Is It Real?
No it’s cake!
I’ve always made the odd small cake here and there growing up, but, my journey in cake decorating began in December 2008, when I was asked if I could make some small cakes to help raise funds for the British Heart Foundation. Not knowing much about decorating and techniques, these cakes were quite plain and simple, but I managed to raise £250 for the cause.
A lady who I worked with at the time, Margaret Wall (who has now retired) “nagged” me to go to cake decorating classes in my local area. Well, at the time I wasn’t quite sure about this as I didn’t know what to expect, but, she won her war and got me to classes. Needless to say I really enjoy going now and I am in my fourth year, one day a week. Mostly we cover basic modelling, sugar flowers and we use other mediums depending on what we are making.
I recently just qualified as a teacher and I work with students, 16+, who have a variety of learning difficulties. My main role is full-time learning support. I don’t make cakes for a living due to work commitments so I make them as a hobby, and the Pug is my first dog cake I’ve made! I don’t have a website for my cakes as I’ve never really thought about going into cake decorating as a business, because where I live is a little quiet, so, I just make them as and when I can fit them in. Word of mouth has spread via family and friends with previous cakes I have made. Another VERY important person in my life, but most of all, a great friend, is Ingrid; she has ALWAYS believed in me and has always encouraged me to follow my dreams. Without Ingrid by my side I feel I would not have achieved a lot of what I have today. So a BIG thank you to Ingrid!
There are many artists out there who inspire me with cake and I’ve always been too frightened to push the boundaries, but, that is changing with confidence as I grow as an artist. I am becoming more adventurous with what I make and will take on something that will challenge me a little more each time. My next big step is to learn how to make structures for tall cakes, but due to the food regulations in the UK, I will need to research this more before going ahead with this!
I attended the Oklahoma State Sugar Art Show for the first time last year and I have to say it was absolutely incredible! The cakes that were on display were just mind-blowing, and you had to look twice to see if it really was ‘cake’! I met many talented artists there who are so passionate about what they do (even if their cake causes them stress at the time) and to see how proud they were of their finished pieces just inspired me even more!
I feel my cake journey is only really just beginning, and I can’t wait for what the future holds!
EDITOR: I asked Justin about the cake and he added:
This particular Pug is made from melted marshmallows, butter and rice crispies, which forms a medium perfect for modeling/sculpting. I then covered it with a layer of white modeling chocolate and let it set up to harden slightly. The next coat was fondant icing, and this is where all the detail work came in; fondant is a soft and pliable medium which can be shaped well. I then airbrushed the Pug (who I’ve named Alfie for now) with edible food colourings, picking up the folds in his skin with a black accent. This can be made out of cake, but I chose to use this medium as it can be removed from the board and then kept as an ornament. It can be made from cake using the same techniques depending on what the customer wants.
A True Story
For those of you that have pets, this is a true story.
For those of you that don’t have pets, this is also a true story.
The following was found posted very low on a refrigerator door:
Dear Dogs and Cats
The dishes on the floor with the paw prints are yours and contain your food. The other dishes are mine and contain my food. Placing a paw print in the middle of my plate does not mean that is suddenly your food, nor do I find that aesthetically pleasing in the slightest.
The stairway was not designed by NASCAR and is not a racetrack. Racing me to the top of the stairs is not the object. Tripping me doesn’t help because I fall faster than you can run.
I cannot buy anything bigger than a king sized bed. I am very sorry about this. Do not think I will continue sleeping on the couch to ensure your comfort. Dogs and cats can actually curl up in a ball when they sleep. It Is not necessary to sleep perpendicular to each other, stretched out to the fullest extent possible. I also know that sticking tails straight out and having tongues hanging out on the other end to maximize space that you are taking up, is nothing but sarcasm.
For the last time, there is no secret exit from the bathroom! If, by some miracle, I beat you there and manage to get the door shut, it is not necessary to claw, whine, meow, try to turn the knob or get your paw under the edge in an attempt to open the door. I must exit through the same door I entered. Also, I have been using the bathroom for years – canine/feline attendance is not required.
The proper order for kissing is: Kiss me first, then go smell the other dog or cat’s butt. I cannot stress this enough.
Finally, in fairness, dear pets, I have posted the following message on the front door…
To all non-pet owners who visit and complain about out pets:
- They live here… you don’t.
- If you don’t want their hair on your clothes, stay off the furniture. That’s why they call it “fur”-niture.
- I like my pets a lot better than I like most people.
- To you, they are animals. To me, they are adopted sons/daughters who are short, hairy, walk on all fours and don’t speak clearly.
Remember, dogs and cats are better than kids because they:
- Eat less
- Don’t ask for money all the time
- Are easier to train
- Normally come when called
- Never ask to drive the car
- Don’t hang out with drug-using people
- Don’t smoke or drink
- Don’t want to wear your clothes
- Don’t have to buy the latest fashions
- Don’t need a gazillion dollars for college and
- If they get pregnant, you can sell their children…
The Pug Nursery
by Jane Bryder
Sometime ago we decided to turn our spare room into a bedroom for our 3 pugs, Eve, Zoe and Chelsey.
There was a lot of work to do, buying and customizing furniture, decorating and stenciling the walls and cupboards and sourcing all the soft furnishings, and some of these things had to be handmade to order.
The bedroom is now finished and a friend of ours immediately called it ‘the pug nursery’ and it has been known as that ever since.
It is also very practical for us as all their belongings are easy to find.
The girls love sleeping in their own bedroom and they love playing in it as well. When I go upstairs to clean they follow me up and get all the toys out, even though they also have a toy box in the lounge.
Perhaps other members might find this idea useful, and if so, please ring me if I can be of any help. I am listed in the Members Book.
Time for Lunch
Verse by Pat Bilton
It starts about ten Poppy running around,
Lolly is shrieking – a very loud sound.
Yogi thinks it is lunchtime, ‘Surely now Ma,
can you not see just how hungry we are?’
It is far, far too early, you really must wait
do stop twirling around, you will get in a state!
They are under my feet, all three tumbling about,
can’t hear myself speak, I just have to shout.
It is just like a mad house, the Pugs do not care,
because, they are STARVING! Their cries fill the air.
Of course, I must feed them, or the noise will not cease,
giving in, it’s the only way I’ll get some peace!
The bowls, are now down, the Pugs, they are munching,
how happy they are, now they are lunching.
Afterwards, silence, how blissful, if boring,
the only sound now is of three Pugs a-snoring!
I defy anyone to delay a Pug’s lunch, it is not worth the stress!
According to Pug
If I like it, it’s mine
If it’s in my mouth, it’s mine
If I can take it from you, it’s mine
If I had it a while ago, it’s mine
If it’s mine, it must never appear to be yours in any way
If I’m chewing something up, all the pieces are mine
If it just looks like mine, it’s mine
If I saw it first, it’s mine
If you are playing with something and you put it down it automatically becomes mine
If it’s broken, it’s yours