What the Dickens? Sweet as Sugar

To celebrate the opening of their new Portsmouth store yesterday, Oak Furniture Land commissioned CakeBomb to create a cake of Charles Dickens. Portsmouth is the birthplace of Dickens. Portsmouth’s Mayor visited the opening of the new store and there was a photoshoot with artist Laura Miller of Sweet as Sugar Cakes who is responsible for this fabulous cake. Laura really rose to the challenge to create a colour representation of the Dickens’s statue  (by sculptor Martin Jennings) which sits in Guildhall Square in Portsmouth, and which was unveiled in February of this year to celebrate the 202nd year since Dickens’s birth. The cake was afterwards presented to Portsmouth Museum. We hope to show you pictures of the cake being cut later in the week.
Well done, Laura, it’s a masterpiece!

Charles Dickens Cake



dickens by sweet as sugar



Dickens Statue, Portsmouth

Dickens Statue, Portsmouth, courtesy of Hampshire-history.com


The Dark Side of the Jungle

It wasn’t all pretty flowers and cheeky monkeys in our jungle. There were some more sinister-looking creatures lurking in the undergrowth.

Photographer Paul Winch-Furness made a film of some of our other jungle dwellers.





insects blog


Credits: Annabel de Vetten (trophy skull, scorpion), Vicki Smith (Atlas bugs and jewel bugs), Caroline Parkin (grubs), Tracey Rothwell (Dung beetle), Beth Mottershead (gecko).




Over the weeks we’re going to feature some of our team in a little more depth. First off is a well-known face to many, who is as much at home doing pretty and stylish as she is geeky and grotesque … but we suspect we know which one she prefers 😉 … Tracey Rothwell from Little Cherry Cake Company.

tracey 2

Tracey, tell us a bit about you. 

I’m a 26-year-old geek who has a passion for films, gaming, popcorn, zombies and I do have rather a large soft spot for Freddy Krueger and pizza. Just your average girl then right? 😉
I am pretty much known for weird wedding cakes (or that’s what some people like to call them!) which often include zombies, skulls or movie characters. But I do make bright kids cakes too!

You’ve been cake decorating since 2007, that’s a long time in cakeland, do you still get the same buzz each time you deliver a special cake?

It is a long time! I have actually been making cakes since I was 13 years old on and off, and there is NOTHING better than a brand new theme/design to get working on! After all this time I STILL get excited when a cake order comes in with a theme I haven’t made yet, I practically sit making inaudible squeaking sounds at the computer!

Hearing the gasps and giggles from customers is always awesome on collections and deliveries too, it’s what makes it all worthwhile.

You run your company in two halves, Little Cherry, and Black Cherry for the darker themed cakes. Who do you think is having more fun?

You really don’t need to ask 😀 As much as making bright kids cakes is REAL fun (and it really is!), after the twentieth Peppa Pig model I really want to bust out a zombie version!
The guys who order Black Cherry stuff are really on my wavelength and get just as geeky as I do when discussing designs. It’s never a customer/cake designer relationship, each customer leaves as a friend … a big, geeky, zombie-loving friend. 😀
And when they allow me to splatter blood on it too, I pretty much have a friend for life!

What cake has been the most fun to make?

I have many, many fun cakes, but one that always stands out is for the couple that came and ordered my OWN dream wedding cake!

Since I started making cakes I have always wanted to do a Zombie Apocalypse style wedding cake, all climbing their way up the tiers.

But no-one ever seemed to want one? I wonder why!? ha ha

But one day it HAPPENED … a zombie wedding cake with a movie theatre theme. I was ALL over that one! The guys were just AWESOME, and I met up with them and spent hours just geeking out over ideas. The final design included a retro-style plaza cinema on the front being overrun by zombies, and round the back was the inside on the cinema where a Gremlin in 3D glasses was enjoying a Troma film. There was blood, guts, bodies, chainsaws, blood, rats, lights, movie posters … and MORE BLOOD. Probably many of people’s worst nightmares … but we LOVED IT!

Rather than flowers you concentrated on fungus for the CakeBomb installation, what was it about those things that you enjoyed?

Well I’m not going to lie, I’m not exactly known for floral stuff! So fungus was much more likely to be up my street 😉 I even got to jazz them up a bit with Bollywood style gems! I really admire people who can make realistic flowers, man that stuff is hard – I have never gotten into it properly.
I think I’m just destined to make the grungy stuff 😀

Tracey Rothwell's handiwork for CakeBomb's Welcome to the Jungle

Last year you organised the Cakenweenie project, how was it to be involved in a project as a contributor instead of an organiser?

I cannot tell you how cool it has been to chill out on the back of the bus with my boots up rather than being the driver! Of course when you’re organizing you have the buzz of bringing things together, playing around with ideas and logos but there’s also a TON of planning, whip cracking and work involved behind the scenes. I suppose already being there once has made me appreciate what you guys have been doing
whilst I have been messing around with mushrooms and gems in my kitchen!

You have such a large portfolio of amazing work, and your competition-winning pieces always inspire other cake makers, do you enjoy seeing how others interpret your ideas? 

*blush* Thank-you so much!
Oh of course!! I get messages all the time with pictures of cakes they have made based on my designs and its so cool to see how they have changed them or added details I hadn’t thought of! I even have an album on my computer with some of them in to make into a collage, there are about 50 versions of my Mike the Knight cake 😀



Thank You, Manchester – The Movie

Would you like to see what a great time we had in Manchester? This video beautifully sums up our experience of  The Cake & Bake Show – the laughter, the tears, the sore feet, the green airbrushed fingers, the chocolate ganache and fondant everywhere, and the amazing crowds. This will give you an idea of what the atmosphere was like at the show. It just never stopped for the three days – so many people, some of them twice! The crowds were amazing; so polite, respectful and positive, and we loved meeting every single one of you. And Rosemary Shrager too – yes we do luuuuurve chocolate.



Thank you very, very much to Jim Cooke for making the video.