Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Big Flower Petal Explosion Wedding

We began our journey with cake when my bride came in with a with a picture of a cake from a magazine. It was a very plain fondant cake with a big flower on it. The bride liked, the design, but she wanted more. More flower, more petals, more bling. And she wanted it in buttercream. Who could blame her?

The bling was easy to accomplish. We used some of the rhinestone rope from Bead and Trim as a border for each tier. It's subtle, but still classy, elegant, and sparkly.

The flower? It was a lot of work, but the look was worth it. I started by using a teardrop cutter and making petals. In four different sizes. I made SO many gumpaste petals! Chad made gumpaste petals! Did I mention there were a lot of petals?!?

But I did get to use a new tool that I just love. I have never really liked my plastic ball tools. They seem to drag and I don't get the petal curling action that I really want. But a few weeks back I ordered Colette Peter's new metal ball tool... and it is amazing! With the metal ball tool I can get my petal edges super thin, and had much nicer curls than what I had previously achieved.

OK, back to those petals! I let them dry on aluminum foil and once they were nice and dry, I used a triangular makeup sponge (not all my cake tools are expensive!) to apply a mixture of silver and purple luster dusts on the petal's edges. These were the colors the couple was using during the reception.

Now with most gumpaste flowers, you make the petals on wires, you bind them all together with floral tape, and then at some point to pop it into the cake. With this flower being on such a grand scale, I couldn't exactly wire all the petals together. So I had to place each petal individually onto the cake. See? I told you it took me a long time!!

Until next time, have a great week!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Cookie Jar Groom's Cake

I have always said that if you want a great cake, call a good baker, set a price, give them a theme, and tell them to do whatever they want!

I met with this couple and they settled on a bridal cake, but the groom's cake was up in the air.  The groom was in the military, but he didn't want a military cake.  We came up with several ideas, but all went by the wayside.  The groom eventually said that he just didn't want a groom's cake, but the bride really wanted him to have something special.  With only a week to go before the wedding, the bride called with one final idea.  The groom's favorite food was chocolate chip cookies.  She wanted to know if I would do one big chocolate chip cookie cake.  That was far too close to sheet cake territory for me.  I asked her if I could take this chocolate chip cookie theme and run with it.  I told her she would get a better cake for the same price we had contracted for previously.  She trusted me enough to say Yes.

So I sculpted a cookie jar cake, covered it in buttercream and made some "COOKIES" lettering with the Cricut Cake.  The lid was made from rice crispy treats.  It looked great, but the cake was lemon (their choice), so the groom still wasn't getting his chocolate chip cookies.  So I whipped up a couple of batches of chocolate chip cookies so they could be coming from the top of the cake.  Here's what whole thing looked like put together at the venue.

Afterwards, I received a very sweet note from the bride via Facebook.  Here's what she said:

Jen... Seriously?! The cakes were AMAZING!! The groom's cake was a HUGE hit!!! So adorable! EVERYONE LOVED IT!!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Blue Bow Wedding Cake

This wedding cake is a real alternative to the traditional wedding cake.  I'm not a huge fan of mixing tier shapes, but I liked this look a lot.

I used Satin Ice with some tylose mixed in to make the ribbons. This helped keep them from stretching and they held up better.  I used my trusty sewing gauge to help mark my ribbon lines and I used blue luster dust to the give the blue ribbon its sheen!

Also, I normally don't like handwriting on cakes.  We have so many other methods of getting text on cakes (edible image, Cricut, etc) and the handwriting is just not my style.  But I was very pleased with how the writing turned out.  And believe it or not, the cake gods must have been smiling on me that day - I did all the writing in one take.  Yep, no mistakes or do overs!!

Hop back over here on Friday and see what else we've been up to!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Wedding Couple on the Ledge

A few weeks back, I delivered this 5 tiered buttercream tower to the Dalton Freight Depot.

The couple were using purple and orange as their wedding colors and wanted them represented on the cake.  I used my ribbon cutters and placed the 2 bands of fondant.  It was what we discussed and what I drew out in the wedding consultation, but once the cake was done I thought it detracted from the cake just a little.  It's still a pretty cake, but I think the color bands make it look a little "less-weddingy".

There are times when the actual cake just doesn't work out looking at great as it did when I sketched it on paper.  It always puts me in a pickle - do I do what looks/works best, or do I give the couple what they contractually agreed to?  Contract wins out 99% of time.  The other 1% I consult the bride and explain my dilemma and ask for permission.  It doesn't happen very often, but try to be mentally prepared when it does! ; )

I'm always fond of the whimsical scroll pattern, but I was overwhelmed from cute overload by the bride and groom ledge sitters.  They were just so cute!  A word of caution though - these ledge sitters can get pretty heavy so make sure you provide some support underneath them.  A few straws will do the trick.

Speaking of cake supports, in the past I have used skewers, wooden dowels, plastic columns, drinking straws, and have just started using bubble tea straws.  Drinking straws were my favorite, but I am liking these new bubble tea straws I just got in.  What do you use for cake supports?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Toy Story Birthday Cake

I constantly get calls from customers wanting birthday cakes.  Their kids want a cake themed around their favorite cartoon character or movie.  The kids have no concept of copyright law, the parents don't care about it, and sometimes even I forget about it.

Even though I don't do a lot of birthday cakes anymore, when I got the request from this long-time customer I wanted to do my best to give her child the cake of his dreams while respecting copyright law to the best of my knowledge and ability.

This cake is definitely inspired by Toy Story.  I pulled color schemes and themes from Buzz and Woody for the bottom and top tiers and the cloudy wallpaper from Andy's room for the middle tier.  Chaddy even found the font they used and cut "Happy Birthday" letters on the Cricut using it.

I was happy with the way it turned out and I hope little Jack really enjoyed it for his 3rd birthday!!  Y'all have a great week!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Hip Hop Groom's Cake

Many, many moons ago I used to live in California where I had several run-ins with many celebrities.  But in the small town where I live now there is very few chances of running into any type of celebrity.

A while back I met with a couple, and the the groom-to-be was a professional hip hop dancer who has worked with several big names.  It was my first brush with celebrity in a while.

He wanted to keep his cake simple, while still representing the dance styles that made his career.  He brought a page of dancer silhouettes to the consultation and we almost immediately designed his cake around those silhouettes.  We found the same graphic on a stock photography site and bought it.  Chad then used the file to create a cut file on the Cricut.  We cut the dancers out of black modeling chocolate.  The cake was finished off with some white-chocolate dipped strawberries.

As I was delivering and setting up the cake, I ran into the groom for a few short minutes and he saw the cake.  He was very happy with it.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Monochromatic Wedding Cake

This wedding cake really grew on me the more I worked on it.  I have always been a fan of the tone-on-tone / monochromatic look, but at first I thought this cake might benefit from a splash or color.

But the more I worked on it, the better I liked it!  The dimensional flowers and leaves formed these awesome shadows that really added a lot of contrast to the cake.  When I was finished I stepped back and was really proud with how it came out.

I formed and sculpted all of the flowers and leaves from gumpaste and let them dry nice and hard.

Normally I would have used my trusty ribbon cutter to make all those vines, but the gumpaste I was working with was so tough that I was using the pasta machine to roll it nice and thin.  Out of curiosity I set it on one of the cutter settings and it cut nice long gumpaste "noodles" for me that worked out great!

Have a great week and stay out of the heat!

Friday, June 3, 2011

The Ranunculus Weddng Cake

This year I have had a real obsession with the flowers on this wedding cake.  They're called ranunculus, and they are part of the buttercup family.  I like to think of them as buttercup's fancy cousin!  Chaddy just calls them "redonkulous"... he's the redonkulous one!

They are perfect for wedding cakes because like roses, they come in a multitude of colors and sizes.  Spray them with almost any hue and they're still basically botanically correct.

In this case, our bride wanted a very tone-on-tone look, so we left them a basic butter cream white.  I cascaded them down the front of the cake in a very artsy way, grouping large and small flowers together in clusters.

We delivered this cake to The Mill of Chattanooga and this was actually a Friday wedding - my first Friday wedding in fact!

A lot of venues in my area are offering weekday wedding packages at a great deal to the bride.  Are you seeing more weekday weddings in your area?


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