DIY Shanty Cupcake Tower

I am soooo excited about this Cupcake Tower!  It took about an afternoon of work and $15!

This was so easy to put together!  Here’s how you can build your own:)

I purchased 2 1×4’s and cut them down:

4 @ 14.5″

3 @ 11″

3 @ 8″

Then I used my Kreg Jig to attach the boards but if you don’t have one you can use wood glue and clamp them together until they dry:)

Here’s the bad boy that made this cupcake tower possible ~ The Dremel Trio ~ This is by far the coolest tool I have ever used!  You really need no building experience to use it.  Just read the instructions, plug it in and get to work:)  It has this awesome attachment that guides you through perfect circles.  It allowed me to cut all three circles in about 10 minutes!

Diameter cuts:

large circle: 14″

medium circle: 10.5″

small circle: 7.5″

Ooooo ahhhh!  I lightly sanded them to soften the edges and that was it!

Here are the rest of the supplies:  1 bag of small candle sticks and 2 tall ones from Hobby Lobby.  You can find these on the unfinished wood isle but we are learning that these are very hard to find in stores now.  You can purchase them online at Hobby Lobby HERE but you will have to pay shipping although you can use a 40% coupon.  I purchased the finial at Lowe’s.  It comes in a bag with two for about $2!

I chose to use the Vaseline technique to finish this piece.  You can get a detailed tutorial HERE.  In short, I painted my base coat color where I wanted to distress and then used a very small amount of vaseline to cover the brown.

After I sprayed 2 coats of Rust-Oleum Heirloom White and distressed the edges with an 80-grit sand paper, it was time to construct the tower:)

I used Gorilla Glue Epoxy to build the entire piece.  Then I started by glueing 4 small candle sticks to the bottom of the large circle.

I used the tall candlesticks in between the tiers

and for the top I attached the finial to one small candlestick.

That was it!

Whit was great and brought me cupcakes to break the new cupcake tower in:)  We made a play date of it and my kids loved their surprise after school:)


I got to thinking that this would make such a cute centerpiece even without the cupcakes so I played around with it a bit while I was waiting on my cupcake delivery:)

Now for some exciting news 🙂 One lucky winner will be the new owner of their very own Dremel Trio!  We will have a giveaway tomorrow. In the meantime, get your creative juices flowing and be thinking about what you would use this nifty tool for!

If you love my new Shanty Cupcake Tower I would LOVE pins below!  Thanks so much:)  ~Ashley


  1. Raven on April 22, 2012 at 9:11 am

    This absolutely fabulous…Love it

  2. Lana on April 21, 2012 at 8:40 am

    AAHHH… Oh my goodness… GORGEOUS!!! and your photograghy is amazing as well!!

  3. Chantee Willis on April 20, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    I have been wanting to recover an antique highchair, but I need a circle cut… this would be PERFECT!

  4. julie on April 20, 2012 at 5:31 pm

    I love this. I wish I had seen a tutorial like this last year – I would have made one for my wedding!

  5. Tara @Urban Hoot on April 20, 2012 at 2:43 pm

    Wow! It looks amazing! I have had my Dremel Trio for over a year now and have never even used the circle attachment. That is going to change right now! Can’t wait it make this cupcake stand! You are so inspiring!

  6. Rachel on April 20, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    I absolutely LOVE this! I’ve been looking for something to display cupcakes I have to make for a bridal shower that wasn’t going to cost me a fortune, I’ll have to make two and it will be less than what I have budgeted so it is going to be GREAT!

  7. Serena on April 20, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    Love it!! I want to make one.

  8. Jessica Wilcox-Modern Moments Designs on April 20, 2012 at 1:27 pm

    Can you tell me the brand name or where I can buy the mini candle sticks? I’d love any information from size, etc? I live in Oregon and don’t have a Hobby Lobby (gasp, I know)!!

    I am going to make two of these!

  9. Henrie Marie on April 20, 2012 at 12:37 pm

    Absolutely Stunning-will be making this soon, thanks for the inspiration.

  10. Amanda S. on April 20, 2012 at 12:25 pm

    I love how this can be multipurpose! Your projects inspire me 🙂

  11. Christee on April 20, 2012 at 12:12 pm

    I love this!!! I would also love a Dremel Trio so I could make one myself—-and finish many more projects too!!

  12. Michelle on April 20, 2012 at 11:45 am

    So cute! What are the cream colored balls in the picture with the candles?

  13. Peggy on April 20, 2012 at 10:07 am

    Beautifu, must make one for my daughter and I saw a stool at Target the other day that the circle technique would be perfect on! Thanks for the tutorial.

    • Peggy on April 20, 2012 at 10:07 am

      I meant to say Beautiful!!

  14. Kassi @ Truly Lovely on April 20, 2012 at 9:47 am

    I really like this!! I am loving how you only stain the areas you’re going to be sanding! Saves on time and product I’m sure! 🙂

  15. Mrs Mike on April 20, 2012 at 8:35 am

    As always, another FABULOUS project!!! You are one of my favorite bloggers!! 🙂 This will be another on my to do list

  16. Niki on April 20, 2012 at 8:19 am

    LOVE this! Soooooo cute, and looks very easy. I’m going to have to look into that dremel trio. I hate cutting circles with a jig saw

  17. Nicole @ scrap me baby on April 20, 2012 at 8:03 am

    That is so fab it’s crazy!! I wish I had tools…any tools! Lol, I am so overwhelmed about where to start so I just avert my eyes…and usually end up back in the paint section!

  18. Ester on April 20, 2012 at 7:58 am

    I’ve been wanting to make one as well, thought I would just wing it and figure it out as I go but you just saved me time and money. Thanks for sharing!

  19. Anne Rodrigues on April 20, 2012 at 7:49 am

    I love this design, especially using it with the candles. Great job!

  20. Anne on April 20, 2012 at 7:35 am

    This is the cutest thing I’ve seen on Pinterest. can’t wait to make one for myself.

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