As we all know, everyone loves a good cake and with companies like The Hummingbird Bakery and Lola's Cupcakes, decorating cakes is becoming a popular hobby for many. A good friend of mine has recently taken her hobby to the next level and set up a small business making and decorating cakes. I asked her to do an interview for the blog and here it is!
When did your passion for baking cakes begin? My passion for cakes began when my two year old nephew demanded that Auntie Emma make him a Finding Nemo 3rd birthday cake. Having never baked a cake before in my life i panicked! I raided my Grandma's cooking cupboard for baking books and tins, then 8 eggs, 4 packs of fondant and 8 hours later and i had made quite a decent looking Nemo cake! When i dropped it off at my Nephews party i had a swarm of parents and friends complimenting me on my cake skills and asking if i take orders. I really enjoyed making the cake and was quite proud of the result that i started making cakes for every possible occasion, taking photos and uploading them onto Facebook. Once on Facebook the cakes were getting a lot of attention and more people were asking if I took orders! After a lot of pushing from family and friends i decided to set up a Facebook page and start selling my creations - All thanks to my little nephew and his demands!
Where did you learn how to decorate cakes? Every cake technique and icing idea i have got from Youtube tutorials. No books, no classes, just youtube! I've known other people who have paid for cupcake decorating classes and are taught pretty much the same things i've learnt from videos. The videos are just uploaded by the general public, not cake companies or teachers so i have often thought about filming some too and uploading them and secretly plugging my cake page in them too!
Where do you take inspiration from? When i get a cake order i am usually just told what theme of cake they would like. For example recently i was asked to make a Wallace and Grommit birthday cake and the customer left the design up to me. To get inspiration i watched an episode of Wallace and Grommit and wrote down all the key things the characters do, which i then created in fondant icing and iced onto the cake. Things like that make the cake more personal too and people are always impressed with the effort and thought put into it.
Do you have a favourite cake you have made/decorated? My favourite cake i have made is my Sugar Skull cake. I didn't have an image to copy so was totally free to be as creative as i like. I have also never seen another cake like it so its original :)! I would love to be asked to do more sugar skull designs. I also have made some Cupcakes with the Muppets on (Muppcakes) which have been insanely popular with everyone!
What cakes are you currently working on? I am currently taking orders for boxes of Christmas cupcakes that people can give as presents. I am selling boxes of 4 or boxes of 24 of Christmas themed cakes and am nearly fully booked up. A great way to make a little extra money before Christmas!
Do you have any advice for people who may be interested in starting cake decorating? If i was to have any advice to anyone who want's to start cake decorating it would be do it from home for as long as you can. Having no overheads to pay it enables such a high profit. I make a cake for 13 pounds and sell it for 70! Also from experience i have learnt that people prefer sponges made with oil not butter. Butter makes the sponge very heavy and oil enables it to be light and fluffy! Also, as I mentioned before, don't pay people for classes. Youtube is my god!! Every technique and method you can imagine is on there, and it's free!
Hopefully this will inspire you to bake and decorate some of your own cakes, but in the meantime head over to the Emma's Cakes Facebook page and take a look at some of her other creations!