Thursday, July 31, 2008

Fun with tokidoki

When our client Tina ordered a tokidoki theme for her daughter's 14th birthday cake it was our first introduction to tokidoki, which is a bit embarassing considering I wrote my thesis in college on Japanese Anime and have an appreciation for pop culture kitsch. Tina sent us many images to work off of and each one slightly more fun and bizarre than the next. Talking to her, I got an instant crash course on tokidoki. We should have known from the "Latte" and "Leche" milk carton tokidokis that they were of Italian origin but I assumed they were Japanese. For anyone (besides us) not previously familiar with tokidoki, they are the brainchild of Italian artist and designer Simone Legno. There is a huge tokidoki fan base, and an extensive tokidoki website and of course, a blog.

For our tokidoki cake, Tina turned over the design to Rick. Her only request was to have the base color of the cake be in black and white and to try and incorporate the girl image in some way. Rick made all the tokidoki figures by hand and tried to put as many on the cake as possible to mimic the tokidoki design style. Tina chose our Kona Toffee Crunch flavor for the cake. When we delivered the cake, Tina and her husband were thrilled and excited to celebrate with their daughter Laneah, her friends and her many tokidokis.

See the tokidoki cake and many others on

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Getting Messy!

When our client Kulia called to order a cake for her daughter Maya's 3rd birthday, she told us she was having a "messy party" and wanted a cake that would match the theme. Let the kids do what they do naturally, and what they do best, get MESSY! Kulia wanted to avoid many of the pitfalls that she had witnessed at other parties where children line up and are made to participate in games they don't want to and watch another kid open up gifts when that age group is torn apart by jealousy. The messy party takes place outside and is made up of "stations" for the children to explore at their own pace. She told me the party was inspired by an article she read online at Mothering Magazine.

What a fantastic concept! Where were these messy parties when we were growing up, and is it too late to have one at our age? Intrigued, I asked Kulia to tell me more. At Maya's messy party, Kulia served sandwiches, fresh fruit and drinks for the kids and Pizza that arrived mid-party. In the yard they had a blow-up pool with water, cups, buckets, a finger painting area, sidewalk chalk, and a glitter/glue/ribbon area where children could decorate their own wands or whatever they wished to make. She told me the most popular "game" was the unplanned Gecko hunting as bands of children attempted to catch them as the geckos ran for the highest tree they could find. They had over 25 children and their parents attend and it was a fun time for all!

For the Messy Cake, Rick got in touch with his inner child (which wasn't too difficult), designing an all-edible creation of delectable messiness for Maya. When Kulia emailed me with information about her party, she described how the messy cake came to be and I thought I'd let her tell you about it:

"When you guys heard about the Messy Party Rick came up with the awesome idea to design a cake that looked like a product of the children at the party. It was the centerpiece of the meal - oohs and ahhs and conversations galore focused on the cake - before people even tasted it! The Guava Lava flavor is always a hit in this house - and we'll be sure to repeat again next year when the party is set to get even messier - cornstarch and water "goo" is on the play menu!"

Ooh, Kulia, cornstarch and water "goo" on the play menu? We are SO there! Thank you for sharing your experience and the photos with us. We had a blast making your cake and will look forward to it again next year!

See Maya's Messy Cake and her Ohana photo on

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Jason's Millenium Falcon Cake

It's been over a year since Karla placed the order for her fiance Jason's sculpted STAR WARS Millenium Falcon Groom's cake. We're STAR WARS fans and have been looking forward to this cake for the past year, and were excited to deliver it to Karla and Jason's wedding over the weekend. Rick made Jason's Millenium Falcon (MF) cake out of fondant and carefully studied all angles of the falcon to make sure no detail was overlooked. He propped up the MF on a platform of cake below to give the illusion that it was in flight. Jason chose our ever popular Hot Fudge Sundae flavor -- chocolate cake with fresh whipped vanilla cream, chocolate fudge and raspberry preserves.

Our client's Lynn and Curt have also ordered a sculpted Millenium Falcon Groom's cake for their wedding next year. Coincidentally, also in the Hot Fudge Sundae flavor. We'll be looking forward to making it again!

Check back here in the next couple weeks to see Visionari's photos of the rest of Karla and Jason's gorgeous oceanfront wedding including their monogram wedding cupcake tiers.

See our Millenium Falcon cake along with other new celebration cakes on

Monday, July 28, 2008

Brandy's Wedding Cake

On Saturday July 19th, before we delivered the sculpted Technics Turntable cake to the Koolau Golf Club, we drove out to the JW Marriott Ihilani Resort & Spa out in Ko Olina for Brandy's wedding. For her wedding, she chose the beautiful open air "Pavillion" venue at the Ihilani for her reception venue where she could entertain her 610 guests. Yes, 610 guests! The bride and groom's family are of Hawaiian and Samoan heritage and large guest counts are very common.

When Brandy approached us to make her wedding cake she mentioned that she was going to use a giant birdcage for her envelopes from her guests and possibly integrate the birdcage motif elsewhere in the reception. She wanted to have her cake in the shape of her birdcage and through collaboration with Rick, it was decided that her cake would borrow the shape of the wooden birdcage but still have the elegance of a wedding cake and borrow design elements from her wedding dress. Rick made her cake in white pearlescent fondant with vertical columns representing the gathers in her dress and painstaking amounts of TINY delicate piping all over the cake. On the top of the cake, he added a "T" monogram for the new family name. To honor the heritage of the bride and groom, the couple chose our Local Kine Special and Guava Lava flavors. The Local Kine special, one of our signature flavors has a taro cream filling in a coconut cake. In addition to her wedding cake, she ordered a number of cakes on the side that she and her groom could gift their families with, which I thought was a very sweet gesture.

Two days after her wedding, Brandy sent us this note:

Hi, Sasha and Rick,

My cake was so beautiful. I couldn't imagine a more gorgeous cake. You folks did an awesome job. When we cut the cake the servers started to cut the rest of the cake and it was all gone before I could blink twice. Thanks again!


Brandy, we loved making your cake! Thank you for providing the many design inspirations to work from. We hope you and all your guests had a wonderful wedding. All the best to the newlyweds!

-- Sasha & Rick

See Brandy's wedding cake and many other new cakes coming soon on

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Thank You Letters

In the past week or so we’ve received quite a few Thank You notes from our brides. The letters are very meaningful because as we’ve worked with them over time, we’ve developed a relationship and want the best for their wedding day. In an age where people write emails or send text messages, there is nothing like receiving a hand written note expressing thanks. We appreciate the kind thoughts and time it took for them to write the letter and find a stamp with the appropriate postage. As our way of honoring their efforts, and sharing their words with our clients, we regularly post these letters on our “Testimonials” section on the Info page of Today we are posting the photos of their cakes along with the accompanying testimonial, which we also did in June in our post “Kudos and their Cakes.” We hope you enjoy reading their letters as much as we like receiving them.

See the larger version of these cakes on

Enjoy the weekend!

Aloha Sasha and Rick,
The wedding cake you designed and made for us was so beautiful. So many of our guests gave us compliments on the taste of the cake too. We loved the banana nutella and the design. Thank you so much for your hard work and creativity!

-- Heidi & Edwin

We just wanted to write and tell you what a fabulous job you did on the cake for our wedding. It was everything we were hoping for and sooo tasty. We only wish we’d gotten to eat more of it!

-- Josh & Gwen

(see more of Gwen and Josh’s wedding in “Two times a Tiki in Waikiki”)

Thank you for making my day even more memorable with your work of art. The cake had so many compliments. The cake wasn’t just beautiful, it was delicious. In the future anyone wanting a special cake I will highly recommend cakelava. Thanks again, the cake was amazing and more beautiful than I imagined it would be.

-- Amy B

Our wedding cake was amazing! The spiky urchin on the top was such a nice, unexpected touch. All of our friends commented on how the cake was both delicious and beautiful. It was such a great backdrop for our pictures and our first dance. Mahalo and Aloha!

-- Mike and Ricki

(read about Ricki and Mike’s Underwater Invertebrates cake and the story behind their supercool invitations)

Friday, July 25, 2008

Goin' to the Expo?

Although we don't have a booth at the Hawaii Bridal Expo taking place at the Blaisdell Arena this weekend, cakelava will have a presence at two different vendor booths -- The Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa and Pacific Edge Magazine. We were hired by The Hyatt to make a cake product to enhance the look of their booth display. To keep the element of surprise we won't say what that cake product is, but it sounds like The Hyatt's booth will be quite spectacular so check it out if you are attending the Expo. One of our recommended linen vendors, Les Saisons will be doing the linens in their booth and floral designer Florist Grand is handling the floral arrangements. The Hyatt often wins "Best Booth" at the trade shows and hopefully they will win again at this show!

Pacific Edge Magazine , a beautiful publication specializing in business, culture, lifestyle and art in Hawaii, is another booth not to be missed. I'm told they are located in booth #411 and it will be quite a comfy booth. They will have refreshments, prize giveaways, and will distribute their 2nd annual Wedding issue FREE to any interested brides and grooms. Having been fans of the magazine for quite some time and one of their Featured Young Professionals (see previous post "Weddings on The Edge") we were excited to be showcased in their 10-page wedding feature in the magazine along with a bunch of our recommended vendors including Dave Miyamoto Photography, Weddings by Grace & Mona, who provided the art direction, Les Saisons, and Flowergirls. One of the wedding issue's Young Professionals is none other than Brad Buckles, the Producer of the Hawaii Bridal Expo. If you can't make it to the Expo, Pacific Edge Magazine can be picked up at Borders and Barnes & Noble, or direct from the publishers.


Thursday, July 24, 2008

Worth a Second Post!

I'll admit, it can be a bit of a struggle to maintain my once-a-day (weekdays only) posting. I happen to love writing and quite enjoy the exercise, but let's get back to reality, once a day is almost more than I can handle. What then would prompt a second post today? How about the "Top 10 Most Tasteless Cakes" listed on the Best Week Ever blogsite. Rick and I are both HUGE fans of Best Week Ever on VH-1, and only they could do a list like this justice. Check it out. It's a beauty!

See some of our other favorite tasteless cakes, including the "Sorry about the Herpes Cake" in "Wacky Cake Fun on Friday"

Black Fondant, Pink Daisies and Hidden Mickey's

One the newest cakes up on is from Kathy and Ryan's wedding on June 28th. Their wedding cake, shown above was designed for the couple nearly a year earlier and we've all been looking forward to it since. It takes an open-minded couple to order a bold BLACK fondant cake, and it took a little convincing by the groom to the bride to agree to black fondant but once she did, there were smiles all around. For many reasons Kathy and Ryan's cake was quite unusual, the obvious reason being that the cake is black, not a traditional wedding color. Keeping with non-tradition, which we always welcome, Rick designed their cake so their tiers would be varied in height but also that some of the tiers wouldn't sit perfectly center. Handcrafted pink daisies bands of black polka dots on the bottom of each tier added to the design. Kathy and Ryan love Mickey Mouse and wanted to integrate his silhouette in a subtle way, as they had on their invitations. Rick placed "hidden" Mickey Mouse heads amongst the polka dots. At the top of their 5-tier black wedding cake sat a silver monogram "KR".

If the bold black fondant cake with hidden Mickey's wasn't enough of a surprise for their 400 guests, they upped the ante by making the inside colorful as well. They chose our Rainbowlicious (see Taryn and Gavin's wedding post for a photo of this flavor) for their cake cutting to bring on the WOW factor, and Banana Nutella flavor for the rest of the cake. Just to be sure everything matched beautifully, the cake was placed on a pink custom linen by Les Saisons. Incidentally, this wedding was where we got to play in the Blue Cheese photo booth, a perfect "something Blue" in an otherwise black and pink themed room.

Kathy and Ryan, thank you for the opportunity to make your cake. All the best on your new life together!

See many new wedding cakes, including Kathy and Ryan's on

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Hollyjean and Gary - A Celebration of East and West

All photos courtesy of Visionari

Hollyjean and Gary wed on Sunday, June 29, 2008 at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Hotel. Their ivory, pink and Japanese themed reception took place in the hotel's Ballroom. Coordinator Lissa Wilson of The Wedding Planners beautifully merged delicate western traditional wedding elements with bold and elegant Japanese accents, honoring Hollyjean and Gary's heritage. Holly was a 2-dress bride, with her bodice-style beaded wedding gown with sash and brooch detailing for the ceremony and a gown with an embroidered japanese pattern (Anne Namba?) for the reception. Floral designer Fong Tagawa of Floral Inspirations created the gorgeous bouquets and towering centerpieces in soft pinks, ivories and greens, keeping the vibe romantic but with a little bling, as seen in the addition of crystals. I was told by their DJ that Hollyjean and Gary had a full program of entertainment planned for their guests, including live musical performances, taiko drumming (shown above), and a DJ. Other fun amenities for their guests were a photo booth and a candy bar with their favorite treats.

For their wedding cake, Holly wanted us to use her wedding gown as inspiration and Rick designed her a beautiful 3-tier ivory fondant wedding cake with delicate piping from her dress and the same brooch/sash detail from her gown on the middle tier of her cake. In the middle of the brooch detail was a swirly "T", honoring the couple's last name. Holly and Gary chose 3 flavors for their wedding cake -- a coconut cake with vanilla cream filling, Strawberries Chantilly and Chocolate Dream.

Photographer Jon of Visionari was there to capture all the special moments of the day. Jon, thank you for sending us such a gorgeous selection of images. It was tremendously difficult to choose!

Hollyjean and Gary, we're thrilled to have been a part of your Big Day! We wish you both the very best in the many years to come!

See Hollyjean and Gary's cake soon on

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Scratch this!

I couldn't resist posting this AWESOME photo and letter we received from Kalani in our morning emails. We love seeing people interacting with our cakes and this is a priceless photo.

Hey guys!!

I just wanna salute you both for the creation of my buddy's wedding cake. The sweet Technics Turntable for Alex and Danika. Check out my default picture! The true cake cutting, heh. Not sure how I ended up finding your myspace, but I'm glad I did to THANK you for the wonderful job. I'm a DJ alongside Alex, so I was super jealous of it when I seen it. Everything from the grooves in the vinyl to the headphones, just genious. Awesome job.

- Kalani

Thank you, Kalani, for contacting us! We'd be happy to make you a turntable of your own for your next big shindig! We'll be adding your photo to our Ohana album on the website with our next updates!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Hey DJ, Play That Song!

Rick and I have been music fanatics for as long as we can remember and were thrilled when our client Danika asked Rick to make her fiance Alex, a DJ, a sculpted Technics turntable for his groom's cake on July 19th. This was no small task to make a turntable out of our Chocolate Dream cake complete with Technics headphones and a blue Serato Scratch record. The cake was cleverly placed in the middle of their candy bar that greeted their 400+ guests as they came into the reception room. As we placed their cake on the table, we couldn't help but catch a whiff of the chocolate covered goodies, jellybeans, gumballs, and sugar crystals in shades of brown and blue, which perfectly coordinated with the rest of the reception room colors. As sweet as the candy bar filled with heavenly edibles, so was Danika's message to Alex on his Groom's cake:

"To my husband Alex .... I LOVE YOU!"

Congratulations to Danika and Alex! Wishing you both many years of happiness together!

See our gallery of sculpted cakes on

Friday, July 18, 2008

Puffins and Honus (Turtles)

Today I thought it would be fun to marry (pun intended) a couple of our previous themes of the week -- volcanos and 6-7-08 weddings. Like Taryn and Jessica, Kerry was also one of our 6-7-08 brides. For Kerry's wedding, her colors were periwinkle blue and a soft sage green and she fell in love with the tall unusual shaped white swirl/plumeria wedding cake on, a design previously featured on our blog back in June called "A Glimpse After the Cake" . She wanted the same shape with the handcrafted plumerias but wished to include a honu motif. Honu is a Hawaiian sea turtle, which many believe bring good luck. I know we do, especially when Rick and I are swimming at Kailua beach and they come up to us. It's magical! In Hawaii the Honu is often represented by a petroglyph design of a turtle, and for a wedding with a Hawaiian motif the honu is common to find on invitations. We thought the plumeria flower worked well with the honu/ocean motif that Rick used on the cake.

Kerry surprised her fiance with his own sculpted Groom's cake, representing both Hawaii and Newfoundland, where he was from. She thought it would be fun to do a volcano, with a puffin, commonly found in Newfoundland, and have the puffin sit on an iceberg. Well, it's cake and fantasy is allowed. The result is shown above.

Kerry put as much importance on the taste of the cake as the look and she carefully chose her flavors of Lemon Pucker and Local Kine Special for the wedding cake and our Chai Latte flavor for her volcano/puffin cake. You could say their wedding was a HOT, cool, and spicy affair.

See both of Kerry's cakes on


Thursday, July 17, 2008

A Volcano Cake Double Take

About 3 weeks ago, we received a request from Helen, a cake designer in Virginia who came across our website and really liked our sculpted volcano cake. She asked if she could use Rick’s design for a tribal party graduation cake, and we said that would be fine. Recently we were on a cake community site and saw she had posted a photo of the cake she had made mentioning it was our design. Whoa! Rick and I both took a double take. What incredible similarities! Helen, if you are reading this, you did a terrific job recreating our volcano cake with your own artistic touches. We hope whoever received the cake enjoyed it and you had fun making it!

Our sculpted volcano cake which is currently found on in the Celebrations: Sculpted Cakes section was actually made for Gina and Brian's wedding. It’s the second volcano wedding cake we’ve done. It served 80 guests and their flavor was Lemon Pucker.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Next Featured Wedding Sneak Peek - Kendra and Jonathan

All photos courtesy of Chrissy Lambert Photography

There is so much I love about our next Featured Wedding, it's difficult to know where to start. Our special couple-of-the-month is Kendra and Jonathan, who were married on May 4, 2008 at The Kahala Resort. Kendra and Jonathan's wedding was reminiscent of old hollywood, classic and elegant in ivories, pinks and champagnes, and roses as the primary floral decor. For their wedding, Kendra rounded up her A-team of vendors, including Chrissy Lambert Photography, Yvonne Floral Design, Angel De Armas cinematography, and cakelava for her cake. Kendra looked breathtaking in her Monique L'huillier strapless ivory gown with a champagne sash and pearl necklace, and Jonathan was dashing in his khaki suit and champagne tie. Together they walked down an aisle covered in pink and ivory rose petals overlooking the ocean as they exchanged vows. The elegant reception took place inside the Waialae Ballroom at the Kahala Resort where Yvonne Floral Design had created a beautiful sweetheart table with canopy for the couple which she embellished with dozens of pink and ivory roses and several vases of roses placed in front of the couple.

For their 4-tier wedding cake, Kendra chose buttercream icing, which has a natural ivory tone to it and worked perfectly for her design. Using old Hollywood glamour as inspiration, Rick designed Kendra and Jonathan's cake to include pearls, design elements of antique frames, handcrafted garden roses and a custom "A" monogram representing the couple's married name. They chose our Bananarama and Hot Fudge Sundae flavors for their wedding cake which all of their guests got to enjoy and take home a piece for breakfast as well.

This wasn't the first time we wrote about Kendra. She was featured in a previous blog, "Kendra and her Real Wedding" where we mentioned her wedding was a My Real Wedding feature on The Knot.

As a bride, Kendra was an absolute dream to work with, and we are honored to feature her and Jonathan's wedding. We hope the past 2 months have been blissful for them and we wish them many more years of happiness together! - Sasha & Rick

Kendra & Jonathan's Featured Wedding will be showcased on in the near future.

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