One night while I was sorting out the albums of the customised fondant cakes I have done in 2013, what I see on the surface are colourful customised cakes, which made my albums look really pleasing to the eyes, but what I saw behind these cakes were wee hours late nights baking, waking up at unearthly hour to make sure everything goes well and freezing myself inside my super cold deco room to prepare these fondant decorations, sacrificing weekends... indeed its handwork at first, satisfaction at last, especially when I have sweet customers email-ing me with their feedbacks, thank you so much I really do appreciate them :>
Something about me.. you may not see it or feel it but I always have this inferiority complex in me as compared to others in this industry because I was never professionally trained in doing any of these. Everything I learnt was through hands on, and from all the errors I make, it sure does take much much more time than to putting myself through some professional training & I appreciate all that I learnt along the way. It's an arduous journey, but I believe it's worth it. One day I really hope I can step out of this little red dot and to gain different kind of experience in cake decorating in different parts of the world. (Which I already have a few in mind!!) #anotherdreamtofulfil
But okay, for now..since so much efforts are being put into them, I thought of sharing my top 5 favourites! :)
They are not in order, I love them all! okay I'm slightly bias, I love the first one the most! It's natural they come first right?
1. Whimsical Unicorn cake
Unicorn moulded by hands using my own recipe of Marshmallow fondant, never expected that I could do this...really. I was planning on making a kiddish looking unicorn until I challenged myself to step out my limits. You really never know what might happen. Unicorn mane and cake borders painted with Gold edible colours, and colourful sugar flowers to bring out the whimsical feel. :*>
2. Candy Tea Party cake
Tea Party! This was ordered by a teacher in a secondary school, who was super sweet because she planned to give this to her class kids and also for a photo shoot they were going to have. She said, anything colourful, sweet, candies.. there she goes! A huge cupcake & tea pot made of RKT, coated with dark chocolate ganache and covered with MMF.
3. Sunflower theme cake
I do get many sugar flowers cake requests, but I'd always thought sunflowers were the unique ones out of them all, it brings a pop of sunshine to the whole cake, unlike other sugar flowers which usually represent elegance/ vintage. Anyway.. the whole design was drawn by the birthday girl and I just did the honour of cakeifying it!! :) Cake board was designed and painted to make the cake stand on a 'wooden' board.
4. Pop neon shades wedding cake
First wedding cake!! Needless to say, this is the most exciting cake request I have gotten for the year 2013, barely a month after I have officially graduated, its almost like a first big step into the full-time decorative cakes industry. It's also my first time creating a sugar peony which I surprised myself very much by being able to succeed in doing it too, I had a very bad experience with it few months back which stopped my from trying, I don't know what pushed me into trying it again this time, but it certainly felt very satisfying because many guests at the wedding reception were asking one another if it was a real peony. Thank you people, you guys made my day :")
5. Whimsical pink sugar flowers cake
Last but not least.. another sugar flower cake!! Can you tell I really love creating them? Not sure if it's the girl in me, hehe. It always put a smile on me when a flower cake is done, I surely hope it does put on smiles on all the guests at the party too! :) Pearls, fondant frills brooch and whimsical sugar flowers, it's my dream 21st birthday cake (which sadly I couldn't do any for myself as it was around ALL my assignments deadlines..) oh well, at least not I get to create for other girls who are lovers of pink, like me! :B
Looking through my old albums, it has been an on-and-off thing in this cake decorating journey..with loads of ups and downs too. It was all along a part time kind of thing, the only thing I knew was I enjoy doing it. Its funny how at this moment you will feel like this is your best achievement and few years down the road when you look back, you're like: WHAT WAS I DOING THEN? hahaha. I sure have this feeling & I'm gonna share some with you ;)
Back in 2010...
My very FIRST fondant cake. I was SO proud of myself that time for being able to complete one! i mean..you know that feeling when you accomplish something for the first time.. hahaha. How does it look to you? To me, now, its a cake with so much flaws. One, its all crooked. Two, obviously the cake wasn't frosted well/ smooth enough to make the fondant look smoothly covered on the cake. Three, a ribbon that doesn't look like a ribbon. haha! If you look carefully at the sides, its dented in here and there...due to the dented layers of cake (again poor frosting) something I cannot accept now for the fondant cakes I do. Four, edges of the cake are all rounded and poorly done. (Will explain more in details below so you know what should you look out for when ordering fondant cakes next time!!)
Fast forward 2 years, a better frosting probably.. a better ribbon this time round too, haha! BUT..the edges were still round. This is what happens when a cake decorator lazily lays the fondant over the cake, trim the bottom edges and say, TADA its done! I really thought it was good enough back then but after another year of experience with fondant cakes.. I really don't like this anymore.
In 2013, today...
I make sure I sharpen the edges of every fondant cake I make, yay no more round ugly edges!!! No more dented layers of cake showing through the fondant!! Just to show a few.. by the way it takes quite a bit of time from smoothing out the round edges you get initially when you lay the fondant over the frosted cake, until you get what you see below!
This year, I too have experimented my very own Marshmallow fondant recipe, which means you don't get any weird/ rubbery taste usually found in commercial fondant (many would say it tastes like plastic &...play dough?!?!!) No no, my marshmallow fondant will taste no where near those! If you want to find out more you can hop over to http://www.prettyswirls.com/fondant.html to find out more! :)
I also believe a fondant cake works like a package. Just like when you go on a vacation, you have the hotel, insurance, air tickets, etc etc. No cake is complete with a nicely covered & decorated cake board, no more plain cake boards too! yay!!
More workmanship = more quality details = more time taken = most costs = you know what I mean ;) Now you know what to look for when buying a fondant cake!
Surely, these years of experience are like my best friends, they taught me so much! Now I really can't wait to see what this brand new year of 2014 is going to teach me and how am I going to improve further from where am I standing now. Am in the midsts of planning something really exciting, which is coming in 2 weeks time; a first-time for me too, I hope I can do it well! *fingers crossed*
Having that said, I must admit it can be really energy-draining and tiring for one person to handling every aspect of the business alone. Sometimes if I delay some email replies, please be understanding, I'll try my best to get back to them asap! I can't remember when's the last time I had a good long 8 hours of rest at night :(
Lastly, PrettySwirls is going to have a new name for this new start in this new phase of life, I pray and hope everything will go smoothly! It will be revealed really soon.
Till the next update...good nights & sweet dreams everyone ;)