Monday, June 30, 2008

Quilt Cake

My mom is the reason for my creative urges, growing up, crafts and art were incorporated into many of our afternoons. So it only makes sense that making things is part of my life.
My mom's passion is quilt making. She takes classes, collects books, watches the shows on tv, and disappears into her quilting room for hours and hours to finish her masterpieces.
One year, on her birthday, I decided to make this quilt cake for her.
Instead of using fondant, I used white modeling chocolate. She doesn't prefer fondant, so I felt that I should use something else, especially since it was her birthday. So I tried the chocolate. It was kind of weird, but because of the oil in the chocolate it didn't stick to the counter when I rolled it out, and it went on pretty well. It doesn't stretch like fondant, so you really have to get your ruler out and make sure you have rolled it big enough.
And then, using a template I printed out off the internet, I traced the quilt pattern, and painted it with luster dust.

Happy Birthday Mom!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Spiderman is for Girls too!

Yes, my daughter has never been one of those frilly types, one of those girls who freaks out when they get their white tights dirty. In fact, I can't remember the last time she wore tights. I think I probably had to pay her to do so.
For her 6th birthday, she wanted to have a spiderman party. I was more than happy to make a cake, though I had to make it on the same night as the bug cake, so it was kinda rushed.
But, not too bad for my second fondant cake, I must say.
And, yes, I still can't pipe to save my life. That's something I must work on this summer.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Happy New Year 2008 !!

Ok, so it's not January. But I have all these cake pics, now that my wonderful family members have dug through their archives and found them for me. I must admit, after I work on a cake I often forget to take a picture. I know, it's lame of me! But usually I finish just in the nick of time, and am running out the door with the cake as I am shaking the cornstarch out of my hair, ha ha (no seriously I am)
So, this is one that I made for a New Years celebration that my family has at my grandma's house every year. I think this may be the first one I made for that occasion. Anyway I was inspired by my lovely sister and her man.
In case you are wondering what the heck it is, it's supposed to be rice cakes, called mochi, stacked up and a tangerine on top. The name for this is Kagami Mochi. This is something that is a traditional Japanese decoration for celebrating the new year. The two cakes symbolize the past and the future, or yin and yang, etc. See what you can learn from wikipedia??? (and this blog)

Bug Cake ~ where it all began

So, I always wanted to be the type of mom who made her kids' birthday cakes and halloween costumes. Well, I accomplished the first one, at least.
The first time I tried covering a cake with marshmallow fondant was so frustrating. I remember that the darn fondant kept sticking like crazy to the countertop! I would dust the counter, roll it all smooth and perfect, then go and try to pick it up and it would be totally stuck like glue to the counter. In fact, I had to roll it back up and walk away several times. But I never gave up, because I was so determined to get that cake done. That, and there was no plan B. So, finally I decided to use a TON of powdered sugar on the countertop, and dust and dust after every time I rolled, and voila, it worked like a charm!
My son, *T*, loved to lay on the ground and watch ants for hours. Sometimes he would find a tiny spider and follow it around, eventually catching it and bringing it to me (eek). So, for his third birthday, I made him a bug cake. He had a bug themed party, I bought a pack of ladybugs from the hardware store, and a bunch of plastic take out containers from a wholesale store, and the kids made their own "bug houses". It was so cute.
Anyway back to the cake. I bought this stuff called 'candy clay' that looked like playdough and had these wonderful flavors, like the green one was green apple, and the red one was cherry, etc. And I made a hundred or more bugs, ladybugs, caterpillars, bees, beetles, butterflies, dragonflies, etc. I did this over the week before the party. I even fished out little black sprinkles from my multicolored sprinkle bottle and used them for eyes.
After I finally got the fondant on, I used the leftover fondant, colored a darker green, to make grass. I rolled it out, cut a strip, fringed it with some kitchen scissors, and glued it on with water.
Then I piped a swirly vine all over the cake and added leaves, and put all of the little bugs on with a little icing for the glue. I was so proud of this cake, it turned out so cute!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Kitty =^..^=

This isn't really about cake, much, but I took this picture while I was in the midst of decorating a cake. This sums up what sort of activities are happening in my house as I'm running back and forth like a mad scientist at two in the morning. Oh, well, I'm a stay at home mom who loves to spend time with my kids, so all cake related stuff is done when they're sleeping.

Dave and Renee's cakes

Ah, Dave and Renee. These people are definitely some of the nicest ones I've ever met. They are so easygoing, and friendly. True friends for life.
I made a 50th birthday cake for Dave, who is a jazz band teacher. When I delivered the cake I was totally blown away at how many people were there to celebrate his greatness!
The bottom cake is a trombone case, and the other cakes are decorated with fondant and painted to look like wrapped presents. I purchased a miniature trombone from ebay and put it on the top by the "50". I also bought edible rice paper and printed out sheet music onto it and used it to decorate. Also, I had some edible ink pens so I cut small pieces of rice paper and asked his students to write little messages for him and we scattered them around the cake.

And, some friends had a surprise birthday party for Renee, and the theme was a 'tea party', so I decided it was fitting to make a teapot cake.
Looking back, I really should have looked at more teapots before I made this spout. Renee joked that it was phallic. (I guess it really is) hee hee!!!

Happy birthday guys!!!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Monkey Cake

So, we were visiting my in-laws, and my favorite niece was having a birthday. I asked her what kind of cake she wanted and she requested monkeys. Not exactly what you would expect a six year old to say, right? But I love a challenge. Which is what I had. A huge challenge. What do you do when you're hundreds of miles away from home without any of your cake stuff?? It was totally like a food network cake challenge. I had only three hours to complete it, before they came back from the pool. So I used what I had, amongst my mom in law's huge collection of kitchen tools, and after a quick trip to Joann's, and I think it turned out really cute! My niece loved it too, which is the most important part anyway.

~~ Love you T* ! ~~

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

~~ *Cheers !!* ~~

These are cakes that I made for my friend. She ordered one for her father in law's birthday, and one for her father's birthday. I thought that I would put them together since they seem like they would compliment each other in a bar. hee hee!

~~Tapas Cake~~

This one is all edible, from the manchego cheese in the center, to the little bowls of tapas. The bowls themselves are little cakes covered in fondant, and the tapas are made of white chocolate clay. The very bottom is a large brownie I covered in fondant and then painted to look like a big wooden board.

~~ Pacifico Beer Cake ~~

The next cake is a Pacifico beer bottle. This was one of the most difficult cakes I have ever made, because it required much planning and structural support. I had to screw a dowel to a square board for the center, and build the cake around it. The bottom part of the bottle is cake, and the top is a foam 'cone' that I shaped with a saw. I mixed a ton of cocoa powder into the fondant to make it that dark brown color, and then after covering the bottle, I rubbed shortening all over it to make it all shiny. Oh, and I cut the label out of yellow fondant and hand painted the details onto it, and stuck it on the bottle with some royal icing. Whew!

Christine's Birthday Cake

Aren't cousins wonderful? I am one of the few lucky people who had a great cousin to grow up with. We're the same age, and I think that because our moms are sisters we hung out together alot during our childhood.

My cousin is a custom jewelry designer. Hm. Maybe custom stuff is in our genes somewhere, some ancient japanese thing in our bloodline......

Anyway this is one of her amazing creations, it's called 'Haiku Necklace - Plum Blossoms and Branches' - isn't it so beautiful ??

And this is the birthday cake I made for her, with its own version of the necklace made of fondant and painted with luster dust.....

OK, now go check out her website!

We love you Christine!!!! You're the best!!!


First Blog !

Hello, I am a self taught cake decorator. I don't know very much about baking, but I love sculpture and since fondant is like clay, I was pretty comfortable using it. I started out making cakes for my children's birthday parties and other family functions. It has become one of my passions now, and I make cakes all the time, for friends and friends of friends, etc.

Here's one of my latest cakes.

~~Teddy Bear Cake~~

My sister had a baby shower for her friend, who's having a baby girl!

The bears and lollipops are all made out of fondant, which disappointed my kids so much! They took a bite out of the lollipops and made a very interesting expression, immediately followed by a glare in my direction. heh heh.

~~ Indiana Jones Cake ~~

This next cake is one I made for my son's buddy. He had a cool Indiana Jones party, and what party is complete without a cool Indiana Jones cake ??

The skull is made of hard crack sugar, I bought this really cool 3 dimensional mold from this place ~ ~
Anyway the molds are made for chocolate, but if you cool the sugar by pouring it out onto a silicone mat, and wait until the sugar no longer sticks to the mat, it should be cool enough to handle and actually pick up and stuff into the mold. Since the mold is 3 dimensional, there are two sides to "stuff". When they cooled completely, I used a lighter to melt the edges and stuck them together. It was very cool. The kids at the party kept asking if they could have it. I was like, "ummm, ask your mom"
The bottom part is supposed to look like the building where Indy goes to find the holy grail. I used a cake made in a sand castle pan and sliced off the very front of the cake, which is basically the door and two pillars, and cut a big square hole in the front of my 6 layer square cake, stuck the sliced parts in there, cemented it in with frosting, and covered the whole thing with fondant. You can't see my handy work because the skull is in the way.
Oh, and under the hat, I cut a large hole and put a little plastic cup with some water and dry ice in it, and it created some fog, which you can barely see coming out from under the hat.
Not too shabby for a six year old birthday party, eh ??

~~ Emmalene Cake ~~

And, this cake was made for my dear friend's baby shower. She had already picked the name! lucky me! the flowers are all made from gumpaste, and I made the crown and lettering out of royal icing. The crown idea was obtained from my Collette Peters cake book, my bible!!! In retrospect, I needed like three more days for the icing to completely dry. The crown and lettering were painted with luster dust.

** Pam **