This year my twin grandchildren's birthday theme was John Deere. I ordered the girl and boy JD stuff on line and then worked cakes to coordinate. My grandson's cake was a John Deere Birthday Cake. I had looked for other John Deere cakes and nothing inspired me. I used the Pantastic tractor cake pan and adjusted the colors to match the birthday supplies. It is a plastic cake pan and worked very well not only for baking, but also the candy forms that I made for the tires, etc. I covered the inside of the pan with cake release before using. The pan held a little more than one chocolate box mix so I used the extra to make little cupcakes that the kids decorated.
I baked the cake the day before and froze it so it would be firm. The buttercream frosting recipe didn't seem to want to set up on the humid day I made it and I kept adding more powered sugar and ended up patting and smoothing the whole cake with my finger tips. I don't know if the frozen cake had anything to do with the frosting issue or not. After baking the cake, I used the pan to form the tires and parts of the tractor with chocolate candy melts. I added food coloring to the brown and green melts and they didn't melt as well. I popped the parts out and placed them on top of the frosting and then piped around the pieces.
Before starting the project, I designed a John Deere sticker to use on the hood and took the kids photo to use inside the cab. I printed them out and then covered them in contact paper. The candles were suppose to represent the exhaust pipes, but had to be moved to the top of the cake to light and blow them out. I didn't have a container big enough to hold the cake so I just sat it in the refrigerator for a day and a half uncovered. I was concerned it may dry out, but it was great.