Sunday, February 13, 2011

Purse, Money & Cupcakes

Last night my husband's school, St. Thomas More, held its annual fund-raising auction at a beautiful location downtown Portland. Last year I had created the Latin Lady cake for their themed event and raised $600 for the school! This year they asked if I'd take part in the dessert portion again, so of course I was thrilled to say YES!
The theme this year was "So You Think You Can Bid" and the whole event was based on reality TV shows. I wish you all could have seen the venue...it was beautiful! They put on an amazing auction!! - I'm sure it's the best in Portland!
I decided to go a bit smaller scale this year (compared to the 42" tall beauty I made last year) because I'm a bit busy raising up a baby and all! :) So, I decided to create a purse, some money and 24 cupcakes to continue the theme of the night.
I was SO happy with how everything turned out!! The money was quite impressive!! I had edible images printed so it really looked real! I made some rice crispy treats, covered them in white modeling chocolate, scored the sides, then placed the edible images on top and whaallllllah - stacks of money!!! So fun and VERY tasty!! There ended up being six stacks of money!
The purse was a bit of a challenge...I truly didn't decide on what I was going to do until the day before the auction!! I had made two 9" layers of chocolate cake to use, but didn't know what I wanted the purse to look like. I was having a ginormous brain block! Then my sweet husband said, "Hey, have you prayed about it?!" I thought nope...I should do that! So, Friday I decided on a shape and began carving it. I then spent the day asking the Lord what in the world it should look like!? - the decor and colors. Then, later that night as I was searching etsy for inspiration, the very first thing I saw on the main page was a really cool vintage suitcase that was a robin egg blue and had this funky tree detail on it and BOOM - I thought, that's it! I knew I wanted to hand paint something, I just couldn't figure out what - or how! So, I tinted the fondant a vintage blue and hand painted the trees to finish the look. I really loved how it all turned out and think this is probably one of my favorite cakes to date. Thank you Lord for being sooo kind and so faithful!
I also had an epiphany while making this purse...I don't think I'll ever be on a Food Network challenge show because it takes me forever to do anything!!!! I work so slowly because I just want everything to be perfect! It literally took me 1.5 hours to cover the cake with fondant!!!!!! I ended up having to do it in four pieces because of the shape of the cake. Note to self...next time before creating a shape, ask yourself how you're going to cover it in fondant! :) I wanted the seams to be perfect and tie together, so it just took me a while! I'm SUPER happy with how smooth and flawless everything looked, so I guess it was worth it! :)
Here is the purse before fondant during my brain block! :)

And, here is everything together on the dessert table awaiting bids. I guess the purse looked pretty realistic because right before I set it on the dessert tray, it was sitting off to the side and a woman came over and put her purse and coat right on the table next to it...a little too close - I thought she was going to hit it! So, I grabbed it and said I was going to move it because it was a cake and she flipped out!!! She totally didn't know and thought it was my purse!! :) LOL! It was pretty funny...she was soo surprised!
The cake was a rich chocolate cake with chocolate hazelnut buttercream and dark chocolate ganache. The cupcakes were red velvet filled with cheesecake and topped with cream cheese buttercream. The coconut cupcakes were filled with a white chocolate coconut custard and topped with a white chocolate buttercream.
Now, onto what it went for...a very impressive $1400!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was beside myself with excitement!!! Truly...it was amazing! I was soo thankful that all the time I spent on this cake set was able to raise such an impressive amount of money for the school!!
Again, the Lord is faithful!!

Thanks for looking!

23 comments:

  1. Super cute! Bonus that no backs were thrown out in the process. :)

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  2. What in the world!?! I am new to your blog and you are AMAZING! Holy bananas!

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  3. Your work astounds me! Great job! Now please get some much deserved rest & feel better in a jiffy!

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  4. Hi! I Love you'r blog and you'r work. You are so brilliant! I wonder if I could get the recapie of the fondant you use on the cakes. Keep up the good work!

    Hugs and love from one of you'r Swedish readers/Nathalie
    http://www.nathaliessweets.blogspot.com/

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  5. Thanks for your sweet comments! Here is the fondant I used for this cake:

    http://cakecentral.com/recipes/7432/michele-fosters-updated-fondant

    Only I used milk instead of cream! :)

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  6. Wow, unbelievably perfect! I have no words.

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  7. Beautiful! I'm going to a purse party and thought I'd make one of these to bring. hmmmm not to sure I'm up for the challenge tho?

    Question: Where do you have your edible images made?

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  8. Suzan: There is a local cake shop here in town that can print edible images for me. It's called the Decorette Shop if you live in my area. Good luck on your purse party! - sounds fun!!!

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  9. Do you freeze your cake before carving? I tried to create a little cake purse this past week and the cake kept tearing and collapsing. Any tips? I was using a Red Velvet recipe and 6" round cakes.

    Do you have a video tutorial on your purse cakes? I would love to make one of these for my kid sister.

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  10. Part-Time Bakeaholic: Yes, I semi-freeze the cakes before I carve them so they are MUCH more stable!!

    No video tutorial...although, that's a great idea! :) Might have to put one of those together! :)

    Blessings!

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  11. Great! I'll give it another go after semi-freezing the cakes. :-) Thanks so much for the tip!

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  12. Hi Jessica,

    This may sound like a silly question but you said you were using 9inc layers were those round cakes. Did you have a template or did you carve it free hard. The smoothness of the cake before fondant is amazing. Is it iced in ganache?

    It is so refreshing to she a woman of god doing so great in this field. You are an inspiration.

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  13. Thanks Dee! They were round cakes I carved free hand. Yes, it's iced in ganache before covering in fondant...the pic of it iced in ganache is above...right before I put fondant on it. This was my best fondant job. I still remember! - I was REALLY happy with how the fondant worked and went on the cake. It was awesome!
    God bless you too! :)

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  14. This cake is amazing! Good for you!! I am trying to make purse cupcakes for my one year celebration with thirty-one. Any ideas?
    www.mythirtyone.com/dempsey :)

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  15. Hi, I'm impressed with your cake designs! I'm curious to know how you did the money for the Purse and Money Cake. You mentioned printing, how exactly did you do it? Thanks. - Janine.

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  16. Janine: I found some money images online and sent them to our local cake shop and they printed them for me on rice paper. I then just applied it to my blocks with a little tiny bit of crisco. Worked great! They just need to be slightly smaller than regular money so you don't get into trouble for printing it! :)

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  17. Hello Jessica! your cakes are stunning, welldone dear. Is there any wire in your handle? or tylose powder beeing added to the fondant? Also is modelling chocolate same as gumpaste?

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    1. Hi there!
      I think you just emailed me too?!

      No wire in the handle but there are some toothpick/skewers in there to help give it support about an inch from the bottom.

      Modeling chocolate is not gumpaste!! They're totally different but can perform the same way. Modeling chocolate is temperature sensitive and will soften when warm...gumpaste hardens and stay hard! - so it's much more stable.

      I hope that helps! :)

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  18. Your cakes are so beautiful!

    I really love the vintage blue. Would you please share how you achieved this color?

    Thanks so much for being an inspiration.

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    1. Thank you! :) I honestly don't remember exactly, but I think I used Americolor Turquoise and a little light blue. I'm sorry!! :)

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  19. Hi Jessica I'm trying to see if you have a video tutorial on how to do the stack money cake. Did you use loaf pans? What colors you use to get the perfect green and the lines on the sides of the money what tool did you use. Thank you. I love your work!

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    1. I don't have a tutorial, sorry. They are just cut out sections of rice crispy treats that I paneled with modeling chocolate. The images on the sides and top are edible images I stuck to the modeling chocolate with shortening. I used a fondant tool with a point on it to scribe the lines in the sides of the stacks. Blessings!

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