October Cake Decorator of the Month is Shanni-Lea, Creator of @cakeserasera! Now if you haven't seen Shanni's work... we will wait while you go have a look! Shanni is an incredible fondant Cookie Artist and creates the most abstract but captivating designs. If you're a visual person like Shanni, read on to find out how she pushes through in times of doubt!
What is your favourite Breakfast?
1 - I’m actually so terrible in that I often skip breakfast because I want to get stuck straight into decorating! But if I could have anything for breakfast it would be anything off the menu at my favourite local cafe, their brioche French toast in particular 😍
How long have you been Cookie Decorating for?
2 - I have just celebrated the 4th anniversary / birthday of Cake Sera Sera! Although most days it feels like much longer than 4 years!
Why did you choose Cookie Decorating?
3 - I like to think that cookie decorating chose me! I had absolutely no plans to make cookies when I started my business. My first love was cupcakes and I planned to start my business with cupcakes and cakes. My first order was from a friend who requested cookies to go with her cake and so I drove right in headfirst! The rest is history.
In times of doubt, what do you do to get back into your creative zone?
4 - In times of doubt I like to sketch it out! I’m a really visual person so if the creativity isn’t flowing and I have a mind block for whatever reason. I get all my elements in front of me (colours, stamps, moulds, stencils ect) and draw out each design on paper (badly I might add, I’m no artist with a pen!)
Where did you learn your Cookie Decorating skills?
5 - Back when I started, honestly i just worked everything out as I went along! It was trial and error, learning from my mistakes and if all else failed… google!! These days we are spoilt with all of the amazing creatives out there sharing their process and tips and tricks.
What is your typical day like, what does it entail?
6 - I’m a mum first and foremost. So most days involve entertaining a very active 2 year old! I’m very lucky that she still naps during the day so nap times is when I get stuck in to my decorating, creating content and these days, making reels!
We know Sweet Sticks is a brand you use, what do you love about it?
7 - My very first Christmas in business I was hand painting Christmas trees onto cookies with gel paints. One of my aforementioned “google searches” had me stumble across sweet sticks and I was hooked, immediately purchases the entire set of edible paints! It has been amazing to watch the brand grow, and fall in love with each new product release. The water activated palettes, glitter pumps, sweet stencils and stencil activator being a few of my most used and most loved!
What is your #1 piece of advice for the newbies in Cookie Decorating?
8 - The best advice I could give anyone would be to embrace what makes you different as a decorator and what makes you, YOU! It’s so easy to get caught up in comparing yourself to others but it’s so important to find your style and and focus on that.
Who is your inspiration in the Cookie Decorating world - name three (TAG THEM)
9 - There are so many people in the industry that inspire me everyday, it would be so hard to name them all! But to name a few…
- The millers wife custom cookies - who’s royal icing cookies blow my mind but who I often go to for colour palette inspiration!
- Coco peony - who’s not afraid of bold and bright and who’s work is the perfect combination of colour / texture / and balance that I aspire to.
- Mark and Amy from custom cookie cutters - who I’m constantly in awe of the business they have created from the ground up. The way that they treat everyone in the industry with respect and create friendships wherever they go!