Choosing a theme for Dina's second birthday was exciting to me, because for the first time she could tell me what she wanted. Unfortunately, she didn't have much to say about it. "Chocolate!" was about all I could get out of her with respect to a theme. Since her favorite toy at the time was her Fisher Price farm we got at Queen's Day (giant garage sale) the previous year, I decided to go with a Barn-Yard bash.
Inge saved the day in that regard. The white platter I used is HUGE- 20 inches across (51cm). My sweet husband used sketch-up to create a barn coming out of a 9" round cake, complete with silo, so I'd have measurements. My biggest concern was getting the proportions correct, so I modeled the animals to be similarly sized to the little plastic ones Dina loved. I only had the horse and chicken to work from, so for the rest of the animals I had to wing it.
About two months before hand I made a test cake to check my estimates of the sizing with respect to her plastic horse:
Wilton gel-coloring directly to the finished animal. Made for a bit of a mess, and tough to handle without getting the color everywhere, but it looked bright.
The stone path was also made using gum-paste, and I didn't blend the gray/black colors completely, so I could get a mottled texture for some of the stones. Using a piece of plastic wrap inside a small bowl, I made a blue jello pond (only half the recommended water in the recipe) which I let set for a day in the fridge and placed it at the last minute on the platter for the duck to swim in. Interestingly, within a few hours the gum-paste duck began to literally melt into the jello-pond.
The silo was made with a cupcake placed on top of the cake, and graham cracker pieces to form the edges. I coated it with royal icing (the barn too), and got the bright color by using Wilton's no-taste red gel coloring.
What was most important was my Dina's reaction. And it was priceless: