Friday, April 30, 2010

Diver Dan the Scuba Cake Man

I can probably count on one hand the number of times I have used marbled fondant on a cake.  It's not that I dislike the effect or anything, I just don't get a lot of cakes that call for that look.

But this SCUBA cake, now that's a different story!  I thought the blue marbled fondant really gave off that ocean look that this cake needed.  I didn't get a lot of direction on this cake, only that the birthday boy really liked diving.

I piped some seaweed and molded some fish, turtles, and starfish out of a chocolate mold.  I also hand molded some coral and the legs and flippers.

I thought it came out really cute!

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Cricut Cake - First Impressions

So, I got my new Cricut Cake machine on Tuesday and I have had a few days to make use of it.  There is definitely a learning curve, but once I get into the groove with this thing I think it will really save me some time!

Here are some of the things I have learned so far working with the Cricut Cake:

The material you use is key.  Gumpaste works very well, modeling chocolate works well too.  Fondant on average is just too mushy, but I had good luck using Fondarific.  Next time I will test fondant mixed with Tylose to see what happens.

Thickness (or thinness actually) is very important also.  On the blue and brown cake (below) I left the modeling chocolate too thick.  I still liked the overall effect, but I had to cut a lot of extra pieces and clean the blade several times.  On the "Chuck" cake, Chad rolled out the gumpaste so thin you could almost make out the mat under it.  They cut out very nicely.

My last finding was that no matter the material I used to cut on, popping it in the freezer for 5-10 minutes before cutting always yielded better results.

    I know some of my other blog friends also have the Cricut Cake machine.  What have your experiences been with it??

    Friday, April 23, 2010

    Acoustic Guitar Groom's Cake

    I know you've all been waiting, so here's the groom's cake that we delivered to the Tennessee Aquarium last weekend!  The groom wanted a replica of a Martin Acoustic Guitar.

    Chad got busy on the Interwebs and found the appropriate guitar graphic and enlarged it so that we would have a scale template to work from.

    I carved the cake but I was initially stumped on how to handle the neck of the guitar without building an elaborate stand.  We finally decided to use black modeling chocolate to "hide" all of the cake that wasn't part of the neck.  You can see it in the picture below, I thought it made for a very realistic effect.

    The couple were very against fondant, so only the top of the cake is fondant.  I airbrushed the buttercream sides with browns and blacks to give that dark wood-tone look.  I made the strings by extruding fondant through my clay gun, but I wasn't totally happy with how they turned out.  Next time, they would either be smaller, or I would maybe try to use floral wire or some other medium.

    Well, there's more cakes to do that will have to be it for this time!  Check back on Tuesday to see what new cake adventures we have been up to!

    Tuesday, April 20, 2010

    Tennesee Aquarium Butterfly Wedding

    This weekend we did our very first Chattanooga Aquarium wedding.  The staff there were wonderful and the venue was spectacular!  The wedding was held on the fourth floor in the Tropical Rainforest / Butterfly Sanctuary section of the aquarium.

    In keeping with that theme, the bride wanted some butterfly accents on her bridal cake.  I put my brother to work building us another custom cake stand out of a Baby Bio Orb fish tank.  Inside the tank we put moss, twigs, and some mechanical butterflies that I bought from Etsy.  They are so thin and delicate, but their wings move like a real butterfly!  Lots of people at the event thought they were real!!

    The wedding cake itself is all buttercream, with each tier getting gradually lighter.The white swirls were then piped on.  I was very happy with the cake and the natural background the Tennessee Aquarium provided made it pop even more.

    Stay tuned next time for the accompanying groom's cake... a scale model Martin guitar.  Have a great week!!

    Friday, April 16, 2010

    Cricut Cake is on the way!

    Well, Wednesday was the big release of the new Cricut Cake on HSN and since I have been salivating over this thing since I first saw it a couple of months ago, I went ahead and bit the bullet and purchased one.

    I have been watching YouTube videos from some of the folks that had advanced access to the machine and it looks very impressive and it looks like it could really cut a lot of labor time off of certain types of wedding cakes.  Also, I want my bakery to be known as staying on the leading ledge of technology and offer my customers the very best (that's what I told my husband.... shhhh)!

    I promise to give you guys a proper rundown and evaluation as soon as I get it in and get it unpacked.  Maybe even a tutorial if you're interested?

    UPDATE: My Cricut Cake arrived on Tuesday (4/20), so look forward to my thoughts on it real soon (maybe Tuesday).  So far, I LOVE it!

    Tuesday, April 13, 2010

    Taking it Outdoors

    The neighbors must really think I'm crazy on a regular basis!  Especially when it's pretty out, I can be seen carrying plant stands, end tables, potted plants, or some other odd item from my house throughout the yard looking for the perfect place to snap a shot of some new confection I have crafted.

    This weekend I made up a batch of cupcakes for a customer and with the few I had leftover, I grabbed a cake stand, and small table and headed for the great outdoors.  There's just something about that outdoor light and that green grass background that I think just makes for some beautiful photographs.

    Hope you enjoy!

    Friday, April 9, 2010

    Ladybugs All Dressed in Red

    You know that spring is truly here when people start ordering cute ladybug cakes.

    Molly was celebrating her birthday, so we used her invitation as inspiration for her cake.  I pulled all the colors and the flower and ladybug motif from the invitation.

    You can't tell from the picture, but there's even a cute little 2D ladybug on top of the cake with a big smile on her face.

    This was a simple buttercream cake with fondant accents.  I even made Molly a birthday smash cake!

    Have a great weekend, maybe even get out and watch some real ladybugs!

    Tuesday, April 6, 2010

    Deja vu all over again!

    Look familiar?  Remember a couple of posts back I said that everyone was calling for wonky cakes?  Well, the day before I finished the blue wonky cake, someone called and ordered the exact same cake (only in green and pink).

    I have to admit that sometimes I get tired of doing the exact same cakes over and over.  I don't know why it bothers me - each time I do the same cake I do it more quickly than the last time and usually a little better too.  I guess I just like spreading my artistic wings and seeking out new cake challenges.

    Stop back in again soon and I promise I won't show you another version of this cake, in fact, I'll make sure to showcase something other than a wonky cake!

    Have a great week, OK!

    Sunday, April 4, 2010

    Hoppy Easter!

    So, what happens when you give a couple of cake artists a dozen eggs and some spare time?!?

    Yep!  Tie-Dyed Glitter Eggs!  We had a blast making these little suckers!  After dying them, we got out ALL the luster dusts and edible glitter and just went to town!  My personal favorite was the golden disco glitter egg (look to the middle right in the picture).  It's been forever since we made Easter eggs and for the life of me, I don't know why!

    Once that excitement wore down, we thought we would enjoy a cookie break, so we broke out a package of Milano cookes.  30 minutes later...

    Yes!  Milano marshmallow sheep!  We're sickos, OK!  But in case you're interested, here's the lowdown on making these cute little guys!  Coat a Milano cookie in white chocolate and cover in  marshmallows.  Once set, use more chocolate to glue on four "feet" (we used some sort of Reeces egg candies).  Now take another milano cookie and using your mini marshmallows, make eyes and ears.  Use more chocolate to glue the cookie head to the cookie/marshmallow body.  Viola!  These little guys will serve as plate decorations / possible dessert for our guests today as we serve Easter lunch!

    Happy Easter Everybody!

    Friday, April 2, 2010

    Wonky Blue Polka Dot Cake

    Things definitely come in waves here at the bakery.  And lately, everybody that calls wants a wonky cake.

    Maredith was turning sixteen and needed a special cake to celebrate the occasion.  She picked this cake off my website and changed the colors a bit

    I went to town on it, carving it and covering it with fondant, while Chad was busy making bow loops, polka dots, and cutting out the 16.  We put it all together and I even accented it with some fondant ribbon roses.

    I was pleased with the color scheme and thought it came out quite cute and whimsical.

    Thanks for stopping by and have a great weekend!


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