It was one of our most unusual requests, a cute sculpted turtle hugging a cupcake. Rick and I were both intrigued by the idea when our clients told us this is what they wanted for their wedding cake. The bride and groom had a huge sweet tooth and had planned their wedding around a sweets and candy theme, which included sculpted giant cupcakes on the tables as centerpieces, which Rick also made. Their adorable turtle with a cupcake wedding cake was a huge success and circulated around the internet where the wedding was featured several times, including cakelava.com. The awesome photo is by Stephen Ludwig.
Carisse and Todd's wedding cake, shown above, was also a very distinctive design. The couple wanted a "WOW" cake with unusual shapes using the colors bright pink, yellow and purple, with a few butterflies added in. The wedding was gorgeous like Janelle and Alex's shown above, and coordinated by the same company, Weddings by Grace & Mona, who we have worked with since cakelava opened. Carisse and Todd's cake has remained one of our favorite wedding cakes. I thought Rick hit it out of the park with this design and the colors were made for each other! Apparently, brides must have thought so too because the "Carisse" cake inspired many after it and was well appreciated on the internet.
The "Bree" cake (first cake above) was named after our Australian bride and has been so popular there hasn't been a year gone by since 2009 that we haven't made at least a couple of cakes based on this style. The year after the "Bree" cake, Rick made two 3-tier versions - one for Grace, another Australian bride, and one for Jennifer done in a cream base color. That cream colored wedding cake was later showcased in Cake Central Magazine (second photo above, taken by Visionari). Rick made a larger, 6-tier version in white in 2012.
The first several years in business we were occasionally making Thomas the Train cakes, and I remember each time Rick would let out a small groan because it is a time consuming and structurally involved design. I don't think people realize how labor intensive this particular cake can be. I've noticed many Thomas the Tank Engine cake pans on the market, and his iconic likeness on sheet cakes, so it is clear that making the shape is a challenge for many cake decorators. Rick makes his sculpted Thomas out of cake, versus styrofoam or Rice Krispies Treats. It can be more difficult to sculpt, but also means the client can eat the whole train, cute little face and all!
If you have ever lived in Hawaii, you know that people here LOVE Las Vegas. It is a huge vacation destination for people who live here - partly because gambling is illegal in Hawaii, and because we all love to party, eat and gamble! The Vegas themed cake has been requested since we opened, and Rick has made many of them - single tiers, multi-tiers, and sculpted cakes. The cake above had handmade decorations and was made for Anita's birthday.
Rick made this cute bulldog cake as a surprise groom's cake for a wedding in April 2009. The bride sent us photos of their dog, who is completely adorable! Rick sculpted the dog out of cake, and painted him to look as realistic as possible. We've made many dog cakes over the years, but the bulldog will always be one of our favorites!
The tokidoki trend was alive and well at cakelava in 2009. Rick made a number of tokidoki themed cakes, and they were all very different in design. The first cake above is a "tokidoki and sushi" theme design. Rick made all the characters and decorations which was already a lot of work, then added on the sushi. He placed the sushis mostly on the cake board, and designed it to look like a conveyor belt, which I thought was really clever! The client loved it too! The pink cake above combines Hello Kitty and Donutella, a tokidoki character. I adore this cake. The combination of colors and sweets worked well together.
Rick has always said how difficult the football helmet with its facemask is to make. He's made so many of them, and almost always a different team. He even made one as a wedding cake with custom figurines of the couple sitting on top. The Miami Dolphins helmet was made in May 2009, and was a challenge because of the structure of the helmet and the team's logo has a dolphin wearing a helmet! Talk about a double whammy!
I can't talk about 2009 without sharing one of our most unusual (and hilarious) cakes ever made at cakelava, the toilet bowl cake for Sam the plumber! Our client, who just happens to have a great sense of humor, asked if Rick could make her husband a toilet bowl cake since he was in a new career as a plumber. Rick and I loved the idea. We were so excited about this cake! He tried to make it as authentic as possible, which included having the toilet slightly overflowing. We couldn't stop laughing and Leslie and Sam loved it! It was one very tasty toilet!
I would be hard pressed to find someone living in Hawaii who hasn't heard of Lex Brodie's tire company. Their ads and "Thank You Very Much" slogan is all over TV and they are the best known tire company in the state. Having grown up with Lex Brodie's in Hawaii, I felt honored when we got the call from the company's president asking to make a cake for Lex's 95th birthday in October. Rick sculpted a life size tire out of cake with an actual rim inside of it provided by Lex Brodie's! You can read about the experience in a blog post here.
2009 really was a great year! What made this year extra special was that a number of our friends were married and we had the honor of making their cakes! The cake above was made for Dave and Michelle Miyamoto. Dave is an accomplished photographer and owns Dave Miyamoto & Company, who we've worked with regularly since cakelava opened. For their wedding cake Rick pulled out all the stops with a desserted island theme with the couple in their wedding attire and their dog Nacho on the back of the boat. All the pieces were handmade and Rick spent a lot of time on the cake, but it was so worth it! It was a a fun cake for a lovely couple! Photo by Dave Miyamoto & Company.
The Little Einstein's rocket ship cake looked awesome! I loved the way it turned out and the design pushes all the right buttons and greatly appeals to our geeky side. We were happy to have the opportunity to make it!
Rick made his first Harry Potter cake in 2009, and at the time we hadn't seen the movie and had no personal experience to draw from. Thank goodness for the internet! When our client asked for a sculpted book of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows with Harry's wand added in, she called the wand "a magic stick" which made us laugh. It was clear at that point who the Harry Potter fan was. The cake was a surprise for her fiance and was a big success. It remains one of our favorite book cakes!
We still have a number of selected cakes from 2009 to share, including one of the most significant cakes Rick has made, the Spongebob Birthday Cake design he made with his assistant Annie for Food Network's "Challenge. We will continue 2009 in the next post.