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

Antique Mystique

John and I spent the weekend traipsing through one of the South's largest annual antique fairs. BECAUSE THE FUN NEVER STOPS HERE. (And also THE WEATHER WAS VERY NICE.)

Of course, the stuff we like is less "antique" and more "cheap junk we can take apart and make into rayguns." So if it's not broken and/or rusty and/or less than $20, don't talk to me.

Anyway, sometime after our third hour of backing slowly away from tables filled with what I can only assume - going by the prices - were Shakespeare's personal knick-knacks, I had an epiphany:

Bakers, don't change out those old window display cakes; call them antiques and sell them!

Here, I'll get you started:

Lovely Art Deco centerpiece. Very Rare. $1,200 FIRM

See? Not so hard! Just leave out any nonessential details that might hurt the sale, like the fact that the stuffed birds are lined with asbestos.


Buyers like antiques with interesting stories, so be sure to include lots of historical anecdotes with your cakes. Even if you have to make them up.

Authentic WWI-era German Weiner Schnitzel, model THX1138. Very rare. Once gnawed on by the Duke of Gloucester. $7,500 or your left kidney. (Left only! Do not ask me to consider the right!!)


Pop culture items are super valuable, which allows you to capitalize on anything that evokes even the slightest hint of childhood nostalgia:

Batman memorabilia! Very rare. Perfect for collectors! $835 or will trade for 1947 Superman Golden Carrot Trophy with original "Bat-a-Veg" chopper/axe.

(And if you can spot the Batman piece in under 30 seconds, you win a gold star.)


Naturally, vintage Disney items are ideal for bilking delighting your customers:

Authentic Vintage Disney Snow White collectible cake - complete set! Comes with original 1927 cat litter garnish! Eyeball not included! $4,000


Still, nothing can compete for your client's money quite like antique dolls. And as every serious doll collector will tell you, the creepier those suckers are, the better. Chipped porcelain faces with vacant soul-sucking eyes? BINGO. Shove that thing on a cake, pronto! Preferably face down.

Original Kewpie doll and accessories. Very rare. Found in the ruins of an abandoned asylum. Possibly haunted. Seller not responsible for any damages or demon possessions. Priced to sell. I'll give you $50 if you take it.

Ok, $75. NO RETURNS.

Creepy Kewpie there still isn't THAT creepy, though, so I did you a favor, bakers. See, this weekend I found you the perfect cake topper. So just put one of these on your old cakes...

...and watch it fly out the door!

Probably under its own power.

Because it's haunted.

And will no doubt try to kill you.


Hey, Rebecca H., Ann P., Clara B., Elvira E., Leah B., DON'T GO TO SLEEP.

And before any of you ask, yes, I *did* send that last picture to Jonathan Coulton. ;)

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Reader Comments (117)

OMG! That doll is the albino from The Princess Bride!!! "Welcome to the Pit of Despair. . . "

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDani @ Sweet Startt's

That was quite the Wham Instant Nightmare Fuel for the last one. *shudders*

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAddy

Claudia is right. That's "Little Miss No Name" (a rather pricey collectible in good condition). "Poor Pitiful Pearl" was actually created by William Steig (of "Shrek" fame) and is marginally cuter and less horrific. I had the Pearl doll, a gift from my Mom at the stage where playing with dolls was tapering off into only collecting them -- I think she's offended to this day that I did not love Pearl!

"Poor Pitiful Pearl"
"Little Miss No Name"

And trust me -- after thirty years of doll shows -- these two are adorable compared to some of the horrors out there! Let's not even get into "art dolls", I just talking about dolls marketed as playthings for little girls!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCapt_Video

Gold star for me! Now I need to conivnce someone I know to shave his moustache into the shape of the batman logo...

right after I stop screaming. Which may not be for a couple of days because that doll is going to haunt my dreams.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmberK

I love that doll. I would take her home, prop her up at my desk, and love her forever.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRubyV

Please reassure us that these cakes are really

And, holy crow, my dad gave me that doll and! I tried to be a good mommy, but there was nothing I could do to make her stop crying. And her poor little patchwork dress...Oh, the scars!

Poor Pitiful Pearl was cute by comparison.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMaryanne

The name of the doll at the end of your pictures is Little Miss No Name.. I know because I had one when I was little.. and yes she came in her own little burlap aack dress..

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSharon

Oh tell me you sent the crying doll pic to The Blogess, too. What a wonderful companion she would make for Copernicus. . .

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterholly

A quote from my unique three year old daughter on the doll. "Aww, she's said. I want to hug her."
She has no clue that that doll will eat her soul when she does. *Shudder*

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJennyPoodles

I want to know why there are two of same dwarfs on the snow white cake? (the guys in the yellow hats to right of snow (looking at them). and that last doll... EYE BLEACH.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermn_me

Wow, talk about some killer deals...

How does anyone feel about making the Epcot bunker available as an insomniac shelter? Not for me, of course -- I'm just asking. If it can withstand Epcots, I'm pretty sure it's zombie-proof. Right? (If anyone falls asleep, keep your screams to yourself.)

LMNN reminds me of the little girl in The Sixth Sense. Only she wasn't... never mind -- there might be one person on the planet who hasn't seen that film, and I don't want to mess it up for them.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCraig

"...And, you know, the thing about a shark... he's got lifeless eyes. Black eyes. Like a doll's eyes."

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStarbuck

That last cake looks absolutly FILTHY! Is it covered in dust?

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCeleste

Wow, the one with the baby on it has an "artful" "decoration" that makes it looks like a stone alter on which the poor baby is being sacrificed. He will certainly haunt someone after this.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSkeptic

We had that Snow White set back in the seventies too - for some bizzarre reason I remember my dad putting them on a Christmas cake - they hung around the house for years, every now and then you would open a drawer and find a dwarf staring back at you...

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHelen

BEST POST IN AGES! Hey, I'm not dissing the previous posts, every one is a gem, but this one made me ROFL, LOL and LMAO. Loved the pear with the Batman mustache, but also loved the fact that Mrs Pear is silently weeping...

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLesley Wright

YE GODS!!! That last pic made me scream at my monitor - something I've never done before. Congrats on being my first on that??? Be back later - I'm going to go hide under my bed now!!! O_O

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNoelle

Thanks for the George Lucas reference! (The only reason I recognized it is because my husband is a huge Star Wars fan, and therefore a huge George Lucas fan. He tried to make me watch THX1138 once. Not George's best movie.)

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterChristine

Aha! A 'THX' reference. I'm so happy I'm a geek. :)

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSenior Geek

Sure it's not the cake (instead of the birds) that's lined with asbestos?

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMT

Mount Dora! Love it!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterblueinredsville

Pare down the pear pair:
left with falsies, coat buttons,
knobkerrie, bro lips . . .

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHaiku Joy

I actually WANTED that doll as a child!!!! I wanted to take care of Little Miss No Name. She didn't seem as scary when I was a child...but now...creepy!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMia

@ Craig: Don't worry. In the Epcot Bunker, no one can hear you scream.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea

The hidden Mickey! The hidden Mickey! Am I the only one who gets a gold star?

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjill

Huh. Last doll reminds of one of those paranomal shows. You wanna catch a ghost? Just sit a bunch of dolls in a cemetary or unmarked mass burial site and SNAP-SNAP-SNAP! We done caught us some ghosts. I think the Ebay market for haunted collectibles is pretty good.

And nope, it ain't a JC song tripping through my tiny, sleep-deprived brain. "What do you see? You people gazing at me? You see a doll on a music box that's wound by a key. Turning. And still yearning ...' To eat out your sugar-frosted soul, toot-sweet!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermsyendor

That's okay, but i'm just wondering, Since when did babies and kittens have eyes that suck your soul out of your body?

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterXion

I found the Batman Logo! I get a Gold Star!!!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPonyo

Aaaaaaaah!!!! the doll is sooo creepy! creepier than a creepy clown doll! Im frightened now....

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLori

Not only did I immediately notice the Batman logo mustache, but I also noticed that particular egg-person's startling resemblance to "The Penguin." I want two gold stars!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSusan

This is my first post though I am a long time reader. I had those very birds on my wedding cake! And that was in 1974.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLuLee

GAAAAHHHHH!!! That last doll!! Purify it with holy fire!!!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMiggs

I just found a web page of Little Miss No Name fans. It's even more horrifying than the pictures. These women actually find her cute and sad. I'll be they're not afraid of clowns, either.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterOldish Lady

You were at Renningers, right? We drove past there on Sunday, and it was super crowded! I went looking for milk glass cake stands there once...but couldn't afford any of them. But I did find some awesome antique keys!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRobin @ Bird On A Cake

The Snow White cake is creepier than expected: two of those dwarves are identical and Dopey is missing. Which means someone is cloning dwarves. And for the love of cake, WHAT HAVE THEY DONE WITH DOPEY???

Also, not to be a book geek, but it's Miss Havisham, not Haversham.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSteph

that last doll is a big thing where i come from. i did see a lady say her name was pearl. we have a local charity in kokomo, in called 'we care'. its a HUGE deal. every year there is an auction before christmas time and people bid on 'the hope doll'. it used to go for thousands of dollars to have this doll for the year and then its auctioned off again. it used to be between chrysler and delco were the two main rivals, but now its not uncommon for regular citzens to have win her. people around her clammer to get those dolls if they see them on ebay or antique stores.

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterkara

My 12 yr old son loves to read cakewreaks with me. As I read it out loud, he let out a blood curling scream at that last picture. Guess we are not sleeping tonight!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJenna

that last doll looks like allison from antm, but with brown eyes.. if anyone here will also shamefully admit they watched that show..... can we have more wrecks with plastic background scenery???? just in case we needed additional context to identifying chick surrounded by the little people. never knew cake backdrops existed... now I crave more!!!!!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjamie

Hey! Now I know how to spell "traipsing"!

January 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBrooke

That is LITTLE MISS NO NAME, I have one... bought her from a dealer as she is very collectible. My best friend used to tell me I just need to put LMNN out of my front step to decorate for Halloween! LOL

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercmom

Just some perspective on how old that Snow White cake is.... I had that cake topper set for my bday aprox 27 years ago....If not longer....

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered Commentershiroaniko

Well that takes care of my doll collection lol. Wow. A new way to freak me out and I already fear clowns thanks to Mr. Stephen King. Arghhh is nothing safe anymore??

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterArlene

Becherovka! The will mess you up. It's like Czech absinthe.

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRachel of Cyberia

This post needs to go into the "Classic" cloud!! Wonderful references THX1138 (*giggle/snort*) ... and you forgot to point out that the last doll is WEARING BURLAP - love it!!! Sackcloth (so the ashes are really the kitty litter from the SW&7D cake?)

And I did find the Batman ref, but only just after reading the caption. Guess that was because it was green, and not black???

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKaren

Gah! Those first two cakes are awful. Seriously bakers, how can you bear to have those moldy, crusty, broken atrocities in your display cases? And do people really go into those bakeries after seeing those horrid examples? *head desk*

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKatiKat

Cake #1: If you've ever read about Noah and the Ark and wondered why the last dove released never returned...mystery solved.

Cake #5: The kewpie lies back, fully sated after a vampirish draining of the cake's sugary essence...for now. (Get a move on, Perfect Pear/Pair...your garlands of plastic provide no sanctuary.)

Last (Haunting) Image: This doll has been identified as 'Little Miss That-Which-Shall-Not-Be-Named'. (Our family plays 'Scary Scavenger Hunt' at the flea markets/antique shows but all our pics seem to be of...(shudder)...CLOWNS.)

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered Commentershan

Great post. But now I'm wondering why Americans seem to insist on writing Wiener as Weiner, no matter how the word is used. You wouldn't write Vienna as Veinna, now would you?

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMoem

Why you call this cake "BATMAN"?…(seconds past)... OK! I finally understand.
... and the last pic is...I couldn'd imagine Little Miss No Name appears here! surely she's an vintage one.

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered Commenternobb

I love that the thing with the Batman symbol kinda looks like the Penguin!

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterM

Wow, my mother had those exact Snow White decorations on a cake in the 80's. We have photos of the cake, complete with my fingerprints in the icing. Blast from the past to see them again!

January 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDayspring

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