Surprise wedding cake – Trotter’s independent trading van

You may have read my last post all about the 3 tier wedding cake for my brother-in-law’s wedding.    I also mentioned in this post about a surprise cake which came from needing extra cake for all the guests coming.  We starting talking with ‘bride and groom to be’ about additional cake and decided on plain sheet cake.  However when talking this through with Kev, I explained I didn’t feel like it was special enough and I had this desire to make them a ‘groom’s cake’.  This idea, I believe, is common over in America where they may have a comedy cake or separate cake which sits along the nice and pretty wedding cake.

Dave, my brother-in-law, is a huge Only Fools and Horses fan and last year for his birthday I attempted a trotter’s independent traders 3D van made from cake.  It didn’t turn out too good and I was very disappointed with it.  I didn’t plan it and it ended up not having a back door on it as it wasnt long enough.  I promised at the time to make a better one for him.

So the decision was made and it was to be a secret from the happy couple until their big day.  With so much cake to do and carving of cake now involved I needed a detailed plan to ensure the lead up to the big day went smoothly and wasnt too stressful.  2 and half weeks before I put together a day by day schedule of things to do each day.  I stuck to this and due to this detailed planning the whole process went very smoothly and no major issues or problems encountered yeay!

The trotter van turned out better than I ever imaged it would.  We even had some construction involving super glue, wood and cake boards to get the scene for the cake set up – we felt like Ace of Cakes doing this!!

It was a full cake, with no bits missing.  It survived the journey and was set up at the wedding venue with spot lights on it, next to the 3 tier cake.  The bride and groom loved it and the surprise went down really well.  The kids were especially taken with it and didn’t believe it was edible, although this didn’t stop them picking bits of it and eating the stella cans hanging of the back!!

My friend Chris made a bride and groom to go on the cake which I will report in on in more detail later this week.  They looked amazing with it and finished the cake display of nicely.

Congratulations to Dave and Fin again and we wish you a long and happy life together.

3 tier wedding cake with roses and calla lilies

When we heard the news that my brother-in-law had proposed to his girlfriend Fin, and she had said yes we were over the moon for them.  They make a super cute couple and are fantastic together, the news of a wedding was very exciting.

We spoke to them about doing their wedding cake as part of their present and got busy looking at designs and styles.  They chose a simple yet elegant design of 3 tiers sat on an off-set stand, with bouquets of roses and calla lilies sat on top and ribbon round the cake.  Due to the large wedding they were having, this cake was unlikely to provide as much cake as needed for all their guests, so we talked about doing a sheet cake which would be kept out of sight and then cut up when cake was served.  The plan was all set until i decided to step up the sheet cake to a shaped cake which I will blog about later this week.  This part of the cake was to be a surprise.

The wedding cake turned out fab and I was really happy with it once it was set up at the wedding venue, under a spot light.  The flowers were a lot of fun to make and I set myself a schedule detailing when to start the flowers.  As I started them early it allowed me time to steam in between petals being added to create maximum effect, colour them with edible dusting and enjoy making them without rushing.

The cake tier flavours were:-

Top – Lemon sponge with lime buttercream

Middle – Chocolate sponge with chocolate frosting

Bottom – fruit cake with marzipan

I hope Dave and Fin loved their cake and had the best day ever.  We had such an amazing weekend catching up with family and meeting new family, Fin’s Irish family certainly know how to party!

Congratulations to the new Mr and Mrs Garner

Homemade wedding cake for my best friend’s little brother.

When I was at school and first met my friend Kelly we went on some amazing holidays with her family as they were kind enough to take me along.  We stayed in caravans in Cornwall and up in Scotland and stopped at lots of Little Chefs for food on our travels.  With the travelling this also meant we spent a lot of time in the car with Kelly, her brother Russell and me sat on the back seat.  We had so much fun on these holidays and Russell wasnt too annoying for a little brother and we kept him in line!

When Kelly told me the news Russell was getting married and also would be a father a couple of months before the big day I was extremely happy for him but also stunned! Surely Russell wasnt old enough to be getting married and having children, he was only 8 in my head!!  I find that when friend’s little siblings reach the age of 18, 21 and older, it freaks me out more than anything else does on age and growing older.

I met with them to talk through the cake ideas and they had a picture of a cake they really liked.  It was a pleasure meeting Nicola, Russell’s wife to be at the time and to see Russell all grown up and settled in his life.

Their wedding was on Monday and the sunshine was out for them – yeay!  The venue looked gorgeous and we saw the bride looking very calm and relaxed about her big day, I also got to have a peak at her dress hung up in her room, it was amazing.  The cake was set up and we left them to continue getting ready.

 

The cake was a 4 tier sponge wedding cake.

Bottom tier  – vanilla sponge with buttercream,

2nd tier – chocolate sponge with chocolate frosting,

3rd and top tier – gluten-free vanilla sponge cake with buttercream.

I also did an additional fruit cake which was not put on display.  I had concerns about the strength of the gluten-free cake and whether they could hold a fruit cake, so I choose to make a top tier gluten-free and I gave the hotel a display box to put it in so the bride and groom could take it home with them as a little gift.

The decoration was simple and elegant and I really enjoyed making the cake.  I need to explore ways of making my individual cakes as flat as possible on the top to ensure a strong and straight stacking of cakes – I may need to purchase a spirit level to add to my cake kit.

I hope the new Mr and Mrs Horrocks had an extra special day and I hope Kelly had a fantastic day looking gorgeous as bridesmaid.

Congratulations xxx

Learning to make Stargazer lilies out of petal paste – not half as scary as I imagined!

Back in June 2010, during one of my cake classes at Knowsley College, our tutor came in announced it was challenge time on the flowers.  She then proceeded to show us a stargazer lily and how to make them.  The classroom was filled mostly with laughter as we attempted these flowers with little success!  I managed to produce something that resembled a stargazer lily and was extremely pleased with myself as it was tricky!  unfortunately at some point later, the stargazer lily fell to the floor and smashed into pieces and i did not, for one minute, think I would be required to make another!

Until Jo and Adam’s wedding!

The challenge started with discussions on the fact I had done one before. I dug out the photo thinking I could show Jo, however on seeing it there was no way I was going to show it Jo as it did not look anywhere near good enough to go on a gorgeous wedding cake!

My timetable of cake tasks meant I started flowers in January and I started off as i meant to continue – on schedule!  I did lots of research on the internet, printed pictures off and went to a florist to get a real flower as a model.  I set up a work station at the dinning room table and had a play around with the templates and ball tool to see what effect I could get.

I then got a system going for each stage of the flower.  First – cut out and shape the petals then leave to dry overnight, then colour the petals and again leave to dry overnight and finally put them together to make a flower.  I lost a few petals along the way, but all in all they turned out fab yeay!!  I now have 4 flowers and about 15 petals that I had spare and didn’t use.  If you get a cake off me in the next few months, it may well have a lily or two on top!!

 

If you fancy having a go at making stargazer lilies, I recommend this site . The instructions are clear and the pictures help to understand each step.  Good luck!  I would love to see your pictures of any sugar paste flowers you have made.

Mastering stargazer lilies from petal paste for an extra special wedding cake.

The wedding of…

Adam and Jo

Friday 17th February 2012

It was a great honour to be asked to do the wedding cake for Adam and Jo and it was an amazing gift we could give them and an opportunity to help contribute to their special day.  It was all excitement until it was announced they would be having Stargazer lilies as their flowers – I nearly shed a tear!  We had done these in cake decorating class and they were set as the challenge of the term and we didn’t do very well!

As soon as it went in the diary the flower making was planned and the week leading up to the big day had been mapped out.  When I then added the Superman Birthday Cake to the ‘things to do‘ list due the same day, it was imperative I stuck to the schedule.  I wanted to avoid any stress and just enjoy it.

My lily making skills progressed quickly with practice.  I lost a few petals along the way, but for the big day I had all the flowers and leaves for the cakes, spare flowers, spare petals and a box containing essential cake equipment for emergency situations! I had even created packaging out of cardboard boxes and a lot of bubble wrap, as the flowers required some careful arrangement for the car journey.

I am so so happy to report that the cake turned out better than I ever imagined it would.  It was only my 3rd wedding cake and I wanted it to be perfect for Jo and Adam.  It arrived at the venue without any damages and with the help of Lou Lou the cake was put together beautifully on the eve of the wedding, we didn’t even have to use any spare flowers or petals.

All it needed was the Bride and Groom figures Chris had handmade out of fimo which were arriving in the morning.

I have to say that to date; this is the cake I am most proud of.   Being able to make Stargazer lilies out of petal paste (which I really didn’t know if I could at the start!) has shown that the cake classes I went to tought me well, thanks to my tutor Gill.

I wish Adam and Jo, our 2 amazing friends, a long and happy life together full of love, happiness and laughter.  Thank you for letting me do your cake and I hope I did you proud x

Click here to visit the post on making the flowers.

Wedding cake number 2

For Naomi and David’s wedding they wanted a tiered cake decorated in the apple green, white and black, with spots and a mixture of vanilla sponge, chocolate sponge and lemon sponge.

 

It went rather smoothly in the days leading up to the wedding, so much so I was waiting for something to go wrong during the delivery up to the Lakes using our holiday motor home.  However we made it safe and sound and the cake looked fab once it was displayed on the table with the flowers added from the florist.  I have to say there was a moment of panic when I realised the flowers were all separate and required arranging on the cake, I am definitely not a flower arranger and it was rather a stressful 10 minutes!!

Naomi and David reported back that they loved their cake, which is the most important thing and I wish them a very happy and long, love filled life together.

 

First ever wedding cake!

My brother-in-law recommended me to one of his work colleagues for her wedding cake.  I met up with Lesley, the bride to be, and went through what she wanted and there was a web site with the style of cake she wanted.

It has been a very exciting and nerve racking experience as with it being a wedding cake the pressure has been on to do a super cake!

I delivered it to the venue today and on arrival I had butterflies in my belly!  I managed to keep calm and put the cake together.  Kate the lady organising the venue had a fantastic silver stand we could put the cake on to raise it up from the table and finish the look.

I hope Lesley and her husband like their cake and I hope they are having a fantastic day.