Texas-based cake artist, Kassy Jimenez of Cakes and Crafts by Kass gives us the scoop from this year’s That Takes the Cake show.
That Takes The Cake, literally!
By Kassandra Jimenez
If you are in the cake world then you probably know about the Austin TX cake show which is held in Round Rock TX. It is the show that really gets the ball rolling for all other cake shows because, well, it’s one of the first of the year.
That Takes the Cake is known for its cake competition; hundreds of competitors enter their cakes, from young bakers to cake royalty! If you are anything like me then you might be feeling intimidated, but don’t let your fear stop you. This show not only has amazing cakes but amazing judges too! Once you take the plunge, you will be competing at this show and any show you can get to. The competition bug is real, and do not fight it. Its bite is infectious and will not subside until you give it what it wants!
Joyce Marcellus created a series of eggs for her competition entry
Here is the low down on competing in Austin: Once you have signed up, make sure you read the rules, and follow them. Remember that competition is an opportunity to push yourself, creatively, and to experiment with new media. The great thing about Austin is that no matter how big or small your piece may be, every single person volunteering for that show makes you feel like you just completed a triathlon when you walk in with your piece! Seriously the volunteers rock!
Incredible Sculpted Horse
Incredible wedding cake entry by Nikole Miller
Once you put your cake down and look at the vast sea of entries you can put the cruise control on. The best part is yet to come! You get to look at all the cakes!!! One of my favorite parts of attending the show is actually looking at all the cakes. New techniques, amazing colors, numerous mediums, buttercream skills, and so much more to gaze at. I can stare at some of these cakes for hours. The detail and hours put into these cakes show just how amazing the competition is. After you are done checking out the cakes you can shop with amazing vendors while the judges do their thing!
A sensational buttercream entry from the competition.
Speaking of judging, I have noticed a streamlined judging process being adopted across multiple shows. Since that I have entered this particular show three times, it is a change that I am still getting used to. This year they introduced Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze awards, which were placed in front of everyone’s cakes on Sunday. There was some buzzing and chatter going around with this new change. Some embraced it, mainly because they knew what it meant, and some were confused. The show did take the time during the awards to clarify the changes, which was helpful. The jury is still out on whether the cake community will take to and embrace the new awards.
Bug Cookies by Sara Weber of Sara’s Sweets Austin
As for the score sheets, the ones I saw online seemed very clear, concise and easy to read. Your score sheet is and should be read very carefully. This is how you improve for the next show you will compete at. Some of my favorites from the show this year were amazingly detailed bug cookies from Sara Weber of Sara’s Sweets Austin. An insanely detailed chameleon cake from Benny Rivera of City Cakes. I especially loved the detailed wafer paper quilling cake from Heather Delgado of Sweet Notes Bakery. The showstopper cake for me had to be the gorgeous black constellation cake with cascading flower arrangement from Nikole Miller of Nikki’s Cake Art. These are just a handful of amazing artists from the show this year. Trying to explain the caliber of work is one thing but honestly, you need to experience this for yourself!
Detailed Chameleon cake by Benny Rivera of City Cakes.