Meridian Industrial

BAKE, CRAFT AND CREATE

4/2/2020 | Vicki Mitchell

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Cupcakes that look like a beautiful bouquet of flowers; cookies that look like wedding gowns or sneakers; cakes decorated in many creative ways; flower arranging; calligraphy and stenciling… all this and more can be found at Bake, Craft, and Create in East Windsor, Connecticut. And guess what? You learn how to decorate, craft and create yourself at one of the classes that are offered, or watch as your children get creative during a workshop, “camp” experience, or a custom birthday party. The owner, baker, decorator and crafter of Bake, Craft and Create, Mercedes Delano, is mostly self-taught, and has been baking and crafting most of her life. In 2018, when Connecticut instituted the cottage food operator license, Delano obtained the license, which allowed her to sell food products from her kitchen to the public. Before and during that time, she took on-line classes, did research on baking and decorating trends, used social media to check in with other decorators, and has been certified from instructors such as Food Network competitors Colette Peters and Tammy Dunwoody. In fact, she credits part of her success so far to “my dear friend Tammy Dunwoody, Food Network Cupcake War competitor and owner of Art of Cake Tammy Dunwoody, her studio in New Jersey. She is actually one of the reasons I opened my studio…she is my friend, mentor, teacher, and support system.” Finally, Delano knew it was time for her to open her own studio and make her dream come true. After hiring someone to do a business plan for her, and with additional support from the Town of East Windsor, the family of the late Walter E. Bass (who owns the plaza where the studio is located,) and her fiancée Jimmy Chamberlain, Delano was thrilled to open Bake, Craft, and Create this past December.

Delano offers beginners classes for both children and adults in decorating cookies, cakes and cupcakes, where you are presented with a pre-baked (in her on-site kitchen) item. You then use the products provided for you to create your own masterpiece, with guidance from Delano. For instance, you may be using buttercream frosting for frosting cakes and cupcakes, and fondant for decorative details. Fondant is a marshmallow flavored “play-doh” type of edible product that you roll out and cut into shapes with cookies cutters. You can also push the fondant into silicone molds and make 3D decorations for your cake. In a recent class on Magically Delicious Cookies, the participants were provided with a medley of different shaped sugar cookies to decorate, using pastry tubes filled with colorful icing.

During an adult cake decorating class, the students were amazed at the professional looking “masterpieces” they were able to create with no prior experience. During these classes, Delano provides a cake covered with fondant for each participant. Then everyone is free to use their own creativity to make a one-of-a-kind cake using the studio’s tools and Delano’s guidance. There are even Vino and Cake parties, which are similar to “paint and sip” parties, but with a cake for your canvas.

Delano offers children’s workshops during school breaks and summer vacations. In these classes, the children learn how to make and bake a cake by themselves, then finish up by decorating it, all with guidance and help from Delano. There is an April break “camp” from the 13th to the 17th. If you are interested, see the website for details and to register. Private parties for adults and children can be customized to a theme of your choice. Recent children’s parties have featured mermaids, princesses, pirates, and pineapples…it’s really up to you! The cost for classes is $25.00/per person and up, depending on what you’d like to do, and costs vary for private parties, again depending on individual customization. Parties generally have a minimum size of 10, and max out at 36. It’s best to call and talk to Delano, or fill out a custom order form on-line.

Delano says she only uses high quality ingredients, and that includes everything from the flour she bakes with to the gel paste coloring and sprinkles. In her small retail area, customers may purchase the above mentioned decorative items, as well as choose from an assortment of American made Ann Clark metal cookie cutters. The cookie cutters include shapes for many everyday occasions, geometrics, hearts, mermaid tails, and holiday themes such as Easter bunnies! She also has a 3D printer which she will be using to design her own cutters, which will then be available for sale.

Delano welcomes custom orders on cakes, cupcakes (including those amazing cupcake bouquets,) decorative cookies, French macaroons, meringues, and other types of pastries. Customers can call her or go onto the website to fill out a custom order form. Also check the website for the calendar of events for April/Easter, the Spring break camp for children and a retreat for other professionals to share ideas and “just learn from each other.” Also coming soon will be a spring flower arranging class in conjuction with Broadbrook Gardens. You will also find more inspiring pictures of what can be created with a little guidance from a professional during one or more of the fun classes or custom parties!

Bake, Craft and Create is located at
140 North Road in East Windsor
bakecraftandcreate.com
860-386-6945

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