is its own little plant, and if you get dead leaves you shouldn't yank them out because that will disturb the stems around it. You just trim off the dead leaves with scissors. Also, the reason each leaf has a crease down the middle is that at night the leaves fold up like little umbrellas.

With the difference between the rounded ground shamrock and the pointy house plant shamrock you can ALMOST excuse some of the decorators for being a little confused. For all of the other cake wrecks, you'll have to blame the Guinness.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterVanessa

i think maybe they were going for a shamrock colored as the irish flag in the last one, but really missing the mark....oh dear!

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterrebecca

Wow. I'm pretty sure my 8-year old cousin is able to draw a shamrock without actually having to, you know, convert it to broccoli.

And my boyfriend is Irish, flaming red hair and all, and if he could breath Guinness, he would. Like Andygirl said, they're all alcoholics, and they're all okay with it.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLyssanne

The shamrock (3 leaves) is the proper symbol for St. Patrick. Supposedly he used it to help the Irish understand how the holy trinity works. However, these are awful shamrocks. The four-leaf clover is a symbol of luck. I hope that clears this up.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnne

I think the first one, if done in orange or brown would resemble the beginnings of all those turkey "cakes" [read: attempts] last November. Who's with me?

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKristers

Thank God they finally found a shape that so perfectly lends itself to CCCs! Yes, we acknowledge that making circles out of cupcakes is very difficult, but the shamrock--now there is a can't-miss CCC design!

Wait a minute...


March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

All I see are misshapen heads of broccoli. Makes the Irish in me (and yes I do have some!) want to weep into my Guinness.

(Well, I don't drink, but if I did...)

As for that last one--now, I'm all for modern art but I'd rather see a Klee or a Pollock rendered into cake form than this. 0_o

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa (& Billy)

That last one is NOT a shamrock. I can't accept that. There's RED in it. Since when is that right?

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTrevor

I'm sure no day is a good day to see green body parts. Oh, my!

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterlisadh

LOVE the Seth and Amy reference!

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEmily

Oh man... that right hook is looking more like something else than that...

*Yes, my brain went there*

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTornadoBaby

Well, here's a point.

The people who made these cakes are probably so busy they just don't have time to do them better. Busy equals, lots of cakes, lots of orders, lots of money.

Where as, the people who did the Sunday Sweets Masterpieces obviously are eyeball deep in spare time.

So really, who's the success, huh? Huh? Huh?

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMary Connealy

For all those insisting on telling Jen that her reference photo is actually a four-leaf clover rather than a shamrock, I suggest you re-read the post, and check out what the reference photo actually references...yes, that's right, a "clover."

Thanks for the laughs!

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Cupcake cakes are almost always disasters...

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCandice

I like the way the triangle "shamrocks" (which definitely look more like the triangle-shaped houseplant variety than the typical St. Patty's day design) on the second one show frugality on the part of the decorator. The first one done (bottom right corner) is with the full pastry bag, and not wanting to waste any precious green icing, they kept going and squeezed out the very last bit on the last one (bottom left corner). Uh, yah...

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The last one looks very mushroomesque.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

I was about to ask the same thing as one of the other comments -- why does the "right hook" have a "tip" on it's stem? It is as if the decorator was going for the penis look on purpose.
And the last one is soooo awful, I'm surprised it made it in a box and on display!?!?! Really?!?!?!?!?!?!?
Thanks for the great laughs to get my Monday going!

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I dunno, maybe the Sham-Wow ones are trying to be Joshua Trees...

That's kinda Irish now right? ;p

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterbonobaby

I recognize the right hook. He was my 1st husband. he was Irish too.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I see the sham parts of all of these… at least they went light on the “poo” part today.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The last one... what the crap!?!? I'm still squinting in confusion! I literally had my nose touching the screen and still, I got nothin'...

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCourtney C.

That last one looks like an old piece of toast smothered in cream cheese with a broccoli handle. Egads!

The 1st one reminds me of the turkey cake wrecks. The last one, I just don't get!

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJust a Small Town Girl

The Sham-WOW looks more like a sham-cauliflower!

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterbassgirl

Note to self: if I ever find myself making a shamrock CCC (at gunpoint, no doubt), skip the stem and try for a four-leaf clover.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterjiminycricket

I think most of us saw that target add and wanted to send it in. I know I did!

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenternikki

I loved the SNL reference. If target thinks the "clover" is attractive, I would like to see their other cakes. On second thought, I take that back I have no desire to be sick.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLilly

That "right hook" looks bothersome.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Yeah, I think that right hook looks more like a cockroach.

(Cockroaches cockroaches cockroaches...)

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterabi

Obviously, the Guiness joke refers to the bakers! Sheesh - what some people try to pass off as decorated cakes. (wailing in an Irish accent) : Oh the Shame of it All!

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLorraine

After reviewing the Rockin' Shams
related wreckage, it is clear that the commonality is BROCCOLI. Whodathought?

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

"The Sham...WOW": looks like a bacteria.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Wow, #5, at first glance I thought it was a swastika haha. Why do all these only have 3 leaves? I thought it was lucky to have 4. And 3 leaves was just.. meh. Not that I can count the leaves on all of those.

I actually think that targets clovers were pretty good, considering they are made of cupcakes.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBlue Eyes

To Anonymous at 1:47 PM:

Actually, the reference photo only said "shamrock" when it was originally posted. Notice how it's crossed out now and says "clover" in bold. That's because this morning, people jumped all over her 8,000 separate times telling her that it was NOT a shamrock! So she edited her post.

Also, 100 people saying the same thing is acceptable up to a point. All 100 people could submit their comments at the same time and not have them show up on the comments list until hours later. That's why it says the blog owner has to approve the comments! Don't think that Jen and John sit there all day approving comments as they come in; they do a lot at once!

Give Jen and John a break. There are so many smarties and know-it-alls out there that make a fun blog annoying. Personally, I couldn't care any less about the difference between a shamrock and a clover. It just isn't that important in the grand scheme of things, now, is it?

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Let's all sing along with Bugs!

"I'm looking over a three-leaf clover that I've overlooked be-threeeeee!"

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermio

That last one... yikes. Just yikes. And I don't even want to know how that one was deemed fit to sell.

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

Oh, for the love of...

HERE we go again.

THIS JUST IN: "93,717 (combined)shamrocks and clovers later, they reached a consensus. The adopted word is now 'shamvers'. No, wait--maybe it was 'clorocks'..."

(And why is the so-called "right hook" facing left?)

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

You tell me what holiday the "right hook" is celebrating and I am converting!

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterduffylou

Hmm, I thought the handle on the last one looked more like the corpse of a Gumby." rel="nofollow"> Gumby

March 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKatherine R

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