Friday, June 24, 2016

Gumpaste Succulent Veiner Video

Here's a video by request (I try to honor requests if I can, so send me some!)



This video shows the process of using the gumpaste succulent veiner set that I have listed in my shop. The link is at the beginning of the video description and also here: http://acaketoremember.biz/products/succulent-mold-veiner

This set was used to make these:





Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC, custom wedding cakes in Richmond VA, and cake supplies online at www.acaketoremember.biz and www.acaketoremember.etsy.com

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

What To Do If People Want You To Make Your Cake "Not As Good" So That It's Cheaper.

I would occasionally get a cake request from someone who wanted a detailed design, but didn't have the budget for it. They'd occasionally ask if I could do a "worse" version of it to keep their costs down.

I generally decline that kind of thing, for a couple of reasons.

First of all, I know myself, and I know that I CAN'T do a crappier version of something if I know that a better version was what we originally discussed. I'll put too much time into it anyway, and that will eat into my profits.

Second, if the customer has a mental image of what they think the cake will look like, it's probably not going to change much, even if they agree to allow you to dumb-down the design. When you deliver a less-elaborate version of their mental image, they're going to be disappointed.

If you're willing to drop your level of detail and/or quality of work to meet a customer's budget, you also need to be aware that your slacker cake will be working as an advertisement of the level of work that your business produces. You know that you dropped the normal level of detail, your customer knows that you dropped it, but the people at the party don't. They'll just think that you do that level of detail all the time.

I've quoted a couple of cakes that would have been replicas of extremely detailed buildings lately, and neither customer wanted to pay for them. Based on the architecture, though, I knew that trying to do a "basic" version of them would have looked stupid, so I declined to lower the price to do less detailing.

Well, as it happened, one of the customers went to another baker who agreed to do a dumbed-down version of the design. and sure enough, it looked less than excellent. The baker posted it on their facebook page so I got an eyeful and boy, was I glad that I'd passed on that. I have no doubt that the customer wasn't 100% excited about it, based on the level of detail that they had been requesting to begin with.

It's up to you to decide whether to take on requests like this, but if you do you need to make sure that the customer will know EXACTLY what they're going to be getting. Don't overpromise, because that will only get you complaints in the end.


Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC, custom wedding cakes in Richmond VA, and cake supplies online at www.acaketoremember.biz and www.acaketoremember.etsy.com

Monday, June 20, 2016

Grey Brush Embroidery Wedding Cake Design

This cake design was based on a dress fabric that kept popping up in my google ads. This is the first time that google ads were useful, since it was a pretty design.


This was the second design done in Photoshop using the plain cake that I did as a base to work on. I pasted some of the flowers on the dress onto the cake, then I warped some of the designs to fit the shape of the tiers. I added layers on top and drew over them with a 9 pixel-sized pencil, using small marks like brush embroidery would have. When I was done with the drawing I deleted the base patterns so that the drawing was the only layer visible.

The important thing when you do this kind of designing is to make sure that you can actually make the design with real cake in case someone sees it and wants you to do it. Keep that in mind and you'll never be scrambling trying to get advice on how to translate your own design into cake.


Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC in Richmond VA, and cake supplies online at www.acaketoremember.biz and www.acaketoremember.etsy.com

Friday, June 17, 2016

How To Put Sticky Fillings On a Cake Layer Without Ripping It Up

My cream cheese filling is made from cream cheese and sugar. Nothing else. So while that's delicious, it's also sticky and stiff as %&^$ and it tries to rip up the layer of the cake that I'm putting it on. So I came up with this method for applying it:


It involves waxed paper and it looks weird but it works. If you're curious, this was the cake that these fillings and the raspberries from last week's post were in: Yellow lace cake


Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC in Richmond VA, and cake supplies online at www.acaketoremember.biz and www.acaketoremember.etsy.com

Monday, June 13, 2016

Butterfly Shadows Cake Design

This cake was a minimalist wedding cake that I did, and since I've been practicing with photoshop lately I decided to do a series of designs using the plain tiers as a blank canvas.

The original cake was this one:

I took the flowers off by copying the left side of the cake and flipping the photo over onto itself, then using the patch tool to remove the top flower. This was the result of that:


I then took some flowers and butterfly photos that I had, turned them into silhouettes, and arranged them on the cake to get this:


I added some shadows in various spots to  make the butterfly photos look more three-dimensional. This pattern was based on a dress that I'd seen that had a combination of the flat black and colored butterflies.

I have to say that this was a lot more fun than actually having to cut out every butterfly and apply it to a real cake. This would be a good way to put a design together to show a client what their cake would look like, and also good for designing cakes in general. I'm planning on doing some more, using the giant stack of inspiration photos that I've collected but haven't had time to use to make real cakes.


Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC in Richmond VA, and cake supplies online at www.acaketoremember.biz and www.acaketoremember.etsy.com