Skip to Content

Why not Start Something New in 2014?

star-new-boutique-button-185x185  The prescription for joy is to learn something new! Start 2014 by stirring up your brain juices – tackle a craft project, master a new skill or enrich an existing talent. Trust these DK books to explain what you need to know and provide the visual inspiration. They are also specially priced at 30% off for a limited time, so act now!

This year I want to work on my baking skills.  I already know the basics, and can make some pretty yummy baked goods but I want to expand on what I already know and gain new skills.  Specifically when it comes to cake making and decorating.

Last year I made Keira a pretty cool looking Owl Smash cake for her first birthday.  It’s pretty basic as far as cake decorating goes and as of the beginning of 2014 was pretty much the extent of my cake decorating abilities.

I found two books from DK Canada to help me improve this year – Step-by-Step Cake Decorating by Karen Sullivan and Step-by-Step Cakes by Caroline Bretherton.  Both are examples of just what can be found in DK Canada’s Start Something New Boutique!


9780756692674HIf you want success in the kitchen, DK’s new Step-by-Step Series will take you through every single stage of classic recipes with clear, illustrated, step-by-step instructions that guarantee you will be cooking with confidence.

Featuring two hundred recipes in easy, step-by-step sequences that showcase every single stage, Step-by- Step Cakes covers a spectrum of cakes, from angel food, jelly rolls, and mini cakes, to red velvet, sponges, and chiffon cakes.

Step-by-Step Cakes will have readers cooking the world’s classic recipes successfully, whether making a birthday cake or whipping up biscuits, cookies, or treats for the family.

 This is a wonderful book for those of all levels of expertise when it comes to baking.  I would say this is a must-have for beginners though.  Each recipe includes colour photos of each step along with a gorgeous “finished” photo of the cake.  Don’t let the amount of photos and steps fool you though, these recipes are easy to follow and even easier to make.

Each recipe includes additional information such as prep and bake time as well as the length of time the cake can be frozen for (if applicable).  Many recipes also include a set of recipes that are a variation of the main recipe.


9781465414410HFrom delicate creations for weddings to fantastical birthday cupcakes, Step-by-Step Cake Decorating contains 20 remarkable projects for every occasion. There are more than 100 pages of step-by-step icing, piping, stenciling, painting, and cutting techniques. Each cake recipe includes fun, unique tips and variations for turning it into cupcakes and cake pops. Home bakers looking to impress their friends and family with gorgeous confections will love these smart, elegant projects.

Download a scary cake pop recipe from Step-By-Step Cake Decorating!

 This book is perfect for beginners as it lays everything out in simple terms – right down to providing a chapter dedicated to detailing all the tools and equipment needed for the various techniques used in the book.  We then move on to the chapter on key ingredients which lays out how to make frosting, marzipan, fondant and more as well as how to actually fill and frost a cake properly.

We then move on to the various decorating techniques such as piping, hand modelling, stencilling and more.   My favourite part of the book though is the chapter dedicated to actual projects.  It includes step-by-step instructions along with plenty of gorgeous full coloured pictures for making different themed cakes including a gorgeous Newborn Celebration Cake. 


Disclosure:  I received the above mentioned books in order to facilitate this review.  All thoughts and opinions are honest and my own.


Victoria Ess

Tuesday 28th of January 2014

I really want the step-by-step cake decorating book!

Darlene Schuller

Tuesday 21st of January 2014

oh thank you I'll have to look for that, I bookmarked your other blog! i'm checking out julep too! Thanks chickie!

Darlene Schuller

Tuesday 21st of January 2014

I decided I needed to learn something new too! I am working on nail art, I stopped a 42 year old nail biting habit and now have gorgeous nails in the works!


Tuesday 21st of January 2014

Oh I like this! I may have a slight addiction to nail polish. I think I have over 100 polishes now. :/