13 Feb

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

The gals behind this shoot absolutely love Valentine’s Day because it gives everyone a chance to take a step away from their busy lives and focus on love. Who can argue with that? So in honor of this lovely holiday, Lexy of PROPER + Michele of Michele Hart Photography teamed up to shoot a real-life couple spending Valentine’s Day together. They met up with two cuties, models Maverick + Callie, whose chemistry just shines through in every photo.

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

Lexy says, Our lives become so busy with work and family that it’s nice to have a holiday that is all about love. When celebrating Valentine’s Day, some couples go out, and some stay in. I was so excited to work with Michele Hart of Michele Hart Photography to capture this stunning couple and their intimate day. From coffee in bed to making breakfast in the kitchen to getting dressed up for a night on the town, we wanted to share their Valentine’s Day story in a series of moments!

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

They started with hot cocoa and donut bites in bed…

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

(And snuggling.)

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

Lexi added little floral touches throughout the house with blossoms by Flower Muse and a floral garland strung above the headboard.

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

A simple breakfast involving red velvet pancakes with cream cheese frosting added even more fun to the morning. Heart-shaped pancakes were created by simply placing a metal cookie cutter in the pan and pouring the batter inside. The plates were adorned with “His” & “Hers” confetti place settings and every detail was planned right down to the floral ice cubes in the orange juice!

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

Valentine's Day inspiration | Photo by  Michele Hart Photography | Design and Styling Lexy Ward of PROPER | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-day-inspiration-1.jpg

Final thoughts from Lexi… Michele captured the day so beautifully and was able to portray the love and comfort that Maverick and Callie feel for one another! The day began and ended with a kiss.

Totally. And how great a Valentine’s Day gift is a series of photos like this?!

Photographer: Michele Hart Photography / Townhouse: Homeaway Rental in Boulder, Colorado / Styling, Florals, Hair & Makeup: Lexy Ward of PROPER / Models: Maverick & Callie of Wilhelmina Denver / Red Tray, Pink Mugs, Heart Marshmallows, & Garland: Crate & Barrel / Pink Cups, Bowls: CB2 / Ivory Napkins: Anthropologie / Red Teapot: Boutique Find / Confetti Place Settings: DIY / Tissue Honeycomb: Ikea / Garland & Gold Flatware: Target / Callie’s Jacket: Anthropologie / Maverick’s Blazer: H&M

 
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13 Feb

Valentines Day Raspberry Meringue Cake | Photo by Apryl Ann Photo | Cake by Cakewalk Bake Shop | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-cake-1.jpg

It’s been a minute since we featured the talents of Cakewalk Bake Shop (this naked cake DIY to be exact), and the day before Valentine’s just seems an appropriate time to get inspired for the weekend’s festivities. Lucky us, Apryl Ann Photography documented Emily’s latest tutorial, a delectable raspberry meringue cake for us to give a go ourselves. Yep, even you with incredible talents in areas *other* than baking can whip one up in no time at all! Thanks to Emily of Cakewalk Bake Shop for the how-to:

Valentines Day Raspberry Meringue Cake | Photo by Apryl Ann Photo | Cake by Cakewalk Bake Shop | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-cake-1.jpg

So many clients ask my most favorite thing that I make, and folks, this is it! The texture is melt in your mouth creamy and the flavors are the perfect combination of tart (due to the fresh berries) and softly sweet (thank you cream and meringue). But beyond just being absolutely delicious, there are two other great things about this dessert: 1) it is incredibly easy to make (dare I say, foolproof!) and 2) if you’re not feeling up to making everything from scratch, you can substitute 2/3 of the ingredients with ready made goodies. Oh, and an added bonus? It is supposed to look a little wonky! Cracks in the meringue? That’s cool! Compote and cream oozing all over the place? Just perfect! It’s an easy, messy glob of delight.

First, the individual recipes… Scroll to the bottom for the full instructions!

Valentines Day Raspberry Meringue Cake | Photo by Apryl Ann Photo | Cake by Cakewalk Bake Shop | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-cake-1.jpg

Meringue Recipe:

• 6 egg whites (room temp is best)
• 10.5 oz superfine sugar
• 125 g almond flour
• 1/4 t salt
• 2 t extract (we used vanilla, but almond or rose would be nice too)
• 1 drop of soft pink food coloring gel

1. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. To keep the layers similar in size, trace a 6″ cardboard cake round onto parchment paper three times with pencil, then turn it over so the pencil side faces the baking sheet. (This way no pencil bleeds onto your meringue.) Freehand it if you’re living on the wild side! Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees F.

2. Using mixer with whisk attachment, beat egg whites and salt to soft peaks.

3. Slowly add in the sugar, 1T at a time, beating on medium-high speed to stiff peaks.

4. Fold in the extract, pink coloring, and almond meal until just combined.

5. Fill a piping bag fitted with a round tip with the meringue batter.

6. Gently pipe onto the circle forms on your parchment, carefully filling each one with batter to create a solid meringue disc. (Tip: I used my leftover batter to pipe little meringue dollops on the remaining parchment. You can then use to decorate your cake with or as a sweet little snack later.)

7. Bake for 3 hours. Turn the oven off and let cool in the oven for an additional hour.

Valentines Day Raspberry Meringue Cake | Photo by Apryl Ann Photo | Cake by Cakewalk Bake Shop | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-cake-1.jpg

Valentines Day Raspberry Meringue Cake | Photo by Apryl Ann Photo | Cake by Cakewalk Bake Shop | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-cake-1.jpg

Chantilly Cream Recipe:

• 2 c heavy cream
• 1 T vanilla extract
• 2 T confectioner’s sugar

1. Put all of the ingredients into a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and gently mix until it becomes a thick cream. Keep refrigerated until time to use.

Valentines Day Raspberry Meringue Cake | Photo by Apryl Ann Photo | Cake by Cakewalk Bake Shop | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-cake-1.jpg

Valentines Day Raspberry Meringue Cake | Photo by Apryl Ann Photo | Cake by Cakewalk Bake Shop | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-cake-1.jpg

Valentines Day Raspberry Meringue Cake | Photo by Apryl Ann Photo | Cake by Cakewalk Bake Shop | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-cake-1.jpg

Raspberry Compote Recipe:

• 2 pints of fresh raspberries
• 80 g granulated sugar
• 1T vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
• 2 t lemon juice
• 1/2 t corn starch

1. Let sugar liquify/lightly brown in a saucepan over medium heat.

2. Add berries. Stir frequently until they break down, about 10 mins, watching so they don’t stick to pan.

3. Whisk vanilla, lemon juice, and corn starch together in a small bowl. Add to the raspberry mixture, stirring until it is dissolved and thoroughly combined.

Valentines Day Raspberry Meringue Cake | Photo by Apryl Ann Photo | Cake by Cakewalk Bake Shop | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-cake-1.jpg

Now to put it all together…

Valentines Day Raspberry Meringue Cake | Photo by Apryl Ann Photo | Cake by Cakewalk Bake Shop | Read more -  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/valentines-cake-1.jpg

Valentine’s Day Raspberry Meringue Cake

Instructions:

1. Start by baking several 6″ meringue disks. These will be the “cake” layers in your masterpiece. While this step takes little effort, it takes a considerable amount of inactive time.

2. Place your first disc onto your cake stand and gently lather the top with a homemade compote or store-bought jam. The meringue, though hard, will crack easily, so be gentle and avoid adding pressure as you move across the surface. To ensure a nice oozy effect, I spread mine all the way to the edges of the disc.

3. Spoon the chantilly cream onto the compote layer and similarly spread out a thick layer. If you don’t want to make your own cream, marscapone is a great creamy substitute.

4. Next, drop those berries! Sprinkle them all over the top of the cream, as many or little as you’d like.

5. Fruit and berries are the traditional ingredient, but we put a Valentine’s spin on it by tossing in some of our fave v-day candy: Sweethearts and chewy heart gobstoppers. I like to sprinkle Sweethearts around the exterior so that when it’s all together they are peeking out and you can read those special messages.

6. Repeat steps 2-5 twice more, until cake is three layers of meringue high. Take care with top layers as those are the ones eyes will gravitate to. Also, it’s gaining height and weight, so try not to put pressure.

7. For a little luxe treatment, I added my signature gold speckling. Everything is better with gold, right? Just mix edible luster dust (found at a cake supply shop) with a tiny bit of extract or vodka (they both dry fast, and the latter is tasteless if you can believe it) to create a thick paste. Then, use a food safe brush to splatter the top with gold. I wave mine in the air like I just don’t care or hit the brush against my free hand so that the brush itself never touches the cake, but the gold dust paste splatters off and onto its surface. This is really fun and really messy, so maybe put some paper towels or a drop cloth down first, ok?

8. I tossed a few meringue drops I baked with extra batter and tiny floral blooms Bows + Arrows left for me in her studio. Get creative with pink textures and toppers to make a fun little Valentine all your own.

It is best to consume same day. The meringue will grow softer as it’s layered with cream and compote, possibly causing the structure to dwarf and crack a bit. Keep air tight in fridge for up to two days.

BIG thanks to Cakewalk Bake Shop + Apryl Ann Photography! Can’t wait to try it! xoxo

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12 Feb

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

There are those who err on the subtle side of design, never wanting anything to go overboard, and then there are those with riskier tastes, knowing that taking chances usually pays off and that there really is no such thing as a wedding that’s too luxe, too romantic, too pretty. Samantha of Details Details Wedding & Event Planning, Shawna Yamamoto Event Design, and the team are definitely risk takers, playing off of one another’s talents to design this glamorous, textured scene. And the payoff? BIG.

Thanks to photog Jasmine Star for sharing these photos with us today!

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Shawna took care of the floral design, creating those incredible bouquets and this 8’ x 4’ living art installation for the ceremony space. Flowers throughout included garden roses, peonies, spray roses, pepper tree branches, morning glory, vanda orchids, sweet pea, Brunia balls, bay laurel. **Sigh**

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Samantha says, Moody, Romantic, Lavish… The 3 simple words that drove this styled shoot into becoming what it is. It was the perfect juxtaposition of modern and old world. There was no picture that we saw or theme that we wanted to replicate. Our ultimate inspiration was simply to create something unique and different not only for brides, but vendors, designers, and everybody in between to become enthralled with what has been created. Our incredible team of vendors brainstormed together, each throwing in different elements they thought would be a good fit, and it came together seamlessly.

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Creative Director + Dress Designer Katie May had a vision for a collision between modern and old world, which Samantha + Shawna translated to lush, modern florals and a blush and taupe color story with dramatic pops of burgundy for depth. And how stunning is that dress? The Verona gown features hand-placed chantilly lace throughout the back, bodice, and sleeves.

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Tell us this scene doesn’t make you weak in the knees!

Shawna and her team made a custom mirrored tabletop with a gold and silver rubbed edged that gave off the illusion of a floating table. Gasp.

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

Romantic and Lux wedding inspiration | Photo by Jasmine Star | Read more - http://www.100layercake.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Luxe-wedding-inspiration-1.jpg

A lovely note to end on, for sure.

Thanks to Jasmine Star + everyone below for sharing your talents with us all!

Photographer: Jasmine Star / Venue: Alexandria Ballroom / Coordinator & Shoot Stylist: Samantha Farris of Details Details Wedding & Event Planning / Florist & Designer: Shawna Yamamoto Event Design / Hair & Makeup: Beauty by Melina / Stationery: Rachel Jane Couture / Desserts: Bottega Louie / Table Top Rentals: Classic Party Rentals / Candlesticks & Furs: Found Vintage Rentals / Dress Designer & Creative Director: Katie May / Dress: Verona / Jewelry: Jackie Aiche

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