Name: Loan Cao
Location: Sydney, Australia
Education/Training: Primary Education
Business name: A Pocket Full of Sweetness
Cake philosophy: Do what makes you happy.
What is the history about your business and how you got to where you are today?
I’ve always had an interest in making cakes and started making cakes for my family and friends. What started as a hobby turned into a business alongside with my teaching job as a primary school teacher. I have always had an artistic side and this has led to me to create art through my cakes. And since I have started, I have been apart of cake collaborations and have been featured in Cake Masters Magazine.
How were you first introduced to Satin Ice?
It was the first brand of fondant I purchased. I love how easy it was to use and mix colors - and I have never looked back.
Is there one particular project that stands out as significant or that you are particularly proud of?
To celebrate Universal Children’s Day, I was involved in the ‘It’s a Small World: A tribute to children from around the globe’ collaboration. Universal Children’s Day is significant in that it helps to promote the welfare and unity of the world’s children. Alongside with many amazing artists from all around the world we created cupcakes and mini cakes portraying their culture and diversity to help celebrate this day.
(More adorable figurines by Loan)
What is your signature style?
My signature style would definitely have to be the clean lines and figurines I create for my cakes. I feel that the figurines I create bring emotion and life into the cake. Making a lot of children’s cakes, it makes me happy to see a child’s eyes light up at their favorite character in cake form.
What is your favorite cake and why?
I have so many favorite cakes! My most favorite cake would have to be the cake I made for my son’s 4th birthday - as it has a special meaning to me. He has a comfort toy (Iron Man) that he would carry around with him all the time so I made a figurine of it to place on his cake. My son is on the spectrum and non-verbal and the look of happiness in his eyes and attempt to say Ironman when he saw his favorite character on the cake made it that much more rewarding.
Most challenging cake to date?
My most challenging cake would have to be the Peppa Pig and Princess cake. This cake was challenging because I needed to combine 2 completely different themes together so that it all tied in together. Although it was challenging, I was proud of the end result.
What tips of advice can you offer to Satin Ice newcomers?
Just keep on practicing and you’ll only get better. Don’t be afraid to try different things - the whole trial and error process is what makes you successful. Satin Ice fondant is great for making figurines - all you need to do is add a little bit of tylose if you want to harden the fondant.
Describe your cake decorating style in just 3 words:
Clean, cute and fun! (We would definitely agree!)
What is your creative process for making cakes?
Before I start on a cake, I would look for inspiration based on the theme. From here the colors and figurines would play their part. Sometimes I will draw a sketch but most of the time, I visualize the design in my head. I don't always stick to my original design because as I create the cake, other ideas will start to develop to make the cake better then what I envisioned!
If you weren't decorating cakes, what would you be doing?
I would still be a primary school teacher.
What is a 'regular' cake decorating day like for you?
My regular baking day would begin after I come back from work. I'll have my coffee (a must!) and get started on the baking and most of the time making figurines. The figurine process usually takes the longest. I would be working on one figurine and the next minute I would look up and two hours has flown by!
(A collage of Loan's cakes as the center of the birthday party dessert table)
What is your creative process for making cakes?
Before I start on a cake, I would look for inspiration based on the theme. From here the colors and figurines would play their part. Sometimes I would draw a sketch but most of the time, I visualize the design in my head. I don't always stick to my original design because as I create the cake, other ideas will start to develop to make the cake better than what I envisioned.
What is your favorite part about designing cakes?
That would definitely be creating the figurines and placing them on the cake at the end. Love seeing how the figurines add to the final results!
Favorite cake flavor to make?
My favorite and most popular cake flavor would have to be chocolate. Who doesn't like chocolate right?!
What is inspiring you this very moment?
Basically everything inspires me. I see designs, patterns and colors and think 'hey that would look awesome as a cake!'
Who would you love to learn from in the industry?
I would love to learn from so many cake artists! I have been fortunate to take flower classes with Faye Cahill and Patricia Hardjopranoto from Yummy Cucpakes and Cake and Thao from Don't Tell Charles to learn to create her signature buttercream cakes. I would love to learn how to make 3-D sculpted cakes from Margie Carter.
What are the big trends you are seeing right now in cakes?
A trend that has been going on for a while now would have to be the unicorn cakes! There is just something magical about them!
What do you aspire to accomplish with each cakes?
I wish to continually learn new techniques and adapt them to my style of cakes.
If you could create a cake for anyone in history - who would it be and why?
I would love to create a cake for Marie Antoinette. I'm fascinated with her fashion and especially her gravity defying hairdos. I could envision the cake to be flamboyant with beautiful pastel colors and gold.