These days, cupcakes are everywhere. So, how can you set yours apart from the rest? A little imagination can go a long way.

In her class at the Connecticut Cake Competition held Feb. 26-27, sugar artist Vanessa Greeley explained that new and creative ideas can be found all around. You just have to keep your mind open, without being afraid to try new things.

Take the container, for example. Who says you have to use the same containers as everyone else? Think about things like small ceramic flower pots or little watering cans. Just be sure to check that the container is labeled as food safe and able to withstand baking temperatures. Greeley also suggests greasing the inside of the containers and lining with parchment paper before pouring the batter.

And the creativity doesn't have to stop with the container. Use your imagination to come up with innovative cupcake toppings, too. Just look at the moss topped on this watering can cupcake. Greeley outlines just how to get the mossy effect.





"Behold, the strainer!" Greeley says. Start off by placing fondant evenly in the bottom of a hand-held strainer.



Begin gently pushing the fondant through the strainer.



Continue pushing the fondant through evenly in all areas



Check to be sure you have enough moss.



Gently scrape moss off the strainer using a flat tool and place on top of the cupcake.