My Cake Decorating Gallery

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Anime Birthday Cake

One of my fellow Michigan Marching Band horn section members asked me if I could make a surprise birthday cake for her sister's 13th birthday. Her sister loves Japanese culture and especially the anime (japanese animation) show called Death Note, and a character called Lawliet or "L" from that show. She sent me a link to a picture of an L key chain which I printed out and used for modeling the character on the cake from. I don't watch anime but a quick google search showed me that there was also a book with "Death Note" written on it which was also common in the show (if you write some one's name in the book, they apparently die).

With that, I thought I had enough information for my cake design. Chocolate cake was the favorite of her sister, so I went with that and put in my typical raspberry buttercream filling and covered it in white buttercream to set the stage for my decorations.

I wasn't sure how I was going to do the L character, and I first tried "painting with buttercream" - this sounded better in my head than it turned out. As you can see from the picture, it would have been the most frumpy character of all time, and I would've been embarassed giving that to some one! Thankfully I had some fondant that I decided to layer to make each piece of Lawliet, painted each piece separately, and then layered them on top of the cake. This went much better and I was able to cut clean edges with a sharp knife after rolling out the fondant. Any portion that was a different color was cut separately to be layered later. For the black, I used store-bought black frosting - there was no way I was going to get that jet black myself starting with white frosting. The rest of the colors were from gel colors and I used a paintbrush for all of it.
I also made a Death Note book out of fondant and painted it with black frosting, and then piped on (very carefully) "Death Note" in the same font from the actual book. I used gold luster dust to paint the edges of the book to simulate pages.

Lastly, I needed to incorporate my friend's sister's name, Rachel, onto the cake and show that this was a birthday cake somehow. Since she loved Japanese culture, I googled how to write Happy Birthday in Japanese. I was surprised it was 9 characters but after a quick trial run on a paper plate, I thought it looked pretty good and decided to write it on the front of the cake in black icing, and then put Rachel underneath. I also used black frosting as a pearl border on the bottom of the cake to finish it.

I was really pleased with how this turned out, it was much better than I expected and I was really excited about the Japanese lettering as well. It was all a very fun project, thanks Mary for thinking of me for the job!


  1. I Love your cake!!!

    I'm doing the same theme for a party!

    Where did you find the Happy Birthday in Japanese I Google it but couldn't it!

  2. Hi there! Try this link -

    I used the one that was listed on there twice, it had 9 characters. It is also listed here, but there are additional characters, which I think makes it more formal (so you can just use the first 9 if you want) -

    Hope this helps! Thanks for stopping in and good luck with the theme!

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