From inspiration to cake

Ever wonder how a cake gets designed? Who makes the final call on  cake design or theme? How does it all work? Here’s a little insight with a recent cake I created!


Sometimes you meet with a client and they have lots of pictures of what they’d like, and it’s easy to compile and create a cake sketch based on all their ideas and wishes. Other times you just get a few pointers and free rein. This can either be exhilarating and the best thing since sliced bread or a major case of writers block. It really depends on whether you enjoy the subject. When the subject is cake design being inspired is definitely key!

For this cake I asked the client what she liked and she said: PURPLE!  (I need to admit that purple is probably one of my least favourite colours – shocking to some, I know – but deal with it,  I’m a aqua- seafoam/pink/white/gold fan, I also can’t choose any specific favourite).  Since PURPLE doesn’t really steer me down one specific path for a sixteen year olds cake, I asked what else she was into. She mentioned travel and photography. NOW that’s something to work with!! When I asked her to expand on her ideas about travel, either where she’d been or where she’d like to go, I wasn’t expecting INDIA to be the answer! She had just spent three weeks there, over of the summer, helping in an orphanage. What a beautiful memory and jumping off point for a cake! I suggested something with a Mehndi or Henna design which she thought was great!

I then asked if she had any other specifics other than flavour (vanilla) which she didn’t, and she left it totally in my hands.

This is definitely best case scenario!

A little research goes a long way, and since pinterest and I are besties, I quickly made my way over and checked out some designs. I actually love creating Mehndi designs, growing up in a very multicultural neighbourhood I learned many of the designs in my younger years.  It’s always good to freshen up your skills so a few doodles, a peek at a few beautifully created cakes and I was ready to go!

Here are a few of the inspiration images I used!

This design was just gorgeous!

and this little mini cake totally inspired my colour patterns.

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First the cake was crumb coated (base icing coat) chilled and then covered in a good layer of buttercream.

Then covered in purple fondant.

I made up five colours of royal icing (pink, aqua, yellow, pale green & white)

Starting with the purple and a Wilton tip #3 I piped all the main designs, and then changed my colour and started adding layers (using tip #1) one colour at a time. The layering takes time but builds a lot of depth in the design and is well worth it!!

I finished it off with a orangey-yellow ranunculus. Yellow and Purple are opposite on the colour wheel, so they make each other sing even more… Yes colours sing!! (stop giving me that look!)

Hope you enjoy it.

The birthday girl loved her cake!


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Happy designing!



By the way – I love reading a good cake blog and if you don’t already you need to check out “the cake blog” they have covered lots of articles on designing and offer plenty of tips! Enjoy!!


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