Our entire family was gathered at our parents' home and when my sister asked if I would make Lulu's birthday cake, of course I could not refuse. She had a couple of requests: buttercream. And Totoro.
Buttercream I could do. But...
"What," I asked, "is Totoro?"
She looked at me, stricken. "WHAT'S TOTORO?!"
Okay, so there's an entire back story to my failure with Miyazaki movies. It's too long to go into now, but suffice it to say, it's an inexcusable reason for not having watched any of Miyazaki's movies. Totoro is the main character in My Neighbor Totoro, a seriously cute woodland magic creature.
At first, I had it in mind to make an actual 3-D Totoro. I had some ready-made gumpaste (no time to make my own) and made a little Totoro model. Too bad he looked like a fat, misshapen mouse. That went into the trash. The second 3-D Totoro...not any better. Looked 100 percent like a mouse. Also trash bound.
So...Totoro in 2D -- success! He was actually cute. Lulu's cake was a vanilla cake with French buttercream. The cupcakes were piped inside with buttercream - as I described it to my sister, "A high end Hostess cupcake."
The amazingly gifted Lyndsay at Coco Cupcakes made a brilliant set of cupcakes of the woodland sprites that I had to copy -- they provided a sweet little counterpoint to Totoro lounging amidst the flowered cupcakes.
Happy birthday sweet Lulu!