So I decided for the first time this year that I would try to make a really nice cake. And let me tell you have I learned a thing or two! For example: never start a project like this after 9PM. Even if it's supposed to be a surprise, you can make the cake and frostings ahead of time and just decorate it after the kiddo is in bed. Whew! It was a marathon night.
And before I started frosting, I placed little strips of wax paper under the edges of the cake so when the smooth layer was done I could remove them and keep the cake plate looking neat. (Which is just an inverted tart pan.)
I think they turned out fine piped directly onto the cake.
And to answer the un-asked question: I went to bed around 2:30 AM.
Just another reminder: DO NOT START THIS AFTER NINE PM.
'Cause those nice piping bags? Need washed between colors. So either only use the amount of colors you have individual bags for, or get enough bags for the colors you want. Lesson learned.