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A Pirate's Life for Me

It certainly felt like it this October!

It's no secret that I'm a fan of pirates, their skull and crossbones, grungy Jack Sparrow aesthetic, detailed golden dubloons and of course, the rum. One of my favourite adventure films centres around a pirates treasure - The Goonies.

So when I got the orders for not one but TWO exciting pirate orders in one of my favourite months (Halloween!) I was super excited.

Captain Ribs guarding my rum stash

Lisa (and her now husband!) got in touch with me for their fabulous pirate themed wedding and wanted something just that extra bit special. She sent me through a picture of her very favourite figurehead (you know, those fabulous carvings on the fronts of ships!)

My first thought was, 'WOW that looks cool', closely followed and overtook by 'holy hell, how am I even going to make this...CAN I make this?'

I've made a LOT of cakes, but not many of them have been shaped or carved - that's usually because when someone is ordering something I want to KNOW that I can deliver what they want. Customers orders aren't really a time to experiment! lol Leave that for a collaboration cake or competition pieces just incase something doesnt quite go to plan. But Lisa had every bit of faith in me, much more than I had in myself! So I drew it all out, figured out a structure and said 'ok'.

The skull was solid chocolate, I did it this way as it was housing a giant pair of ram horns and headpiece and from the neck below it already served more than enough cake for her guests, plus, she could keep it!

From the neck down its all cake (and a central platform for support). Of course.....rum flavoured!

Here she is all ganached up.

I had so much fun dressing her, and then dirtying her up with airbrushing, paints, dusts and sprays.

She is decorated entirely in sugarpaste, and her 'clothing' is cake lace. I used chocolate crunchy copper balls in the necklace, and a variety of moulds for the headdress. At the bottom of this post there are links to a few of the products I used.

After she was finished I gave her a good coat of PME glaze spray for a wet-sea look and to give the ram horns some shine.

She stood over 2ft tall, and was a heavy little beast. I was terrified of the delivery, she was making her way to the HMS Trincomalee in Hartlepool which was around 2.5 hours away, but once we set off she was as solid as a rock! I've had more cold sweats delivering a normal 3 tier cake.

I could see the venue before we even reached the road it was on, towering over the tall buildings were the ship masts guiding us in.

I set her up on the table amongst some major amazing decor I have to say! Then had a little wander around the grounds and the ship. I caught a little glimpse of Jack Sparrow walking from McDonalds which Abbi (my daughter) thought was hilarious just as we were leaving. Their day looked amazing! Here are some pictures taken by Kane Young Photography

And some words by Lisa:

Think we are the happiest bride and groom with your work Tracey. It has been photographed loved and shared more than anything else at our wedding. It was a true gift and we can't thank you enough xxx

Epic and Amazing, sensational unique and totally can't explain how happy we are. A hundred and one gold stars review. This was taken from one image of what we wanted. Many people would of run and hidden at our request not Tracey, she completed the brief and far and beyond, no one believes this was a cake.

Everyone thought it a sculpture we had ordered in as a prop. Not only is the phenomenal, it also tastes amazing, not too sweet, rum flavoured. Superb texture quality throughout. We have kept the head for prosperity we admit. But our guests are still raving of Tracey's fabulous cake. While we are on honeymoon with the remnants of our delectable dream of a cake.

Then only a week later I was creating another pirate cake, this time a ship complete with battle. Not any battle though, the pirates had abandoned ship, there was a Kraken vs Dragon fight on the moonlit stormy seas.

This whole cake started out white. The ship was painted and airbrushed, and the sea fully airbrushed in teals, blue and greens. The sails are wafer paper and cake lace.

Tahsina started out wanting a battered looking pirate ship, then we added a Kraken...and then later on in the planning we also added a dragon, so I turned it into a mythical battle!

Some words from Tahsina:

OH MY GOD!!!!! I'M DYING RIGHT NOW!!!!!! OH MY GOD!!! You're sooooooo super talented!! I love it!!!! I'm still too busy screaming in excitement right now

Tracey, just wanted to say thanks a million for the most amazing cake I've even seen and for both you and your husband's patience!! I can't imagine it was pleasant waiting an hour in the rain (after work for him and carrying the heavy cake for you) but me and my parents were so amazed by the fact that you were still smiling!! Thank you so very much!!

Below are some clickable links to products I have used on both of these cakes if they come in handy for you!

PME Glaze Spray

Rainbow Dust Pearl Metallic Paint

Rainbow Dust Black Metallic Paint

Rainbow Dust Morrocan Velvet Dust

Rainbow Dust Galactic Green Dust

Kroma Colours Airbrush Teal, Black, Brown, Blue, Green, Apricot

Black Cake Lace

Armature for Dragon

Flourish Mould

Ornate Mould

Callebaut Chocolate

Floral Fern Lace Mat

Hessian Mat

Renshaw White Sugarpaste Airbrush Machine

Scalpel Blades Ship Wheel

Please note above links are affiliates.