I had a total of six wedding in 2013, and each one was special for different reasons. Whether it was an amazing venue, a personal connection with the bride and groom, or the excitement of trying a new cake technique, each wedding had been a treasured experience. The year culminated in, what was for me, one of the best wedding I’ve had the pleasure of attending or being a part of.
So many factors went into the fantasticness that was Josie and Roshan’s wedding. The ceremony was sweet, personal and the officiant was charming. The venue (Hockley Valley in Orangeville) was all around amazing, from the gourmet food, to the room décor, everything was top notch. The DJ was awesome and the photo booth was a big hit (I think my table took advantage of the instant fun pictures – the majority of the pictures are of us!).
I think what had the biggest impact on me was the way Josie and Roshan incorporated aspects of all their varied heritages (Scottish, Greek, Italian and Indian!) into aspects of their wedding. The highlight of the evening for me, and most people I think, was the Scottish piper and the Indian bhangra drummers playing the newlywed couples into the reception area for the first time. I don’t think I would have ever put those two instruments together, but man was it ever incredible!
And of course, Josie and Roshan had a beautiful wedding cake as well. Their theme was red and gold and their flower was a poinsettia (which were beautifully scattered around the room, three per table!). I decided on a simple cake with hand made sugar pointsettias. I wanted the focus of the cake to be on the flowers, which were going to be quite the task, so I kept with a simple white fondant design with a gold ribbon accent. I had gotten quite sick just before the wedding and was bed ridden for a couple of days, which put me really behind with the cake. Luckily, thanks to a couple very good friends, we were able to get everything done in time. I was very pleased with out the flowers came out. The mother of the bride has a better picture of just the flowers – I’ll see if I can get a copy.
Julia and her family were so happy with the Thomas #1 cake that she asked me to make her parent's 40th anniversary cake. She wanted a smile design with flower, but in red. Lucky for me, one of my customers (NAFTA Foods) at my day job makes fondant, and she just so happened to give me a huge bucket of red cherry fondant to try out! Inside is red velvet with cream cheese frosting. The fondant was great to work with. All of the colour was uniform and the fondant wasn't too soft. I've never seen cherry fondant on the market either!
One of the side perks of this job is getting to see how my customer's lives change and their families grow over the years. When I met Manuela (and her Mom), she was just a kid. Now she's grown into a young lady. I was very glad that she was able to accompany her Mother to pick up the cake - to spite a newly broken foot! It was nice to see how she's grown and changed, and of course the smile on her face when she saw the cake.
I was beyond honoured when I was asked to make the wedding cake for Anna Maria and Sean. As mentioned, I first worked with them on their engagement cake, which I had a blast making and then again the week before their wedding for Anna Maria's bridal shower. They're a very sweet couple and a pleasure to work with. They knew what they wanted and they were still willing to let me put my touch on things. When we met for the tasting, they said they wanted to go with a coffee theme for the flavours. So I ended up comping up with a variety of buttercreams for them to try: Espresso, Vanilla Cappuccino, Mocha, and Vanilla bean - they were all a hit, and we figure out how to incorporate them into their cake. They wanted a simple three tiered cake, covered in white fondant accents with a pink ribbon and pink flowers. The flower in the example photo they showed me were silk, but I decided to make my by hand from gum paste.
During the tasting, I found out that not only was it going to be their wedding night, but it was also Anna Maria's brother's wedding anniversary! My couple asked if I would make an anniversary cake within the same theme as the wedding cake for her brother.
And, since this family values tradition so highly, that next night was actually Anna Maria's parents wedding anniversary, and of course the kids wanted to honour and celebrate that with a cake for her parents. This one - heart shaped!
This summer I had the extreme pleasure of meeting a new co-worker and a fantastic lady named Ann (or Miss Annie to me). Ann had 20 years in at the new company I started working for and she had chosen last Friday as her much deserved retirement date. When I was asked if I would make the cake for her celebration, I initially thought it was for our little group of sales support specialists - but, no, I was wrong. The night before the cake was due, I realized that this was for the ENTIRE company. Oh boy.... This was the first real baking project I'd done for my new work family and I was nervous! I didn't have much to go on either, since I had only had the pleasure of knowing Miss Annie for a few short months. The girls in the office were able to find out that her favourite colour was yellow and she was not fond of roses (which is good, because the rose is the cake decorator's go-to flower). I'm happy with how the cake turned out, even if I did have to miss our Christmas dinner. We will miss you very much Miss Annie!
This weekend it was my great honour to make the desert for Amy and Shayne's wedding. Amy was the first friend I made when I moved to Toronto a lifetime ago. We bonded over not only the same first name, but also the exact same middle name too! So when Amy asked if I would make the cupcakes for her wedding, I jumped all over it. I also insisted on making a small cake for them to have something to cut for pictures at the reception. Amy was probably one of the most easy going brides I will ever have. Her theme was autumn and other than that, she let me run with the design. The seventy-two chocolate and vanilla cupcakes were topped with four different kinds of buttercream: Vanilla, Raspberry, Mocha and Lime. The 6" chocolate and mocha cake is topped with hand made and hand painted edible hydrangea and topped with beautiful silk flowers. Amy and Shayne, thank you for letting me be a part of your special day, and I wish you all the happiness in all your days to come.
My good friend Josie knew that I recently completed a class in sugar flowers, and decided that her mother's birthday cake would be a good chance for me to practice what I learned. Josie's Mom loves flowers and even participates in some kind of horticultural society, so it was important to me to get this one right. She asked for a simple vanilla cake layered with chocolate mousse (I used rich dark Belgian chocolate) and decorated with orange lilies. I opted for the calla lilies, because honestly, they are super easy to make. I hand painted each one after they dried, and used a simple ribbon to accent the cake. I wanted to keep this simple and clean, to show off the pretty orange flowers.
About 3 months ago, just after I had made a major life decision, I received my first 'real' inquiry after creating this website. Steph was a bride-to-be and was in Toronto for a few short days and had to plan everything for her August wedding before heading back to Alberta. She had found me by using google and liked my work. We decided to meet for a tasting and consultation (also my first!). Since Steph was staying way out in the East end (Ajax or Pickering or some such) we decided to meet somewhere near the middle. I picked a mall in Scarborough that was supposed to have a Timmy's and we were set to meet nice and early at 8 am. When I arrived, early of course, I found to my chagrin, that since the mall didn't open until 10, the parking lot was completely gated off and I could not make my way around the mall. There was really no where to park and I started to panic. The only option I saw was the pick up/drop off area for the Go bus. Steph called to say she was running a bit late and I embarrassingly told her where to meet me. When she arrived with her twin sister, I apologized profusely, and she was really great about it, and said it didn't matter. So, there we sat, on the curb with the 9-5 commuters buzzing around us while we ate cupcakes and talked about cake. What a riot! Steph decided to take a chance and went with me as her cake designer. We decided to do a three tiered cake, covered in buttercream (to spite all my attempts to talk her into fondant) with blue hydrangea between the tiers and accented with a ribbon. The top and bottom tiers were vanilla cake with vanilla frosting, and the centre tier was chocolate cake with mocha frosting. All of the hydrangea were hand made out of gum paste. All of those little flowers were fantastic practice and I think I've perfected my hydrangea technique! Dropping off and setting up the cake in the reception hall was another amazing experience that left me feeling like all the time and stress and freaking out was worth it. And even better was the look on the beautiful bride's face when she saw the cake, or the request from the groom to stick his finger in the icing. I gave him a stern look.. "What about from the back??" he begged. I smiled and walked away. I don't know if he sneaked a taste or not. My only regret is my my camera settings were off and my pictures do not do the cake justice. Hopefully the photographers will be able to send me some of the pictures they snapped.
So, yay for google maps!! It looks like adding myself there has really opened me up to new business in my area. One of the first (completed) orders that originated straight from the internet was this pretty purple cake that I made for Patricia. She was looking for a cake designer in her area to help make her mother's 50th birthday very special. The top layer is chocolate cake with a mocha Swiss buttercream filling and the bottom is vanilla cake with lemon Swiss buttercream. I used Swiss buttercream for this cake because the client was looking for a filling that was a little less sweet.
I baked my first cookie at the age of 5, and have been in love ever since. The smiles on people's faces when they taste my creations is what keeps my passion alive!