What is a Diaper Cake?

Pink Monkey Diaper Cake

During the holidays we always run into folks who are friends of our friends or friends of family members.  As part of the typical conversation, the question is invariably raised asking what I do for a living.  When I reply I make diaper cakes, most of the the time the response is “huh” or “what’s a diaper cake?”.  So I usually give my standard elevator pitch that goes something like this.  A diaper cake is an arrangement of diapers made to resemble a traditional tiered

Here’s a Lil’ Baby Cake from Oct. 1999

cake.  It is then decorated to match a particular baby theme with ribbons, bows, and baby care items.  I then like to add a plush toy for the baby to enjoy as they grow older.  Then the response is usually “Oh, that’s cool, I have never heard of those before” or “Wait a minute, are those the things people bring to baby showers?  I think I know what they are.”  Either way, the conversation continues and I either explain more (if they ask) or we move on to different topics.  It got me thinking that there are many people who have never heard of a diaper cake or don’t even know they are giving as baby gift.  So with that background, I’ll proceed to explain what a diaper cake is for those who may be wondering.

Well I think it’s fair to say the diaper cake is a “girl” thing.  There aren’t many men who are aware of them primarily because they are popular at baby showers and traditionally the baby shower is about the mom and her friends.  I did some searches and it’s not really clear the origin of diaper cakes, however, it’s assumed that they were made even before disposable diapers became mainstream.  Of course, back then cloth diapers were used and probably glass baby bottles, as plastic bottles were generally not available at the time.  It’s also assumed that the diaper cake creators were woman who enjoyed crafting and as such made these for friends and family members who were pregnant.  And lastly, it’s pretty safe to assume that there weren’t any for profit businesses make diaper cakes like there are today.  I went back to the earliest days of Lil Baby Cakes (Oct 2, 1999) and pick up the diaper cake image shown on the right.  This was one of the first diaper cakes created on the site at the time.  Back then, you can see a baby bottle, Q-tips, ribbons and bows, and a cellophane wrap to present as a gift to the new mom.

Over the years, the designs have evolved to include plush toys and a host of other “goodies” for the mom.  I’m sure you may have seen pictures of diaper cakes made with a champagne bottle in the center along with the diapers as a way to give the mom something to care for the newborn plus of course the champagne for the parents.  I’ve seen motorcycles, airplanes, topsy-turvey, and a host of other designs all cleverly created with diapers.  However, just like a traditional wedding cake has it’s tiers, so does the “traditional” diaper cake and I feel most comfortable with this style for many reasons.

Our Lil Monkey Pink Diaper Cake
Our Lil Monkey Pink Diaper Cake December 2012

So a Lil’ Baby Cake diaper cake for now is a collection of diapers arranged as a traditional tiered cake.  We use Pampers Swaddler diapers in our designs and look for quality plush toys to include on our cakes.  Each diaper is perfectly usable as if it just came out of the package. (I do get asked every now and then if all the diapers are usable.)  And just like in the “ole days” each cake is handmade from scratch when the customer places the order.  The Our Lil’ Monkey Pink 4 Tier design shown on the right highlights the main characteristics that goes into

every cake I design.  For instance,  I love Mambo from Gund.  It’s a great product with a cherished history that new parents appreciate as well as the baby as she grows older.  We put together an overview of this diaper cake that you can find on our main website entitled what is a diaper cake?

In closing, I thought to add another comment from folks I have talked to while owning Lil’ Baby Cakes.  Believe it or not, I still get the occasional question asking whether or not you have to refrigerate the diaper cake.  Now, maybe it is all in jest or maybe they are just making wise cracks.  However, it has happened enough times that I sometimes wonder if people do get confused about exactly what a diaper cake is.

As 2012 closes down I would like to wish you a Happy New Year.  I look forward to creating many more new designs next year all Lil’ Baby Cakes style!  Best wishes for a great 2013,