Meet the team: Monica Anderson, Senior Cake and Confectionary Artist

This week, meet Monica Anderson, the Elysia Root Cakes team’s Senior Cake and Confectionary Artist!  Monica has been an integral part of the Elysia Root Cakes team for the past four years.  We previously profiled Monica back in 2015.  Monica is from Naperville, Illinois and now lives in the River North area.  Monica has a degree in Baking and Pastry from Kendall College.  

Photo credit: Rebecca Marie Photography. Hair by Livia Caporale. Make-up by Andie Cumber.

Monica worked at various bakeries in the Chicagoland area before joining our team in 2014.  We’ve loved seeing her develop her skills and become an even more amazing cake artist during her time with us.  We are happy to have encouraged Monica in developing her skills by sending her to learn from some amazing cake artists such as Mark Seaman, Nicholas Lodge, Mike Elder, Mary Jo Dowling, and Colette Peters

Monica in class with Colette Peters during Florida ICES mini-classes.

Monica recently competed in her first cake competition and took 2nd place in the Professional Wedding Cake Division at the National Capital Area Cake Show in Virginia.  We’re super proud of her accomplishment.  Read on to learn a little more about Monica!

What has been your favorite project at Elysia Root Cakes? My favorite project thus far at Elysia Root Cakes has been the Rainbow Trout Groom’s cake that we created in 2016.

Photography: PenCarlson Planner: Sweetchic Events

What is your proudest moment at work?  My proudest moment at Elysia Root Cakes is when I came in 2nd in the Professional Wedding Cake Division at the National Capital Area Cake Show.

Monica with her cake at the National Capital Area Cake Show

Monica’s Wedding Cake design that took 2nd place Professional Wedding Cake Division at NCAS 2017. Photo credit: Laura Witherow

What is your favorite thing to do in Chicago?  My favorite thing to do in Chicago is to go to all of the amazing museums.

What phobias do you have?  I have a phobia of bugs crawling all over me! 

What did you want to be when growing up?   When I was a kid I wanted to be an architect.

Monica and Elysia on an 2016 Icing Smiles delivery for Dulce’s 1st birthday to Almost Home Kids.

What is an ability you wish you had? An ability that I wish I had is teleportation.

What is the one thing you cannot resist?  Chocolate and Peanut Butter!

What is the favorite part about working at Elysia Root Cakes?  The ability to be creative and to create beautiful cakes for people to enjoy on a special day.

Monica and Elysia on a wedding cake delivery in 2014.

Best vacation place you’ve been? The best place I have traveled to was Italy.

What celebrity do people think you look like?  When my hair is straight, people think I look like Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge.

Thanks for taking the time to learn a little about the Elysia Root Cakes team’s Senior Cake and Confectionary Artist!  Check out more from Monica on her instagram. 

Monica and her boyfriend Zack at the 2016 Wish Upon A Wedding Gala.  Photo credit: Studio This Is

Meet the team: Kelly Dull, Elysia Root Cakes Head Baker

Meet Kelly Dull, the Elysia Root Cakes team’s head baker!  Kelly is in charge of the deliciousness that comes out of the Elysia Root Cakes’ kitchen each week.   While Kelly is originally from Elyria, Ohio right outside of Cleveland, she has lived all over the United States on both coasts, from Santa Monica, California to Brooklyn, New York!  Kelly received her Bachelor of Science in Baking and Pastry Arts from Johnson & Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island. 

Headshot by Rebecca Marie Photography. Make-Up by Andie Cumber. Hair by Livia Corporale.

Kelly is not only the Elysia Root Cakes team’s head baker, but she is also a successful culinary instructor and you can find her teaching classes at Give Me Some Sugar in Roscoe Village, Sur La Table in Skokie, and Read It & Eat in Lincoln Park.  We are grateful to have such a talented person on our team! Read on to find out a little bit more about Kelly!

What do you like most about working at Elysia Root Cakes?  I love that we have so many opportunities to push ourselves and to learn and grow.  We are always trying to be better than we were and that’s exciting.

The Elysia Root Cakes team at a fresh floral arranging class given by fellow Green Wedding Alliance member, Jori from Fab Flora Chicago!

Before working at Elysia Root Cakes, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?  I helped a good friend open and run a bakery in Providence, RI.  It was one of the most challenging, exhausting, exciting, and rewarding things I’ve ever done.

What is the weirdest job you’ve ever had? I was a car hop waitress at a place called Dog N Suds for four summers in high school.

Tell us something about yourself that would surprise us: At age 26, I spent 4 months on a solo road trip around the entire United States.

Kelly and Michelle delivering 240 (!) mini-cakes in 2016.

What book did you read last?  Hillary Rodham Clinton’s “What Happened”

What is your favorite movie and book? My favorite book (besides the Harry Potter series!) is “The Things they Carried” by Tim O’Brien and favorite movie: A League of Their Own.

What did you want to be when growing up?  A veterinarian until age 14,  then a pastry chef/baker!

What is the most important thing you have learned in the last five years? Self-care and how to say no to people.

What is your hidden talent?  I can juggle!

What has been your favorite project at Elysia Root Cakes?  The Harry Potter themed cakes!

Kelly and Danielle with one of two Harry Potter themed cakes we’ve had the opportunity to make. The one above was a birthday cake!

The 2nd Harry Potter themed cake was a groom’s cake (Photo by Averyhouse)

Thanks for taking the time to learn a little about the Elysia Root Cakes team’s head baker!  Check out more from Kelly on her instagram and her website. 

Kelly and her boyfriend, Andrew at the Wish Upon A Wedding Gala. Photo by Studio This Is.

Real Wedding: Jessica and Jacob

Jessica and Jacob’s wedding at The Langham Chicago was such a beautiful and glamorous affair! Every time we look back on the details of this amazing day, captured beautifully by Rick Aguilar Studios, we feel so honored that we could be a part of it! The show-stopping five-tiered cake was adorned with black fondant ribbon and fresh white florals from Kehoe Designs, creating a modern yet elegant design. The cake table was draped in a textured white linen which beautifully contrasted the smooth, slick surface of the cake.

We love a sophisticated and minimal design, and this cake was no exception. We wish Jessica and Jacob many more days that are as special and happy as their wedding day!

Vendors //

Photography: Rick Aguilar Studios | Event Planner: Barbara Moss Events | Florist: Kehoe Designs | Venue and Catering: The Langham Chicago

XO, Elysia

A Magical Affair

Brandy and Brian’s wedding day at The Langham Chicago was full of love, laughter, and magic. One of the most unforgettable parts of the day was the revealing of the groom’s cake. Brandy surprised Brian with a Harry Potter themed cake, to honor their shared love for the famous series. The two-tiered cake was topped with the Sorting Hat, and adorned with a wand, snitch, and train ticket to Hogwarts, which are all signature items to the books.

The magic didn’t stop there! For their traditional wedding cake, we created a show-stopping 4-tiered cake adorned with gorgeous pink and burgundy flowers from Stems Chicago, as well as luscious greenery. Candles decorated the cake table, lighting up the cake to enhance its beauty.

We loved getting creative for the groom’s cake and keeping it classic for the wedding cake! Groom’s cakes are a fun, yet special gesture that every groom appreciates, and will have your guests in awe. Take a look at the gorgeous photos from AveryHouse below to get some inspiration!

Vendors //

Photographer: AveryHouse | Planner: JDetailed Events | Venue and Catering: The Langham Chicago | Florist: Stems Chicago | Entertainment: Becca Kaufman Orchestra

XO, Elysia

Hand Painted Details to Elevate Your Cake Design

At Elysia Root Cakes, it is our job to keep up with wedding trends, and the hand-painted wedding cake craze is one we can get behind. Hand-painting is a beautiful and creative way to bring in elements of your day that have meaning. Whether it’s incorporating your favorite flowers, your monogram or your new china pattern, be sure to make it your own! 

Take a look at some of our favorite hand-painted cakes below!

Photography: Amanda Megan Miller | Fresh Floral: Fleur | Venue: Radisson Blu Aqua

Planner: Jayne Weddings | Photography: Julia Franzosa Photography | Venue: Ravenswood Event Center

Inspired by invitations by Rifle Paper Co. | Photography: Elysia Root Cakes

Planner: Frank Event Design | Photography: Rush Photography And Video | Venue: Anna Held Studios

Inspired by Invitations by Chicks N Hens | Fresh Floral: Kehoe Designs | Photography: Tim Tab Studios | Venue: Café Brauer

XO, Elysia

Christy Tyler Styled Shoot

We love being a part of styled shoots – especially this gorgeous Christy Tyler photography workshop shoot.  Creating a cake that perfectly complements the design, decor, florals, and bride is a challenge; one that we will always accept!

From the pretty pink ring box and flourishing tablescape to the beautiful china, pulling inspiration from all aspects of a shoot is crucial to creating a stunning cake design. For this shoot a three tiered classic all-white cake adorned with luscious pink sugar florals, greenery and blush flower buds, set the stage for an elegant and romantic affair.

Take a look below at all of the details from this fabulous shoot!

Vendors //

Venue: Chez Event Space | Photography: Christy Tyler Photography | Florals: The Petal chicago | Model: Aimee Mazzenga | Dress: Alice in Ivory bridal | Hair and Makeup: Debra Petrielli Hair and Makeup |Paper goods & ring box: Jenn Heller Design co | Linens: BBJ Linen | Rentals: Kate Vintage Wed | Video: Robert Cawthorne

XO, Elysia

A Groom’s Cake with a Bark

Liz and Joey’s wedding day was a joyous celebration, filled with friends and family! The most memorable part of the day had to be the unveiling of the groom’s cake – Joey was pleasantly surprised to find his best friend turned cake form. Liz wanted his Jack Russell Terrier, Pebbles, to be a part of their special day, and this was the most creative way possible!  Liz arranged for Joey’s favorite Boston Crème pie from Joe’s Seafood to be delivered to us so that we could depict Pebbles getting into trouble by eating his pie!

This cake was so much fun to create, and even more exciting to see Joey’s expression when first laying eyes on him! Take a peek below at this one of a kind grooms cake, and Joey’s once in a lifetime surprise!

XO, Elysia

Vendors //

Photography: Carasco Photography | Venue: The Drake Chicago | Planner: Kesh Events

Spring has Sprung in Cake Form

With Spring just around the corner – we here at Elysia Root Cakes are overflowing with inspiration! This Spring season is full of enchanting blooming flowers and trees putting forth new leaves, the earth looks dazzling! With all this new beauty around us we cannot help but think, how do we incorporate this grace into our cakes?

From actual bright blooms to sugar flowers to colorfully hand painted designs, our inspiration beams from Spring time and transcends through our cakes. Take a peek below at some of our favorite seasonal cakes, and get a little spring in your step!

Photography: Carasco Photography | Floral & Decor: HMR Designs/ Rishi Patel  | Planner: Birch Design Studios

Photographer: David Wittig Photography | Floral & Decor: HMR Designs/ Rishi Patel | Planner: Birch Design Studios

Photography: Leathem Photography | Planner: Clementine Chicago | Floral: A Stem Above Chicago

Photography: Rush Productions | Planner: Frank Event Designs

Photography: Amanda Megan Miller | Planner: Jayne Weddings (katijayne) | Shoot Concept: Indie Wed

Photography: Tim Tab Studios | Floral & Décor: Kehoe Designs |Coordination: CJ Janda

Photography: Becky Brown Photography | Florals and Coordination: CJ Janda

XO, Elysia

Real Wedding: Blake and Ian

We love reflecting back on past weddings, and especially Blake and Ian’s beautiful celebration! Their special day was lively and full of love and laughter, from the incredible ambiance that set the stage for dancing to the final cake cutting.

Guests received a 4 piece French Macaron favor with a custom favor tag embellished with a tiny bell to signify the bride’s new last name. Pistachio, Vanilla Bean, Raspberry and Salted Caramel flavors for the French Macarons complimented the wedding colors.

This six tier fondant cake with diamond quilting and glittering rhinestone accents, was adorned with gold fondant ribbon and both sugar and fresh florals – creating a unique and personalized cake for this stunning couple!

We love incorporating our specialty designs, one of them being sugar flowers, and this design took the cake! Wishing these two many more days that are as happy as their wedding day!

XO, Elysia

Vendors //

Venue: Four Seasons Chicago | Planning: Christina Currie Events |Photography: Dennis Lee Photography | Floral and Décor: Meetinghouse

Valentine’s Day Inspiration

With Valentine’s Day today- we here at Elysia Root Cakes have been feeling inspired from this love filled season! From hand painted decor to flourishing floral adornments, these love influenced cakes will leave you in awe. Incorporating  beautiful blush pinks and vibrant fuchsia tones create the perfect design for a spring wedding. With these delightfully whimsical and stunning visuals, your wedding cake is sure to make an exciting statement.

Take a peek below at our favorite Valentine’s Day inspired wedding cakes!

Photography: Jennograph | Planner: Katie Jayne | Floral Design: Life In Bloom | Venue: Zhou B Events

Photography: Emilia Jane | Venue: Langham Chicago | Floral: Andrews Garden

Venue: Four Seasons Chicago | Photography: Dennis Lee Photography 

Photography: Ryan Timm | Planner and Florals: CJ Janda

Venue: 401 Morgan MFG | Photography: Studio This is Photography

Photography: Coach House Pictures | Floral Design: Becca Blue Flowers | Venue: Ignite Glass

Photography: Carasco Photo | Event Planning: KESH Events | Floral Design: KESH Designs

Photography: Tim Tab Studios | Florals: Kehoe Darling with Kehoe Designs

Photography: Clary Pfeiffer | Venue: Langham Chicago | Floral Design: Fleur Inc

Venue: Ravisloe CC | Floral: The Foxglove Studio | Photography: Tamara Gruner Photography

 

XO, Elysia