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My daughter Avery was nearing her 3rd birthday and we still had not made a decision about it’s theme.  One night over dinner, my then 2 year old, 5 year old, husband and myself brainstormed.  The outcome:  pink panther.  It was a brilliant idea considering Avery’s all time favorite color is pink.  She loves to watch the pink panther, and it was so original.  Who knew Wal Mart would have pink panther PJ’s and Barnes and Noble would sell stuffed pink panthers to add to our totally “pink” pink panther party!

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Avery wanted a vanilla cake, which I colored pink, of course.  Icing in pink vanilla butter cream and topped with the pink panther himself, this two tier cake was totally awesome!

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This cake order was for Tasha Stafford & Doug Hollingsworth and their unborn son due the end of July.  As with any pregnancy, something unexpected happened.   Kaiden arrived on July 4th at 1:22 pm, three weeks early.  His shower was still held on the 11th and the whole family was able to celebrate his safe arrival.

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Kaiden’s Aunt Joy ordered a 2 tier cake.  The bottom 9″ layer was White Trillium cake with buttercream, and the top 6″ layer was Chocolate Chiffon cake with buttercream.  The shower and Kaiden’s room both have a sports theme, so did his cake.  I made baseballs and a baby blanket out of fondant to decorate the cake.  Then finished it off with baby blocks and his name on them.  Joy was very happy with her finished cake!

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My very dear friend asked me to make a cake for her daughters 6th birthday this year.  She loves Pet Shop and does not eat cake.  Hum, I thought, how do I solve this problem? She does however, love chocolate chip cookies.  So I made two plaques from fondant and used a technique called run out to draw on her favorite Pet Shop kitty.  One was place on the half chocolate chiffon cake, half white trillium, and the other was placed on top of a cookie stack.  They turned out very well and the birthday girl was very pleased!

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One of the 1/2 sheet cakes the Library ordered for the community to eat if there were not enough desserts entered in the contest.

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There were five entries in the competition. The panel of judges were:

• Myrna Ballard – President of the Chamber of Commerce
• Amy Carter – Georgia State Representative
• Sue Cox – Owner of Covingtons
• Mayor Fretti – Mayor of Valdosta
• Kay Harris – Editor of the Valdosta Daily Times

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First place was The Cat in the Hat cookies made by 3 local children.

My cake took second place.

For my competition cake, I made a two-tier cake.  The base layer was an eight inch, three-layer white cake with Swiss butter cream filling. The second tier was a six inch, three-layer chocolate chiffon cake with Swiss butter cream filling.  I covered the cakes in a pale-blue fondant to match my Dr. Seuss’s theme of black, white, red and blue, just like the original book Horton Hears a Who! Earlier in the week, I made Horton and Vlad Vladikoff with white fondant and hand painted them in Seuss style, pen and ink.  Once the cake was assembled, I added the Jungle of Newell to the base layer, Horton’s pond, and foliage in white, red, pink, and royal blue.  To the second layer, I added the field of  clovers, the mountains Horton climbs in an effort to save his clover, and of course, Vlad with Horton’s clover.  The entire cake took about nine hours to make and was by far the best piece I had ever produced.

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Click here to see a picture of my daughter,Avery and myself after the competition in our local newspaper!

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These cakes were commissioned for the Lowndes Youth Leadership League, or LYLL, by G. Green.  She needed to feed 30 teenagers cake after a long day at camp.  I was given full leeway and opted for two cakes.  Teens tend to be picky, and this would give me an opportunity to please everyone.  The first cake was my Traditional White Cake with Swiss Alps Buttercream and was filled with a layer of Cream Cheese Buttercream.  The second cake was my Chocolate Chiffon Cake with Mocha Buttercream and was filled with a layer of Dark Chocolate Ganache.  A snail trail graced the bottom of both cakes set atop textured card-stock basses. They were both adorned with hand made shimmering flowers in brown and white, about 200 each.  I believe they were quiet stunning when paired together.

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My nephew has been obsessed with tractors since he could walk.  He lives in a farming community and spends a great deal of time playing with and riding on them.  Of course John Deere are his all-time favorite tractors.  His Mom found these cute invitations and decided a tractor cake would be a must.

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We discussed the cake for a month almost, trying to decide if the whole cake would be the tractor or just a scene for a tractor on top.  “Do we buy a small tractor to put on top like you get on a grocery store cake?” Amanda asked.  Not at Bonobo Cakes, no mama.  I will make the whole thing from scratch, and I did.

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I started with a yellow cake and filled it with vanilla buttercream.  I carved out the 3 corners, one for the lettuce field, one for the part the tractor had already mowed and bailed, and the last for what the tractor was currently mowing.  A crumb coat was then applied and the cake hung out in the fridge while I made this  wonderful new mocha buttercream recipe I found at  Zoe Bakes from Carol Bloom’s The Essential Baker.  This was the second time I had made i and I was delighted with the way it turned out.  It is rich and creamy with a somewhat mild chocolate espresso taste, a very light texture, and almost a fresh whipped cream bite.  It is truly a 5 star recipe!

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The hay rolls, as they make here in South Georgia, contrary to the traditional bails, were made from a few things.  I first made Rice Crispy treats and pressed them about 1″ thick in a pan.  I then used a round metal fondant cutter to cut out the rolls.  Next, I coated them with gold fondant and used a knife to score the outside to look like hay.  As a final touch, I brushed on a little cocoa powder to give it a 3 dimensional look.

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The lettuce patch was hand made from Marzipan.  I colored it a dirty green and rolled out thin long strips like fettuccine noodles.  I let them dry for a minute before rolling them up like a ribbon rose, so the edges would crack and look like individual lettuce leafs.  These were also dusted with cocoa powder.  I put a few Oreos in the food processor to make the soil in the lettuce field.

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The tractor itself took a few days to make, with the drying process before assembly.  I am quiet pleased with how well it turned out.

Here you see the cake fully assembled and about to be eaten by the birthday boy himself.

Happy 2nd Birthday Gavin, Aunt Cheryl Loves you!

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At Bonobo Cakes, I can take a simple 11″ round, 3-layer butter cake with blueberry buttercream filling and build a beautiful ocean scene complete with whale.  My Mother-in-Law commissioned this baby shower cake for her brother-in-law Thomas and his wife Heather.  This will be their first child, a son, Ty Alexander.  The cake is coated with Swiss buttercream.  The whale was built with pound cake and iced with Marshmallow Fondant.  The whale’s spray also included a small flag that said “Ahoy Ty”.  This was truly a cute cake.  Thanks for the order Cathy. I had a blast making it!

This was a fun project.  I got a call from a couple who wanted a birthday cake for their son’s first birthday, a dog cake to be exact.  They were a referral and have never met me or seen my work.  Trusting I know!  They wanted a chocolate lab in 3D; or just his head, done somewhat like a cartoon.  I thought about it and said “I do not think I am quite skilled enough to do a 3D cake, but a dog face I can do for sure”.  They agreed, and I got to work.  I found as many dog cakes as I could as well as pictures of people’s Labs online.  I pondered and drew. Then I pondered some more.  The face cakes did not cut it for me.  I had to do 3D.  After all, you only turn 1 once!

My rough draft was drawn.  Now how big do I make it?  We agreed that it would be at least the size of a 1/2 sheet cake.  I mapped out everything I would need to make, such as brown fondant for the ears and nose and white for rawhide bones.

Now for the scale; back to the drawing board with cake pans in hand.  This helps me calculate how much I would need to bake for the size dog I wanted on the board.  A little more sketching and I’m ready to start making my fondant pieces.

I made one large rawhide bone for the dog cake.  I was also making the birthday boy a small cake to eat himself, which of course would need to match the theme.  I also created twenty mini bones and a 3″ dog to hold up a #1 for his cake.  I was very happy with the dog. This was my first gum paste character.

The actual dog cake came together quite nicely although it took some time for piping.  It was about 90° on Friday and very humid.  My chocolate lab fur was melting faster than I could pipe.  In the end, with refrigeration, he stayed in tact!    Both cakes did very well in the car and were delivered in one piece!  The most tedious part of this process is the delivery!  This was by far the most creative cake I have ever made.  I thank my customer for the order and giving me an opportunity to practice and hone my skills.


My very supportive (loves to eat cake) husband, rolled the fondant for the first ever homemade fondant covered Bonobo cake.  It surprisingly only took us two tries.  A little gel coloring and we had ourselves a very pretty cake.  We ate it at a family get together and man was it delicious.  This is a Chocolate Chiffon cake with Oreo Swiss Buttercream filling and Rolled Vanilla Fondant icing.  We were both very proud!

My dear friend Jennifer offered to watch my girls while her Mother-in-law, a trained sugar artist, taught me a few things.   Gaynor Ernest, of Wales, has crafted more than 300 cakes of her own and is a very talented sugar artist.  I was more than willing to accept this generous offer and spent about two hours soaking up all the knowledge I could.  This was the flower I built from fondant while “in class” with Gaynor.

Not too shabby for someone with no rose petal, leaf, or calyx cutters.  I came home and practiced using her advice with gum paste this time, for round two.  As well as some wonderful tips from a fellow wordpress blogger and her you-tube “how to” videos.  Thanks Donna!  What do you think?  I need your feedback.  Am I any good at making sugar flowers?  Please leave a comment!

Hello reader, this Blog is a real time biography for Bonobo Cakes. BC will become an official bakery sooner than later. For now however, we are closed. With the addition of a 3rd child, life is to important to stop and spend 24 hours strait on a cake. Although we love cake, it will be a while before we get back into baking on a large scale. Enjoy the stories and photos, but please ask prior to using any of our original information on another site. Thank you and Enjoy the blog as it was!