I’ve literally worked on so many cakes I just don’t think there is enough space to take you through all of them, so I’ll give you a gimps of a few of my favorites and a quick insight into my most difficult element of each and my personal cake decorating firsts.
Hope you enjoy :o)
When faced with the challenge of recreating an item from a movie buffs favorite film, attention to detail is extremely important. The main area of focus when it came to the time machine from Doctor Who was ensure to replicate the scale of all the elements and to create sufficient depth to make the whole thing believable.
Most difficult element:
I had to measure….
then re- measure,
and then, just in case, I measured one more time.
Shell’s decorating first: In regards to prep work versus ACTUAL decorating time, the scale may just be tipped in favor of the preparation, because honestly I felt like this took forever. That, along with painstakingly sharpening and ensuring the straight lines were 100% straight, meant this cake sucked up quite a bit of time. I feel like the end result turned out great
The Big Head Bears:
The photo does not really give this cake justice because it was definitely on the BIG side. Over 15kg in weight all shimmered extended tiers and 100’s of little filler flowers.
Most difficult element: Covering the extended top 6” White Choc mud cake in very humid and sticky conditions as the rain bucketed outside as the air con ran overtime.
Shell’s Decorating First: With help from Margie we created the cute little big head bears that sat proudly on top of the cake. And of all the details we put on the bears I would have to say that positioning of the ears took me quite a few goes.
Just for Neen – Pretty Dolly Varden:
Neen was know in the production kitchen as not being a fan of the Dolly Varden cake. I have to admit I could never understand why as I think they are a cute cake design. This one, designed for Ella to match her princess Barbie theme birthday had layered frilled skirt and sparkle top.
Most difficult element: Achieving the ruffles on the bottom of the skirt was a new challenge and required some gathering and strategically placed cotton wool to create.
Shell’s Decorating Frist: Well… I’m not sure I can claim it as a first as I have spent a fair bit of my childhood hours playing with Barbie dolls, but his was the first time those skills came in handy in the Planet Cake production kitchen. A cute up-do for Barbie with sugar flower hair pins…. Awww… cute!
Classic Quilted Wedding Cake:
Classic black and white theme- I think this design speaks for itself.
Most difficult element: The stylized flower was difficult in the sense that it was made to match the brides material rose on her wedding dress. The petals needed to be “rounder” and more uniform than I would normally create, and then of course some added “bling” in the centre to make it sparkle.
Shell’s decorating first: Quilting! Can you believe it? I have been at PC for over 5 moths and NEVER quilted. I have to say that I think the right tools are what’s most important in the decorating technique, for me I used a angled ruler and a wooden knife tool.
Novelty 106 Sitting Bear:
One of the really AWESOME things about working at Planet Cake is that every now and then we get to do a PC course – which we all know are AMAZING! We were lucky enough to have Chris (aka. CC) as our teacher as he showed us how to carve, mould and cover this difficult cake shape.
Everyone in the class was able to design their own bear/panda and I tried to go with an old-school cute teddy design.
Most difficult element: Without a doubt – cover the bears legs. When I was designing the cake I did not consider the position of the arms and how it would interfere with the covering, so the low positioning made it a very tight fit to get the icing on and around the bears legs.
Shell’s Decorating First: It was a PC course – so the whole bear was a first!
I was so excited when handed the order with three funky figurines on top a two tier wedding cake. Excitement because I was really keen to flex my funky muscles, however, that excitement soon turned to sheer apprehension when I looked at all the detailed elements that were in the funky’s hands (both hands of both figurines) and clothing. I was fortunate enough to spend a couple hours with Margie to get a fast and furious funky lesson that would guide me in the right direction for these figurines.
Most difficult element: I would have to say the hand painted checkers on the funky chef’s pants. By the end of the whole process I had controlled my breathing to such a slow and steady beat that I could have easily nodded off to sleep!
Shell’s Decorating First: Designing clothing on a Funky to match the clients outfit.
Art Deco Extravaganza:
Art Deco can be a very challenging theme to replicate on a cake, but challenges are what I love most. With only 2 days in the production kitchen needed to really focus on my time management skills to get this cake up and out in next to no time.
As all cake decorators know, the hardest color to work with is black… the next hardest is… ummm… red. So not only was the design of the cake going to stretch my skills (and patience), but the colors were also not going to make things any easier.
Straight lines, triangles, bling and well over 10 hours later and the cake was ready to be adorned with some fabulous red feathers. The finished cake stood at over 30 inches tall and looked great (even if I do say so myself).
Most Difficult element: I probably couldn’t pick one specific element, but the skill I needed to rely on the most was definitely my patience.
Hope you enjoyed that update,
For my next blog I'll let you in on how it feels to go from intern to Planet Cake teacher! And trust me... I wont have to wait as long as you did for this one.