I've had this post sitting in my drafts file for a week and I'm finally getting it together to post. Gabe turned 5 at the end of June and requested a snake cake -- specifically, one that "looked like a giraffe." I had no idea how I was going to make a cake big enough to feed the hoards of kids at his party (40+) with just one snake (and a 13" x 17" board), so decided late the night before to add a bottom layer made out of two 9x9 cakes. Cake was chocolate with vanilla bean buttercream (pretty much the only buttercream I'm making these days - it's that good!). To make the snake I made 4 6" layers and split each one. Then assembeled three cakes with three layers each, all spackled together with buttercream. Cut a hole in the middle of them and then sliced in half sideways and pieced it together. I used the remaining 2 layers to cut out the head and the tail (the remainder of the cake is still in my freezer, where it's slowly being chipped away by Doug and I).
The scales are made out of gumpaste which I cut into diamond shapes a couple of days before. Bad move - they were way too hard to bend on the cake, so I placed them on the night before and by morning had melted enough to smoosh them on. Finally, my overly warm kitchen is good for something! Last thing - see the nose? I didn't even think about snake's having noses until my 5yr old told me. Learning new things every day!
One of three three-layered 6" cakes
Piecing the snake together
Snake on a cake (this one is really blurry for some reason, not sure why)
Adding the head and the tail
The finished cake, taken by Doug, in our attic studio