Tag Archives | Cake Studio

Upcoming Changes in 2018

Friends, colleagues and clients,

It is with a bittersweet purpose that I share this news with you today. During this holiday season of gratitude and reflection, I have been carefully examining my life, both from a business and personal perspective, and have made the difficult decision to close Elysia Root Cakes permanently January 27, 2018.

Please know it has been an absolute privilege and honor to be part of the Chicago wedding industry and to play a role in thousands of beautiful celebrations of love, life and family. I am so grateful for the wedding community, and the friendship and support that both clients and colleagues have shown me over the years.

Photo Credit: Bob & Dawn Davis Photography

In the years to come, I will look fondly back on many moments- including our move to the cake studio space at 1939 W. Fulton Street, our regular Treat Tuesday team lunches, having not one but two cakes featured on season 4 of Fox’s hit show, Empire, and being a part of the 100th wish granted by Wish Upon a Wedding. I still eagerly anticipate our upcoming episode of Cake Hunters, set to air in 2018, which was shot during PartySlate’s second anniversary celebration.

Elysia Root Cakes' Chicago custom cake studio

Photo Credit: Tuan B & Co.

This has been a deeply personal decision made at a time when the business couldn’t be stronger, but the needs of my family have grown, and I can’t let those needs cause us to sacrifice the quality of our products and services for which we are known.

For our clients, we will continue to ensure that the transition is as smooth as possible. We are pleased to recommend Sugar Fixe Patisserie to Chicago couples seeking referrals. We have complete confidence in our highly reputable colleague and are grateful that they are willing to help fulfill our client’s needs during this transition.

I am grateful to Nate Root, my husband of 12 years, for his unwavering support. Without him, Elysia Root Cakes would never have existed. I am also grateful to my amazing employees, past and present, for being so dedicated and professional and believing in our core values and mission.

Photo credit: Tuan B & Co

This chapter of my life and business may be ending, but I take with me friendships and memories that can never be replaced. I am grateful to you all for following me on this great adventure.

There is nothing wrong with change, if it is in the right direction. -Winston Churchill

With much love and gratitude,

Elysia

Meet the team: Andrea Alvarez Reno, Cake Artist & Baker

Last but not least in our Meet the Team series, meet Andrea Alvarez Reno, who is a cake artist and baker on the Elysia Root Cakes team!  Andrea is an extremely talented artist and not only does she excel in the pastry arts, she taught herself calligraphy as well and in her off hours, owns and runs Andrea Reno Calligraphy.  Andrea is originally from Honduras but cake artistry and love brought her to Chicago!  Andrea received her L’Art du Gâteau certificate from The French Pastry School here in Chicago.  

Headshot by Laura Witherow Photography. Hair and Make-Up by Joanna B Artistry.

Andrea owned a custom cupcake and cake studio in her native Honduras and worked as a lead decorator for a couple of other bakeries in Chicago before joining the Elysia Root Cakes team!  She is also the best dog mom to her dog Manolo.  We are grateful to have such a talented person on our team! Read on to find out a little bit more about Andrea!

What do you like most about working at Elysia Root Cakes?  As a perfectionist myself I love the fact the all the cakes are done as perfect as possible.  The first time I learned that we could use a ruler to make the cake the perfect levelness and circumference it was like fireworks in my brain.

What has been your favorite project at Elysia Root Cakes?  Definitely the pleated architectural inspired cake. It was such a challenge and such a unique cake! The fact that it was all white made it better and all the math that involved was thrilling to me.

Delivered to Acadia restaurant this past September.  An architectural wedding cake designed by an architect groom and executed precisely by Andrea!

What is your role at Elysia Root Cakes?  Construction of cakes and elaboration of artistic elements AKA Cake Artist.

Motto or personal mantra?  You give your best. There is no other option.

Three words to best describe you?  Perfectionist, motivated and hard working.

Fondant dragon for a wedding cake, hand sculpted by Andrea

Back of the hand sculpted fondant dragon

What did you want to be when growing up?  Three things: baker, veterinary or forensic doctor!

Describe the greatest challenge you have had to overcome in your life thus far?  Grabbing my bags and my dog and coming to a country where I would have no family (except my husband) and no friends, leaving behind everything I ever knew.

What is the most important thing you have learned in the last five years?  Family and health are the most important thing.

Calligraphy and edible wedding invitation created by Andrea.

Edible gala invitation created by Andrea.

Outside of work, what kinds of hobbies and interests do you have? I’m obsessed with Crossfit and nutrition.

Where is your hometown?  I am from San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

What is your hidden talent?  I like to think I’m very strong. I can currently squat 200 lbs and I’m going for more weight!

Gorgeous sparkly art deco fondant wedding cake with a ruffled bottom tier to match the wedding dress!

 

Thanks for taking the time to read about the Elysia Root Cakes team.  Check out more from Andrea on her Instagram and make sure to also check out her calligraphy Instagram as well!

Members of the Elysia Root Cakes team: Andrea, Maddie, Monica and Sammie at the 2017 Wish Upon A Wedding Gala.

Meet the team: Danielle Leahy, Cake Artist and Baker

This week, meet Danielle Leahy, the Elysia Root Cakes team’s Cake Artist and Baker!  Danielle joined the Elysia Root Cakes team in the past year.  Danielle moved to Chicago from Washington D.C., but is originally from Pennsylvania.  She received her degree in Baking and Pastry Management from The Culinary Institute of America in New York.  

Headshot by Laura Witherow Photography. Hair and Make-up by Joanna B Artistry.

Danielle interned at Pink Cake Box in New Jersey and also has a strong pastry background, having been on the pastry team at the Rosewood hotel in Washington, D.C.  We recently sent Danielle to 3 days of  Cake Carnival in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada to learn from six amazing cake artists and to further develop her own skills.  She spent 3 days creating this beautiful wedding cake that showcased a variety of different techniques.

Wedding cake created by Danielle. Photo courtesy of Danielle Leahy.

Read on below to get to know a little more about Danielle!

Before work at Elysia Root Cakes what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?  In high school I took phone orders for a company that sold plants and seeds.

What do you like most about working at Elysia Root Cakes?  I like that we are always doing new and different techniques and learning every day.

Danielle pictured with the Elysia Root Cakes team and the cake we created for the TV show Empire for the Prince tribute episode.

What book did you last read? 32 Yolks by Eric Ripert

Where is your hometown? Hatboro, Pennsylvania

What has been your favorite project at Elysia Root Cakes?  My favorite project so far has been the monkey baby shower cake.

Hand painted baby shower cake with hand made fondant monkeys that Danielle helped to create.

What is the first thing you would buy if you won the lottery?  A French bulldog puppy

What is one food you wish had zero calories? Pizza

Danielle and our intern Maddie, delivering a wedding cake. Photo by Jason Kaczorowski Photography.

Where is the best place you’ve travelled to and why?  Italy because of the amazing art, delicious food and wine

What is one thing you can’t resist?  Peanut butter

Thanks for taking the time to learn a little about Danielle, Elysia Root Cakes team’s Cake Artist and Baker!  

Danielle pictured with Courtney Clark, Sarah Myers, Joshua John Russell, Avalon Yarnes, James Roselle, Susan Trianos and Chrissie Boon. Photo courtesy of Danielle Leahy.

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

Real Wedding: Casey & Agustin

Casey and Agustin’s wedding day was such a blast to be a part of—it always brings a smile to our faces when looking back and reflecting on all the amazing details that made this day special! The elegant three-tiered Banana cake was filled with Blueberry Preserves and Passion Fruit Buttercream. The all-white square wedding cake was the perfect compliment to this stunning Chicago venue. We’re always fans of adorning cakes with sugar florals, and beautiful deep red and white flowers added a burst of color on this classic cake design. Incorporating light blue seeded twigs also added an additional element of depth, which we always love! Colorful embellishments and decorative depth really transform any cake from simple to chic, and this timeless white wedding cake is a perfect example.

Adding a more personal touch to this love-filled day, Casey and Agustin incorporated a creative groom’s cake as well to really add to the fun! Representing the two of them as individuals and their unique passions was a great way to ultimately represent their great dynamic as a couple—the two really compliment one another, even seen through this one-of-a-kind cake design! From flowerpots to mini airplanes, this groom’s cake personifies the breathtaking love these two share.

Take a look below at Casey and Agustin’s special day below!

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XO, Elysia

Venue: The Langham Chicago | Floral Design: Cornelia McNamara | Planner: LOLA Event Productions | Photographer: Studio This Is

Real Wedding: Deema & Ermin

We love looking back on Deema and Ermin’s gorgeous Chicago wedding day, and reminiscing on their creative and timeless Super Mario wedding cake. This customized triple-tiered wedding cake was straight out of a Mario-inspired dream and we love every last detail. Tailoring each and every wedding cake to fit our many couple’s unique styles is always fun, and this cake truly was one for the record books!

Taking a deeper dive in to this custom creation, the first tier of this cake houses a detailed Mario adventure backdrop, adorned with full sized Mario and Luigi characters. Incorporating a pop of color is always a great addition to any cake design—we loved incorporating the Piranha Plant for a little extra pizazz on the second tier. From the fondant Yoshi to the flaming window on the third tier castle to Bowser and Peach as decorative cake toppers, this cake is full of festive detailing and flair. It wouldn’t be a party without the whole Mario crew, which is why we also had to include the one and only Goomba.

This cake was a wedding day hit, especially with the children. We’re always fans of letting your personality as a couple shine through your wedding day; themed wedding cakes are a great way to do so, and are some of our favorites to create. Take a look below at their beautiful day and very original Super Mario cake!

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xo, Elysia

Venue: Café Brauer | Planner: Clementine Custom Events | Floral and Décor: Stems Chicago | Photographer: Steve Koo | Caterer, Rentals and Linen: Calihan Catering | Videographer: Shutter and Sound | DJ: Okyne Medialab | Hair: Holli Beauty | Make-Up: Sonia Roselli

Real Wedding: Lora & Stephen

For Lora and Stephen’s Chicago wedding, our cake design centered on the color aesthetic of their stunning day. Their four-tiered cake was both Lemon cake with Raspberry buttercream filling as well as alternating Chocolate and Vanilla Bean cake layers with Vanilla Bean buttercream filling and was adorned in pink cascading florals from Christine Janda Design & Events. We love the addition of bright blooms on a classic white cake, and the emerald green ribbon to top off this one of a kind design. From the invitation suite to the floral bouquets to the cake, these summertime nuptials were colorful and cheery!

Call (312)-344-1046 or email for a custom consultation today, we’d love to bring your cake dreams to life!

XO, Elysia

Vendors //

Venue: The Langham Chicago | Photography: Becky Brown Photography | Event Design, Planning & Floral: Christine Janda Design & Events | Invitations: LBrown Design & Paperie | Cake: Elysia Root Cakes | Band: Cagen Music | Hair & Makeup: Tamara Makeup + Hair Artistry | Bridal Gown: Weddings 826

Happy Birthday, Baby! Our favorite children’s cakes!

Kids love cake, too! We love children’s cakes for a number of reasons, the most important being design. Children’s cakes are a great opportunity for our team to put on our collective creative thinking hats and create something truly memorable. Whether your child loves Sesame Street, the circus, or the movies, we are here to bring your child’s cakes dreams to life. Some of our all-time favorite creations are our children’s cakes, and we’re excited to be a part of your next birthday party! Call (312-344-1046) or email to order your child’s amazing birthday cake — we can’t wait to hear what your child has in store for us!

XO, Elysia

Arete’s Red Velvet Cake Private Baking Lesson

After Elysia received a touching email from Ms. Halle Quezada, a Chicago Public School teacher at Suder Montessori Magnet, the two made arrangements for one of her students to come in for a private baking lesson last week.

Arete, a bright young student, had lost her mother unexpectedly the previous year. She wrote an essay about her mom’s sudden passing, and one passage in particular stuck out to Ms. Quezada: Arete wrote about how her mom used to always bake red velvet cake, and that she never got a chance to learn from her. After her mother passed away, the family found the last red velvet cake she ever made (perfectly preserved in the car, thanks to Chicago winter temperatures) and they all cherished it.

Ms. Quezada, very understandably touched by this story, reached out to Elysia and asked if she could arrange for a private baking lesson so that Arete could learn how to make red velvet cake. Elysia and the team happily agreed! We hosted Arete, her sister, her aunt, and Ms. Quezada for a fun afternoon of baking. Take a look at these photos of their lesson below led by Joyce Marie:

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The team loved teaching Arete and her family how to bake red velvet cake, as a way to remember and honor her mother. We hope that she’ll be able to share this recipe with her own children in the future so that her mother’s legacy lives on!

If you are interested in having a private baking lesson in our studio, feel free to reach out to us today.

Custom Cake Spotlight: Bodybuilder Groom’s Cake and Blooming Wedding Cake

We absolutely love it when couples ask us to create not one, but two unique cakes for their wedding celebrations. Lauren and Lee, who got married last summer at the Museum of Contemporary Art, had a fun and personal groom’s cake as well as a gorgeous, four tier wedding cake. Kesh Events did a fantastic job planning their beautiful event. Thank you to Carasco Photography for sharing these lovely images of the couple and their two cakes below!

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Lauren and Lee’s fun personalities really shone through the groom’s cake. The two of them love working on their fitness together, so Lauren thought she’d display that in the form of a surprise groom’s cake for Lee. The cake itself took the form of two stacked weight plates, and standing in front of it was Lauren’s fondant figurine holding up Lee’s. Too cute – girl power!

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Lee’s groom’s cake was a yummy chocolate cake with peanut butter buttercream.

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Their wedding cake took on a completely different style – it was a beautiful, four tier cake with a large open fondant garden rose.

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The flavors included almond and chocolate cake with salted caramel buttercream and turtle filling.

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Having a groom’s cake in addition to your wedding cake is a great way to really inject your and your fiance’s personality into the decor. If you have a unique idea in mind for a groom’s cake (or wedding cake) , give us a call at 312-344-1046 or email us today!