Teaching 101: My First Class

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Throwback to November 2013 when I found myself watching Youtube videos on how to decorate cupcakes. Yes lovelies, you’ve read that right: DECORATE. 4 years ago I had no clue on how to decorate cupcakes, let alone decorate wedding cakes! A few months later and I finally decided to venture into the colourful world of selling baked goods armed with the knowledge I acquired from all those 5-minute tutorial videos I’ve been obsessively watching. I felt I was ready to unleash my crazy into the world. Turned out, the world wasn’t ready for my crazy!

It didn’t take long for me to realise that I needed to upscale myself if I wanted to pursue this newfound career. I was back behind my trusty Mac one evening searching for “cake decorating classes in Dublin.” Decobake classes came up at the top of the search engine list and I couldn’t be more thankful for that moment when I clicked that link and brought me to where I am today. Fast-forward to 2017 and I now specialise in decorating tiered wedding cakes with pretty and delicate sugar flowers. 

Blushed Blooms

Sugar flowers dominate most of my cake designs and I think it’s only fitting to start my first ever class with the basics of making these edible beauties. After browsing through my portfolio a.k.a. my Instagram account, Amy (the brain behind Decobake) and I decided that my first class would be recreating a design I previously made: a small tiered cake with cascading sugar peonies and roses.

Just like any other “first days”, the run up to the day of the class became quite nerve-wracking. As I was asked about the equipment list, things quickly became very apparent. “Is this really happening?”, “What am I doing?”, “Can I really do this?” — these were just few of the questions that ran across my mind over and over and over. But just like any other first days, I quickly regained my confidence and excitement back as I reminded myself with how I wanted to teach in the first place.

The atmosphere in the class was carefree, fun, and friendly. I made sure of that. We were joking, laughing, sharing experiences with baking and decorating, and why we’re doing the class, both their reason and mine. My 11 students were all very cheerful, lighthearted and were such a pleasure to teach. This definitely helped the class run super easy and very smoothly.

The final results were phenomenal! I was extremely proud of how my students’ work turned out. This came as no surprise really as all of them were very hardworking and über dedicated. I was seriously impressed and tremendously proud! Click here to see more photos from the class.

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I’ve attended a number of classes in Decobake myself. One in Clane, another one in Galway, and a good few in Bachelor’s Walk. Decobake has been a huge part of my cake designing journey to say the least and to be asked to be a part of their teaching team is both an honour and a privilege.

Beauté Blanche

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Confetti Magazine’s Summer 2017 issue has just hit the stands and we are buzzing to show you all some of the photos we took from the romantic styled shoot featured in this issue! So here we go 😉

The location for this shoot was Lough Rynn Castle, one of Ireland’s premier castle hotels situated in Co. Leitrim. Dating back to more than 200 years, this Victorian manor boasts stunning details of a luxurious time long past that made it a perfect venue for this collaborative display of talent and beauty. Styled by the ever so talented Grace Campbell of Grace & Saviour and the equally creative Christina Brosnan behind the lens, we knew this project was going to be of epic proportions!

The brief that we received was very straightforward: no colours except shades of white, grey or black, and small accents of gold or bronze. With this in mind, we created a wedding cake that exuded a dainty and delicate feel yet very powerful in presence.

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The colour palette was very simple and minimal to the point of being almost monochromatic. Almost. As I was excitedly browsing through the magazine spread, it certainly was nowhere near binary. It was like a mosaic, a work of art that was so beautiful and so romantic! Our stunning models Grace and Piaras, both from Morgan The Agency, executed the couple scenes with such intimacy that if I had not known them, I swear I would think they’re a real couple! They look so perfect, so in love. Grace was made even more stunning by the beauty squad: Stacey of Making Faces Makeup Studio and Lynda and Lauren from LS Hair Westport. The wedding dresses featured in the shoot were all very classy, elegant, and supremely chic! Soft shades of ivory, cream, and white were very evident which perfectly suited the look and feel that the team was going for.

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With a variety of neutral hues, textures and beautiful ribbons, white florals are definitely far from boring. Here the incredibly talented Judi of Balla Florists created oversized bouquets of white fresh blooms and garden greenery.

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Light toned and soft styles, classy tablescapes are an eternal favourite as demonstrated by Grace in this table styling.

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When it comes to an all-white setting, less is definitely more. Neutral hues and shades of white, unassuming and unprejudiced, is so incredibly chic that will definitely raise your style ante!

NOTE: All photos used in this article are our own.

VENDORS

Styling: Grace Campbell, www.graceandsaviour.com

Photography: Christina Brosnan, www.brosnanphotographic.com

Make Up: Stacey Brennan, www.making-faces.ie

Hair: Lynda Mc Nally and Lauren Beirne, www.lshair.ie

Cake: Jen Rojas, www.cupcakesandcounting.com

Models: Grace and Piaras for Morgan The Agency, www.morgantheagency.com

Stationery: www.asyouwish.ie

Dresses: www.myrtleivory.ie

   www.alicemay.ie

   www.houseofdelphine.com

   weddingsbynikkikavanagh.com

Location: Lough Rynn Castle, www.loughrynn.com

Pics! The Glitter Studio 2017

Pics! The Glitter Studio 2017

Kicking off this year’s wedding season is the much awaited wedding fair in the Emerald Isle, OneFabDay‘s The Glitter Studio! An ensemble of some of Ireland’s top creative and talented wedding suppliers has come together for one full weekend in the CHQ Building in Dublin to turn every bride’s dream into a reality. Both team bride and team groom from different counties have witnessed Pinterest come to life and have definitely experienced a wedding fair like no other!

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This year’s overall theme was It’s Written in the Stars and stylist extraordinaire Lesielé have definitely set the tone with these pretty origami installations.

The ever popular Bubbly Bar is back with a bang to make everyone feel super relaxed and really enjoy their TGS experience, vendors and visitors alike. Chin chin at 11AM! So with their bubbly on the one hand and camera phones on the other, our lovely guests then went on to their merry way exploring this life size (hashtag) wedding inspo.

Wedding fairs are a great place to meet suppliers face-to-face and see samples of their work under one roof. The Glitter Studio is no exception, however, what’s great about TGS is that because there are only a select few suppliers exhibiting, guests can actually talk to the vendors and ask as many questions as they want without having to worry of not being able to talk to other 400 suppliers and being completely exhausted at the end of the day. The whole venue have also been strategically organised into 3 thematic areas, guiding brides to the style that suits them best.

Top tips and expert advice were also offered through a series of workshops spread across the 2-day event. Workshops covered calligraphy, cake decoration, wedding styling, makeup masterclasses, and even wine tasting. All these to assist every bride and groom prepare for their big day!

Creativity have really exuded in all the stands and exhibitors showcased some serious Instagram-worthy designs and decors in their individual spaces. Greenery is Pantone’s 2017 Colour of the Year and this was definitely evident throughout the venue. Feast your eyes and see how vendors incorporated 50 shades of green into their exhibits!

Tons of other wedding essentials were also on display, from stationeries to wedding party decors and seriously stunning jewelries. This year, TGS have also introduced visitors to the art of decorative handwriting, an intimate clothing apparel, and gorgeous, gorgeous wedding shoes! I must say, our lovely brides were really spoilt for choice. Really!

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Calligraphy by Laura
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Calligraphy by Laura / Natasha Sherling

Of course, what would a wedding fair be without wedding cakes? Bloggers’ favourites marble, metallic, and geode wedding cakes led this years wedding cake trends. Myself and my other cake designer pals have displayed a wide array of wedding cake styles and designs for our brides to have more than enough inspiration to take away with them. Another great thing about TGS is that visitors get the chance to go on a sumptuous cake tasting adventure and we definitely made sure of that!

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Cupcakes and Counting
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Cat, Graham, Ann-Marie, Jen

For the first time this year, The Glitter Studio has also introduced a bridal fashion show where 7 of the top bridal boutiques in the country showcased some of the most stunning and prettiest wedding dresses!

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Frilly Frocks
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Sarah Foy Couture

 

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Sarah Foy Couture
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Alice May Bridal

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Frilly Frocks

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The Glitter Studio is not just a wedding fair. The Glitter Studio is one spectacular production for everyone that’s planning a very memorable wedding!

Wedding Minus A Wedding Cake

Wedding Minus A Wedding Cake

Traditionally, a wedding wouldn’t be A WEDDING without a wedding cake. From the most extravagant to the simplest matrimony, wedding cakes are always in attendance. Or should they? We recently had a couple who opt not to have a wedding cake at their reception. Instead, they greeted the guests with a spectacle of vintage-themed wedding cupcakes.

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This is apparently becoming a trend right now where couples are ditching the customary towering and flowery wedding cakes and going for a more unconventional alternative e.g. wedding cupcakes, ice cream, and mini desserts like french macarons and other bite size treats.

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Some couples are also deciding on a more grand display of sweets and treats with their themed dessert tables. Dessert bars have always been around but is noticeably making a triumphant comeback nowadays. Dessert tables basically give the guests a selection of desserts to choose from rather than being served with just a thin slice of the wedding cake.

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What do you all think? Yay or nay? No wedding cake: an option for the bold and adventurous and is not recommended for the faint-hearted. Nevertheless, to each their own, right? Happy wedding!

The Caketress Masterclass

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The student and the teacher 🙂  (Photo credit: Decobake Bachelors Walk)

It got me extremely excited when I found out that The Caketress was going to hold classes right here in Dublin! I stumbled upon Lori’s Instagram account a couple of years ago and I’ve been an avid fan ever since!

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The Caketress (Photo credit: http://www.thecaketress.ca)

The first time I met Lori at Decobake Bachelors Walk, I couldn’t stop myself from smiling. Lori’s so pretty! I said to myself, I am not leaving this class without a selfie with her LOL

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The Selfie

Lori teaches very well. The way she renders her instructions during the class was straightforward and easy enough to follow. She would really bring out the artist in you. I learned to expand and broaden my imagination and I was so pleased with how my cake turned out!

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Photo credit: Decobake Bachelors Walk

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It’s all about the details! (Photo credit: Decobake Bachelors Walk)

As a cake decorator myself, it is always a pleasure in attending classes of very talented cake artists. It gives me the opportunity to continue to learn, discover new ways and techniques, just like upscaling one’s self in a way. Life, indeed, is one big learning curve and it’s really up to you if you want to be productive and make the most out of your skills or get left behind. Attending classes is also the perfect medium to share ideas, make new friends and expand your network!

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With the super friendly Adele Condron King. Behind us is her stunning shabby-chic vintage cake!

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And here’s my version! (Photo credit: Decobake Bachelors Walk)
The Party After The After Party

The Party After The After Party

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The wedding reception is usually the culmination of all the hard work spent in planning and organising the big day. This part is the most fun and candid where everyone tends to let loose a little (or a lot!) all thanks to those complimentary bubblies and other party beverages! Sure why not if they’re free, right?

So what happens after? What happens after when most of the guests bid their goodbyes and head home?

We recently baked a cake for a same sex couple, both named Daniel (pretty handy, huh?), and we are loving their after party plan! So after the wedding reception, they have invited a few of their closest family and friends to attend their “after party” in The Penthouse Suite at The Morgan Hotel. We love this idea as this gives the couple a chance to truly celebrate their union with the people most closest to them. We all know how wedding receptions are like where more often than not, the couple tends to spend the majority of their time trying to entertain all their guests. We all know that this is next to impossible! Amazing idea, right?

Going back to the venue, the suite is chic, sophisticated, and super STUNNING! Here are some photos to prove it 🙂

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The suite is very spacious with tons of natural light so your photos are guaranteed to be amazing! The purple wall is one of the hotel’s trademarks.
The infamous rooftop terrace with a panoramic view of the capital, Dublin City!
The infamous rooftop terrace with a panoramic view of Dublin City!
So Instagram worthy!
We are going gaga over this gigantic frame with the iconic Spire as the background! So Instagram worthy!
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We are in love with this Air Stream, so neat and handy! We could entertain our clients here all day long!
The interior of the Air Stream, embossed leather with a dash of royal pinkness!
The interior of the Air Stream, embossed leather with a dash of royal pinkness!
Oriental style meets Parisian furniture.
Oriental style meets Parisian furniture.
The welcoming committee!
The welcoming committee!
Did we mention that we are in love with this place? Love love love!
Did we mention that we are in love with this place? Love love love!

And of course, the wedding cake…

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The wedding cake is 2-tiered, dark chocolate in flavour and covered in white fondant.
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The couple have also requested to add fresh roses to the cake. Here we have used Red Naomi Roses placed in between tiers and at the top.
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The wedding cake in its full regalia!
Out with the big, in with the smaller wedding cakes!

Out with the big, in with the smaller wedding cakes!

Wedding cakes are considered as one of the main attractions during marriage ceremonies. Aside from the bride and her wedding dress, the wedding cake completes the top 3 things most guests are looking forward to at a wedding. However, time is changing and so as the trend in wedding cakes. We’ve been so used to the idea of big, tall wedding cakes that are strategically placed in a corner (or centre) of the reception venue for everyone’s viewing pleasure. There is a recent trend on smaller wedding cakes that is taking over the wedding world by storm, and we are loving them! They’re economical, practical and every bit as elegant as the traditional wedding cakes all bundled up in a 2-tier of yumminess!

We’ve recently had the pleasure of showcasing 3 beautiful small wedding cakes and cupcakes in Asia Wedding Network. To Michelle Yuan and the rest of the AWN team, thank you so much for featuring our bakes! A big thank you too to Finnstown Castle Hotel for providing us with the stunning venue, to Crafty Letters for the “Happily Ever After” cake topper, and to Jay Alexis for the photography. Read here for the full article.

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Continue reading “Out with the big, in with the smaller wedding cakes!”