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: Miss Independent

Today we get to look at some of America's best birthday cakes. :)

By CC (aka Cake Central) member sugarchicone

I don't feature sheet cakes too often here on Sunday Sweets, but this one is postcard-perfect; and all buttercream! Those are some sweet piping skills.

Another that looks almost too perfect to be real:

By Spring Lake Cake

Love the bow.

Folks who share a birthday with the U.S. sure get some excellent cake designs:

By CC member tcam

See the little firecrackers on top? So. Fun.

Plus, this cake was beautiful *inside* as well as out:


And then CC member themaytrix took the hidden flag idea to the next level:


If you read the Reader's Digest, you may remember this couple:

This is Ralph Archbold & Linda Wilde, who play Ben Franklin and Betsy Ross in Old City Philadelphia. When they got married (on July 3rd, no less!) this was their wedding cake:

So pretty! The intricate star designs are fantastic.

By CC member Nunuk

WOW. Can't you almost hear the big band playing "Stars and Stripes Forever?"

And here's the gazebo the band would play in:

That's made of gumpaste and royal icing. Awesome.

Proving that simple can also be stunning:

Believe it or not, those daisies are also gumpaste. Gorgeous!

Here's a cool idea, and executed flawlessly:

CC member mimiguk wrote the words to the national anthem as the stripes in the flag. Painstaking, I'm sure, but oh-so-perfect! (Just looking at all that script makes my hand cramp. Yow.)

And speaking of our national anthem, here's a cake celebrating its writing:

By MixinVixen

The top is Fort McHenry, which was where Francis Scott Key was inspired to write The Star-Spangled Banner during an attack by the British navy during the War of 1812. Just look at the little rockets on wires! So, so cool.

And finally, for our Canadian friends:

By KupKake Tree

Happy Belated Canada Day! Sorry again for almost forgetting it on Thursday.

Oh, and btw: I'd like to say again that our Canada post on Thursday was NOT making fun of the Canadian national anthem. As I said in the post, it was making fun of the Epcot song about Canada - and even then, with affection. (I happen to love that song. I just don't know the words.)

Fortunately, most of you Canadians both know what your national anthem is AND have a sense of humor, but a select few who don't on both counts were "patriotic" enough to write angry e-mails and leave goofy cake blogs over an imagined maligning of said anthem. [sigh]

So, for those still here who were offended: wrong song, and we certainly meant no offense. We love Canada. We love Canadians. Your bacon is awesome, William Shatner is da man, and we like that Celine Dion, her music is Ok. So, yeah. Hope the beaver cake makes up for everything. Wreck on, eh?

« What's Our Name? And What Are We Celebrating? | Main | May the 4th Be With You... »

Reader Comments (125)

thank you for featuring our own ben and betsy in today's pix. ralph and linda archbold are wonderful city representatives and together they bring old city philadelphia history alive for our visitors.

now go shoot off some fireworks!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered Commenteranne marie in philly

Amazing cakes! I love the national anthem-themes one!

Now...not to be nit-picky, but how is it that so many of the flags on the cakes have the wrong amount of stripes?

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKristin Kvam


July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTawn

I had never heard of that Epcot song before. Hmm. Live and learn.

This isn't our national anthem either, but is excellent.

Apologies for my fellow countrymen (country people?) with no sense of humour. They must be from Ontario.


July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWrathofDawn

I've been following this blog forever, but this is the first time I've felt compelled to comment (I'm usually laughing too hard to type!)

First off, let me just say that today's Sweets are gorgeous!

Now, as for my fellow Canadians, please don't let the anal-retentiveness of a few discolour your opinions of us ALL. We are a fun country, really!

I agree with Cdn, y'all can keep Celine, and Pamela Anderson and Shania Twain right along with her, but James Gosling, Russell Peters, Wilfred Bigelow, Todd McFarlane, John Callaghan, Jim Carrey, Robert Naismith, Keanu Reeves and Shannon Tweed are OURS! :)

Happy Independence Day, USA!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGoddessKali

I'm sorry about the angry emails, but I did giggle a bit. You stated it was an Epcot song - does anyone else see the delicious irony of people misunderstanding the reference? Is that Epcot squared or something?

I love Canada too - one of my bestest friends is Canadian and he's got a brilliant sense of humour. Plus Wolverine comes from Canada :D

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWolvie Girl

my comment to myself upon seeing the first cake was "i LOVE the bunting!" and then the cakes just got better and better and better! thanks for a fabulous 4th of July post. Happy Independence Day, Jen and John! and Happy Birthday America!

w.v. reken: I reken that there are the coolest patriotic cakes out there!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLaura P.

We love you here in Canada, and please don't mind those who are humourless. If they can't see that it was meant to be sarcastic (duh- a VERY Canadian trait, eh?) then I say 'good riddance and don't let the door hit you on the way out'.
It seemed kind of awesome that one could think the US would have a "let's talk about how awesome Canada is" day. :)
Happy Fourth of July!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMOSID #1, Navy Wife

I am in absolute awe of those layer cakes... I was just reading an article advocating the banning of food dyes, but I will happily imbibe, despite the threat of hyperactivity.

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLeah the Nosher

It's a well known secret that most Canadians actually despise Celine Dion.

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

:D Awesome cakes! I'm especially impressed with the one that are flags on the inside.

<3 Happy 4th of July
and <3 Happy Canada day!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGoof

These cakes are so gorgeous (not to mention labor intensive)! Also, I'm from Baltimore (home of Ft. McHenry, Francis Scott Key, etc., etc.) and I have to say, I love "O Canada." It's a way better anthem than "The Star-Spangled Banner"; easier to sing and more melodic. When the O's play Toronto, I like to sing both of 'em!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJan the Hon

I like the Canada cake best! And my husband, who was raised in Montreal, assures me that most Canadians share our disdain for Celine Dion. :)

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

Today is my birthday and I have been looking forward to Sunday Sweets 4th of July edition for a long time! These are great!


July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Another Canadian who was not offended. Its your sense of humor that makes your blog just the best for me. I wonder what those people who complained thought of South Park's Blame Canada song. Happy 4th.

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPamela

Ok, so I missed Thursdays post (Damn life!!), so when I heard you say so many people were offended, I had to look! Really? I thought you were (as usual) hilarious and spot on. As a proud Canuck, I say keep 'em coming! Wreckerators know no boundries!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSue

Loved all the cakes - and I'm Canadian and not the least bit offended by anything you post.

I'm glad you love Canadians. We love you... and we cringe when we go to Epcot and see the representation of Canada... log house, mine and lumberjacks (and Chateau Frontenac)? Really? How can we blame the rest of the world for thinking that's all we are when that's all we show them? The EPCOT song is corny, but hey, the movie is great. Who doesn't love Martin Short?

All I want to know is: when are you coming to Toronto on a Cake Wrecks tour? Huh? HUH?

PS Most Canadians are awfully glad that Celine Dion has left the country. You can keep her... we'll pay you..please?

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPatti

Thanks for the Beaver and Happy 4th of July to you guys, eh!!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHappy Moose

WOW!!! Those cakes are amazing. I'm insired to try the hidden flag style. I feel all patriotic inside! Great pics!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Ok, nitpickers who are upset about the number of stripes on the cake with the words of the national anthem, YOU write it out and fit it perfectly on only 7 lines (since there are 7 red stripes and 6 white stripes). I'm completely impressed at the skill of the decorator to write it so beautifully.

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I'm another Canadian who wasn't offended and who thinks it's lame in the extreme that anyone was. We're not all like that. Really, we're not!

I get a kick out of Americans making fun of Canada because they generally use the most obvious stereotypes from which to draw humour... beavers, moose, our politeness, the cleanliness of our cities, "Eh?," hockey, curling, etc. Even the Simpsons fell back onto the stereotypes when they did that episode where they went to Toronto. It amuses me. Canadians know that we offer a lot more than that and we shouldn't feel threatened by playful jabs no matter where they come from. People need to lighten up.

These cakes are pretty awesome. Especially the one with the Star Spangled Banner written out. What a creative idea!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKate

too bad there weren't more canada day cake wrecks for you to put up. as a canadian i feel profoundly ashamed that i let my country down in such a way. from now on i shall visit grocery store bakeries before canada day to be sure to get a few wreck pics (or sweet hits) if i can.

as to the song from epcot, did you know that since the lyrics changed some years ago, most canadians *don't* know the words to the national anthem? it's true. a lot of them pretend and lip sync at events where they are supposed to sing it. so don't let the nay sayers and grumps get to you.

happy 4th.

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterdykewife

Long time lurker, but I just had to comment on my love for the Fort McHenry cake! My father was the chief ranger there in the late 80's, and I remember playing in the "dungeons" as a kid. The cake version is
SO COOL! Thanks for posting!

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterapplescruff

Happy b-day to our southern neighbors....

Thanks to all the Canadians for reassuring you that we found it funny... and thanks for keeping Celine and Shania (or whoever has her right now) ... We like knowing that people know us well enough to poke fun at us... we sure enjoy laughing at ourselves :-)

July 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKnittinchick

Wow some of these were really innovative and amazing... Happy 4th everyone!

check out my blog:

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered Commenter~Nikki~

Aw, cute little beaver cake!

As a canadian, I wasn't the least bit offended by the canada cake wrecks, and I am rather embarrassed by the wet socks who are so devoid of their sense of haha, well, they shall not have ANY cake.

I have lots of US friends who didn't know what canada day was, and were delighted to learn.

So it's all good, and it's all cake and happy respective national days, US and Canada.

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNico

Happy 4th!!
I have family on both sides of the border (though I am a Canuck by birth). I can't believe some were offended by your fantastic July 1st blog!
I'll take the adorable beaver cake (& the Shat), but you all have to keep Dion. ;P

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNicolette the Canuck

Oh wow these are stunning cakes! I love the flag with the words to the Star Spangled Banner on it.. all of these cakes are just gorgeous and a wonderful way to celebrate the 4th!

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterArlene

It's the 5th now, so...

Happy Easily Offended People Day!! Clearly the celebrations have been building over the past few days, and those thin-skinned folk that have the most trouble with reading comprehension and controlling impulse blasting have really gotten into fine form to kick off the festivities! I'd like to see some Easily Offended People Day cake wrecks now, please.

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGetATherapist

I apologize for the Canadians without a sense of humour. What they were doing reading your blog, I have no idea, but hopefully they are gone now. Out of 34 million people, there's got to be a few twits. Unfortunately.

And the beaver was cute :) I don't think I've ever actually seen a real one, but... I've seen bald eagles!

On to more important things: STUNNING cakes! Kyle's firecrackers, the flags inside the cakes, the stars-and-stripes-forever cake, the gazebo, the anthem flag... There's hope yet for designers with imagination, style, creativity, sense of fun, and well-placed patriotism! Hope everyone had a fun and meaningful 4th!

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAliza

Anonymous, I have read all the comments and not one single person complained about the number of lines on the hand-written cake. The 15 stripes complaints were for the 5th cake which had one extra red and one extra white and could easily have been made with the correct number without compromising the cake. The other 15 striper was the one with the flowers & the flag draped down the front. That flag, although done beautifully, had an extra white stripe at the top and bottom. Nobody left any negative comments about the expertly piped anthem cake.

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJenny

They are all nice, but it seems that noone knows how many stripes are actually on the American flag. There are 13, so while these are pretty, some of them are also wrecks.

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKeith & Jodi

I really like the cake with the writting but,I didn't know the Star Spangled Banner was a question....

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRenee

Fellow Canadians, you're adorable for buying into one of our most-loved stereotypes by apologizing for everyone who got offended.

People will whine about anything (number of stripes on the flags?! SERIOUSLY guys!) so just a little note- Canadians CAN take a joke (mostly) but maybe not about our country on the day we celebrate it.

WrathOfDawn- yeah, you better duck.

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLola

I think maybe the problem is that a lot of Canadians had no idea what this "Epcot song" is.

I'm Canadian and although I wasn't offended by that other post, I had no clue what you were talking about. Isn't Epcot some kind of Disneyland thing? That's not exactly in our backyards, so a lot of us have never seen it/heard the song/have any inkling what it actually is.

It's either that, or maybe some people thought it was just another example of (many) Americans' complete and utter ignorance about anything Canadian (other than hockey and beer.)

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSpace astronomy

I am glad to see that the beaver is less pooey than it could well have been.

Still, I think Canadians have let the side down by not providing more Canada Day wrecks (and more Sweets!).

And to all those idiots who sent irate emails.... As a Canadian, I can state hat they don't represent all Canadians.

Here is a traditional welcome to Canada

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnneke (Mudhooks)

Okay, so I'm OCD about the lyrics to the anthem and I really feel bad about pointing this out, but there is one textual problem with the anthem cake: it's "through the perilous fight" not "through the perilous flight".

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCatherine


You didn't know the Star Spangled Banner was a question? Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but it starts out "Oh say can you see" and the last line of the first verse starts "Oh say does that Star Spangled Banner yet wave...." Those are both questions, right? Or are you asking something more profound, and I'm just not getting it?

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCatherine

I believe the striped cake is the first doberge you've shown.

In New Orleans, they're everywhere, but only in New Orleans...

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

@Renee...The star spangled banner cake doesn't have ALL the lyrics on it. And where it does leave off, there is indeed a question mark.

The lyric is a question: "Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?"

In other words, "does it still wave?"

July 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMollyB

Hi Jen and John,

Just another Canadian so NOT offended, but thanks for posting such a cute little RCMP beaver as a gesture of goodwill! Love it, love your blog.

July 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNicki

Nice Beaver...

July 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLeslie Nielsen

If they do start playing Stars and Stripes forever, just make sure you aren't standing in a circus tent at the time. If you are, please leave in an orderly fashion. Stampeding just makes the impending doom worse.

July 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSharon

CC member mimiguk wrote the words to the national anthem as the stripes in the flag. Painstaking, I'm sure, but oh-so-perfect! (Just looking at all that script makes my hand cramp. Yow.)

What blows me away is the fact that she justified all the text! O_O Wow.


July 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAngie

Wait a second. I'm looking at the cake for "Betsy Ross" and "Benjamin Franklin." Is it just me, or did htey stick PINS in the cake? OMG, that a wreck of a different kind waiting to happen!

July 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTrevor

I'm trying to decide if the 39 five-pointed stars on the script cake are sprinkles or hand-piped. Either way, that's another reason to have a hand cramp.

July 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTJ

Ok I love these pics, but I don't really like the first one. I often hear, Happy Birthday America!, but technically it's not America's birthday. Just had to throw my two cents in. Should this be a wreck or a sweet?


July 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Wow, the written-out SSB cake is AWESOME. The rest are gorgeous (the first one looks like something out of a Wilton yearbook, and the flag-within-a-cake entries just boggle the mind) but that one wins for sheer technical merit and decorating chutzpah.

And yes, rock on Canada, home of "You Can't Do That On Television" and "Kids in the Hall." =D

July 6, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterladyrazorsharp

Anyone who thinks Canada is a land of ice and snow should come visit Montreal in the summer!

Please keep Celine Dion in America, Europe doesn't want her either.

July 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I love these cakes! I must say though that I was surprised that no one said anything about the fact that the national anthem cake not only had 19 stripes, which I understand when you have to write out the words in script, but why did it have 39 stars? Did I miss something? 3 rows of 7 plus 3 rows of 6...And I don't think I've ever seen a question mark except at the end. Otherwise, beautiful cake!

July 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLaura E.

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