November 26, 2011

the finer things in the life


I've never been able to justify spending extravagant amounts of money on myself, although I have been able to justify receiving extravagant gifts - with ease. I hope the recipient of this cake feels the same way - at least about the latter part. This cake was prepared for a 40th birthday party for a woman who loves the finer things in life. 

The bottom tier is a 10" square chocolate and vanilla cake covered in teal fondant to look like a Tiffany & Co. box. The ribbon was sculpted out of gumpaste and dusted with heaps of pearl dust to give it a beautiful shimmer. 

The birthday girl's nickname is Diamond Girl and to incorporate that some hand-made sugar gems were as diamond jewelry. Side note: making these gems created a bigger mess than creating the rest of the cake. Boiled sugar is very, very splashy.

The purse was constructed of five layers of red velvet cake with cream cheese buttercream. Each symbol was hand painted with gold luster dust, and all the detailed pieces were made with gumpaste (the tag is engraved with "LOUIS VUITTON PARIS). This was an extensive but amazing project.

Happy birthday, diamond girl!


November 18, 2011


Just a little something splendid.


November 6, 2011

showers, 3 ways

Cupcakes, three ways, for a baby shower. Brown background with bright pink, green, white and blue polka-dots. I incorporated the pink, brown and white and made three distinct batches of cupcakes for the occasion.

1) Red velvet cupcakes topped with cream cheese buttercream and a pink gumpaste "Baby" topper, small sugar blossoms and silver dragees.

2) Chocolate cupcakes with chocolate buttercream, hot pink blossoms, daisies and silver dragees (again).

3) Vanilla cake with pale pink cream cheese buttercream and a footprint topper, white blossoms and (you guessed it!) silver dragees.

It was a ton of fun getting to exercise my creative side with three dozen cupcakes while sticking to a beautiful colour scheme. 


November 5, 2011


Nothing makes me happier than combining the two things I love most in life: science and cakes. Many years ago, I spent a good part of my undergraduate degree in a wet lab working with cell cultures. I looked every the bit the part of a scientist; lab coat, goggles, and hollow expression resulting from chronic sleep deprivation. 

My microbiologist friend celebrated his birthday and I took the opportunity to step back into the past, channel my inner biologist, and create a petri dish cake for him.

The top of the dish was covered in yellow fondant agar with petal dust and gel coloured colonies. Sprouting from the biggest colony was a mutant bug. But it's ok, he looks pretty benevolent to me.

Because many scientists share the same incubator and work space, it's very important to label your dish with the culture species, the date it was plated, and the cellular density, to keep track of growth. It's also important to label any dangerous cultures with internationally recognized symbols. Safety first!

Happy birthday Alex, I wish you many more years of geek-dom!