Down the Rabbit Hole with Oak Furniture Land

The new Oak Furniture Land Store on the Great Lodge Retail Park in Tunbridge Wells was offically opened by Cllr David Neve on Saturday. A replica cake of the White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland was being donated to Groombridge Place after the opening. The cake was made by Maidstone based cake artist Francesca Pitcher of North Star Cakes

To celebrate the relaunch of the Tunbridge Wells Store this Easter Oak Furniture Land commissioned a special 3ft White Rabbit Cake based on the 1865 illustrations by John Tenniel from the Lewis Carol fairytale ‘Alice in Wonderland’. This is the forth local commission from Oak Furniture Land received by Kent CakeBomber Francesca Pitcher of North Star Cakes. Francesca was delighted to take on this latest challenge from the furniture specialists, “making this well loved character for Oak Furniture Land was such a pleasure and so different from the usual commissions I get, I’m very lucky to be asked to make such varied cakes for a company that supports local events and causes and I’m so happy to be asked to take part in one of their store openings for a forth time”.

The Cake has a strong internal structure allowing it to stand on two legs and is made up of seven 8 inch square sponge cakes expertly sculpted into shape by Francesca. The cake was filled with heaps of Madagascan vanilla buttercream and covered in white chocolate ganache before modelling started. All the small details are made from edible materials including the buttons, embossed gold pocket watch, playing cards, and dirt! Francesca even had to cut a paper dressmakers pattern in advance so that she could then make the edible sports jacket complete with ‘leather’ elbow patches for the white rabbit to ensure that it would all fit correctly on the cake. You might think that going to this level of detail in confectionary seems extreme but Francesca said of the cake, “making a pattern for an edible jacket in order to dress a cake rabbit is just one of the many necessary but unusual skills I’ve acquired in the name of cake art – it’s all in the detail”.

The cake was later donated by Oak Furniture Land to Groombridge Place for their special ‘Alice in Wonderland’ Easter Holiday Event and was put on display in the restaurant before being consumed by the public.

More information on the Tunbridge Wells store opening  Click here. For more images of the White Rabbit Cake please visit North Star Cakes on Facebook.

 

 

Hat-Trick for Burns Night

Opening of Oakfurnitureland on the Salmon Retail Park, Holmer Road, Hereford. 23-01-2016. from left: Marc Metcalfe, Manager Anthony Neary, Jamie Williams, Vince Norris, Mayor of Hereford Councillor Charles Nicholls, Alexander Price, Gavin Pettigrew (Herefordshire Burns Club).

Opening of Oakfurnitureland on the Salmon Retail Park, Holmer Road, Hereford. 23-01-2016. from left: Marc Metcalfe, Manager Anthony Neary, Jamie Williams, Vince Norris, Mayor of Hereford Councillor Charles Nicholls, Alexander Price, Gavin Pettigrew (Herefordshire Burns Club).

 

CakeBomb was delighted to celebrate with cake the three new store locations for Oak Furniture Land in the days leading up to Burns Night this January. Oak Furniture Land commissioned three of our artists to create Burns themed cakes for their new store openings in Hereford, Paisley and Stirling.

Veteran CakeBomber Annabel de Vetten-Petersen took on the Hereford store opening with a life-sized boxed set of bagpipes. The cake was later donated to the Hereford Burns Club for their annual Burn’s Night Supper and then auctioned to raise money for the Alzheimer Society.

For the Paisley store opening CakeBomb was pleased to introduce local cake artist Natalie Hume from ‘Tilly Makes Cakes’. Natalie made a huge Haggis cake to celebrate the occasion. The cake was later donated by Oak Furniture Land to local charity Home Start and accepted on their behalf by Councillor Hall, who also attended the store opening.

The last of the Burn’s Night cakes was made for the Stirling store opening by another newcomer to the CakeBomb team, Suzanne Esper. Suzanne sculpted a pile of Burn’s poetry books from cake, and a sugar ink well, quill, red rose and the Burn’s poem, ‘My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose’ painted onto aged edible paper.

What a great way to celebrate Burns Night!

 

 

Blooming Great Tea Party

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To celebrate the opening of Oak Furniture Land’s new store in Croydon, CakeBomb commissioned  Jacqui Kelly of Totally Sugar based in Wimbledon to make a gravity defying teapot cake.

 

This fab cake, featuring a big yellow teapot made of ginger cake and incorporating the trademark Marie Curie Cancer Care Daffodil was presented to Marie Curie Cancer Care, South East on Saturday.

 

It was cut up and given out to Marie Curie volunteers and supporters at the Gift for the Future event at Brooklands Museum on Tuesday.

 

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Last week was Marie Curie Cancer Care’s Blooming Great Tea Party week, where fundraisers hosted tea parties with cakes, games and raffles etc in their own homes, workplaces or community centres to raise money for the charity.

 

If you missed it, don’t worry, there are other ways to raise money for Marie Curie Cancer Care. Here are some ideas here.

 

Great job, Jacqui, I’m in the mood for a good strong cup of tea and a slice of cake now. (Aren’t I always though).

 

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marie curie pic
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Orchids in Orpington – part deux

Did you guess the species of orchid correctly? The name is Eulophia Guineensis. Orchid The winner who correctly identified the flower wins a signed copy of of Eric Lanlard’s book Chocolat. It will be announced over on our Facebook page.

The jardinière  cake is Francesca’s original art work based on elements from the Orchid Society of Great Britain‘s gold award winning display at the Chelsea Flower Show this year, which was sponsored by the Ministry of Tourism of the Sultanate of Oman. Eulophia guineensis is native flora of the Sultanate.  Also in the display was another impressive flower native to the Sultanate of Oman, a six foot tall Eulophia petersii. Hey it’s turning into Gardener’s World around here. The Orchid Society also won gold at Chelsea last year.
The Orchid Society of Great Britain's Gold Award Winning display

The Orchid Society of Great Britain’s Gold Award winning display at Chelsea 2014. Photo © Orchid Society of Great Britain

Our cake for the launch of the Oak Furniture Land Orpington branch was presented as a gift to the Orchid Society. It is made of carved sponge cake covered with sugarpaste, and is hand painted in edible dusts with another of the flowers from the gold winning garden, Cattleya Purpurata.  It is the handiwork of CakeBomber Francesca Pitcher of North Star Cakes.
Francesca said: “The cake jardinière was based on the designs of the Aesthetic movement of the Victorian Period, specifically the ornate and heavily stylised porcelain of that time. This type of jardinière was typically used to display rare botanical specimens of the day, so it fitted the brief perfectly.”
We think that the jardinière and the ‘planted’ orchids are very realistic. Great job Francesca!
 jardiniere

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Cake expectations … it was delicious!

“Is it really a cake? ” That’s a phrase we heard from thousands of people visiting our Welcome to the Jungle exhibit. Yes it is cake and, what’s more, it’s really delicious cake.

To celebrate the recent opening of their new Portsmouth store, Oak Furniture Land commissioned CakeBomb to create a cake to replicate the famous Martin Jennings statue of Charles Dickens in Portsmouth. The cake artist was Laura Miller of sweetassugarcakes.co.uk.

You can see it below. It was presented to Portsmouth museum, and the next day it had been demolished by staff and visitor.

“A crime!” I hear you cry.

Well, wouldn’t it be a crime not to eat it!  We hope it was enjoyed by all.

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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

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The baker, the cake, the tiger and her keeper

CakeBomb’s latest commission, from Oak Furniture Land, was to create a tiger cake they could donate to Dudley Zoological Gardens. Our woman in Birmingham, Annabel de Vetten of Conjurer’s Kitchen, was the obvious choice to make it. She meticulously made sure it was to scale and realistically textured – and it’s not just any tiger, this cake LOOKS like its inspiration, Daseep the Sumatran tigress, the star attraction of the zoo.

The blog title – reminiscent of that Peter Greenaway film – is shamelessly stolen from a caption on Annabel’s Facebook page. She’s clever that girl. Looks like she had a fab time at the zoo. It’s not every cake delivery that includes meeting a fully grown Sumatran tigress.

Annabel said of Daseep: “She’s so friendly! She’s hand-reared, so really used to humans. I really wanted to touch her. Her being so friendly is so deceptive. I had to keep reminding myself that she could literally kill me.”

It is always a slightly happy-sad moment when a cake that gorgeous has to be cut – but what a shame it would be to miss out on eating delicious sponge and ganache. Looks like the public enjoyed it too!

The zoo’s Head of Media and Communications, Jill Hitchman, said: “It was a 3-D true likeness of Daseep, and it was a shame to slice it up, but we had lots of hungry visitors and it was certainly much appreciated by everyone yesterday afternoon. We’d like to say a very big thank you to Oak Furniture Land for their generosity; it was a most kind gesture.”

This week? Annabel Lecter is back to making “weird cakes” she says. A relief no doubt, but we certainly enjoyed her very successful foray into ferociously fluffy.

Thanks to Annabel and to Daniel Graves Photography for the pictures.

Annabel is pictured below with the zoo’s Assistant Curator, Richard Brown.

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annabel tiger slider

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