Sunday, November 25, 2012

Scrumptious Sketches

I've been working hard this past week, and for once, it doesn't involve any sugar, eggs, or fondant! I've been designing cakes... digitally! Let me back up and explain a bit. I'm a complete novice when it comes to things like photoshop, they are way too complicated for my liking, and I never had the patience to learn how to use it properly. I've tried a ton of different programs to draw out my cake sketches, and none have been simple enough for someone like me, and I always resort to drawing them out by hand. So, my search for a digital option continued... until I got my Mac, and I came across this program called Artboard. Finally, I had a simple way of bringing my visions to life, and available to share for everyone to see! :)

After a week of learning the basics, I know I'm nowhere near mastering this program, but I thought I'd share a couple of sketches anyways. To start things off, I decided to make a sketch of a cake I've already made. Look familiar? (Fit For a Fashionista)

I also made another sketch, based on a trend I'm seeing a lot in wedding cakes this year. When I was at the Elegant Bridal Show last week, I noticed a whole bunch of cakes with ruffles, cascading ribbon flowers, and an oval quilted texture. Voila! Wouldn't it be awesome to get a sketch of your wedding cake before the special day!? 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Yummy Minnie

I don't usually make cakes that aren't covered in fondant. Fondant is smooth, clean, and creates the perfect blank canvas. So when a repeat customer asked me to make a buttercream cake for her daughter's first birthday, I reluctantly agreed, explaining to her that I'd still use a bit of fondant to recreate the decor and topper she asked for. I probably could have made it entirely out of buttercream, but the OCD in me would have hated the imperfections! I worked extra hard on making the buttercream as flawless as possible, and topped it off with a 2D gumpaste figurine of Minnie's head.

I have to admit, the buttercream makes this cake look extra yummy! Doesn't it just want to make you stick your finger in it for a little taste!? :P

Monday, November 12, 2012

Wedding Cake Bliss

It's wedding planning time! Now that I'm engaged, I'm finally allowed to start pinning endless floral arrangements and sweet table ideas on Pinterest without looking crazy! There's just one question that everyone has been asking me without fail. "Will you be making your own cake??" As crazy as it might be, and at the risk of becoming the most insane bridezilla, I have to! As to how my wedding cake is going to be decorated, I have NO idea! That's something that will take a while to decide!

When my sister-in-law insisted that I enter the wedding cake category at the Montreal cake show last month, I was at a loss as to how to decorate the cake. The contest was about creating what we thought the wedding cake of 2013 would look like. Modern has been done, and classic is well, classic. We tried to come up with something new, techniques and patterns that haven't really been done yet. Being an interior designer, she suggested I work around some patterns we found in some wall flats from Inhabit. We also found this floral lamp, and we were set. Here's the sketch she came up with. 

So I got to work, trying to make sure her visions were reproducible in fondant! Some of it took quite a bit of trial and error, but in the end, it looked amazing! Modern and elegant.

The coloured tiers are actually painted inspired by watercolour paintings. The lampshade inspired tier was formed out of gumpaste over a dummy cake, and then suuuuper carefully placed over the painted tier. 

And to top it all off, a giant gumpaste rose, dusted in a pink/purple petal dust. Instead of sitting it straight on the cake, we thought we'd make it even more different by making it stand just an inch over the cake, with a thick stem showing. 

Friday, November 9, 2012

Bundle of Sweet Joy

Last week, my best friend and amazing cake apprentice came over to work on a friend's baby shower cake. I love working with this girl! She's got quite a bit of talent, and she's already proved herself during my insane wedding cake week ;)
Together, we came up with a design to match their jungle themed baby room. There were quite a few things that are kind of been-there-done-that, and we were absolutely set on staying away from them... Blue, baby bums, and blocks, just to name a few. So we got to work, designing a cutesy jungle-themed baby shower cake. The cake flavour is my latest favourite, it's chocolate cake with a fresh raspberry buttercream.  I made these in cupcake form for the cupcake challenge, and they were such a hit! It is beyond yummy! 

For the outside of the cake, we decided to go with a beautiful shade of green, and she made all sorts of tiny, detailed baby animals to go around the sides of the cakes. 

And while she slaved away on those adorable animals, I got to work on the cake, and this super cute baby elephant! We make quite the awesome team! 

She's even decided to give you a little insider's scoop on her experience in making this cake!
The amateur's perspective:

Fondant looks absolutely stunning, but it's no piece of cake. Imagine that playdogh stuff you used to play with as a kid. Well, instead of it drying up after an hour because you forgot to close the lid, image it drying up in 10 minutes because you forgot you left a piece outside to work with in "JUST A BIT". It's one of the most challenging materials I've ever worked with (and for all those OT's out there, yes... more annoying than thermoplastic D:)

That being said, I couldn't have made these figurines without Chef Periwinkle close by my side, validating every little move I made. From sticking on eyeballs to spotting the giraffe, it had to been done Periwinkle style, elegant with perfection. 

What has this experience taught me? I have a huge appreciation for what this girl does. She loves her work and her passion effortlessly  transpires through. She's a sugarsweet genius :)

Monday, November 5, 2012

Once a Princess...

Always a princess! No matter the age, girls will always love tiaras and pink! This pretty little cake, all decked out in bling, is just so perfect for any princess. This was my first sugar tiara, what do you lovelies think? 

Sunday, November 4, 2012


I've made cakes for just about any occasion, and in all sorts of shapes, but graduation cakes are definitely something new!  When I was asked to make a friend's grad cake, I crossed my fingers and my toes hoping he wouldn't want something typical including hats and diplomas... To my relief he asked that I make a  cake version of the McGill arts building! It was a ton of fun to make, and I think it was my first cake replica of a building. The inside was a chocolate cake with a choco-hazelnut buttercream, sooooo delish! 

Don't forget the miniature McGill flag, hand-painted, of course!