Ipso Fatto Instant Photo: Stella Turns Six

Our friends Jim and Colleen have four daughters and Jim has turned the three oldest ones into die-hard Star Wars fans (undoubtedly the youngest girl will be one as well, but she's only a few weeks old and not yet able to declare her fandom). Their daughter Stella happens to be crazy about Chewbacca in particular and she had a Chewbacca-themed birthday party this year.

I Googled "Chewbacca cakes" to get some ideas and decided that a single layer cake covered in fondant Chewbacca fur, with a bandolier, would be a doable design in light of my limited artistic abilities. But when my brother Kevin happened to in town the week before the party and demonstrated his talent in sculpting fondant, I asked him to make a Chewbacca figurine. He deliberately made it chibi style -- or, as I would later explain to Stella, more like a baby wookiee.
To make the cake itself consistent with the Chewbacca color story, I baked a two-layer, 10-inch diameter chocolate butter cake that I filled and frosted with chocolate mousseline. Decorating the cake was actually pretty easy. For the fur effect I just cut long swaths of fondant that I had dyed brown and rolled out. I covered the sides of the cake in a thin base layer of brown fondant so that I would have something to glue the fur pieces onto (using edible glue, of course!); for the fur on top of the cake I just attached the pieces to the buttercream. I had some leftover blue marbled fondant from the cake I made for my cousin's son Josh that I used for the lettering.

Stella loved the cake. She was wearing a Chewbacca costume -- including full face mask with sound effects -- as we sang happy birthday and cut the cake. The recursive effect of Stella dressed as an adorable kid-sized Chewbacca in front of the Chewbacca cake with a baby Chewbacca figurine was both striking and hilarious. And Stella even ate chibi Chewbacca's arms off. As with the Yoda cake I made shortly before this one, much of the credit for this cake goes to my brother -- but I couldn't have been more pleased with the way it came out.

Recipes: "Base Formula for Chocolate Butter Cake," "Mousseline Buttercream (Chocolate Variation)," and "Classic Rolled Fondant" from The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum.

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Sally said…
you are such an artist! LOVE it!
Louise said…
The figurine definitely completed the look, but it would have been great even without it.