Monday, March 28, 2011

Jacket for the cutest little girl

I know this girl...she's the most adorable little thing ever. She is the kind that makes you wish you had small kids again. When I learned she was going to turn 3 in April, my first thought was that I wanted to make her a special birthday cake.  But of course, I wanted to give her some other present apart from the cake and when I found this pattern on Etsy, I knew this was going to be what I would be making for her.

My first try was supposed to be some sort of practice jacket, using only remnants and other materials that I already had in my stash but it turned out beautifully that I would say, it's more than good enough to be a gift.

Pink polar fleece lined with a floral Japanese cotton fabric.  Perfect for the coming winter!

Heart applique with fabric matching the lining

I ditched the ribbons (as with the original design) and instead, added a couple of heart appliques to match the lining.  The jacket is no longer reversible but that's perfectly ok.  It all came together very easily.  The only tricky part was sewing the outer sleeve to its lining along its small opening.  It took me a while to figure out how to correctly do it.  Overall, I would highly recommend the pattern to anyone wanting to make something like this.

Now, I'm thinking of making another one.  Or should I do one with a hood this time?

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Baking burnout

I baked and decorated 4 cakes and 48 cupcakes in a span of four days and I am feeling absolutely exhausted.  I love what I do but it does take its toll on me when it's this hectic.   I only took pictures of two of the cakes cause the others weren't anything out of the ordinary.

For a 37th wedding anniversary.  It's mocha chiffon filled with caramel custard and frosted with Swiss Meringue Buttercream.

Close-up gumpaste roses.  I love using embossing sticks to make designs on my topper.

A beyblade-themed 7th birthday cake.  Again, it's mocha chiffon (as requested by the celebrant's dad), filled and frosted with Swiss Meringue buttercream.

My kids don't own any beyblades so I just kinda invented my own.  They're not that great though.
I am earning a fair bit with this homebaking thing but honestly, I am not really after the money.  Every cent actually goes to loved ones back home who need the money more.  I am not saying this to brag or to give credit to myself.  All these cake orders are but blessings for which I am really grateful.  To have an unselfish purpose simply gives more meaning to all the hard work.  At the end of the day, after all the measuring, mixing, baking, washing, and decorating, I rest knowing that I am doing a good thing and this truly gives me great joy in my heart.  What better reward is there?

So...inspite of the burnout....I am more than welcoming new baking opportunities.  Keep them coming!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

My First "Wedding" Cake

The reason for the " " is because the cake is not actually for a wedding. It is for a marriage enrichment program culminating in a renewal of vows. It is, in fact, not just for one couple but for 40.

I was given just a week to think about how to go about doing this cake. I've never done a wedding cake before so the apprehension was definitely there. When I was given a rather small budget, my first thought was it was enough to make a decent two-tiered cake. Clearly, I was so clueless as to how much wedding cakes cost! When I saw this and this, I knew my cake was going to be a huge bargain.

But as my son aptly put it, even if I wasn't going to get paid for this, I'd still give it my all. True. So here it is...just finished it early this first ever two-tiered wedding cake!

The top tier is an 8" chocolate chiffon and the bottom tier is an 11" mocha chiffon. The cakes are filled and frosted with Magnolia Bakery's creamy vanilla frosting. All the decorations were made from gumpaste.

I got the idea of the bride and groom topper from a Carol Deacon book. I borrowed the book from the library months ago and photocopied some of the pages that I thought might come in handy for me in the future. I really had a blast making this topper!

So that's it for another new thing for me. Would I want to do this again? Certainly! The experience caused me a bit of anxiety but it was all worth it in the end.

You all know that I am just a self-taught homebaker, right? I've never attended any baking class whatsoever. So...if I can create something like this from scratch, all of you out there with dreams of making and selling beautiful cakes from your own home kitchen, can do so too. Go ahead and chase your dream!