Sunday, January 30, 2011

Kiwi Cake Decorator - Tracy Unsworth

Today I am profiling Kiwi Cake Decrator - Tracy Unsworth. Tracy is the owner/operator of A'riginal Cakes - 12 Arawata St. Ph: 078716909. Tracy has previously won the Kiwicakes birthday cake competition see her winning design here

If you would like to be profiled here email me at and I'll send you the ten questions.

Hi Tracy, please give us you website, facebook page, blog: website and
How long have you been decorating? 16 years

You've recently opened a shop in Te Awamutu - tell us about this journey.  I had been making cakes from home to sell for a few years and as I was becoming more and more known I was of course getting busier and busier so with that my darling hubby encouraged me to look at opening my own cake shop/kitchen. Because as I got busier the home was being overtaken leaving no dinner table at tea time running out of places to put things as I was making them so it was another reason to find somewhere where I didnt have to worry about it all but could also just leave it. After looking into it and knowing that there had been a cake shop in Te Awamutu a few years ago now and with even more encouragement from our farm bosses I was able to track down and find this great shop with a registered kitchen on the back so it was perfect... all I had to do was buy an oven, repaint, get a tub put in and get a few things for in the shop and I was away. Since I opened on the 10th May I havent really stopped with orders coming in all the time, sales in the shop of stock etc it has been the best thing ever and I am already getting regulars both for supplies and cakes. The word has gotten round town quite quickly and I was also recently in the local paper which has also boosted my business. It is also great as now I am a registered cake decorator and legal I can now have displays at the bridal shows etc without any worries and concerns of getting into trouble.

What is you favourite thing to bake & decorate? I love baking cakes and decorating them especially 3D cakes. I mainly use and prefer fondant on the cakes.

What got you started in baking/decorating? After my first daughter was born my first cake was her 1st birthday. in those days I didnt bake my own cakes I would buy a slab of sponge cake from Pak n Save and cut out to shape and would use buttercream and as I didnt know how to pipe I used liquorice straps cut into thins to make all my lines etc.. see a few of my kids cakes done this way. Then in 2001 when living in Masterton a new cake guild was being set up so I joined and there is where I learnt how to pipe, make roses, figures, carnations and orchids and of course started baking for myself swearing I would never bake for anyone else - hmmm never say never hehe.

What are your top 5 decorating tools you cannot live without? My spatula’s, silicon rolling pin (bought from Kiwicakes) dont know how I went without for sooooo long, my muffin tray converted into my flower forming stand, my pasta machine to which I roll out the thin icing for lettering and flowers, and all my wonderful books.
What do you do when you're not decorating? Now I have the shop I enjoy down time away from it all just chilling with the family, going camping, taking digital photos, writing poetry.

What are some of your favourite creations you've made? My all time favourite cake would be my 3 tier kina wedding cake, the couple were told by several cake places that it couldnt be done and me being me is always up for a challenge.

A 3D car I made for my dad’s 60th birthday it would be the best car to date I think.

 My 3D sorting hat cake.

My more recent cake of the avatar face as I had never carved a face before and was great to see her come alive as I put on the details.

Another recent cake of a figure sitting under a blossom tree she is just gorgeous.

And of course the 3D Mickey Mouse but honestly I do have a few that I like but nothing is better than one that is an original design by yourself ie the cakes I have listed above. which is also why I call my business A’Riginal Cakes as 90% of the cakes I do are an original design and who says original anyways we all say ariginal hehe.

What is you favourite Cake, cookie, or cupcake flavour? Wow favourite flavour.. I have a couple my chocolate boysenberry cake, chocolate boysenberry tim tam cake and my banana lemon cake. Why? because they are all different, lovely and moist and original flavours that I have played round to make although there are probably recipes out there but I dont tend to look for recipes I play round.

If you could have someone make a cake for you, what would it be like? This is a tough one as I would soooo love for someone to make a cake for me and it would have to be something 3D probably or with figurines etc on it. I would give them an idea of what I am into and from that they would have to then come up with a design which is how I work my cakes.

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