Cassette & Record Players

Who would have guessed that stereos and record players could be such a popular theme for cakes?

For Berliosca, it all started with the boom box cake for Monte’s 80’s-themed birthday party.

From that portable cassette player, we moved on to an old-fashioned turntable to celebrate Tony’s greatest hits, as well as his 60th birthday.

The next request was for a more modern turntable—a Pioneer CDJ-2000 to be precise—to celebrate DJ Darkness’ birthday.

After that, AM 650 radio had Berliosca do up another vintage record player for their big anniversary bash.

And just when we thought we were done, we got a request to make yet another turntable, this time a Panasonic SL-1200MK5, to celebrate Paige’s 21st.

What we loved about this last one was how K was so specific about the extra details on the figurine that represented his girlfriend.

He wanted features like her hat and favourite outfit to be perfect (how many guys out there can identify their girlfriend’s favourite outfit?), and he was particularly careful about making sure the figurine would be as skinny/fit as Paige is (otherwise he’d be in BIG trouble).

Based on a T-Shirt

.

Madeline’s aunt contacted Berliosca all the way from New York to order her birthday cake. Happily, the party was in Vancouver, so we didn’t have to worry about shipping logistics.

Panda bears are really important to the family and the cake design was taken from a t-shirt that the little birthday girl was going to wear at the party. (Check out the pictures of both the cake and the t-shirt.)

.

Inspiration for a cake really can come from anywhere.

Helvetica

When Lauren contacted me to order a rectangular cake with decoration based on a poster that really just had text on it, we never imagined how special it would turn out to be.

The cake was based on the poster for a documentary film called Helvetica.

Helvetica is an independent feature-length documentary about typography and graphic design, centered around this widely used sans-serif typeface of the same name. Directed by Gary Hustwit, it was released in 2007 to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the typeface’s introduction. (Thank you Wikipedia.)

As Lauren’s husband is a graphic designer, she came up with the idea to replace some of the letters on the poster with letters spelling out HAPPY BIRTHDAY TANNER..

The only thing she asked was that the font (Helvetica style) be spot on, as typography is Tanner’s big thing. Gulp. It’s a daunting task to please an expert by imitating something within his field of expertise.

Happy ending: Berliosca received the following message in an e-mail: The cake was perfect! Thank you so much. I had no idea it would be exactly like the poster! You are a fabulous cake designer. Many thanks. My husband was thrilled.

I wish I could brag about having the cool idea for this very original cake, but all the credit goes to Lauren.

.

Ms. Pumpkin & Mr. Squash

.

We always thought that Halloween would be the occasion for this type of design, but our first pumpkin cake was for an engagement!

Mr. Squash proposed to Ms. Pumpkin, she said yes, and they needed an appropriate cake to celebrate. During the consultation we were really tempted to ask for the story behind their pet names, but a little mystery is nice so we cannot tell you why.

.

.

Just to give you a better idea of the size of this cake, the board is 18″ X 18″ (45.7 cm X 45.7 cm). Huge.

Both real-size pumpkin and acorn squash were carved out of vanilla cake and milk chocolate ganache.

.

Wild Baby Shower

Wild Baby Shower

Most baby showers I go to (or make cakes for) have baby cute themes in pastel colours. The request for this cake was slightly different since it was for a more fancy-fashion type of event.

I loved that the client’s first words when she saw the cake were: Wow, that’s classy!

The Titanic

Titanic Cake

I learn a lot when researching the cakes I make. For example, I’ve learned about everything from juvenile arthritis to 3-D animation techniques because of cake requests. I have also dissected a tiger lily in the name of cake-science. This summer, thanks to an 11-year-old Titanic aficionado, I learned that contrary to our image of fluorescent-orange life vests, the actual vests worn by Titanic passengers were a light salmon hue. I imagine that 11-year-old Evan and I were the only ones who cared about this detail on the Titanic cake, but these are the things that keep me up at night.

Who knew that cakes could be so educational?

Titanic Cake sideview 1

Titanic Cake sideview 2

Happy Birthday Katie!

bubbles

Katie, my fellow straw-stealer (don’t ask), recently commissioned a cake for her 21st birthday. She has been working this summer at the store where I share kitchen space, so we often spend hours chatting and laughing while I do my designing and sculpting. She keeps me from talking to inanimate gumpaste figurines, so I probably owe her what’s left of my sanity.

When we were discussing the concept for her cake she said that she didn’t care about any details except that the filling had to be white chocolate ganache. A fine choice. She later picked out the colours and design, so I suppose she did care about the cake after all.

When her cake was ready, I realized I had forgotten my camera. I hate when this happens because I really want to build up my gallery, but Katie happily promised to take pictures and send them to me. Today I got the most perfect pictures of what I think is one of my cutest cakes.

I decided to call this design Bubbles, and I think it is going to be a popular one. I’m going to try all sorts of colour combinations for Bubbles. Suggestions are always welcome.

Cassie and Friends

Cassie and Friends Cake

.

The people behind Cassie and Friends promote awareness of juvenile arthritis and raise funds for research, pediatric rheumatology programs, services, equipment, and events. Their team raised money at the Scotiabank Half-Marathon and 5K run, where I got to meet 4-year-old Cassie herself. (It’s always fun to hobnob with celebrities.)

After delivering Cassie’s cake to the Stanley Park finish line, I stayed to help serve it to the runners and guests at the Cassie and Friends tent. Unfortunately, nobody (including me) thought to bring plates, forks, napkins, or even a knife to cut cake with. Oops. Usually my cakes attend parties in homes or event venues that have kitchen facilities, so this situation has never come up before. This event, however, was in a public park.

.

5853_138690717743_590387743_3685194_8238790_n

.

We ended up using a Swiss Army knife to cut the first few slices before some good soul found us a regular kitchen knife. I felt strange serving cake from my hands (yes they were clean—I licked them myself) into the waiting hands of eager cake-eaters, but nobody seemed to mind. When people started coming back for seconds it became clear that napkins were unnecessary. We should have bragged about being environmentally friendly or something.

Photos by Maria Leticia Photography

Hands Around the World

Hands around the world cake

It’s always nice to make a cake for a celebration, but getting involved with special projects can be extra special. This extra special feeling was evident with a recent cake for the CISV Vancouver Chapter Picnic.

Hands around the world top view

CISV is a wonderful organization that promotes world peace by connecting kids from different countries and cultures through camps and other events. I really like this statement on their website: We are founded on our belief that peace is possible through friendship – and that the real difference can be made by starting with children.

The cake concept was suggested by Patricia, one of CISV’s most enthusiastic volunteers and a personal friend of mine.

Bikini Cake

Bikini-cake

The gentleman who commissioned this bikini cake, as well as the birthday boy, really appreciated the intricate details and, shall we say, textures of the buxom torso. Some customers are easier to please than others…

While we’re on the subject, clicking the pink button on this site gets you karma points in promoting breast cancer awareness.