Monday, September 17, 2012


When Steph of contacted me for a cake for her girls' birthday party, I was totally drawn into her party theme - "Around the World"! Steph is a globetrotting photographer and it seems fitting that she was putting together a party that would feature countries like Egypt, Japan, Philippines, Malaysia, Brazil, France and Singapore, where she is based.

I got the brief for a suitcase cake - one of those old-fashioned buckled cases with stamps from around the world. It's definitely one of the most interesting cake orders I've taken on! It's a large cake too, a double layer chocolate cake measuring 15" wide - that's a whole lot of chocolate cake!

Steph was very kind to take a chance on me as I was not sure if I could pull this off. But the more I researched, the more I got into it. I was going with a brown leather suitcase, complete with straps and buckles and corners. Then I asked if there were any special stamps/stickers that she would like on the suitcase so it could be more personalised. Here's what Steph sent me...

And here's my fondant translation...

Stickers ready to go

My favourite sticker is the Japanese one with Mount Fuji. I love how the flag incorporates the snow-capped icon. Creating these sticker stamps made me think of the amazing places in the world that I've visited and Japan is definitely one such destination. 

Japan - Mt Fuji

The sticker I'm most proud of is the French one. Again the flag features the icons of the country like the Arc de Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower and Basilique du Sacre-Coeur. I visited France just last year when I was 5 months pregnant and we took Jake who was about 15 months old on a road trip!

Vive la France

With most cakes, you really can't start on it till pretty much the night before delivery. This is to ensure freshness and to minimise any 'accidents' while the cake awaits collection. So I started 'packing' this suitcase only the night before the 'trip'.

Packing in the chocolate
Putting in the details

I was wondering how to include those eyelets on the buckle strap, then it occurred to me - a drinking straw should do the trick! Sometimes the solution is in the ordinary everyday things. It was just the right size and made perfect little circles. I also had the Wilton tool kit that gave me the stitching wheel, so I could add in the seams for the leather trim.

Distressed leather
Have luggage will travel

I was really happy with how the suitcase turned out and applying the country stamps was super fun! The husband was very encouraging, he said he was tempted to grab the handle and go!

Ready for check-in

The next morning, the suitcase was waiting for pick up when I noticed something was missing. There should be some form of identification - i.e. the birthday girls' names. So I quickly made a simple tag and inscribed the girls' names on the bag.

Happy Birthday Ginger & Pepper

This is a timely cake to make as I'm making plans to satisfy my own wanderlust. I'm off to the land of gelato next month. I'm sorry to have to decline the enquiries for orders in October. In place of baking, I'll be loading up on tiramisu, panna cotta, limoncello and gelato. But please do get in touch with me again for orders from November onwards. Thanks!


libpuritan said...

We loved it, Debbie! Both as a showpiece for our party and a yummy chocolatey dessert! It tasted as good as it looked! Thanks for your wonderful effort. ;) Will blog about the party tomorrow (and with more raves for you!) :)

libpuritan said...

Enjoy italy! :) definitely a lot of food inspiration there!

yenyen26 said...

Hey Steph, very happy to know you guys enjoyed the cake. It was immense fun making it ; ) Looking forward to more pics of the party!