Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Valentine's cards

It's a real work day again today, and with a big 'healthy lunchboxes' project on the go this week, I'm really short of time to do much else. I made some super-fast Valentine's cards though, which I actually quite like. Having not made a card since way before Christmas, I thought I'd ease myself in gently with some printed ones, then just add some sparkle. There are more on the way. I'll be offering them with the gift boxes of cupcakes for a small extra cost.

What colour would you like to see added?

Sunday, 23 January 2011

And now for something completely different...

For my Father-in-law's birthday, I am making him a shooting cake, complete with pheasant flying over the top. Eek! What have a I let myself in for?! In my mind a have a green cake, with bushes and trees, and a man leaning against the side of it pointing a gun skywards. Over the top will be hovering a pheasant in flight. Ooh, I could even add his dogs! Let's see how it goes...

Well, that was written a few days ago. The cake has been made and demolished. It did have a pheasant in flight, but being for family, I left it until the last minute, so as you look at the photos please bear in mind that much more care is taken over cutomers' orders!

A pheasant in flight! Didn't realise he looked blind until now- really should have added black centres to the eyes!

Pretty shoddy man and dog. Lessons learnt about leaving things until the last minute!

Trees (with stray icing sugar!)

Overall effect, not too bad!
With a little more time, the man could have been much better, as could the dog. If I'd done a bit more forward planning I could have made a much more accurate gun, and maybe even had him pointing it skywards as intended- maybe next year!

Friday, 21 January 2011

Even daylight's not enough

Last night I made my first Valentine's cupcakes, having thought about them for far too long! I went for two simple, but striking designs~ a red rose, and a glittery heart. They look fab in their black gift boxes, but no matter what I do, I cannot get a decent photo of them. They looked dreadful with the flash last night, so I thought I'd try again this morning. I even took them into the garden and knelt in the frost (still in my pyjamas!) to take some better shots, but no, up popped the flash. There must be a way on a digital SLR to turn off the flash, but I really can't work it out, so here are the best pictures I managed to get...

Red Rose Cupcake

Glittery heart cupcake (with some stray glitter, grrr)

By the way, the upshot of the Great Muffin Debate is simply that I'll be a bit more descriptive when I name them, so the Plum Crumble Muffin is now the 'Light and Fluffy Plum Crumble Muffin'!

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

What's in a name...

I need your help. I've just made a batch of plum crumble muffins/cupcakes... let's just call them cakes for now. The only real difference between them and a cupcake is that they are in a different case and are a bit less pretty (although just as delicious!) Some muffins I make are a different consistency to a cake, they're much heavier, but these are light and fluffy. So there's my dilemma- what do I call them, muffins or cakes?! Does it actaully matter? Would you be disappointed if you bought a muffin to find that it was light and fluffy?

Your thoughts please...

Monday, 17 January 2011

Love and stuff

Valentines cupcakes are playing on my mind at the moment. So much so that I think I may need to bake some tonight, just to try out my ideas! I've been having a little look around at some of the offerings from other crafties out there for inspiration (being a crafty is a good thing by the way, even if my brother does use it in a derogatory sense). These are a few of my favourites.

I love this butterfly heart picture by Daisy Frames that I found on gift wrapped and gorgeous. I wonder how many butterflies I could fit on a cupcake...?

Who wouldn't love buttons like this on their cardi?! There are loads more designs on Melissa Choroszewska's website. They've given me an idea for a cupcake...

And last but by no means least, this truly fabulous bronze kiss cast- not that I could put them on a cupcake, but wouldn't they look amazing if I could make them from icing... I wonder if I could get a mold made?!

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Fabulously girly... and tasty too!

OK, so as promised, a big picture post. This was my big order of the weekend. Super-girly cupcakes in four flavours- lemon drizzle, white chocolate and raspberry, vanilla and chocolate fudge.

Baked and ready for the fun bit!

Butterflies and roses in the early stages.
And again... with a bit of added bling!

Each flavour had a different decoration, so the customer knew which was which.

Vanilla~ buttercream rose

Chocolate fudge~ fondant roses

White chocolate and raspberry~ raspberry buttercream swirl (with glitter!)

 Lemon drizzle~ butterflies

And finally, for the birthday girl!

I wrapped each cupcake in a butterfly wrap and they'll all be displayed on my beautiful mirrored cake stand, although I'm sure the customer will put them on something a bit classier than my creased old tablecloth!

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Butterflies and glitter

On Wednesdays and Thursdays I do my 'real' job, so technically, this morning I should be getting ready to face a class of 20 something 6 and 7 year olds this afternoon. Hmmm, perhaps not, eh?! The pull of the blog is just too strong, so I thought I'd let you know what's in store.

I've got a fabulously girly cupcake order to do for Sunday, with lots of glitter, butterflies and lacy wrappers- my favourite kind of order! I'll do a big picture post over the weekend to show them off and I might even find time to share some work in progress photos and tips, but for now I'll leave you with some of my previous creations.

New baby boy cupcakes

Love and Butterflies cupcake

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Let me explain...

Ok, so let's get this out of the way first.. My business name is Ballderdash & Bunting. Sorry, what was that? Did you say 'That's not how you spell balderdash'? No, you're right, it's not. It's how you spell Ballderdash. This is how it came about...

About a year ago, I was invited to a friend's house for an afternoon of card making and tea. We spent a lovely afternoon on the floor of her 'making room' cutting, sticking and creating while our children slept on the floor around us (oh the joys of having small immobile  babies!). In the days and weeks that followed I began to think that perhaps I could make a little pocket money from making my own cards. Around the same time, I had started to bake a lot (another luxury of maternity leave), then I was asked to make a wedding cake for a friend and thought perhaps I could make some extra cash that way too! I sold a few cards at an Easter Fair and when I returned to work part time, I sold them there too. To my surprise, they sold quite well and I started to think about a business name. I can't even remember any of the other ideas now, but Ballderdash stood out. It was suggested by a friend of mine (whose first language isn't even English, which makes this even more clever), who noticed that I signed my cards B.Allder. So there we go, Ballderdash was born. I wanted an 'and' name, just because I like how they sound, and when my mum, who is the other creative input in the business, made bunting one day, the name stuck.

So, now you know why I spell Ballderdash with a double l, because I am Ballderdash! Nobody boycotts the toy company who write their r the wrong way round, so I'm sure that it won't offend too many people enough to put them off buying our products... oh yes, that has been suggested by a few hardcore pedants!

I hope not to bore you with too much writing. A picture paints a thousand words as they say, so to whet your appetite and hopefully get you coming back for more, here are some gorgeous mini cupcakes I've been working on...

Lemon drizzle in a white chocolate case.