Extreme Cakeover : DIY Makeup Bag

Today’s post is a two-parter.  First, we’re celebrating a huge accomplishment by some of our talented cake friends.  And second, we’re sharing a fabulous new tutorial for you to try at home!

Many of you are familiar with Rick and Sasha Reichart, owners of cakelava, in Oahu, Hawaii.  We’ve featured many of Rick’s gorgeous designs in the past, like this one and this one.  Rick has been making incredible cakes for over 20 years and teaches his techniques to eager students around the world.  So it came as no surprise to us when we heard the good news… that Rick and Sasha would soon teach on a much larger stage.  Fast forward through two years of hard work and now we can all learn from the pages of their first book, Extreme Cakeovers!   

Extreme Cakeovers is a how-to book filled with 40 DIY’s appropriate for any and all who want to try their hand at a creative cake.  No special skills necessary.  No special equipment.  Just snag a frozen pound cake at your local grocery store, raid the candy aisle and get creative!  Each project includes detailed instructions for you to follow along and transform your grocery goodies into an incredible cake design.  Genius!


Extreme Cakeover |  Make Fabulous Cakes from Store-Bought Ingredients |  by cakelava  |  TheCakeBlog.com

Talk about fun, right?  These projects are totally achievable and cover every occasion, from birthdays to holidays.  Your store-bought donuts and pack of Twizzlers are headed to new heights!  And to get you started, Rick and Sasha are sharing one of their tutorials with us today.  So grab your Tootsie Rolls because we’re learning how to make this incredible Makeup Bag Cake.  Let’s get started!

Extreme Cakeover |  Make Fabulous Cakes from Store-Bought Ingredients |  by cakelava  |  TheCakeBlog.com

a DIY from Extreme Cakeovers, by Rick and Sasha Reichart
Serves 10 to 12


  • 1 (9 × 13-inch) cake board
  • Small offset spatula
  • ½-inch flat-head paintbrush
  • #4 round artist’s paintbrush
  • 1 (10-inch) wooden skewer
  • Wire cutters
  • 1 round toothpick


  • 3 (10.75-ounce) frozen pound cakes (we use Sara Lee), thawed
  • 3 cups of vanilla frosting (2 16-ounce cans)
  • Paste or gel paste food coloring: black
  • 1 roll Hubba Bubba Bubble Tape, green apple flavor
  • Liquid food coloring: black
  • Pure lemon extract
  • 6 sticks Wrigley’s Doublemint gum
  • 1 (1.4-ounce) York Peppermint Pattie
  • ½ teaspoon chocolate frosting (from 1 16-ounce can)
  • 2 Giant Chewy SweeTarts: 1 green and 1 purple
  • 2 large gumdrops: 1 yellow and 1 orange
  • 1 large (2.25-ounce) Tootsie Roll (6 inches long)
  • 1 black Twizzler
  • 1 chocolate Tootsie Roll Midgee
  • 2 vanilla Tootsie Roll Midgees
  • 2 red Jolly Rancher Fruit Chews
  • 6 pink Starburst candies


Trim the tops off 2 of the pound cakes to make them completely flat.  Stack all 3 cakes horizontally with the untrimmed cake on top, applying a thin layer of vanilla frosting between the layers as “glue.”  Cut the stack into a wedge shape: Using a chef’s knife, score two lines along the length of the top of the stack, 1 inch from the top and bottom edges.  Stand the stack on its short side with the scored lines facing you.  Position the knife on the top surface between the beginning of the right scored line and the top right corner on the same surface, and cut through.  Discard the cut-off piece.  Repeat on the left side.

Lay the stack on your work surface with the tapered side facing you.  On the farthest edge, measure 1 inch in from each side and make a mark.  Line up the knife on the top surface between the bottom right corner and the right scored mark, and cut through; discard the cut-off corner.  Repeat on the left side.  The cake should now resemble the tapered wedge shape of the makeup bag.

In a bowl, tint 1¼ cups vanilla frosting gray with black food coloring, and spoon ½ cup into another bowl for crumb-coating.  Center the cake on the cake board with the bottom of the bag 1 inch from the bottom edge.  Attach it with a small amount of frosting.  Using an offset spatula, crumbcoat the cake.  Clean up the board and refrigerate the cake until the frosting is firm, 15 to 20 minutes.  Then frost the cake with gray frosting.  Dip the spatula in hot water, shake off the excess, and carefully smooth the frosting.


Cut a 20-inch piece of the Hubba Bubba Bubble Tape and put it on a piece of wax paper.  Mix ½ teaspoon each of liquid black food coloring and lemon extract.  Using a ½-inch flat-head paintbrush, stain the top of the Bubble Tape black.  Let dry.

Turn the cake board around so the top opening of the bag is facing you.  Starting ½ inch above the bottom right corner, put 1 stick of the Wrigley’s Doublemint gum on the top at about a 45-degree angle, and cut to fit.  Line up the remaining sticks of gum end-to-end in 2 parallel rows spaced ¾ inch apart; cut to fit.

Starting at the top left corner, run the black strip of Bubble Tape across the white stripes, ending ½ inch left of the bottom right corner; cut to fit.  Put the next 2 rows of parallel black strips ¾ inch apart below the first strip, and cut to fit.  Use the #4 paintbrush to dab water under the black strips where they cross the white strips to make them stick.

Spoon ¼ cup of the remaining gray frosting into a zip-top plastic bag and cut ¼ inch off the tip.  Pipe an angled line 1½ inches above and parallel to the black strips.  In a bowl, tint ¼ cup vanilla frosting black.  Spoon into a plastic bag and cut ¼ inch off the tip.  Pipe a black outline around all edges of the makeup bag except for the short ends at the top, where the bag opens.  At these open corners, pipe a “V.”

Pipe a gray line down each side of the bag, from the bottom of the black “V” to the bottom of the bag.  Set the cake aside but do not refrigerate, because the coloring on the black strips could run.

Prepare an 8-inch piece of wax paper to put the makeup items on as you are working.  Keep in mind that after you touch a tinted black makeup piece, you should wash your hands before touching a colored piece.

To make the powder compact, squeeze half of the black frosting from the bag into a bowl.  Using a clean ½-inch flat-head paintbrush, brush the bottom and sides of the Peppermint Pattie black.  Set aside, frosted side up.

In a bowl, mix 2 tablespoons vanilla frosting with ½ teaspoon chocolate frosting.  Spoon this into a zip-top plastic bag and cut ¹⁄8 inch off the tip.  On the frosted side of the Peppermint Pattie, pipe a brown circle ½ inch from the edge and fill it in.  Smooth the frosting.  Pipe a black outline around the brown center.  Trim ½ inch from one side of the compact so that it will lie flush against the makeup bag.  Set aside.

To make the eye shadows, use the flat-head paintbrush to brush black frosting on the tops and sides of the Giant Chewy SweeTarts.  Cut one-third off the flat side of the yellow and orange gumdrops, and discard the rounded parts.  Put the cut pieces, sugared side up, on the centers of the frosted SweeTarts.

To make the lipstick tube, cut off a 4-segment piece of the large Tootsie Roll and brush it with the black frosting.  Set aside.

To make the mascara, cut a 2-segment piece of large Tootsie Roll.  Roll it between your hands until it is 2 inches long.  Set aside.  Cut 1¼ inches off the end of the black Twizzler.  Using a wire cutter, cut 4 inches off the pointed end of the wooden skewer, and discard the rest.  Insert the pointed end of the skewer into the Twizzler piece and the other end ½ inch into the Tootsie Roll.  Brush the Tootsie Roll handle with black frosting, and set aside.

To make the makeup brush handle, take the remaining Tootsie Roll segments and roll them between your hands to form a piece 3 inches long and slightly conical.  Brush it with black frosting and set aside.

Position the makeup bag with the top of the bag facing you.  Put the compact flush with the bag, 2 inches from the right side.  Put the makeup brush handle at an angle to the right of the compact.  Smash together 1 chocolate Tootsie Roll Midgee and 1 vanilla Tootsie Roll Midgee to form a 1-inch piece with one end tapered to fit the top of the brush handle.  Press the blade of an offset spatula into the piece to make bristle indentations.

Put the lipstick tube at an angle between the makeup brush and the powder compact.  Smash together the red Jolly Rancher Fruit Chews, form them into a 1½-inchlong tube, and flatten one side to resemble lipstick.  Put this at the end of the tube.  Pipe a gray border where the colored piece meets the handle on the makeup brush and on the lipstick.

Put the mascara wand at an opposite angle to the makeup brush, 2 inches from the left side of the bag.  Pipe a gray line over the skewer on the mascara wand.  Put the orange eye shadow between the mascara and the compact, and the yellow eye shadow against the mascara handle.

Smash together 6 pink Starbursts and roll them between your hands to form a 1¼-inch-long log.  Shape it into the bottom of a nail polish bottle.  Cut a toothpick in half, and stick one half into a vanilla Tootsie Roll Midgee and the other half into the nail polish bottle.  Put the nail polish bottle on the board with the top against the mascara wand.



{Reprinted with permission from Extreme Cakeovers (Clarkson Potter, July 2013) by Rick & Sasha Reichart.} 

Carrie Sellman , Founder & Editor

Carrie Sellman is the Founder & Editor of The Cake Blog. Her work has been published in BRIDES Magazine, Country Living Magazine and featured online at People, Today, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Redbook, Real Simple, TLC, The Cooking Channel and more.


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