by carrieMarch 26th, 2009 | Posted in baking, craft, food | No Comments »
Last week I had an interesting request for a cake. Jennie called and asked for a cake for her 22 year-old daughter. This daughter is currently in design school and just finished a few great dress designs. Jennie wanted a cake that was inspired by one of her dresses and sent me three to look at.
The dress I chose is a gold flowy, tea length dress with feathers across the top. Here it is:
The directions left me with a lot of creative options. She wanted it to feed 12, and chose one of my favorite cake combinations: chocolate cake with white chocolate mousse filling. I decided on a round cake and planned on coloring fondant to look like gold and draping it over the cake. I was then going to cover the top with chocolate shavings to represent the feathers at the top of the dress.
Unfortunately, I almost had a Cake Wreck on my hands! The fondant ended up looking like cheese! It was an orangey skin color – nowhere close to gold! About 2 hours before delivery I ripped off the fondant and covered the whole thing in icing. I then ran to the store and bought gold dust for the sides. I used a lot of gold dust – enough to coat the whole kitchen including the husband and child!
Here is the cake. It looked more golden in real life but didn’t photograph as well:
Jennie said it was delicious. She ate the leftovers (I made it 3 layers tall) for breakfast the next day and sent some with her youngest to school for lunch.
If anyone wants to request another “Inspiration Cake” again, I am up to the challenge! And no cake wrecks! … I hope.
by tracyleeMarch 22nd, 2009 | Posted in craft | 1 Comment »
Carrie and I have been very busy, which unfortunately has resulted in a big gap between posts here. Last weekend I had two baby showers in Delaware, which meant lots of fun things to make and prepare. My friend Ilka (who made this beautiful quilt last May) is having a baby girl in May, and her shower was hosted at a friend’s house on Saturday afternoon. The shower on Sunday was for our older sister who is having twin boys in June! Thursday, Friday, and even Saturday morning, we were still finishing up some preparations for the parties. My mom, sisters, and anyone else around helped make these adorable little boxes for favors for Ilka’s shower (the “cake” in the middle).
The pattern was very cute, and they were a big hit, but we only ended up making 8 of them (just the ones you see here). The cutting, folding, gluing, filling with candy, attaching ribbon, and labeling took a very long time. I downloaded the pattern to make them, but I am not sure from what site. I would be happy to send it anyone who asks. The pink petal boxes around the “cake” were purchased and had to be put together, which I have to say was also not very easy! Luckily I found one person early to the shower who could read instructions and fold them perfectly (Thanks, Eileen!).
We did find that some craft stores sell kits to make these, so we purchased brown ones to use for Nicky’s shower to match the blue and brown color scheme. We adapted the boxes to use a different ribbon than came with them, and I think they looked really cute (and probably only took three of us about 30-45 minutes to put together). I am a big fan of do-it-yourself, so it was hard to go buy the kit, but compared to the cost of materials and the time, the kit had greater benefits.
My mom helped me finish a few sewing projects for the showers, too, like this cute baby bunting. It was very easy to make – especially with my mom’s bias tape maker (a super tool if you ever need to make a lot of fabric “rope” or ribbon. We made three lengths of bunting, and I gave Ilka two for hanging in the baby’s room. This project used that adorable baby animal fabric I bought back in January. I want to make some for my nephew’s room; he really like to play with them when we first hung them in the kitchen.
I think Carrie (and the kitchen) was covered in flour, sugar, and fondant for most of the weekend. She made two amazing cakes for the showers. We all sat around and watched as Carrie rolled the fondant and decorated the cakes; it’s as much a baking process, as it is working with an edible canvas! Ilka’s cake was layered pound cake with a raspberry filling. The two tiers were perfectly decorated in baby booties and a puppy dog, and we had plenty of cake to serve from the bottom tier, so Ilka and her husband could take the top tier home with them.
The cake for Nicky’s shower on Sunday was just as delicious, and the tiers were made with two different flavors (lemon on the bottom, chocolate on top), which made it fun to cut and serve. Everyone thought we had gone to a fancy bakery to get the cakes; Carrie really did go all out.
Carrie has a new website that includes a photo gallery of all her cakes, however, I would warn you not to go looking at it if you are hungry! Carrie and I will follow up later with posts about some of the sewing projects we made for shower gifts.
by tracyleeMarch 4th, 2009 | Posted in craft | 3 Comments »
I have been traveling for work for almost a week now, and I am missing my sewing machine and working on my current projects. Since I can’t do any sewing, I thought at least I could write about it! I started this quilt around March 2005 when a good friend of mine got married. I have noticed that the habit to get so far on a project and then put it away for a while seems to be a trend in my notes about my quilt projects.
Anyways, my friend’s wedding was truly beautiful – she got married at a castle in France, so how could it have not been. I picked Provencal inspired colors for the fabrics, and the backing matches the large green print with a complementary background color (the backing and binding are the same fabric). The pattern was a little advanced for my sewing skills at the time (I lopped off the tops of most of the triangles), but I am sure my friend won’t mind.
The machine quilting is an all over “fleur de lis” inspired pattern. I have had the quilt since last July just waiting for binding and a label. The quilt goes to its new home next weekend once the label is on! Some people have asked me about giving away something I have spent so much time on, but I think that act – in the end – is what motivates me to finish the quilt. I would much rather have it being enjoyed and used that continue to sit on a shelf in my sewing room.
Happy 4th Anniversary, Stephanie and Elias!
by carrieMarch 3rd, 2009 | Posted in craft, paper | 1 Comment »
This may be a small spoiler for family, but I had to post about these cards I made for St. Patrick’s Day! Ethan is pretty good with doing crafts with me – as long as it takes less than 15 seconds of his time. I had to force him to stay a little longer but the end result made it worth it!
I started with each blank card and put the shamrocks wherever they landed! I later added detail with a green thin sharpie and used a glue gun to attach the green ribbon. I had enough left over ribbon to line the flaps of 2 of the envelopes. You can see the little fingerprints detail that made each of the 3- or 4-leaf clovers:
I think you can do this project with any age kid – as long as you can hold them down for a few minutes! I was able to get 9 cards made with Ethan. I wish I could have done a few more but I think at least the family will enjoy them! Happy Shamrock Day!