Last Spring, my girlfriend began planning her daughter’s 4th birthday.  When asked what she wanted for her cake, she replied “a Princess Cake!” My girlfriend then called me up asking if I would be willing to create a cake for the birthday party.  Of course I replied yes, and immediately got online and typed “princess party cake” into my Google search. I was surprised to find so many cakes other people had made in the theme of princess and prince, and primarily in the shape of a castle.  I found so many pictures of castle cakes online that I felt confident I could create something of my own. 
I printed out the pictures of the cakes I liked the most and made notes on what tips the bakers mentioned on their sites that helped to make their cake successful.  What better way to tackle something new than to learn from other people’s mistakes (thank you internet!).  Then I went over to my friend’s house to start looking through her edible decorating stash.  She had these wonderful gems from 

After many trips to local gourmet candy stores for inspiration, I got started on getting all my supplies together….
I had all kinds of plans for this cake like a draw bridge made with cookies and licorice rope, flowers and vines and painted windows. Some of those ideas were abandoned because they were too complicated, or I found something better as I went through the creation process.
First, I began by creating the cake which made up the main castle building.  (I have to admit using boxed cake mix as I just didn’t have time to also get all the ingredients together. Plus it was a really good, organic cake mix with sprinkles inside!)  I made 4 layers of cake and then cut them down to the size I wanted, frosted and stacked them all together.
Then I created the castle towers or turrets from ice cream cones.  Those were also covered in frosting to help them stick together.
I used regular cake cones for the base and then sugar cones on top.  The sugar cones were covered in icing and rolled in pink sugar.  When turned upside down they fit perfectly into the opening of the cake cones.

Once I had the base of the cake done I started on the embellishments.  I put the cake on a large piece of cardboard so I could make a moat around the base. 
The moat was made with blue gel icing. It has a few gummy sharks to guard the castle from invasion.  The edge of the moat was made with chocolate covered raisins. And see those blue and green jewels in the side of the cake?  I loved those so much that they took the place of drawing on windows.
And here is the completed cake at the party, with two Royal Knights standing guard.
I have already heard that the birthday girl who will be turning 5 this year wants something Ariel themed (The Little Mermaid).  I started coming up with ideas of an underwater theme with mermaids and fish. Then I heard she wants another castle, Ariel’s castle. I may have set the bar too high for myself on this one. Not sure how I can outdo this castle, especially having to recreate Ariel’s underwater castle.  We will see…..
Oh, and here is the cake after we completely devoured it.