Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Holiday Goodies

I used to create truffle boxes for past holiday seasons, but they were so time-consuming and a hassle. This year, we're going to offer cute holiday cookie bags and fancy present cakes. The cake flavor options are Egg Nog, Chocolate Hazelnut or Chocolate Mint. Hopefully people will enjoy eating and giving these for their holiday parties and dinners!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Junior League Tea Room Table

Every year, the Junior League of Austin throws together a Christmas Affair where you can go shopping and have lunch in the tea room. I was asked to design a table setting for the tea room incorporating the theme of Christmas in Paris. It ended up being quite an endeavor! Even though the cakes weren't real (it was going to be sitting on the table for 5 days), it still took days to complete. Everything on the display is edible - the roses, the handdrawn base, the bows, etc.
There were 30 tables overall, some with just amazing table displays. Here are 2 tables that I thought were just stunning.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Bird Cake

Often a client will want to incorporate a single element from the invitation design into the cake design, such as the swooping bird above. I found the pillow design by Thomas Paul and thought it would work well in a cake design. If you don't know about Thomas Paul, he is one of my favorite designers! http://thomaspaul.com/
The couple also wanted to keep the cake clean and modern while maintaining an element of whimsy. The birds and leaves are all fondant. The 3-d leaves are raised to give some depth the design since the birds are flat. The lighting was a little dark in the ballroom, so please forgive the weird shadows.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Backyardigans Birthday Cake

My daughter's obsession with the Backyardigans led me to create a Backyardigan-themed cake for her 4th birthday. She wanted a cake with Tasha and Uniqua hanging out in their mermaid garden. It was a fun cake to create, and my daughter and her friends were thrilled with it. It was kind of sad to see it get demolished so quickly. She even started to eat the gumpaste figures I made. (I had planned on saving them!). I can now sympathize with the people who pay big $$$ for my cakes, only to experience the heartbreak of watching them get cut up and eaten.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Yummy Cookies!

Today I want to mention a great new addition to the Austin dessert scene - The Cookie Lounge. My friend (and former boss at the Driskill Hotel) Mark Chapman has opened a wonderful little cookie boutique where you can get a freshly baked, custom cookie. You pick your cookie dough and then your mix-ins. Your 10-15 minute wait is rewarded with a hot delicious cookie, oozing with your fillings.
The Cookie Lounge has a fun and modern lounge-like setting, with bright orange built in sofas and a large wall of windows. You can also peek into the bakery next door and watch the bakers at work. It's in West Campus, so parking on the street is tight. I discovered that the parking garage is only $2.00 for an hour, so save time and go for the garage.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Seasonal cakes - Autumn

We designed two fall-themed cakes this month, both using a 3-d leaf format. The first one was based on a previous cake I had designed with climbing branches. Instead of flowers, I applied hand-made fall sugar leaves. For the second cake, the bride showed me a picture she liked and asked me to incorporate a falling leaves design. Each leaf was painted with a copper luster dust to give it some shimmer as well as to coordinate with the linens.
Another thing I like about these cakes is that they show how wedding cakes don't need to follow the convention of the round stacked look. The tiers on the top one are rotated 45 degrees, and the second cake had a little riser under the top tier to give it extra height. Also, the second and bottom tier are intentionally shorter to give it height variation.
Later this month we'll be making two 3-d pumpkin cakes - one for a Halloween party and one for a little girl's birthday. I'll be sure to post some fun Halloween treats!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Fun Groom's Cakes

Although the bride's cake is usually the focal point of a wedding, I thought I would inaugurate my first blog post with a little chat about fun groom's cakes. I live in a southern state, so about 3/4 of the guys want a groom's cake of some sort, whether it's cookies and cupcakes or an elaborate sculpted cake.
In the past month I had opportunities to make some fun and challenging groom's cakes. (It's not really a worthwhile week without a design challenge!)

Yes, this armadillo was a red velvet cake. I might email the bride for some pics of the poor guy butchered. It was a challenge to finish, though, since I hadn't done one before. I ended up cutting out each scale individually in fondant. It was also the first time I had done a stadium, so I had fun (and frustration) figuring out how to make the different elements, especially the stands. It was a surprise for the groom - I can't wait to hear what his reaction was!