I have had the pleasure of working with Rachel on a number of styled photo shoots and have been so impressed by her wedding cakes, I wanted to know a little more about Rachel and her business so I could share with brides and grooms.
Tell me a bit about Rachel….
Based just outside Farnham, I am a self taught baker and cake artist, mother of one lovely girl (who doubles as a chief taster), part time Optometrist and full time lover of all things cake! I have always loved art and design but at school I also enjoyed science, especially biology. I almost pursued a career in graphic or interior design but in the end I studied Biology followed by Optometry at university and qualified as an Optometrist in 2008. Since then I have always needed a creative outlet to ensure a happy balance with my clinical work.
How did you get into cake design/decoration?
I have always loved cooking and baking but it all started when I attended a cupcake decorating course in 2012. I was so happy I literally cried and knew from that moment that it was what I really wanted to do as it combines design and creativity with cake! I jumped straight into the deep end and made my own three tier wedding cake! Shortly after we relocated to Farnham and I discovered Squires Kitchen and I was in heaven from that point on. I attended a Professional Intensive Cake Decorating course at Squires Kitchen International School and have continued to develop my passion and skills since then. I first hand painted a cake after seeing some painted biscuits, my first attempt was trial and error but thankfully it has become a lot more refined and I have been fortunate to attend a couple of courses with an incredible cake artist, Natasha Collins.
What makes your cakes unique?
Every cake is unique as every client is unique and inspiration for each bespoke cake can come from so many elements. I love to include hand painted elements into the designs but I also love creating sugar flowers and decorations to add depth, texture and interest. Each design is sparked by an idea which I then develop, sketch and bring to life! More importantly, the cakes have to taste delicious as well as look beautiful. Whilst I love feedback that my cakes are too beautiful to cut it is even nicer to hear that they were delicious to eat to, thats what they are for after all! I use the finest ingredients to create luxurious cakes and I love to experiment with new recipes and flavours.
What has been your favourite cake you have made so far?
Sorry to sound cliched but I love every cake I make! I am so passionate about the design process they become like my cake babies as they develop and are then realised. I’m almost sad when I complete a cake but like a bird flying the nest I love to see them enjoyed and am so proud of the feedback they receive. If I had to choose one it would be my harvest festival design. It was the first cake I made for a styled shoot and I made it a time when so many exciting developments were happening for the business. And to see it featured in Wedding Ideas Magazine was just incredible! If I could choose two… it would be my botanical design. I was so incredibly nervous about this cake as it was so tall and everything came down to the very last minute as I was using fresh edible flowers for the first time that had to be put on at the venue. But with great advice from lovely Jan at Maddocks Farm Organics for the flowers, and with help and patience from my lovely husband I think it looked really stunning when all set up and had such lovely feedback!
What are the plans for your business going forward?
I am so excited about the future! My website is just finished, I have exciting projects being featured next year in Cakes and Sugarcraft magazine and I can’t wait for my 2017 weddings! As my business grows I hope to one day leave the optometry world behind and create cakes full-time. New for 2017, as part of my bespoke cake design, I will also be offering clients a styling service. Whilst cakes alone are beautiful, when they are also beautifully styled with props, backdrops, candles, flowers or any other desired element they can become stunning centrepieces. I incorporate this styling into the design process from the very beginning, working alongside other vendors such as florists, photographers and planners, to create elegant cohesive designs. A lovely lady commented “It’s like Pinterest but in real life…”, which is absolutely my aim!