Ugh, I am my own worst enemy. Three cakes for people this weekend, and I was excited that I finished one early enough to start the second tonight, as opposed to getting up at 5 am and working on it before work. HA!
The cake I just finished is the wine-bottle-in-a-basket cake. Baked two 1/4 sheet cakes, cut them in half and stacked three of the pieces. I used the Hershey's recipe, which as everyone knows is pretty moist. I put two dowels in to keep the three layers in place. Did a basket weave over the whole thing with chocolate buttercream (also incredibly soft). I made grapes for this cake out of a 50/50 mix of fondant & gumpaste. Each individual grape was skewered onto a toothpick, and I just put the grapes into the cake one at a time gradually forming a bunch. One bunch hanging off the front left, one batch hanging off the front right. Chocolate wine bottle was in place, it looked adorable and I was thrilled. Emailed my friend that the cake was finished. Washed my mixer bowl to start some buttercream to crumb coat and fill the layers of my next cake.
Then things went wrong. Stupidly, I set up a backdrop and decided to take some pictures because it was such a cute cake. Then tragedy struck. I decided to elevate the back of the cake to get a good view of the wine bottle. That's when it happened. Gravity pulled the entire group of cakes off the front of the cake and now I have a big chunk missing off the front left side of my cake.
So I have two problems. One, I've got to fix my basketweave and keep the whole thing looking seamless. Second (and this is probably the bigger issue), there is a chunk of cake missing from the front of my cake. The pieces that came off are good for nothing but very moist cake balls. I hate to add a huge chunk of frosting under the basketweave, but I'm not sure how else to fix this.
Vanity! The whole thing wouldn't have happened if I didn't HAVE to have a picture of it. Grrr!
Moral of the story: when you have a bunch of fondant grapes toothpicked into the front corner of your cake, do NOT elevate the back of it!
It may have happened eventually even without elevating one end of the cake because of the toothpicks. I don't know how many were used, but piercing a cake with too many holes can cause it to break away right along the perforated holes.
Better it happened to you (so you can fix it) rather than the customer (who wouldn't know what to do).