TomKat Confession :: Old Cupcakes

Happy Monday, friends! It’s been quite hectic around here while we try to get some photo shoots and projects done for the holiday season, all while my two little ones are home on Fall break! I pinky promise that the new FREE Thanksgiving collection that I teased about last week will be ready for download very soon! In the meantime for Cupcake Monday, I thought I would share the Thanksgiving cupcake photo above and a little story behind it.

When I designed the new Thanksgiving collection, I was focusing on designs that our readers could use when hosting Thanksgiving dinner. For whatever reason, I didn’t design “party circles” (the term I coined years ago for my 2″ designs to be used for cupcake toppers) and didn’t plan on using any cupcakes for the shoot. As we were at my house shooting, Molly (my design assistant) freaked out that I didn’t design the one item we ALWAYS include (and that I usually design first) in the collection. I don’t think we’ve ever done a shoot without cupcakes, if it was party related. She was right. It just wouldn’t be a TomKat collection without them. So, I whipped up the cupcake topper designs (the perk of doing shoots at home) and luckily I happened to have a leftover cupcake sitting on a cake plate in my office. Here comes the funny (or gross, you might think) part. Go back and look at the cupcake photo above, now look below….recognize the cupcakes?

Confession: I’m a cupcake hoarder. I actually keep a few cupcakes around after shoots JUST IN CASE. The photo on the left is from our HGTV Halloween shoot (July) and the photo on the right is from one of our DIY Halloween shoots (early August), and the Thanksgiving shoot was in early September. Sometimes, people come over and want to eat the cupcakes I’ve saved and sometimes kids try to stick their fingers in them, but they quickly realize that won’t work. If you’ve ever saved a cupcake and left it out, you know that it becomes petrified. It becomes hard as a rock, but maintains its look. Kinda gross, I know, but this is something I’ve done for a long time, starting with time that I left one of the prettiest cupcakes ever sit on my side table for months. I just couldn’t throw it away.

Hye, give me some slack, I’m super busy! I know, I know….cupcakes are so easy to make (especially when you use a boxed mix like I do most of the time), but you never know when you’re going to need one on a whim for a photo! So, with that being said, guess what’s sitting pretty in my office still…

…the cupcake I baked in July! 

Have a sweet week!


  1. 3

    Toni says

    I love it that you have exposed this deep, dark secret. LOL I do love it that when I’m at your house, you always have pretty cupcakes around. Adds to the ambiance. LOL xoxo

  2. 5


    Confession: I’ve totally done that, too! Last year I made some mini-cupcakes around the holidays that turned out so cute… but with all the holiday madness, I never got around to photographing them. So I tucked them away in the kitchen and – weeks later – realized they were still there waiting, solid as a rock. The plus side is that you can move them around without worrying about smudging the frosting! 😉 So glad I’m not the only one! As always, your styling is beautiful!

  3. 8


    I love this. I’m actually so upset at myself right now. I just threw away some cupcakes from a past event. I totally could have done something like this. blah!

  4. 9


    True, the only way you can really tell is a little shriveling of the wrapper. I left some cupcakes on a cake stand from a tea party we styled and three weeks later they still looked good enough to eat. When a kid came over to play and reached for the cupcakes, I knew it was time to toss them.

  5. 11


    Gross – but good to know about the petrified cupcakes! Honestly, we all wish we had a cute cupcake around all the time for eye candy!

  6. 14


    Haha! I am guilty too! I save old cupcakes all the time! Sometimes to make them look fresh I remove the petrified frosting and add a new one. I thought I was the only one who make this “gross” thing! Now i am relieve… Ha! Thanks for sharing!


  7. 16


    This is classic! I completely understand and have done similarly strange but completely practical things. As I’m reading this it’s with the perspective of “What a good idea” not “what a weirdo?!” I’ve never thought of saving a cupcake… they don’t tend to last at my house… but I HAVE had times where I wished I had (for a retake or what not). You’re a smarty! 😉

  8. 18

    Karol says

    I just found out about this amazing website and I am in love!!
    Quick question about the cupcake topper: did you use a paper punch? If yes, can you share which one?



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