I have been a stay-at-home Mom since the birth of my daughter in 2003. I have always had an artistic side, even at a young age. When I was little I spent many hours creating with the odds and ends found in the craft trunk my father made me, and when I wasn’t making some fantastic piece of art for my mother I was in the backyard in my sandbox making mud pies. It seems to me these two things have been a constant in my life, art and baking.
It wasn’t until 2010 my two hobbies merged when I discovered cake decorating. It is the first time in my life that I have stuck with a particular artistic medium, before I was what I call a dabbler. I dabbled in drawing (mostly portraits), painting, knitting, cross stitch, card making and scrapbooking. Now I know my place in this world. I am a mother, a wife and a cake decorator!
How did you first get started with cake decorating?
The very first cake I ever decorated was for my best friend when I was 19. There were five of us living in a small two bedroom apartment, living away from home for the first time. I didn’t own a mixer or cake pans, but I did have an icing bag and a star tip, go figure, lol. I baked a box mix cake in three flat bottomed metal bowls that I had and mixed them with one of those smoothie drink blender. After they baked I put them together in the shape of a Mickey Mouse head and decorated it star tip style with chocolate and vanilla buttercream that I mixed by hand. I used KoolAid to colour the icing red for his tongue. I’m still very proud of that cake.
After that I made my daughter’s birthday cakes by searching the Wilton Yearbook and just following the directions. It wasn’t until February 2010 that I finally took my first Wilton cake course with some friends. Of course one turned into two and then a third. I was hooked!
What has been your greatest challenge?
I think my greatest challenge has been to recognize my limitations of how much I can take on. I have a hard time saying no and for the first couple of years I found it very difficult to do and so I would take on more than I could comfortably handle. After a few occasions where I just didn’t go to bed, I had to come to terms with the fact that I needed to say no. I’m much better at it now, lol.
What is the most rewarding part of cake decorating?
Besides the obvious, the reaction that people have to what I have created, I think my own satisfaction in creating something from a piece of cake and fondant and icing. Molding and shaping it into something beautiful. I find it so relaxing and it has given me a confidence in myself that I think I lacked before. I know have this sense of I did this, I made this, I have worth.
Could you give some tips to people who have just started decorating cakes or would love to start?
Just do it! Get in there and play and find joy in the discovery of what you can do! It’s like children playing with Playdoh. They don’t worry that it’s a perfect replica of a rabbit or whatever they are making, they enjoy the process!
How did you find CakesDecor.com and what is it that keeps you coming back?
Truthfully I’m not sure where I saw it first. Probably on the Facebook pages of either Mayen, Peggy or Ann-Marie. I love that it’s like a little community and I’ve met some really great friends through CakesDecor and I am constantly blown away by all the talented people who are members. I also love that it’s easy to use!
Which one of your cakes is your favourite?
That is such a tough decision. Each time I make a cake I think it might be my favourite, but if I have to choose I think I would choose the First Communion cake that I did for Antonia because of the gum paste flowers. I have found that I love making gum paste flowers!
What’s been the biggest surprise in all of this for you?
I think the biggest surprise for me is the recognition that I get for what I do. I never would have imagined that there would be people from all over the world who would be interested in what I’m creating in the kitchen or that I would be published in Cake Central Magazine or even asked to do this interview.
To me I’ll always be a stay-at-home Mom who has an interesting hobby. I have a wonderful husband and daughter and I get to do something that I find to be very fulfilling. I’m very lucky!
Thank you so much for your time Naomi.