Air Jordan Shoe & Basketball

Jenae wanted a really unique for her girlfriend's birthday. When we first talked and she said that she wanted Kristina's favorite shoe in cake form, I remember thinking "wow, how am I going to do this!" There is a specific pair of Jordans that Kristina really loves and so we decided to make that cake along with a Chicago-Bulls-esque jersey and a half basketball. The shoe was a strawberry cake layered with buttercream and the basketball was hand-shaped from vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream. The shoe and basketball were covered in homemade marshmallow fondant while the jersey itself was marshmallow fondant.

The real shoe has a lot of stitching, grooves, and tiny details and I wanted to make sure that I got all of those elements onto this cake. I spent a few hours shaping, cutting, and sculpting the cake until it fit the right shape (I have to thank Paul for this because he's also a huge Jordan fan and made sure that the shoe looked perfect). Then, I covered it in a nice layer of buttercream. Once the buttercream set up in the fridge, I covered it in homemade marshmallow fondant (it's quite a challenge to cover this shape in one piece of fondant and takes a lot of patience).

Now that it was covered, I had to work fast to get the right grooves and stitches into the cake. I used a pattern tracing wheel found in the fabric department of any store to make the "stitched" look. I set a large groove down the shoe to make the lip and then used more marshmallow fondant to mimic shoe laces. After I was happy with the grooves, I painted the red and black coloring on with food coloring. Although you can't see all of the details here, I was so proud with the finished product of the shoe. It really looked identical to the real shoe :)

The basketball was much easier to execute but not as easy as it looks! In order to make it look real, I imprinted a texture into the fondant so that it looked and felt like a real basketball. The biggest challenge with the ball was to get it to look perfectly round. There are pans that make balls easily but I wanted this cake to be larger than those pans so hand sculpting was the only way to go.

Lastly, the jersey was made of marshmallow fondant. I rolled it out, cut it into the right shape, added the name, number, and borders around the side. SO much fun! I have to say that I wish I kept this cake for myself because in the end, it was such a labor of love! Happy Birthday, Kristina!


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