Owning a bakery and cake design business means that when it’s your birthday you can obviously have any cake you can dream of. So when Felicity’s (one half of Juniper Cakery) 32nd birthday began approaching so did the cake ideas, colour palettes, sketches, various pins, flavour lists etc etc. In the end three things kept appearing in all the different designs… naked birthday cake, macarons and the colours pink & gold. Obviously that led to the glistening beauty featured in this post – a towering buttercream skimmed carrot cake and cappuccino cake adorned with pink Eliza roses, golden silk eucalyptus leaves, 24k gold dusted peanut butter macarons and dainty pink lemonade macarons studded with tiny edible pearls.
Pink and gold themed naked birthday cake!
The macaron shells were prepped a few days before Felicity’s birthday (today) in a pink, pale pink and caramel color palette. Originally there were going to be darker pink raspberry macarons speckled with rainbow confetti sprinkles, but we decided to simplify the cake to help make it a little more on-trend and chic! Flavour-wise the 24k gold dusted (yes… 24k) macarons are ‘Nutter Butter’ filled with a Madagascan vanilla and whipped peanut butter buttercream whilst the pale pinks are our ‘Pink Lemonade’ macarons filled with a pink raspberry and lemon sherbet buttercream.
Aren’t these tall gold candles stylish! They’re from Party Kitsch. We’d spotted them some time ago on Pinterest (as usual – the mecca of inspiration and chic-ness) and made sure to have them ready to finish off the cake because of the various planned gold accents (leaves and macarons). Gold has been quite the ‘it’ colour for a while, but it’s Felicity favourite colour… in fact she has dreams of painting various random things gold.
To decorate the cake we kept going back to the arrangement we used for our famous Black/Pink Forest Gateau Naked Cake which featured a crown of roses and macarons on top of the deep first tier and another crown encircling the top tier! It’s a simple yet elegant arrangement especially for a naked birthday cake. First the organic pink roses were added to the cake with small gaps left between each flower. These gaps were then filled up with glistening gold and pink macarons before the golden silk eucalyptus leaves were added for a little dimension and sparkle.
Sneaky picture of the presents! The cake was finished and photographed the day before Felicity’s birthday so of course it sure was hard for her to shoot everything without being tempted to peek inside those gift bags. In case you didn’t notice the cake, the macarons and all of the gift packaging matches our company branding – white, pink and gold sequins/dots galore! Extra gold elements were added with some sprigs of metallic silk eucalyptus leaves dotted between roses and macarons. Obviously, you can’t have too much gold.
We mentioned earlier the flavours of the tiers, but here’s a more in-depth mouth-watering description… the bottom tier is our soft and light carrot cake made using Chanteney carrots, fresh spices and Lady de Coverly sultanas soaked in King’s Ginger liqueur. The top tier is our cappuccino cake with Fortnum & Mason‘s Queen’s Blend Coffee infused into the batter. Both tiers have been filled and smoothed over with Madagascan vanilla and Callebaut white couverture chocolate buttercream.
For a wonderfully fun joint 13th birthday party we were asked to create a rather magical Harry Potter themed cake. Our brief was to design and make a large cake for 40 servings adorned with edible decorations including… a sorting hat, wand, name plaques, Harry Potter’s famous round glasses, the iconic Gryffindor scarf and a small Dobby character perched on the cake board!
The cake itself was filled with a crowd pleasing Madagascan vanilla and strawberry preserve and crumb coated with silky vanilla buttercream before being double iced with Satin Ice fondant! We chilled the cake once smothered with its crumb coat to help keep the corners lovely and sharp before icing. Satin Ice has a wonderful elasticity to it which really helps cover square edges.
To make Harry Potter’s wand we used modelling chocolate sculpted and moulded into shape before we added a wood texture with a sharp veining tool. It was then hand painted with different shades of brown food colouring before the fun shooting stars were added for a playful effect!
We created all of the decorative elements (except for the scarf as it needed to drape down the sides) a day before the cake was baked and assembled so they could set and dry appropriately. The names and birthday message were hand painted onto banners and a scroll ‘aged’ with edible brown petal dust before being attached to the front of the design. We thought that utilising the Harry Potter font and placing the messages on a weathered scroll and old fashioned banners would work much better with the overall design than just placing them on using letter cutters.
The 100% edible sorting hat was particularly fun for us to create. We began with a large ball of a 50/50 modelling chocolate and fondant mix before moulding a tall conical shape. With some extra fondant/modelling chocolate we rolled out and cut a large circle for the brim of the hat before thinning the edges with a large ball tool. The hat and brim were then intentionally scoured, ‘beaten’ and re-moulded to look aged and weathered. Then we sculpted in dents and the hollow facial features by hand, added the little patch at the side with some little stitching detail and hand painted sections roughly to add to the aged look of the piece.
This cake was a lot of fun for us to design and decorate. We even toyed with the idea of having a Harry Potter marathon for research purposes, but then we took one look at our bake and design sheets for the weeks running up to this cake’s due date and nearly fainted. There are such iconic and memorable styles and looks from the book and film series that we luckily had more than enough inspiration from memory, and pictures, alone to re-create the elements we needed.
For a future Harry Potter themed cake we’d love to create a giant carved and sculpted sorting hat cake nestled on a flurry of house scarves!
Lovely hat box cakes are always popular requests for us around this time of year. They’re vintage styling and softer colours seem synonymous with the light-hearted spring season. Earlier this week we created this wonderful peony and violet themed hat box cake for a 40th birthday! It features dainty hand-painted florals and a sweet plum, peach, juniper green, ivory and blush pink palette.
The cake itself was a classic Madagascan vanilla cake sandwiched with fresh Madagascan vanilla buttercream and home-made raspberry preserve which was then iced with fragrant marshmallow fondant tinted in a lovely blush pink colour.
We created the large voluminous bow and open peony flower a few days in advance so that each could set into fluid shapes and ruffles before being handled and placed on the finished design.
Each white stripe and plum coloured scallop edging was measured and spaced accordingly before we began hand painting small peony blooms, violets, leaves and tiny berries onto each. We planned out a pattern that alternates around the cake with one stripe featuring peonies centered and in each corner and another stripe with bundles of florals placed at the top and bottom.
To balance out the peach of the sugar peony flower we decided to create an edible gift card and envelope out of white and peach gum paste which was then placed at the top opposite side of the flower. The message was completely hand-painted and left to dry before we carefully nestled it inside our little envelope!
We hope this vintage delight was enjoyed by the lucky birthday girl! The very last thing we heard about this cake was that no one wanted to cut it at all.