Saturday, June 9, 2012

Ocean themed Dessert Table: Mum's Wedding

For years I've been following the work of Amy Atlas, swooning over her dessert tables and being amazed by the incredible submissions she gets from talented bakers and stylists all over the world. This lady is super high on my inspiration list (along with Molly from Orangette), she basically has my dream job. So it is Amy I have to thank for inspiring me and encouraging me to take on the challenge of creating a dessert table for my mother's wedding.

On April 28th 2012 my mum married a lovely man named Brian Palmer.

It makes me happy to see her so happy. It's nice how that works.

As my gift to them (more of a gift to me seeing as I wanted to do this so badly) I offered to create a dessert table. So after months of planning, here it is! My first ever dessert table! Disclaimer: the photos aren't quite what I hoped so apologies for the less than professional pics!

Mum and Brian first met through their work at the Tauranga Coastguard where they bonded over a love of boats and fishing, so it was no surprise they chose an ocean theme for their wedding.

The 'Anchor Me' bunting was inspired by the song of the same name from New Zealand band The Mutton Birds. It's a moving song with beautiful lyrics. You can listen to it here.


I recruited my sister, sister-in-law and my soon to be step-sister (sisters unite!) to help and over the space of a week we managed to pull everything off - without a hitch. I wasn't expecting that...I honestly thought something would go wrong. There was so much work involved but I loved every minute. Never underestimate the work and love that goes into creating dessert!

The Menu:

Ruffle Wedding Cake - the bottom tier was fruit cake (made by Brian while I was in London, thanks Brian!) and the top tier was a caramel chocolate layer cake with an ombre affect (graduated colour). You can see Mum holding a slice in the photo above. I love this cake. If I made it, am I allowed to say it's really pretty?


Lemon Pearlised Cake Pops - held to attention on a piece of driftwood Mum collected from the beach.  


Chocolate Seashells (made by my new step sister Karina) and Coconut Ice-bergs


Macarons - Not French but 'Mauao' macarons! Mauao is the Maori name for Mount Maunganui an old volcano and scenic feature of Tauranga harbour where we live. Macaron flavours included blueberry, dark chocolate, salted caramel and passionfruit. I haven't quite got macarons down to a fine art (they will not beat me!) but they just passed quality control (i.e. me).


White Chocolate & Blueberry Cheesecakes and Salted Caramel Cheesecakes served up in individual little jars. These were really good, so simple but so good.

Feedback on the night was fantastic and I received loads of lovely comments from friends and family, including my Mum who, although knew we were putting this together, wasn't aware of the details. I loved putting this table together even more than I expected and learnt a LOT. Hopefully I'll get to create another one very soon...any one getting married or celebrating a birthday???

Dan x


  1. Your dessert table was indeed a raging success!!! Well done you, the white choc and blueberry cheesecakes and cakepops were my faves. I can come up with plenty of birthdays in a year for you and you can practice all kinds of kids themes :) So many happy thoughts looking at the photos!
    Karina xx

    1. Thanks love. You were a big help! Good point about all the birthdays too. Looking forward to more baking fun. xx

  2. You are so very very clever :) x Michaela

    1. Thanks!! Let's catch up soon. I'll email you xx

  3. mmmmm...looks amazing. wish i had been there to try all your yummy looking treats, although i am already fully aware of how amazing your cakes are, having lived with you and sampled pretty much everything youve ever baked! xxx becca

    1. Ah Becca, you are too kind! :) When you come and visit me (next year) we can bake all sorts of treats together. And play on the beach. And do crafts! Just like old times (except the beach bit). xx

  4. Just one word to describe this Danielle: STUPENDOUS
    Move over Amy Atlas there's a new girl on the scene.
    You are totally born to do it and this is clearly going to be the start of something big for you.
    Me and your cake followers in rainy London are so proud.
    Still missing you lots. Georgia and I have decided to rebrand Cakes4fun to Cakes4funk. We're envisaging wearing afro wigs and dancing to select tunes such as "Funky Cold Madeira" while rollerskating round the shop serving customers. We thought you'd approve.
    Can you forward me your email address again as would love to send you a proper update. Take care dudette, speak soon, Zo xx