Eighteen is a special birthday for you and your son. It is the year he leaps to independence in so many ways. It is his graduation year from high school. And in September, he will be off to college. In some jurisdictions, he will be able to legally drink alcohol and drive a car. He will be a free man, but you still have full control over what flavor of birthday cake he will bite into on his 18th birthday.
Naturally, you want to mark this passage from teenage hood to adulthood with a special cake. The Oreo double chocolate cake now seems too childish. You even consider enrolling in Cake Decorating for Fun and Profit and making a super special cake yourself. You ask your son what he thinks of white chocolate mocha. It sounds like a Starbucks drink he quips. Lemon chiffon? Too girly. What cake can you bake for this independent-minded young man?
Cupcakes Are In
Your son plans to grab a cupcake with friends on his birthday. He loves the red velvet cupcakes with vanilla icing. Your daughter plans to eat her favorite veggie orange or gluten-free strawberry cupcake. You are considering a cupcake party. Everyone can have his or her favorite flavor. Wistfully, you reflect on how his 18th birthday only happens once, and you opt for the traditional cake with 18 candles. Blowing out those 18 candles is a right of passage.
Your husband suggests an alcohol theme. When he suggests a six pack of beer with candles, you decide you better come up with some better ideas for 18th birthday cakes. A tiramisu cake with amaretto sounds tasty. The thought of a dark rum espresso chiffon cake makes the mouth water. These yummy cakes at yummly.comare too serious for an 18-year-old, but you will definitely serve them up to friends in the future. The marmalade cake with Cointreau will be a delightful change for your daughter’s 18th birthday next year.
Dark chocolate cake with Guinness has his favorite beer and adds a party touch. But wait, how does your underage son have a favorite beer? you ask your husband. A splash of Jack Daniels in a double chocolate cake is another intoxicating idea.
The greatest challenge of a cake with alcohol is deciding what to serve to drink with it. A Guinness beer alongside a cake with a splash of Guinness is a fun, whimsical birthday theme that will be sure to get a smile, if not a few laughs, from the birthday boy. Just make sure he is not driving anywhere after the party.
Going off to college is a landmark event in a person’s life. A college-theme cake is a symbol of your child’s transition to adulthood. A birthday gift related to college will give him a great send off. Consider making a cake with his new school and team colors. If he is a sportsman, he will enjoy thinking ahead to his football tryouts. He may even be motivated to get in tip-top shape early. Other college sports themes are a football helmet, basketball, soccer field, or his favorite team number. The mascot of his new school is another quirky and fun idea. Ideas for matching gifts could be clothes with the team colors, or new soccer cleats or other sports gear. If you have a child going off to college who plans to join a sorority or fraternity, use the club as the theme of the cake. If this is mom or dad’s alma mater, it will be all the more special. The cheerleader in the family will get in the team spirit with two pom-poms. If you are making the cakes yourself, keep the drawings simple. A course in creating art basics is a good complement to a cake decorating hobby.
The summer after high school graduation is travel time for many graduates. Some travel for a month while others take a year off before they start college or a new career. A jet plane, train or backpack are fun themes. If you know one or two of the destinations, the voyager will be sure to get the travel bug with a theme with the paradise island of Bali or the Eiffel tower and birthday wishes in French. Consider a globe cake with a travel voucher and let her choose her own destination. Travel-related presents will complete this birthday party.
Today, many young people at 18 already know what they want to do as a career. Freshly graduated from high school, you child may be planning to intern and gain work experience over the summer. A computer programmer may enjoy an Apple Mac Book cake. A game programmer will be amused by an Angry Birds theme. An iPad cake will tickle the fancy of an app developer. Career themes are only limited by your imagination – doctor, police officer, chef, spy – and technical ability. If you are not an artist – and even if your icing poses its own challenges – you have lots of cake kit options.
Cake decorators develop basic artistic skills. Drawing portraits is way beyond the call of pastry duty but if you have the talent, it is one way you can differentiate yourself. Applying your creative talents, you can add special touches such as drawing portraits of people on their cakes. Consider taking a basic course in painted faces to learn basic face painting techniques, and keep it simple.
Coming of Age Themes
Coming of age themes are very personal. Suggested themes may include a golf bag or sailboat to signify that he is now welcome to join dad’s golf club, or join the adult events with the family sailing club membership. If your young adult plans to do a lot of dating now that high school is finished, have fun with a dating theme and a dating advice book. Eighteen is also a time when many young adults are confused about their life path. Cakes and presents with meditation, yoga, travel and self-improvement themes may start her on a personal development journey before college.
If you still do not have an idea for 18th birthday cakes, there is always cake kits. James Middleton of The Cake Kits, brother of Kate Middleton, has whipped up a few inspirational ideas. A photo cake is a special touch on an 18th birthday, a time of passing into adulthood. Interesting photo ideas are your child’s baby picture, first day of school, first goal, first ballet recital, and so on. A musical cake is a bitter sweet idea. Imagine his face when he hears himself singing as a child, or at her first singing or concert recital. The 18th year is a good time for a reminder of the passing of landmark events in his or her life. If you do decide on a football cake or car cake, you can buy a cake kit from the brother of the Princess of Wales.
If you have the time, learning to cake decorate will reward you with a creative outlet with opportunities to use your new skill many times over. Once you assemble the special decorating tools and supplies, you can re-use them for special occasions throughout the year. You may even decide to make cakes for others for profit. To learn how to make basic decorations such as appliques and flowers, enroll in Cake Decorating: Winter Anemone Wedding Cake. As a cake decorator, you can choose any 18th birthday theme you have the desire to create.