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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Diaper Cake

This idea is for something a little more fun then just a box of diapers and a few baby odds and ins. I still remember from our diaper cake. Our baby shower was awesome and we got so many things, completely blessed. Though I appreciated every single item we got, our diaper cake was a stand out an we appreciated the extra time that was put into it. Other guests even commented on "how cute an creative" their gift to us was, so it was not just us admiring. So if you have some time to get this done I recommend it for those close friends and family members that you want to put a extra touch into the gift. 

First before we dive into this, though it isn't hard to make a diaper cake, it does require a good amount of time, so if you are short on that or can't clear some up some, you may want to skip. I had plenty of warning the shower was coming and made sure that I could use every bit of non-kid time to get it done. 

Now, What You Need:

Diapers! I used 100, but that is up to you. Base for cake, I used Styrofoam round and tissue paper (Glue & sponge paint brush help with that). You can buy a cake plate or do my same idea with a fowm board,it's just your call. In addition you'll need, regular white glue and Fabri-tac, cake dowels, and rubber bands, A LOT of rubber bands! Don't try to go cheap and use what you have, it won't work. Buy a big bag of random sizes because you will need a variety. Also you'll need, scissors, and minimum 3 things of ribbon. For the ribbon you want 1 thick to cover the rubber bands and be like your main them item and then I got 2 colors of curling ribbon, feel free to buy as many as you want of that. Only item I recommend that is not in above's image is a lighter or matches, I'll explain the need for that later.

Get the "needs to dry" part out of the way. with my plain foam base, a little white glue and some red tissue paper I made the cake's base/platter. Go light on the glue an use the sponge to spread it around. Then GENTLY pull the tissue paper over wrapping to the not so pretty underside. Go slow and rub down very gentle so not to tear your tissue paper. I personally didn't feel like 1 tissue paper gave the proper color, so I repeated, added a tiny more glue and pulled flat again. Let dry as you began the next step.

Ok, time for the most time consuming part. Get comfy and set up in a nice clean spot free of pet hair and what not because it's time to bust out the diapers! Seriously, remember this is for a baby, so keep as clean as possible and be careful not to rip diapers, don't want parents not so happy when baby is leaking. Normally I would recommend you buy a size like 3 because it lasts the longest and it gives parents-to-be time before they have to completely disassemble the cake, but in my case the shower was ahead of baby's arrival by a few months to avoid holiday madness and I had found the best deal on my favorite little disposable diapers (Pampers Swaddlers). 

Besides diapers, you will need your bag of rubber bands handy. Start by looking at your diaper, it should have a natural curl to it, go with that. Top (belly part) of diaper to bottom (leg part). Do it as tightly as possible and rubber band around it.

Those that know me already know this, but I'm crazy anal about things, so of course my projects are no different. So, what I did to hide the yellow bit on the diapers (yes, it did not fit my Mickey theme, an I want all white darn it!) was divide my rolls as I went. If I felt yellow was showing it went in one bag, if it passed my all white standard it went into another.

Now the fun part! Assembly!

Basically the point of dividing up the 2 bags was so my yellow ones could work for the hidden center part of each cake layer, while the white was the outer edges. The photo above is the process for 1 cake layer. Essentially, you want to keep making round bundles an after each time, before you add a outer circle you want to add a rubber band around. This allows you to mess with your cake, adding all the fun extras without ruining the whole layer, and if a rubber band snaps it's less of an issue. 

For a 100 diaper, 3 layer cake, my math worked out like this: Top - 15, Middle - 32, & Bottom - 53.

*Extra Tip* For the bottom layer I had a lot of breaking, so I ended up linking bands together and that worked.

Stack 'em. Now, skewer (cake dowel) them. *Word of Caution* Go slow & careful, use your fingers to feel around to. You don't want to accidentally rip any of your diapers.

First I got out my smaller items, an attempted to work them in. My little set of spoons became like cake candles to me. I also had a special topper for the top layer so I avoid using any of my stick out items.If you added as many rubber bands as I did, it really becomes no big to slip layers on and off. I tucked in a few little extras of items, like the spoons, diaper coupons, and more washcloths into the center of the cake, everything doesn't have to be seen and surprises are fun.

When working my baby beanies and onesies in I had to slide layers on and off, pop out a few diapers here and there, a little re-shifting till I felt everything was perfect. In the case of the beanies I even removed a few diapers from outer edge an stuffed the cap. Then returned diapers from the spot I popped them out of. Click on the pic, make it bigger if you need a little more thought on how to smooth or fit in items.

Once you get it pretty much how you like it time to add your thick ribbon around the rubber band mid-section. Remember measure twice, cut once.

To make it look seamless and to avoid fraying fabric edges take the end to a flame (lighter or match, both work). It melts the end and makes a nice brand new looking end. Fabri-tac one end of your ribbon to the other. I prefer Fabri-Tac because it really holds fabric together, no heat, and no spiderweb glue strings everywhere that would damage anything.

The finishing touches. With the curling ribbon add any extra tiny little items you may have picked up. I went with bath stuff, but you may add like baby rattle, teethers, and other little odds and ends. I slide one end of curling ribbon behind the thick fabric ribbon and out tying in front then curling. Then lots of curls and tucking anywhere I felt to empty.

Very last, I added that special topper I was talking about. This maybe answering your question if you noticed item pilled on top but not in a cute way. I save a extra beanie and onesie to fill it up. I can't tell you how to make that because I didn't, but I bought it from my other half of AlittlePaint&Yarn if you need it. Other ideas are stuffed animals, big bows, oh and the one we got had a rubber duck that said if baby's water temp was to hot. Our daughter still plays with that rubber duck. really it's up to you and you really can't go wrong.

Here's the Mickey Mouse Diaper Cake, final version. I prefer my cakes to be view-able from all angles, if you were wondering. 

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