Collegiate Cupcakes – UCLA

To honor and celebrate a very special recent UCLA graduate I made UCLA cupcakes for his graduation party.

ucla cupcakes

I started out with a new oh-so-yummy vanilla cupcake recipe, made a variation using vanilla bean paste and voila!

ucla cupcakes

Next, I had to lock in my colors. I fell in love with the Decco Drops I found at Williams-Sonoma (in-store) so I had to commit to using a slightly more aqua color than the true Bruin baby blue.

ucla cupcakes

This also meant using gold foil liners for all the cupcakes and not brining in another color of blue in a paper cup liner.

I used my favorite buttercream icing recipe from the bag of C&H Powdered Sugar. Shhhh, don’t tell anyone!

ucla cupcakes

The toppers were easy to make.

ucla cupcakes

I googled and downloaded the photo of the Bruin bear, adjusted the size, printed him on photo paper for the best colors and resolution, cut him out, double stick taped him to a 2 1/2” circle I punch out from scrapbook paper. While I was at the scrapbook store, I came across mortar board stickers and since this was for a graduation, I thought the Bruin bear needed to get his tassel on! The stickers fit him perfectly!

ucla cupcakes

For the stick I used a lollipop stick. To adjust the size, just bend and snap!


But not like this unless you want a 98% return on getting a man’s attention and when used appropriately, an 83% rate of return on a dinner invitation. Whether you use the bend and snap method for lollipop sticks or for a date, secure with tape for either application.. “Oh my gosh, the bend and snap, it works every time.”

For the rolled fondant covered cupcakes I wanted a raised “UCLA” script on top so I had to figure out a way to do this.

ucla cupcakes

At first attempt, I used a cut out “UCLA” made from fondant to add to the top. The fondant was drying out as I cut it with my x-acto knife giving me rough edges plus it was too fragile to work with. It looked a lot like the actual template which I knew wasn’t the look I wanted.

ucla cupcakes

Next, I tried rolling the script template over the fondant but that gave me a concave look.

Remembering the technique I used for the wedding cookies, I made a reverse template placing it backwards and under the fondant, rolling over it to squish the fondant through the template giving me the raised look I wanted.

ucla cupcakes

I then painted the gold outline which is part of the UCLA script logo using gold luster powder mixed with any clear liquor (I used vodka) to liquefy the powder which lends to a paint consistency.

ucla cupcakes

Ready. Set. Party!

ucla cupcakes

Of course, no gift from a USC grad to a UCLA grad could be complete without some Trojan horse being brought into the mix.

ucla cupcakes

Fight On!

And congratulations to an outstanding young man who will one day be a wonderful physician.

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  1. Truly, you are a creative genius. My son’s best friend is going to UCLA. We are having a party tonight. Wish I would have thought to have you make a few extra of those for us.

  2. These look amazing! I wish I could decorate like this! (And I LOVED The Elle reference. It’s one of my favorite parts of the movie!)

  3. Those are sooo cute!! Love the colors, you did such a great job! I love how you came up with such a creative way to get the job done!!

  4. Smart thinking turning them upsidedown to make the script!

  5. these are amazing! What a great idea!

  6. You really are amazing. Great job. xoxo

  7. Anonymous says:

    Those are so cute and creative, but personally I would love them in UNIVERSITY OF OREGON DUCK GREEN AND YELLOW COLORS. but since they were not for me anyway… 🙂


  8. Gorgeous cup cakes!! Hope your hubby as a wonderful Father’s Day!

  9. Lovely Rita says:

    They were the talk of the party! Not only were they beautiful, they were super yummy! Truly a work of art, visual and taste! All the kids loved them! Especially the Bruin’s that were here. I told them that a vey special friend made them and how difficult it was for her make them, being Trojan and all. They all laughed when they saw the Trojan disk under the top row of cupcakes…one Bruin boy said “well it is the way it should be…beneath them…Bruins on top!” ;-p Love you my dear friend! So very thankful you are all right! Happy Father’s Day to your hunky husband!

  10. This Bruin approves! Very clever logo embossing technique – You have mad skillz, Girl!

  11. Brilliant & beautiful! You are so talented.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Those were great! Loved the funny, step by step directions. Especially LOVED the empty Trojan…poor baby!