Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

Raise your hand if you are obsessed with Anthropologie’s Zinc Letters? Can you see us raising ours really, really high? We love everything about them! But, sadly, they are way too big to put on a cake. We did however come up with what we think is a brilliant alternative, a perfect DIY project for your rustic wedding no less. Introducing our Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Toppers (that can also be used as table numbers, even home and office decor – we do!)!! And get this, they’re made from those little magnetic letters kids love to move around on the refrigerator!! Neat, right? Thought so. Even better because Katherine Henry did a stupendous job (as she always does) photographing the step-by-step process for us! Take a look…

PS – Be sure to read to the end as there is a really funny story about our cake mishap. :)

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

Our Supplies:

  • Spray paint – white primer, silver or metallic oil rubbed bronze (available at your local Home Depot or Lowe’s)
  • Acrylic paint – metallic copper (used with the oil rubbed bronze) or black (used with the silver)
  • Plastic magnetic alphabet letters and numbers – Lakeshore Learning
  • Miscellaneous supplies – dry paint brush, gauze, plastic plates, newspaper, painters tape, pop sticks, glue

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

Start by laying out newspaper in a well ventilated area (I prefer doing spray painting outdoors on a not so windy day). Choose your initials in the plastic letters, and starting with the magnet side up, spray a light coat of primer on each letter. I placed a small amount of painters tape on the magnet before spraying. You may have to do this a couple of times on both sides to cover the bright colors. Once the primer is dry, spray the letters with the silver or oil rubbed bronze paint. While the correct spray technique is for several lighter coats, sometimes we get a little heavier in some spots. Guess what? For this project, that’s a-okay! Actually, the little bit of “gloppiness” (you know what I mean), adds to the rustic-ness of the letters.

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

Once the letters are thoroughly dry (I recommend waiting at least 24 hours), drop a small amount of the acrylic paint (I used black on the silver letters) on a plastic plate. Next dip the gauze into the drop and gently rub along the edges of the letter. You can also dab a bit on the flat  sides of the letters. This technique gives additional dimension to the edges as well as some of the “gloppiness” making the letters look exactly like our favorite Anthropologie zinc letters.

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

If you chose the oil rubbed bronze, I used the same technique but used the metallic copper acrylic paint. Aren’t these just gorgeous? They look even better and so authentic in person. (I used the plus sign from the magnetic numbers collection.)

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

The photo above is a great close up of the texture and dimension that we were able to create with the accenting colors. You can also spray paint a thin coat of clear coat for additional protection of the letters. Once everything is thoroughly dry, glue a pop stick on the back of each letter. By attaching the stick to the letter it allows you to better place the letters on top of the cake.

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

After you are done with the letters as your cake topper, you can easily remove the stick and use the letters on your fridge, or even your favorite magnetic board at home or in your office. Cool, right?

So here they are, our Anthropologie inspired zinc letter cake toppers on our, um, pretty cake. So here’s a little story about the cake:

{Editor’s Note} I don’t normally like editor’s notes or popping in on my partner’s posts, but I’m going to make an exception just this once. Mainly because I’d like to tell you a little story about the cake that didn’t make it but still tasted like it did. This cake took me at least six hours (I stopped counting because at one point I couldn’t believe what the clock on the stove was telling me) and three trips to the grocery store (the first was to get what I thought were all the ingredients, then I realized we were out of eggs, then I ran out of frosting halfway through frosting the first layer) to make. Granted, I took the easy way out and went with the Pillsbury Doughboy. But he’d never let me down before so I thought this was ok. It was a cake for a shoot for goodness sakes. Think again. Even though I painstakingly poured the batter into the round baking tins to ensure they were even and flat, one of the layers had a mega-huge lopsided mountain by the time it came out of the oven. And then, even though I’d let it cool considerable, the frosting wasn’t sticking to the cake. Then I ran out. Finally, at about 10 o’clock the night before our big shoot with Katherine, the cake was done and in its holding container. It was perfectly fine when we put it in the car on the flattest surface we could find (the floor in the backseat) where it wouldn’t go flying around like it would have had we put it in the trunk. And yet sadly, by the time we got to Katherine’s studio, the top layer of the cake had cracked in half and completely slid apart!!! I’m not a bad baker. In fact, I love to bake and I’m pretty darn good at it. But I have NEVER had this much trouble with a cake or seen a cake act this way before. Ever. We fixed it. Katherine managed somehow to capture its good side. We even ate it and it wasn’t bad tasting. Needless to say though, I will not be using the Pillsbury Doughboy for future cake making extravaganzas. He let me down. And not even his “whoo-hoo” can redeem him in my eyes at this time. And that, my friends, is my story, and I’m sticking to it, unlike the frosting did to this cake. 

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

We also used the same technique on the magnetic numbers, mounted them in a frame and now have the perfect coordinating table numbers. :)

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY, Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Table Number DIY

Anthropologie Inspired Zinc Letter Cake Topper DIY

We had such fun creating this awesome DIY – perfect for our Rustic wedding month! Try it! You’re going to fall in love with the result!

xoxo

Editor’s Note: Please note that because these letters have been spray-painted, they should NOT come in direct contact with food. In the pictures shown, we show that we mounted the letters on cake pop sticks, and we highly recommend this for your use. The only reason our letters are actually stuck in the cake is because our cake melted and broke  (right down the middle) on the drive to Katherine’s studio. (Please refer to the hilarious story in the italics above.) The cake was not consumed and actually thrown out shortly after the shoot was complete.

Comments

  1. That’s such a great idea – and easy, too!

  2. Love this! Genius!!!

  3. These are super cute! I can’t wait to try to make them!

  4. What a nice idea! Love these cute letters.

  5. Such a brilliant DIY! Love this!

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