Thursday, October 18, 2012

Craftsy Class Review - Exotic Sugar Orchids with James Rosselle

Last week it was Marina's Jeweled Wedding Cakes.  This week it is James Rosselle's Exotic Sugar Orchids!          
I am in sugar heaven!  If you know me, you know my most favorite part of cake design is sugar flowers!  That is probably why watching James in this class makes me feel so relaxed - we have the same feelings and philosophies when it comes to sugar flowers.  Or maybe, just maybe, it is James' smooth, relaxed way of presenting step by step how to create the most amazing, lifelike sugar flowers I have ever seen!

In Exotic Sugar Orchids, James teaches you 3 gorgeous orchids - cattleya, dendrobium, and cymbidium.  You learn step by step how to make and wire petals, make centers and throats, assemble and color your creations.  James also includes features on making leaves, rocks, and bamboo as well as offers a whole section on techniques for making stunning arrangements with your orchids.

As with all Craftsy classes, once you buy it, it is yours to keep for life - you can watch it as much as you want, whenever you want!  You can also interact with James and fellow students through the platform.  There are detailed resource guides and instructions, and you get a sneak peek at James' new cutters and veiners from his line at NY Cake.  I must say, the Cymbidium throat cutter is sick!  It makes the most amazingly realistic throat I have ever seen!

I have been fortunate enough to learn from James in person and consider him a good cake friend!  I can vouch that what you see is what you get - James' cool laid back personality and teaching style jump through the screen just as if you were live in class with him!  He is a genuinely nice person - so nice in fact, he wanted me to share something with you......James wants you all to benefit from this amazing class, so he has given you a link to get the class for $20 - that's half off!  Thank you James!

And the niceness doesn't stop there!  The great team over at NY Cake are giving one lucky reader the chance to win some of James' products - namely one of his new Orchid veiners (due to be released in a couple of months).  So here's how you win: you need to be following my blog publicly, and you need to leave a comment below telling me how James frills his cymbidium throat (hint: look for the comment I posted in that lesson).  Visit NYCake and see James entire line, as well as the cool cutters Marina used in Jeweled Wedding Cakes.

If you haven't gotten enough James after this class, fret not.  There are still a few spaces available to learn from James in person, when he returns to Icing Inspirations next year, where he'll join 5 other star instructors for a 3 day fun filled class at the Cake Carnival!

Until next time,
Happy Caking!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Craftsy Class Review - Marina Sousa's Jeweled Wedding Cake

Hi Cakeland!

The lovely and talented Marina Sousa has done it now!  With her latest online class with, Jeweled Wedding Cakes, she has raised the bar for classes to come. 

If you are not familiar with craftsy, they are an online craft site that offers affordable online classes that you can view in the comfort of your own home, whenever you want.  You get to interact with the instructors and fellow students through the craftsy platform, and best of all your class is yours forever – there is no expiration date!

In, “Jeweled Wedding Cakes”, Marina walks you through techniques required to give your brides the bling factor they are all seeking these days!  In this class, you learn how to use molds, cutters, pearls and dragees, to create eye catching pieces of edible jewelery and adornments that add a touch of elegance, sparkle and shimmer to your creations.  If you are a novice cake artist, or a seasoned pro, this class is a must have to help elevate your skills to the next level!

Marina is one of the biggest names in cake land.  She has won multiple competitions including Food Network Challenge, and has appeared on Oprah.  I had the privilege of learning from her in person, and she is exactly the same on film as she is in class!  Marina starts the lesson with a focus on design – a primer in the “how-to”.  She then moves on to cover tips and tricks for covering and carving your tiers.  One of the more interesting segments is on how to create your own cake stand that looks like it is made entirely of sugar!  I love making wedding cakes and have learned so much from this class – including a quick and easy way for creating swags that look incredible! 

Marina uses molds from her line available through MarvelousMolds and Icing Inspirations.  She moves on to demonstrate how to brighten the baubles up by using lusters, disco dusts, edible pearls and dragees.  And speaking of Marina’s molds, a HUGE thank you to my friend Chrissie from Icing Inspirations, who has generously agreed to give one lucky winner the opportunity to get their hands on 3 of the molds Marina uses throughout the lessons, valued at $75!  If you would like to win Marina’s Bling squared, Jeweled Brooch, and Diamond swag molds, you need to do two things – 1) Make sure you are signed up for blogger and follow my blog; and 2)Buy Marina’s “Jeweled Wedding Cake” class and leave a comment below telling me what Marina does to make a “simple swag” (Hint: It is in lesson 4 at the 5:08 mark).  All correct entries received by 11:59pm EST October 25th, will be put into a random draw.

This class is well worth the $40 fee, but for a limited time, you can purchase the class (thanks to Marina and Craftsy here for 50% off!)

If you really enjoy this class as much as I did, then you should check out Craftsy’s other cake decorating classes, including Marina’s “AdvancedFondant Techniques”.  And if like me, you can’t get enough Marina, then join her (and 5 other amazing instructors) next November (2013) when she returns to Canada for Cake Carnival – a 3 day cake-a-palooza hosted by Icing Inspirations.

Keep your eyes peeled here next week, as I will be offering you a review of James Rosselle’s Exotic Sugar Orchids class on Craftsy.  Oh yeah, we’ll be having a contest for that too!

Until next time,
Happy Caking

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Craftsy Class - Cityscapes with Lauren Kitchens

The folks at Craftsy have done it again!  They have added yet another great class to their growing stable of classes  taught by celebrity cake artists – this time, it is Cityscape Cakes with the one and only queen of modelling chocolate, Lauren Kitchens.  In Cityscape Cakes, Lauren gives you an amazing introduction to modelling chocolate.  You will learn how to make and color modeling chocolate, how to work the chocolate by rolling and cutting chocolate shape, adding texture, adding dimension through color, backfilling with buttercream, and so much more.  The class even gives you insight to Lauren’s design process and tips for assembling and transporting the cake.

Although this is an Introductory type class, there are many techniques included that even experienced cake artists will benefit from this class as well.  Lauren is an amazing instructor who’s personality jumps through the screen and keeps you captivated through the duration of the class.  What is also cool about the Craftsy platform is that the class is yours to keep and watch as often as you like, whenever you’d like!  The ability to make video notes as you watch for easy referral later on.  You also get to interact with Lauren and fellow students through the class message boards.  Valued at $40, this class is a bargain!  But, until 11:59 MST October 2nd only, the folks at Craftsy are offering the class for only $20!  Just click

And when you’re done with this class, you are like me and can’t get enough of my cake dreamgirl LK, head over to her website and buy her 4 instructional dvds – I’ve seen em all and love them!
I am off to watch more of the lovely Lauren.  I really hope you decide to take her class – you will get so much out of it!  Stayed posted to the blog for more Craftsy class reviews including Marina Sousa’s second class as well as James Roselle’s Craftsy debut that may also include something extra special!

Happy Caking!