Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Family Crest Grooms Cake

All of my regular readers know that I enjoy doing unique cakes, and this one ranks ranks right up there!  When I first met with this couple they mentioned the possibility of us doing a replica of the groom's family crest.  Family Crest?  I had heard of them, but I guess I didn't realize that people still had them.  In my family, the only family crest was the tube of toothpaste in the bathroom!  ba-dum-pum!

Anyhoo... on to the cake!  This was a big goom's cake; the picture you see above is on a 22"x22" board.  The main shield design was fairly basic, so we chose to print a template of the crest and hand cut the larger pieces.  We used the open-source program PosteRazor to enlarge the image to my specs.  The lion (I guess that's a lion!!) and the family name?  They were much harder and more intricate, so we used the Cricut to cut those. 

Once the letters and lion were cut, it took a while to remove all the little pieces without messing the graphic up.  We started by cutting the modeling chocolate while cold, and then immediately after cutting (which seemed to take FOREVER) we put it right back in the freezer for a 10 minutes.  We alternated working on it for 10 minutes and then freezing it again for 10 minutes until we had all the pieces removed and cleaned up all the cuts.  Then it was on the cake and FINISHED!

Hope you enjoyed it and we'll see you back here on Friday, K?

And... Happy Anniversary to my beloved husband Chaddy!  Today we have been married for 14 fun-filled years!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Orange Daisy Vols Wedding Cake

Sometimes a couple are such big sports fans that they want to incorporate that into their wedding cake.  This is one of the best ways to do it right; by bringing in the colors of the couple's team.

This wedding cake accompanied the Smokey the Dog cake from Tuesday.  I started by making gerber daises in orange and white out of gumpaste.  They were fairly easy to make, but they were SO fragile.  I lost a lot of these to the cake gods.

I piped orange paisleys on alternating tiers and highlighted them with some small white dots.  Each tier got an orange ribbon border.  And an orange monogram on a fondant plaque finished it all up.

This cake went to The Car Barn in Chattanooga.  It was out first time there, and the venue was really great!  It was spacious and decorated very sharply.

Y'all have a great weekend, OK?

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

UT Vols Grooms Cake - Smokey the Dog

Click for a larger image

Sometimes a cake just needs one super wow element to take it from average to awesome.  On this cake, old Smokey the Dog is definitely the star!  And I have Chaddy to thank for him!

We have done sports logos before, but Chaddy said that this was the most intricate we have attempted.  Most of the logos we have done previously allow for a lot of layering; placing one color on top of another.  This design really didn't allow for that though; everything had to be inlaid.  It was one GIANT modeling chocolate jigsaw puzzle!!

From start to finish, he worked on the design over 3 nights for a total of 8 hours.  He spent about 2 1/2 hours the first night just sorting out the graphics.  That means taking the logo and not only breaking it down into its separate colors to make cut files, but also mapping out a strategy for how each color will fit together or layer onto each other.

As a side note:  I just found out last week that due to legal actions taken by the makers of the Cricut Cake that current versions of neither SCAL (Sure Cuts a Lot) nor MTC (Makes the Cut) will cut on the Cricut.  This is truly sad news indeed, as I wouldn't use my Cricut near as much if I couldn't cut custom graphics.

An in-progress shot of the black logo after the charcoal inlay.

The rest of the time was spent making the various modeling chocolate colors and cutting them out and then putting them all together!!

Since the resulting topper (do you even call that a topper?) came our so great, we wanted to really go all out on the photo.  I have been contemplating "propping" my cake pictures for a while, and this was the first time I really did it.  We got 2 yards to Vols fabric as a backdrop and used the football helmet I bought long ago to use as a model for a sculpted helmet cake.

How about you guys?  Have you used props in your wedding (or just regular) cake pictures?  If so, what worked well for you?

Friday, August 19, 2011

UGA Chocolate Drizzle Groom's Cake

I really enjoy doing these chocolate drizzle cakes.  The drips look random, but don't let that fool you - I control each one of them!!

I start out by icing the cake as normal (leave those edible images and other decorations off for now) and putting in the fridge to get nice and cold.  Then I'll begin pouring the ganache on top of the cake, spreading it just to the edge.  It will start to go over just a little and you want it to, but the cold cake will start to firm that ganache almost immediately.  For the long drips, I'll put some ganache in a small squeeze bottle and apply each one.  Again the cake is cold, so the level of control you have is much better than you would expect..

Once you're done, then you can apply any graphics or borders and the cake will be ready to go!

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Silver and Gold and Sparkly

I really like making display cakes.  I have complete creative freedom, no time (or spoilage) constraints, and I get to enjoy my artwork much longer than a regular cake.

I worked on this display cake a few weeks ago and I was very pleased with the way it turned out.  I wanted a create something with some bling, because it seems every other bride coming into the shop wants sparkles or rhinestones on their cake.

This cake features quite a few non-edible parts, and it's all the blingy parts.  I have bought the sugar diamonds before and my brides are just not happy with the sparkle or the price!!  For this cake I used individual rhinestones, a rhinestone rope as a border, and a gold rhinestone buckle as the center of a bow on the bottom tier.

One of my newest cake idols. Lori Hutchinson (The Caketress) likes to do a scoring effect on fondant that I really like.  I did a little of that here on the top tier and really liked the effect.  I'll be adding that to my bag of tricks for sure!!

The buckle was a little hard to see so I took a closeup of it... and it's still sorta hard to see.  I took loops of fondant and placed the buckle in the center and then place a strip of fondant around the buckle, as if it really were a buckle for the gold bow. 

I hope you all have a great week and stop back in on Friday for a neat little groom's cake!

Friday, August 12, 2011

ICES 2011 Charlotte - The Cakes

OK, so on Tuesday we talked about all the great people I met at ICES.  So today I wanted to showcase some of the great cakes I saw at ICES.  There's just a couple of problems...  Firstly, Chaddy brought his new lens and while most of the cake shots turned out good, some were just so blurry that we couldn't use them.  Lesson learned: bring the general purpose kit lens next time.  Secondly, we didn't do a great job of keeping track of which person did which cake.  BUT! I refuse to let that stop me from posting the pics.  Please please, please though - if you who know who did one of these "unknown" cakes please leave me a comment so I can give these people proper credit.  They certainly deserve it!

And just to be super clear and perfectly ethical - I didn't make any of the following cakes, these are only some of the amazing cakes I took pictures of at ICES 2011.

Cake by Barbara Evans

Look at the cake above by Barbara Evans.  I love the unique cake shapes, the piping and stringwork.  I even love the color.  And the lace molds are nice - in fact a LOT of the cakes there had Earlene's molds on them.  They are the best!!

Cake by Dalila Cabrita
This cake by Dalila Cabrita was SO striking!  A black cake is hard to pull off, but this one is awesome!!  The leaves and flowers appeared to be all hand-painted and the buzz was that all the feathers were made individually!  The parrot by itself was incredible.  Even the eye was glossy!

Cake #1 by Unknown - ID in the comments!
I dared not touch any of the cakes, but I wanted to touch this one SO badly.  The topper was SO pretty but I just couldn't tell how it was made.  Sculpted?  Mold?  Both?  I just don't know.  I am in awe.

Cake #2 by Unknown - ID in the comments!

I thought this cake was a great use of lace molds.  I have never seen this type of layering with the pearl and lace mold, but I really like it.  I even liked the little gumpaste urn on top!

Cake #3 by Unknown - ID in the comments!

The cake above was one of the prettiest examples of brush embroidery I think I have ever seen.  This is not a technique I have ever used before, but now I may have to try it!

Cake #4 by Unknown - ID in the comments!

I thought the cake above was really cute.  It made me smile when I saw it.  Even though I didn't do it, it is very much my style of cake.

Cake by Sheila Miller

This was the first time I have seen a cake on its side and I like the look!  This is a cake dummy, but I'm not sure how *I* would turn a cake on its side and make it look that good.  The curls around the bottom were so cute and girly.  And the cake stand?  Nuh Uh!  Not a cake stand at all!  It appeared to be made from gumpaste - it was certainly edible!!

Cake #5 by Unknown - ID in the comments!

This cake shows a great use of the Cricut machine.  There was lots of details on this cake and I really liked the darker color palette.

Cake #6 by Unknown - ID in the comments!

The piping, the swags, the pearl work on the cake above was AMAZING!  There is so much going on with this cake, but it all meshes perfectly together to make a cake masterpiece.

Cake by Elizabeth Dickson

Wen I first saw this cake, I thought "Oh cool, they used fabric on the cake board" - NOPE!  That's all hand painting and there is a lot of it.  Just beautiful!

Cake by Juanita Holloway

I have used marbled fondant on a cake before, but never a cake like this!!  Juanita has taken something we normally consider casual and made something completely elegant.  Great work!!

Cake by Melonie Stanger

I don't want to play favorites here, but it seems like a lot of the cakes I oohed and ahhed over had Melonie's name beside it.  So much so that I sent her a Facebook Friend request from the hotel room later on that night.  This cake was right up my alley.  I like the button-covered hourglass tier, I really like the fondant knot on the bottom tier.  Together, I love it all.  And Melonie's from Georgia too, just like me.  Maybe someday we'll get to meet!

Cake by Terry Tuttle

I'm not exactly sure what this style of cake is called (is it Australian style?), but it's very pretty and unique looking.  Terry is very talented!!

Cake by Jo Drummond

You would not begin to believe the level of detail on this sewing basket cake!  Everything here is edible, I really wished the picture was better, and I'm so glad it wasn't really blurry like some of the others.  Even the cake board was covered in a tape measure.  I just LOVE that idea!  Great job Jo!

Cake by Vera Cainco

Maybe you can't really call this cake - I don't exactly know.  I looked at it for what seemed like an eternity and I'll be darned if I could figure out how it was done.  It was just absolutely fabulous!  My hat's off to you, Vera!

Display by Penny Cunningham & the Carolina Memory Makers

The centerpiece of the whole show was this huge Corvette cake, and I should be horse-whipped for not taking the time to find out more about this awesome cake.  I'm not sure if it was life-size or not, but if it wasn't, it was really close to it.  And then I get around to the back and see all the detail - wowzers!  Does anyone know who did this?  Chaddy Googled it and couldn't find it online.  Update:  He did come through finally and found an article about it here:

Display by Penny Cunningham & the Carolina Memory Makers
And if I read correctly, fellow blog frequenter Angela Barton made those amazing basketball displays.  They looked SO real.  Chaddy wanted to touch one of them, but I wouldn't let him!  He swore they were real basketballs!

As you can see, I was in Cake Heaven at ICES.  If there's ever one close to you, take the time to make the trip.  I couldn't be a part of the entire convention this time, but I drove 6 hours and paid $50 for a 1 day admission and it was worth every penny and every minute in the car!  Let's not even talk about all the stuff I bought!!

Enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

ICES 2011 Charlotte - Celebrity Edition

This weekend we didn't have any cakes on the books so Chaddy and I packed an overnight bag and jaunted off to Charlotte, NC for ICES 2011.  Even though we had to get up at 4:00 (that's frikkin AM) to get there for the opening, there was SO much going on that we didn't stop until after the vendor room closed at 5:00.

This place was filled to the brim with cake celebrities!  I certainly knocked several people off my "Cake Celebrity Bucket List" (cake people I MUST meet before I die!).  As much as Chaddy stays behind the scenes, he keeps up with all the cake stars (and reads your blogs too).  We had been at the show about 15 minutes and I was talking to a lady about a new airbrush when I hear Chaddy saying "Holy crap, YOU'RE Debbie Goard!  I'm Chad White  I LOVE your cakes!!". By the time I got over there they were deep in conversation about sculpting and pound cakes.  Chad pulled me in saying, "Honey, this is Debbie Goard from 'Debbie Does Cakes'".  She was super sweet and we talked for quite a while.  She even gave me some great advice on airbrushes!

Me and Debbie Goard of Debbie Does Cakes
We turn on the next isle and I see the Fondarific Booth in the distance.  In the booth I see Joshua John Russell and Tracy Quisenberry from Icing Smiles.  We have been big supporters of Icing Smiles since they began so I had to introduce myself.  Amazingly enough, she remembered us right off and thanked us for our help during their Pepsi Refresh Grant campaign.  We talked a while about how their organization has grown and some of the hurdles they have overcome.

Me and Tracy Quisenberry of Icing Smiles
Just a few feet down and I see Mike McCarey's booth.  Inside the booth?  None other than Mike McCarey and Lauren Kitchens!!  I spoke to Mike for a while and told him how modeling chocolate had changed my life! - His response: "Well, then I did my job!"  I told him how excited I was to be taking his Big Bird class in October and then Lauren walked up and joined the conversation.  She was SO nice in person (as is Mike) and told me she would be back in Atlanta in April to teach classes.  I do believe I'll be signing up!!

Me & Lauren Kitchens of Fancy Cakes by Lauren

Karen Portaleo from Highland Bakery, Looking beautiful in red

I'll have to admit that when I spotted Kerry Vincent that I actually gasped a little.  Chad snapped this picture before we actually made it to her booth (he's always scouting ahead) but when we got to her someone had just brought her a salad.  She was trying desperately to eat, but everyone kept stopping her and introducing themselves and asking for photos and autographs.  She was super kind and never gave off any semblance of being mad or put off because of it.  A class-act all the way.  I decided I would move on and try to allow her to eat ad stop back later.  Unfortunately, I didn't make it back.

Hall of Fame Sugar Artist Kerry Vincent

Mary Moy was ALL over that convention.  I didn't get to met her because she was always on the move, constantly running around or doing demos.  I can only wish I had her energy!  Here she is doing a pulled sugar demo - so talented!

Mary Moy from Patisserie 46

I have seen Mike Elder on it seems like a dozen of the TLC's Ultimate Cake Off, always in a challenge.  So we visit the cake room and in the back corner they were having a cake challenge, and there's Mike... going at it!  We later saw him again sculpting a car cake (below).  He had drawn a HUGE crowd - that's showmanship!

Mike Elder from Black Sheep Custom Cakes

When I first spotted Norm he was pointing someone in the right direction of a booth.  I had to introduce myself.  He was such a nice man, he's exactly the guy you know and love from The Food Network Challenges.

Me & Norman Davis of The Sweet Life
Chaddy and Zane Beg of The Sweet Life

We walked right around the corner and ran into none other than Norm's Challenge partner, Zane Beg.  He and Chaddy hit it off and talked for several minutes.  Zane was awesome, just super nice, with the cutest smile!

Sharon Zambito of SugarEd Productions

All day long, Ashley Vicos was running around in the hugest pinky/purpley glittered high heels.  If I walked in those for more than an hour I would be in the Emergency Room.  But not Sweet Ashley; this picture was taken right before the vendor room closed and she was still going strong.  When Chaddy walked up to her he said, "Wow, you're a tall drink of water!"  Not his best pick-up line, thank goodness!

Chaddy & Ashley Vicos of Sweet Ashley's & "Have Cake, Will Travel"
And I saw so many more cake celebs that I didn't get pictures of!  Marina Sousa, Jason Ellis, Dana Herbert, Jay Qualls,  and Edna de la Cruz, just to name a few.  Rumor was that Lindsey Sinatra and Colette Peters were there also, but sadly I didn't see them! :(

And I haven't even talked about The Cake Room yet!  OK, how about you stop back in on Friday and we'll look at some awesome cakes from ICES 2011?

Friday, August 5, 2011

Moving Away Cake

This past weekend I said "farewell" to a dear friend.  My friend Sherri, a wedding coordinator in Chattanooga, is moving to Nashville, TN with her family due to her husband's job.

She had a big "See You Soon" party Friday at The Fairyland Club.  She called and asked me about ordering a cake.  I told her that she couldn't order one, but that I would gladly donate one for the party!

Since I had free reign on this project, I decided to start with a round cake covered in fondant.  I used edible pens to draw a map of the route from Chattanooga to Nashville.  I did this on the front and back sides of the cake and then covered the sides with some Chattanooga and Nashville edible images.

For the top, I decided to do a moving box.  I started with a square cake and Chaddy made up some cardboard colored modeling chocolate panels.  We made 2 top flaps and stuffed one side with mini marshmallows, which in context looked amazingly like packing peanuts.  I printed some "Fragile" and "This Side Up" labels on edible images and placed them on the box sides.  The last detail on the cake was to make packing tape marks.  I started by using painter's tape to mark off the tape lines and then painting a very thin coat of piping gel.  When I removed the painter's tape, it made the piping gel "tape" have nice clean lines.

It was a real hit at the party, and I smiled every time I heard a new guest walk in and say "Who put a box on top of the cake?!"  They had to get right up on it before they realized it WAS the cake!

Have a great weekend!  Anybody going to Charlotte this weekend for ICES??  Chaddy and I will be there - look us up!  We'll try to monitor our Twitter feed... use hashtag #ICES !!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Rhinestones and Gold

I made this wedding cake a couple of weeks ago for a lovely couple at the Fairyland Club.  This is another in the "bling" series that have been all the rage with my brides these days.

I had great time making this cake, as this was my first experience with using these foam separators.  They worked well, I just covered them with fondant and painted them with pearl dust.  Luckily for me, I have found that Wedding White Fondarific matches my buttercream almost exactly.  It comes in very handy when I need to mix elements on a cake.

The rest of the cake is buttercream, except for the golden curls, which I also made from Fondarific that I extruded and then painted gold after they were placed on the cake.

The bling on this cake was all provided by the bride.  She bought the 5-row rhinestones and the rhinestone buckles (the center of each tier) while she and her fiance were visiting in New York.  It was the first thing they purchased for their wedding.

GIVEAWAY UPDATE:   Oh yeah, today's the day we announce the winner(s) of our Marshmallow giveaway.  We didn't get over 100 new "likes" on Facebook, but we decided to give away 2 tins anyway.  Congratulations to Maria and Jenna!  I will get your marshmallows in the mail within a week!


Related Posts with Thumbnails