Saturday, July 26, 2008

Gerald-Bagwell Wedding/Beach Themed Shower/William's 10th

This is an action packed post! I decided to include all three of these into one rather than separating them because well, they were all due on the same day!

Gerald/Bagwell Wedding:

Okay so this was my first big wedding to do. This order seemed easy enough - 2 full sheet cakes and one 8 inch round with flowers matching the color scheme of the wedding. The bride even drew out a sketch of how she wanted everything! I wasn't terribly worried about these cakes until I could not get one of the cake toppers for one of the cakes. I went into the cake shop almost 2 months ago to get them ordered thinking that would be enough time. I was wrong! Apparently the small sized "m" is in high demand and not easily obtained. After calling every cake shop in the state, we were able to get all of the letters in the larger size and it seemed like things were going to be okay...

Then Rylee got sick. It was by pure luck that we didn't have school this week (VBS) so I was going to be able to take my time on these cakes and get everything done the way I wanted to. I was not anticipating a sick child though. Which is exactly what I got. We thought she felt warm on Wednesday and then I definitely knew she felt warm on Thursday ... but I decided to wait it out because every other time I have taken her in at the sign of the fever we've been sent home - only to return two days later with an insanely high fever and a nearly hospital bound child.

She did not sleep at all Thursday night. I think I might have gotten 2 hours of sleep and Rodney's pretty sure he got an hour. We even took shifts. She was just too uncomfortable. So we got up Friday and after she complained of her tongue hurting, I looked into her mouth to discover that she had brightly colored red tonsils (with white spots) that were the size of gumballs. The big kind. I called and made an appointment for that afternoon.

I tried to get work done but it was extremely difficult when all she wanted was to be held and to cry. After I took her to the doctor and got her prescription dropped off ( hello strep and hello ear infection!), Rodney was home and I could finally begin icing the cakes. (thankfully I had already iced the 8 inch the night before).

Some shots of the cakes after they were iced, minus one of the sheet cakes.

I have to say that I was pretty pleased with the outcome of the 8 inch (vanilla cake with dark chocolate filling and vanilla buttercream) but I had a ton of trouble with the two sheets. The one pictured didn't give me as much trouble as the other one - but wow, icing a sheet cake is hard stuff. They aren't terrible but I always feel like things could have been better.

The flowers I ordered from caljava international - I ordered the perwinkles (in the light blue) and then painted half of them with navy blue petal dust myself. The colors of the wedding were perwinkle, navy blue, and ivory.

The outcome of each cake once they were set up:

We had a problem with the little groom topper. He kept wanting to fall over. He was made of porcelain and pretty heavy. We put dowels underneath his feet but he was still incredibly unstable. We ended up putting a dowel behind him to hold much as I hated to do that.

The table was also a little weird. It was bowing in the middle and slumping at an angle. It made me VERY nervous but we did what we could to make sure it was all secure.

The table:

From each side:

I really hope David and Melissa enjoyed their cakes! I was able to sneak into the bridal room and show her a few pictures before we left and she seemed pretty happy. They are such sweet people and a terribly cute couple, I know their marriage will be a success!

Beach Themed Shower:

This is a Margarita Cake, just as the one I made for Rodney's birthday last year. There is half of a sports ball cake (lemon flavored) inside the glass that has been lined and covered with bright pink vanilla buttercream! I added the "salt" effect by painting piping gel around the rim of the glass and sprinkling sanding sugar on top. I added some sugar gels to the top of the cake to give it the wet look. Candy lime and real straw!

These cupcakes were made to go along with the margarita cake. They are key lime with strawberry filling and vanilla buttercream. The shells are white chocolate. I LOVE how these turned out. The colors are perfect!

William's 10th

These cupcakes were made for my friend Tricia's, son William. Every year Tricia does cupcakes and a cake for each of her kids ( they do a friend party and a family party ). (skateboard cake to come next week!)

These are yellow cupcakes, half with chocolate buttercream and half with vanilla. Red fondant buttons on top.

Can't wait to get started on William's big cake!

It's been a crazy week this week! We managed to survive though, and now we're busily preparing for the cake class on Monday. Rylee's still feeling bad and I've been trying to ignore the fact that I'm getting what she has! Thankfully we have Rodney who has been a great help to me this week. We also had 6 cutters that had to go out by Thursday and Friday so he's been busy with that and helping me when I needed it. One of these days we will slow down.

*Just wanted to note that even though Rylee was sick - she did not come near any of the cakes! I am very, very careful!


emzeegee & the hungry three said...

Hi Steph,

How gorgeous are all your creations! Congratulations on a job well done!

I do need to know one secret, on earth do you get your buttercream so perfectly smooth? Are you using a french buttercream (eg with boiled sugar). No way can I get mine to look as satiny as that. Hope you don't mind sharing a tip or two!


Steph said...

Hi Michelle!

Thanks so much, I appreciate the compliment!

I use a regular buttercream - one that is all shortening. A very large part of the reason my buttercream is so smooth (if you can call it that on these cakes) is because of a little plastic scraper I have.

I have some similar to this one:

Mine don't have a holes in them, but the rest of it is exactly as mine are.

Once I started using these (1 has lasted me nearly a year and a half, I just recently had to purchase a few more), I had more success with smoothing my icing.

I also make the consistency of my icing pretty thin. I wouldn't say it was SUPER thin but I add a decent amount of water so that it will go on easily. (but not so much that it just runs off of the cake) That really helps the air bubbles and cracks.

It took me a few tries to "get" using the icing scraper but now that I have it, I will never smooth my cakes any other way. It's very fast and very efficient.

When I first started out there were lots and lots of tears over smoothing cakes but now I can get an 8 inch cake iced in about 5 minutes. Usually less, even!

I hope that helps you some! It's a pleasure to hear from you! Your blog is cute and triplets...WOW!

emzeegee & the hungry three said...

Thanks Steph...I use those all the time, but I think it's time to replace it as the edge is pretty horrid (hence leaving streaks in my icing!). The tip about thinning it a lot helps, too. I use a regular buttercream, too - but I spend AGES getting the 'spackle' marks out. Often I'll use a hot pallette knife but it's a pretty time consuming process. I find if I use a french buttercream, it's a lot smoother - but in thinking about it, I think that's because it's a much thinner consistency.

Off to experiment some more! Thanks again for your reply!


My Sweet & Saucy said...

Everything turned out great! I definitely agree with you on the sheet cakes though...I hate icing them!

Karen Oseguera said...

Hey Steph,
Rodney's cousin here...well, your cousin too now. :)
Your cakes are absolutely gorgeous. I love decorating cakes but have no way gotten near to what you have created. Cici was wanting to take one of your classes. Will you be starting another one after the current one ends?
Did you ever find out what to do with your old mixer? Just curious.


Steph said...

Hey Karen!

Yes, I'm definitely going to do another class...I'm just not totally sure when yet. I have a few people that are interested and I need to figure out what the best day will be for everyone and get through this class first!

I sold the red mixer via craigslist shortly after I got the new one :(

Thanks for the comment on the cakes, I appreciate any feedback that I get!

Hope to see you guys soon!

Steph said...

Thanks for all of the comments guys! You are all very sweet to take the time to leave feedback!