Enjoy our catch up with Rosalind Miller from Rosalind Miller Cakes
When did you first start decorating cakes?
My mother used to decorate cakes all the time when I was young and would go to classes to learn the different techniques. She always made a homemade and hand-decorated birthday cake for everyone in the family. I remember making a perspex cake for a project at art college, but it wasn’t until I was late into my career as a lecturer at Central Saint Martins that I decided to start baking and decorating cakes.
How did you decide to make it your career?
I started making cupcakes after being inspired by Magnolia Bakery and sold them on a weekend stall in Greenwich. It took off and I realised that wedding cakes were the next logical step for me.
How would you sum up your style?
Classic with a contemporary twist, floral, and elegant.
What is your favourite decorating technique?
I think it will always be making sugar flowers.
What top tips would you give to someone just starting to decorate cakes?
Try to carve out your own style. There are so many incredible cake makers out there, but if you can develop a signature style it’s what you’ll become known for. Be experimental and unique.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
I take inspiration from everything around me, from fashion, to patterns, to films. I’m currently working on a cake inspired by The Grand Budapest Hotel.
What’s your process for bringing a new cake design to life?
I normally create a Pinterest board to pull all the images and inspiration together, and then sketch out the design and discuss with my team. I’ll make tweaks to the design as I go along and once I’ve started making the cake. I always take a step back to look at it from different angles, and decorate in stages. You can always add more but sometimes it’s very hard to take decoration off a cake!
How did you come to do the Harrods window?
We’ve worked with Harrods for three years now, making bespoke wedding and celebration cakes as well as cupcakes and cake towers sold in the Food Halls. We’ve done a number of window displays with them, and the Christmas 2015 window was definitely the most ambitious. They asked us to create a giant gingerbread house, 2 metres wide and over a metre high. It was almost a mini piece of architecture and took a lot of planning and a lot of gingerbread!
What’s the most memorable cake you’ve ever created?
It would definitely be the 3-metre tall cake that we made for a wedding earlier this year. The base tiers were almost 2 metres wide and had over 10 tiers. We had to stand on a ladder to reach the top and wheel it on stage for the reveal.
Can you tell us about your Wedding Cakes book?
The book was designed to be a baking and decorating guide as well as an inspiration book, with some of my favourite cake projects and beautiful imagery. It was a lot of work writing it all, which is probably why I haven’t written another yet, but I do have something new in the pipeline!
How did you come to make the world’s most expensive cupcake, and what made it so pricey?
We were asked by the Food Network to make the cupcake for a Fashion Week event. We sourced some of the most expensive ingredients, including a rare wine, Chateau D’Yquem, one of the rarest teas, and 24-carat gold leaf.
What do you think will be the next big trend in wedding cakes?
We’ve had the naked cake, the geode and marble inspired cakes. Although the traditional tiered cakes with lots of beautiful sugar flowers are still very popular, I think there may be a trend to more ‘natural’ cakes, with buttercream or chocolate icing, and the use of fresh edible flowers and edible ingredients as decoration.
What’s next for you?
We’ve just created a new range of celebration cakes, gourmet cakes, confections and biscuits for special occasions, gifts and treats. The new offering is called ‘Confection by Rosalind Miller’ and we’re very excited to have launched a special range of these in Fortnum and Mason, and we’ll be selling them on our new online shop launching soon. We’re planning another book, and always developing new cakes and flavours.
For more information, and to see more of Rosalind’s bakes, go to www.rosalindmillercakes.com