Flowers for my Hair

I’ve been looking for crafty things I can do that do not involve sugar and butter. It’s surprising difficult, actually.  After much searching on http://www.pinterest.com (the site I wrote about a few posts ago), I found some more flower ideas.  Check out my first attempts.  Not too shabby, if I do say so myself.  The orange(y) fabric is made from the scraps of my bridesmaid dress (I sweet-talked the seamstress for my own fabric scraps after she hemmed the 5-in. off the bottom).

 

Sweet Deliciousness

As promised (though a little behind schedule), here are some photos of my recent cupcake adventures.

First stop was my chocolate cupcakes topped with mint buttercream and garnished with sugar pearls.  This batch was an order for a friend. And Sam found out this was his favorite flavor (thus far).

Of the remaining cupcakes from this batch, I gave 6 to my trainer for is birthday and the rest came with me to my desk.  I saw desk because these 6 didn’t make it to the kitchen before they had been devoured by co-workers.  These were garnished with cookie bits.

My friend who ordered the batch above inadvertently got me my first order by an unknown (as in a stranger to me).  She ordered a dozen for her granddaughter’s 10th birthday. She wanted light pink, raspberry flavored icing, and the sugar pearls.  This didn’t leave me a lot of room for creativity, but I managed to make them look beautiful! The rose topped cake is for the birthday girl.

Last Friday was the last day for a co-worker in our Florida office. To celebrate (his new move), I brought in spice cupcakes topped with a pumpkin buttercream (now Sam’s favorite cupcake).

A rose by any other name? Not as pretty, actually.

My name is Robyn and I’m addicted to the website http://www.Pinterest.com.  It’s a virtual pinboard of, well, EVERYTHING.  Any pages, posts, blogs, photos, products, tutorials, or recipes that I run across online that I like and want to remember for future use can be “pinned” to my Pinterest boards – each dedicated to a different topic of my choosing.

Anywho, there is a broad topic on DIY crafts and I have just realized the amazing-ness of felt and fabric flowers.  The most versatile (for everyday wear) seemed to be the rosebud barrettes.

Here is what it is supposed to look like (photos – and tutorial – taken from mrspriss.com).

Here’s what my first try looks like. I definitely need a template for my leaves (they are folded down in the head shot below). They look pretty sad, don’t you agree? I’ll keep working on my rolled felt abilities – because they’re so freakin’ cute!

Photos as Promised!

My friend requested two miniature cakes – one for her and one for her sister, the birthday girl.  In the end, I fit two 4-in. chocolate cakes filled with a mousse pudding on a 10-in. cake board (on which I wrote Happy 50th). I also made a “5” and a “0” out of chocolate to stick in the tops of the cakes. I think that they turned out pretty nice…and I know that they tasted AMAZING. I love the explosion of sweetness of a traditional buttercream flavored with almond. It tastes, well, decadent.

Birthday Roses…out of cream cheese?

Today is the birthday of a friend at work and I was asked to make a red velvet cake – which, obviously means they are waiting for the cream cheese frosting, as well.  I prefer the traditional buttercream or the whipped cream/cream cheese mix over a traditional cream cheese frosting. However, the design I wanted to try this time – very large, old-fashioned roses – required a sturdier frosting than one with whipped cream in it.

I seem to be having some trouble getting my cakes to rise consistently and on command, but overall the cake didn’t turn out too bad.  Next time, I’ll be sure to make two cakes rather than depend on the one cake (split and filled) being tall enough.  On the other hand, the roses are very large and sort of make the cake look shorter than it really is.

Once again, the cake is MUCH prettier in person than in the photos. I have got to figure out how to take better pictures of my creations.

Little Mermaid Birthday Cake

I mentioned on Twitter a couple of weeks ago that I received my first cake order for a Little Mermaid cake.  Unfortunately, Ariel isn’t the most popular princess right now, so it wasn’t as easy to find toys for the top of the cake as I thought it was going to be.  Ultimately, I bought the same pieces that the local grocery story uses on its Little Mermaid-themed cakes.

A few days before the cake was due, I made starfish using colorflow – and they turned out really well for my first attempt at using frosting in this way.  I also made some crabs (I initially wanted to make Sebastian, but he proved too difficult and was too large for what I wanted to use the decorations for – the sides of the cake).

Once it was time to decorate the cake, I decided on fluffy waves for the top of cake and starfish and seagrass for the sides of the cake.  Up until now, I’ve been focusing on cupcakes rather than cakes, so my handwriting leaves a lot to be desired.   After the third try, I decided to leave it alone and deliver it as it was.  For the first two tries, I used the green frosting – but it was hard to see on the blue background.  For the last try, I firmed up some of the pink I had used for the starfish and it looked much, much better.

Wedding Cake: Practice Effort 1

Only 8 months later than I had anticipated, I tried my hand at my first “wedding” cake effort. It didn’t turn out so great. Don’t get me wrong, the cake itself was pretty, but it was not wedding pretty.  However, I do know what I did wrong.  1) I didn’t cool the crumb-coated cake in the fridge to set it – meaning it was soft (too soft) for the fondant; and 2) I used old fondant (it still tasted right, but it was hard to work with).  The main purpose of this practice round was to see how the rock candy and the fondant worked together.  In the end, I smeared on a thin layer of frosting to “glue” the rocks to the sides of the cake.  I started off gluing them on one by one, but I would still be putting them on weeks later if I had continued with that method.

I have a better design in mind now, so the rock candy (on the cake part) is no longer being considered.  However, I still desperately need to work with my fondant and get that perfected.

Next step: Practice covering cakes with fondant correctly (after setting the frosted cake so that it isn’t soft).