h1

My First Drip Cake

June 6, 2017

IMG_3898

Last week I had the pleasure of making a cake for a great girl and her friend on their graduation. Drip cakes are so popular right now, so when coming up with ideas for the cake we decided to incorporate the drip technique with graduation decor.  The school colors I need to use were light blue, white and black. The cake had a lot of blue on it so I decided to throw in a little color with the pink flowers, meringue cookie drops and little yellow tennis balls. The graduates play tennis so I wanted to put something to do with the sport somewhere in the cake decor. I formed yellow fondant balls and used a bone tool to make the seam pattern on the ball. It’s pretty subtle but cute.

IMG_3899

For this cake I had to gather all my sprinkles, colored sugars and chocolate. I made white chocolate bark with a marbled technique and also added candy balls and sprinkles to the bark. It was my first time making bark and also my first time making meringue cookies. I looked at so many meringue recipes and they’re all different. I picked a recipe and my first batch turned out ok but my second batch was disaster. At lease I had a couple of cookies to chose from.

IMG_3900

I also used the buttercream watercolor technique for the base color of each cake. I iced the cakes in white buttercream and then put them into the fridge to chill. Fifteen minutes later, I put dabs of blue buttercream on the cake and used my scraper to spread the blue throughout the cakes. Here’s a link to the tutorial I followed:

 

h1

Star Wars Cake – 10th Birthday

May 30, 2017

Last week we celebrated my son’s 10th birthday…2 months early.  We wanted to have his birthday party with all of his friends before everyone left for the summer. It was such a fun party and I know all the boys and Katch’s little sister loved it! The theme this year was all about Star Wars. Like I’ve said in the past, it’s so neat to see my kids change and evolve into these little people that love different things every year. Last year it was all about ROLLER COASTERS and this year with the video game Star Wars Battlefront and the movie Rogue One, my son was hooked on Star Wars! I asked him to sketch out ideas for cakes for his big birthday and the main thing he wanted was two lightsabers crossing on the front of the cake. So we came up with this…

04179BE0-BA57-41FE-A092-428997C5E498

I must admit, it was hard picking decorations to go on the cake because there are so many iconic things that represent Star Wars.  My son definitely wanted a DeathStar and an AT-AT Walker. We also wanted to represent different planets and worlds on our cake. On the base of the cake, I created a wooded forest to represent Endor where the Ewok live, the desert of Tatooine with a Sarlacc creature and the cold snowy planet of Hoth.

4AD0E5DF-6AEA-4420-A60B-0FCBE1D9887A

The DeathStar was actually a styrofoam ball that I bought at Joann’s with my 40% off coupon. I covered it in gray fondant and was able to work on this when I had a spare moment during the day.  R2-D2 and BB-8 were made from rice krispies treats and cover in fondant.

0371C7AC-FA52-4E22-AD2D-595EB56F2BDA

We also decided to put the most famous saying on the front of the cake in white, “May the force be with you.” It really stood out from the black fondant. The lightsabers on the middle tier were glowsticks that I activated right before the party. I stuck them in the styrofoam dummy cake and quickly made little handles to make them look like true lightsabers.

5A2882AB-33C6-4C7D-B630-172E053B6068

The AT-AT Walker took the most time to make. There were lots of little details that I tried to incorporate and keep it authentic looking.

869D5442-A3A5-4CDB-AD29-20F0690EBF17

I covered each cake in black fondant and splattered the fondant with white airbrush paint to represent “outer space.”

98AA0BD8-DC61-4F66-8C48-60CEB3ABBD43

The ewok I made was a tiny thing but it fit right into the forest of Endor.

IMG_3874

I wanted to show you the little TIE fighters I made for the cake. They were the perfect decor for outer space because I just stuck them into the side of the cake and it looked like they were flying around.

I hope you enjoyed the Star Wars cake and I will be posting pictures of the party and the details I incorporated in the party.

 

h1

50th Wedding Anniversary Cake

May 9, 2017

204C6EC7-A351-41D9-84E7-31D3CCE772A3

This past weekend I made a cake for a 50th Wedding Anniversary party.  The focus was on the couple and the motto they have for their marriage, “Together Forever.” The cake was decorated with circles that represented a huge part of their marriage, their kids and grandkids. What an accomplishment, 50 years with your soulmate!

EC206021-B2F1-408F-A508-C600165EB8B2

I made the cake topper a week before the party so that it had plenty of time to dry.  This was the first time I had made glasses for a fondant figurines, they were pretty cute. All I did was take my needle nose pliers and bend the floral wire into circles. Don’t forget, whenever you have non edible items on cakes to always tell your customer to remove before eating or don’t eat the figurine at all…it’s just for decoration. It’s crazy to say but some people would seriously eat the glasses. I had one customer when I first started making cakes eat a whole figurine in one bite! I said “There’s a toothpick in figurine! It’s the internal structure for the fondant and you just ate it!” I guess he was okay the next day because we didn’t hear anything from them…..I’m glad they were family friends. (It was actually half a toothpick, but still I couldn’t believe he just ate it)

3A3DBFB3-FC8D-448D-A4F3-B53CF5E5521F

The larger circles on the cake represented the couple’s kids and grandkids. Initially, I was going to paint the names on each circle but it just looked to harsh. I tried black writing, blue and white writing for the colored circles but it just didn’t look right.  And then I remembered these little letters in the clay section of Michael’s craft store near our house. I imprinted each name on the fondant circles with the clay text embossing set. It looked so much better than writing them and much more elegant.

IMG_3783

Above is the rice cereal love seat that the couple was sitting on. I made a big batch of rice cereal treats, let them cool a bit and shaped them into a tiny couch. Later, I covered the rice cereal treats in brown fondant and used a Wilton tool to score the fondant to make it look worn. I also brushed brown petal dust on sections of the couch to give it a “leather look.”

IMG_3785

Here’s to long marriages and many more years to come!!!

h1

Baseball Theme Cake

April 14, 2017

IMG_3758

It’s baseball season again and our family are now fans of the Seattle Mariners! I made this cake for a dinner party that revolved around baseball.  I only had to feed 6 people so I made an 8 inch square vanilla cake…with plenty to spare! I made a bag of peanuts because peanuts are a staple for watching a good old baseball game. The Mariners hat has the retro Trident logo from Spring Training and the baseball is decorated with lots of fondant seams. I never noticed that baseball bases have lined patterns on the top and are  not totally squared. The edges of the base are sloped so this made my icing job a little easier because the corners and the top didn’t have to be level. The base was dusted with cocoa powder to make it look like it was used and stepped on.

IMG_3757

All of the baseball decor is edible and made from homemade Rice Krispies Treats, covered in fondant. The peanuts were made by rolling a ball and then using your finger to roll an indention in the fondant to resemble the shape of a peanut. I used one of my rubber mats to impress the texture on the peanut. I dusted each nut with cocoa powder to give them more dimension.  The grass was made from left over vanilla buttercream and the dirt was crushed graham crackers.

IMG_3729

Here we are cheering on the Mariners!

h1

Chalkboard Baby Shower Cake

February 28, 2017

img_3484

This weekend I had the pleasure of making a baby shower cake for some of our awesome friends. The theme of the party was “A Baby is Brewing.” It was a party for everyone and it had plenty of great beers and lots of great food. My friend, the wonderful host, made the cutest beer bottle labels that matched the decorations perfectly. The invitation to the party was a chalkboard style so I decided to go with that theme. This was my first chalkboard cake and I had a good time putting it together.

img_3487

The cake was a 7 inch round vanilla filled and iced in vanilla buttercream. I covered the cake in black fondant and painted it with white gel color. I watered down the thick food gel with vodka and hand painted the lettering. This was a pretty simple cake but made a good statement. One thing that I would have done differently was use smaller brushes. My white “chalk” lines were pretty thick. I really need to invest in some tiny brushes like the ones you see that have 3 bristles.

img_3486

The cake topper was a paper garland that matched the party decorations throughout the house. I wanted to keep the other decoration on the cake simple because the topper and “chalk” writing were so busy. Little fondant balls are perfect decorations to fill space, give color or just make a cake look fun. I hope you like it!

h1

Beach Theme Cake

January 25, 2017

img_3302

This week I made a cute little 6 inch vanilla cake that was all about the beach. It was such a simple and clean cake with a few details that really made you look twice to see how it was put together.

The beach chair on top was started 5 days before cake was due. I cut all of the white slats of fondant and let them dry for four days, flipping them over each day. Here’s a link to the template that I used for the chair:

http://cakecentral.com/modules.php?name=gallery&file=displayimage&pid=1716241

You have to be very patient when putting the chair together.  Have your royal icing in a bag with a small tip to pipe on little amounts to the joints that hold the chair together. It’s almost like a puzzle.

img_3306

I don’t have any sea shell molds so I searched Pinterest on how to make fondant shells. I found these great tutorials at wickedgoodies.net and this is how to make the shells above without a mold:

https://www.wickedgoodies.net/modeling-chocolate-seashell-tutorial/

For the starfish, I cut out a star with a fondant star cutter. I shaped the arms with my fingers, squeezing them at the end to make them thinner. I pressed a rubber mat on the star to give it texture. Last, I painted the star with pumpkin color petal dust to give it a little more dimension.

img_3303

The edible sand was made in my food processor with graham crackers, Vanilla Waffers and light brown sugar.  It was delicious sand!

h1

Plants Vs. Zombies -Chomper Cake

January 7, 2017

This week I decided to make a gravity defying cake for my son. It’s Christmas break so I had some time to fiddle with cake stuff and come up with something I’ve never made before.

image

This is a Chomper! My son plays the game Plants vs. Zombies and it has so many characters that are colorful, creative and very weird. The game is made up of all kinds of plants that are fighting zombies to keep them out of their town.

I decided to make a chomper because it’s a main character in the game that eats zombies. I really wanted to create another gravity defying cake and this was a good time to do it. The shape and make-up of the chomper has nice curvy lines that have an organic flow, like the of a stem on a flower.

I got my carpenter tools out and put together pvc pipes and flanges on a solid wood base. I referenced my favorite book, Artisan Cake Company’s Visual Guide to Cake Decorating, for structure help.

image

Chompers eat zombies! I decided to sculpt a half eaten zombie leg that hangs out of the mouth of the chomper. I tried to tell a story using the cake and the board together. I put footsteps in the mud on the board showing that the zombie was walking and the chomper gobbled him up, leaving only his leg.

image

Here’s me and my little guy and his crazy video game.

image

There wasn’t much cake in this chomper but just enough for our family. The bulk of the cake was made of Rice Krispies Treats, styrofoam and PVC. I made a couple of mistakes with the structure of the chomper but I’m so glad this was just a cake for my family….they’re my testers! The head of the chomper was in two parts, the bottom was RKT and foam and the top section was cake. The main mistake I made with the head was I put too many RKT on the bottom of the foam…hanging RKT really DON’T work. After we cut into the cake the RKT started to sag and separate from the foam. I learned my lesson!!

image

Above is the aftermath of my family devouring the chomper cake. As you can see, the bottom of the chomper head totally fell off. I still have so much to learn about cake structure and sculpting. I really enjoyed making this cake for my son and learning how versatile cake can really be.