My Best Friend’s Wedding

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I have an amazing group of girlfriends who are my best friends. And this past weekend, one of them got married. Katie asked me to make her cake and I knew for Katie it had to be all out. We went with a huge four tier square cake and cake pops.

It’s funny, I actually tried to be proactive with this and I spent a couple of evenings before I made the cake doing things like getting all the decor cut out on my cricut machine. I spent forever rolling out sheets of gumpaste to dry over night and then cut them all out the next night. Well, when I got the cake stacked and went to decorate… guess what? I’d cut all the decor an inch too tall!!!!! Crap.

Well, I went with a plan B. I made an emergency run to the craft store and picked up a mold that you can press fondant into to get some nice shapes. In the end, it all came together wonderfully.
It was an outdoor wedding, but there was a lovely little air conditioned room for the cake. It was perfect.
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I had never made cake pops before, but they turned out just lovely!
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The white and pink went so nicely with the aqua!

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So cute!
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The funny part about this cake was that some of the cake… was, in fact, a lie. LOL
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The bottom tier was made of foam! It wasn’t really cake at all. It was a false tier lol. the large tier was lemon cake filled with a delicious lemon filling, the middle was vanilla bean filled with vanilla bean buttercream and the top tier was strawberry with vanilla buttercream.
It was the first time I had ever worked with vanilla beans! I loved it. I cut them open and the whole house smelled like vanilla! Yum! Even though the strawberry tier was the smallest, I put an entire carton of fresh strawberries into it! haha. The strawberry to cake ratio was almost equal lol
Katie wanted the lemon cake to be the largest because it’s her favorite. Originally, I was going to make the lemon curd myself, but while I was at Cake Craft picking up supplies, I saw they had some premade… the ladies swore to me that it was delicious and I figured it would save me an hour or so of my life, so I went for it haha. It was so good and it even came in an awesome bag that you just snip the tip off of and pipe it into the cake!

In the end, it was a heck of a night and a hell of a party. There was a taco bar, a lot of beer and a lot of dancing.
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Congratulations you two. <3

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Tutorial Tuesday: How to Stack a Tiered Cake

People ask me all the time what they need to do to ensure the integrity of their tiered cakes. I’ll show you how I do it.

First I cover my cakes with fondant. This is a bit more tricky with buttercream covered cakes… but I do most of my cakes in fondant.

The bottom cake is given a support system. Honestly, drinking straws work awesome. I find the center of my cake and come out a couple of inches in each direction and insert a straw. Be careful not to put the supports out further than the next cake with overlap.
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Pull the straws up a tiny bit and cut each one so that once you push it back into the cake, it’s level with the cake and rests on the bottom of the cake board. The concept here is that the next cake’s weight will be supported completely by these straws and it won’t crush this cake.
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Now, sometimes when I do a tiered cake, I’ll add a center support to keep the cake from falling over or sliding around, coming off center etc.
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I usually use a wooden skewer in this case. Be sure that your skewer is cut to the correct height, you don’t want it tearing through the top of your top tier. That would be bad!
This cake is going to be a three tier.
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This next part is very important… you have to have a board under your other cake as well. The board distributes the weight across the supports. I usually cut a piece of foam core board into a circle slightly smaller than the cake is and cover it in foil. Also important… if you’re using a center support… POKE A HOLE INTO THE CENTER OF THIS BOARD BEFORE YOU PUT THE CAKE ON IT. (See how serious I am? I resorted to capslock…)
If not, you won’t be able to properly do this.
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Yeah, that cake looks a little wonky. Don’t worry about that bottom, that’s what boarders are for ;)

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I added a third tier on top of this, putting supports in this second tier the same way as on the bottom. Once you get the cake on, it might look a little rough from the handling, but you just need to wiggle things around a little and smooth things down a little and hey, decorating cakes is all about covering up imperfections with awesome little things you create.

Here’s a photo of it with the top tier on.
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Happy stacking!

Look Whooo’s Having a Baby!

I got a call from my friend Crystal. She told me that her sister was going to have a baby and that she was going to need a cake for the shower. She sent me a text saying the cake theme was going to be aquatic. All sorts of fish, turtles, squid, octopus, corral etc.
I was stoked… I mean… I LOVE aquatic things!
I have a full sleeve dedicated to sea turtles!
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I went over to discuss the cake with the rest of the family and how surprised was I to learn the theme was not in fact going to be sea life… it was going to be OWLS.

I was actually totally stoked on this. Who doesn’t like owls?? They’re so cute and so hip right now. I love that retro is so in right now. I’ve actually been wanting to do an owl cake for a while, so this was just great.

I was asked to use green, brown, blue and orange as the colors for the cake. She’s having a boy, so I made the little owl blue and green.

One of the sisters asked if I could make cupcakes. I told her that I don’t really make cupcakes… they’re just not my thing. They’re tiny and time consuming. I like making BIG things lol.
But when she told me she was hoping for a dozen cupcakes with tiny green owls, I couldn’t resist.

I set to work on the owls first thing.
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Once I put the eyes on these owls… my heart just melted. They were SO cute.

For the cake, I pushed together two quarter sheet cakes so they could have two flavors. I covered everything in a thick coat of buttercream and then rolled out blue fondant to cover it. I cut the shape of a tree branch out of fondant and laid it on top of the cake. I used a food color marker to draw the wood grain on. I thought it would pop well with all the bold details.

As soon as the owls were on, I was totally thrilled. It could be my cutest creation ever.

Owl Cake and Cupcakes

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I put the cupcakes in one of my little brown bakery boxes and decided there needed to be one more. I iced up one of the extras and made some little leaves to put on it. It all turned out just adorable.
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One of the best parts was when I showed up with the cake and the blue on the cake matched EXACTLY to the cups, plates and napkins that I hadn’t even seen yet!
The mom-to-be was super thrilled and I got lots of hugs.

And all this owl talk got me excited, so here’s some great owl stuff I found on ETSY!

Like this adorable owl case by seller OhMyCake!

Owl iPhone / iTouch / iPod / Card Case

I’m also swoony in love with these wall decals by seller surfaceinspired.

Wall Decals

And who wouldn’t squee over this pillow by karensagez???? There are little owls ON THE OWL!

Owl Pillow

Excitement!

I feel like this is the highlight of my cake making so far. This week… I made my very first wedding cake!
Holy cow it was a lot of work, but so worth every second!

My friend Jess asked me to do the cake when she got engaged and with every passing month, I grew anxious about it. I was so worried I’d ruin the cake/wedding/bride’s life if I messed this up! lol

Turns out, I had nothing to worry about. Honestly, I don’t think it could have gone any more smoothly. Honestly.

I knew the cake was going to be big… but I suppose even after buying the huge pan set, I still wasn’t prepared for just how huge…

It finally hit me when it took 4 lbs of buttercream just to fill and crumb coat the bottom tier. It was 16″x16″ and about 4 1/2″ tall. Uhm. Wow.
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I had a mini panic attack, but stayed strong lol. If it helps, that mixing bowl is huge. So for it to look so tiny in this photo is mind blowing to me.

By the time I got all three tiers covered, I was feeling some real shock… “Wait… I’m almost done? Nothing horrible has gone wrong???”

I put EIGHT dowels in the bottom tier (paranoia much? lol), four dowels in the middle tier and though I considered a dowel down the middle, I figured the weight would hold it all in place.

I transported the tiers all separate and stacked them at the wedding. I filled my car with pillows and prayed for the best on the drive. It was SO HOT out. Some how I got the cake there with not a scratch!

Once it was all assembled, I got to stand back and see my work done. I almost cried.
I mean… it’s really pretty, isn’t it?

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What a great moment for me. And to be able to share that with friends… fantastic.
I also made an anniversary tier. With a handmade box.
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The wedding was a blast and everyone loved the cake! I did green buttercream between the top tier and orange between the middle! The bottom tier was chocolate.
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So much fun! The wedding was just great and Jess was a perfect and gorgeous bride. She was about as far from a bridezilla as anyone could possibly be.
Congratulations Jess! I’m so happy for you and so thankful that you trusted me to make such an important cake for you!
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Graduation

My friend’s son graduated from pre-school and I made a cake for their class!

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The board was supposed to be a giant 10×10 cookie, but ehhhh I broke it. Oops. So I had to use foam board in a pinch. It still worked out!

May the fondant be with you…

My friend Janna’s son Ender turned 5 this week and he loves Star Wars. Loves it!
Janna is an amazing mom and she would do anything for her son. So she commissioned me to make what could well be the coolest cake I’ve ever made.
I sat down with the little man and asked him what he wanted his cake to be. He said very matter of factly that he wanted Darth Vader. :)

Well, I set to work, trying to come up with a cool design that would be fun for him. I checked out some cakes online that other people had made, collected some ideas and came up with a plan.

This is what I made!

Darth Vader Birthday Cake!

Darth Vader Birthday Cake!Darth Vader Birthday Cake!Darth Vader Birthday Cake!

Now, Janna is such a freaking awesome mom, that she and another friend, Stacy, looked every place they could to find Ender a Darth Vader costume to wear to this party. They tracked one down at a store about an hour and a half away and he is going to get to be Darth Vader. How cool is that??? He said he doesn’t want people to know it’s him. He wants them to think it’s really Darth Vader. It’s so cute, I could actually explode. He might just be the cutest kid in existence.
I wish I could go to the party and help them eat this cake! I don’t envy the fact that Janna has to slice this fancy thing open though lol.

Let them eat cake!


I quit my job at the bar I was working at and what better way to smooth things over than with cake? I say there is no better way. So I made this lemon and white alternating layer cake with lemon buttercream frosting. I used leftover cake batter and frosting to make cupcakes. The buttercream frosting was full of lemon zest and lemon juice and tasted amazing. Sooo good. It was basically all devoured by the employees and friends at the bar.

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