Friday, April 25, 2014

Updates to Kitchen Remodel

I know, I know.  I don't post for months and then twice in a week.  I have honestly been meaning to update the recent kitchen photos for a while now.  
Here is where I left off. 

Old range


Wood countertops had a great smell, very light in color



No hardware


In the last few months I have added a few finishing touches.  I really like the hardware that I chose.  I saw these Ikea oversized pulls/handles on a blog and loved them.  


The other element which needed updating was the range.  I felt that a stainless steel one would tie it together.  It was a very generous birthday/christmas gift from my parents!


 

The other change that you will notice is that the countertops are darkening with time.  Ok...not just time.  I am fairly diligent about oiling them.  I love the way they are changing.  I would like them to be a bit darker and shinier.  However, I have resisted the urge to stain and seal them.   


Since I opened the cupcake company I really am going to need a more functional/industrial faucet.  I do like the look of this one though.



The other thing that you will notice about this kitchen is that there are no appliances, gadgets, nick knacks....etc.  I saw a phrase once on pinterest that expressed how I feel perfectly.  "It's a kitchen...not a catch all." In a large space I think it is fine but when your kitchen is as tiny as mine is, it just makes it feel smaller and cluttered.  



I always have fresh flowers framing the sink.  I like the pop of color against the otherwise white kitchen.  



Thanks for stopping by

Enjoy your weekend

Michele

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Gateaux

Hello! 

I hope that you are all doing well.  I have been out of touch recently pursuing a new endeavor.  As you may know I have been making cakes and cupcakes for a few years.  I have been asked over and over again if I sell them commercially.  I always brushed it off.  I would often take a cake to an
 event as my hostess gift.  They routinely had polka dots in the middle of them and were finished with fondant.  The time requirement to make these is huge....but well worth it.  


This was my Easter cake from last year


However, in January I decided to use the same recipe and make cupcakes for a friend's birthday.  She was one of the biggest fans of the cakes.  When I presented her with the cupcakes she exclaimed, "They are beautiful, where did you get them?"  That evening my daughter sat me down and said that I should seriously look into opening a business.  

As I was going to sleep I decided to do a bit of research.  I knew that there were many rules and regulations around cooking in a residential kitchen and selling commercially.  Interestingly enough, I found out that the previous January " the Cottage Food Bill" was enacted in California allowing some low risk foods to be made and distributed in this fashion.  In early February I set a goal of opening my small, custom order cupcake business on March 1st.  As there were many licenses and certifications to obtain, along with the normal hoops to jump through, it was not an easy process.  But I did it!  

Gateaux has been open just shy of two months.  I am having a great time with it.  Here are some of my creations for customers thus far.  

Monogrammed vanilla 



Shamrocks for an Irish friend's birthday party


Shamrock confetti on lemon cupcakes with raspberry lemon frosting


Vanilla with salted caramel filling and sea salt flakes on top


Hand punched fondant confetti


Owls for my daughter's friend


Gerbera daisies



Crab feed treats


Blue and green (my favorite color combo)


Princess party


Last but certainly not least, the ones I am the most proud of...
Striped bows and polka dots for a baby shower



Thanks for visiting

I will keep you updated as Gateaux grows and I have new creations to share with you 

Michele

Monday, February 17, 2014

Cupcake toppers

Happy Presidents Day weekend to you!

I have been working lately on my cupcakes and the decorations that adorn them. I thought about making confetti out of fondant.  Time consuming is the first thing that came to my mind.  But as always I think that the extra effort pays off.  And to be honest, I don't put a lot on a cupcake so a little confetti goes a long way.  









I will be taking cupcakes to a few wedding showers soon.  I saw these glittery hearts on pinterest and so made a few.  


These would also work for a shower
Got a little crazy with the confetti.  I returned to office max after buying the regular hole punch to get the heart version. The tiny ones are from that, whereas the larger ones were cut with a fondant cutter (mini cookie cutter).


And my washi tape obsession continues




No offering of cupcakes is complete without a good cookies and cream frosting atop it.


And I added this one to show that presentation can be as simple as a little lemon zest



I believe that presentation matters which is why I put effort into that aspect of my cupcakes.  

I hope you all are enjoying this long weekend.  So nice to have 3 days to play!!

Michele

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Merry Christmas

I wish you all the best of holiday seasons.  I hope that you find the time to slow down and enjoy the little things.....which are really the big things.  


 I have been fortunate enough this season to be the recipient of some incredibly kind gestures and wishes.


And I am very grateful for that.  Isn't that what this time of year is about?  The important things are not these gifts underneath the tree.  


A few days ago my daughter decided to make bath bombs from scratch.  (The apple doesn't fall far...does it?)  I watched her dance and sing to christmas music as she made her little gifts.  She was genuinely happy.  I thought to myself...this is what is important.  Times like that are invaluable.  


I made my cards again this year.  They were easy and fun.  I created a washi tape banner hung on red and white bakers twine.  


Then I added a photo of the girls taken in front of the Golden Gate Bridge.  

Enjoy your time

Michele


Monday, December 2, 2013

Maison de Michele and the Farmyard Darlings!

Hi all.  I hope that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  

On Thursday Dec 5th I have been invited to showcase my wares at the lovely Farmyard Darlings' event in Lafayette.  Carole and Kim are so kind to include me in their 3 year anniversary party.  It will be a grand time....as all of their parties are.  

Here are a few of the items I will be contributing.  I made 12 of these boxwood wreaths this past weekend.  Unfortunately I found out through this exercise that I am terribly allergic to boxwood. :(  I like, though how dainty they are.  


Grain sack star ornaments




White linen napkins with frayed ruffle


and a few grain sack stockings







I have been working on my Christmas cards which will have a bunting across the top of the photo made of various patterns of red and gold washi tape, strung on red and white bakers twine!  I'll show them to you as soon as I get the photo.  That part makes hand making the cards seem like a cake walk :).

If you live in the area please join us.   

Thursday December 5th
10am - 8pm

3295 Mount Diablo Boulevard
Lafayette, CA 94549

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

How About a Handmade Gift...and a Sale at Maison de Michele

I often think about how much of what I do in the course of a day is electronic.  It is more than I care to admit.  There is definitely a use for it and in many ways, the keys on my laptop, make my life easier.  That is why I think that a handwritten card sent via the postal service is very special these days.  And, with all of the mass produced goods from overseas, a handmade item has a way of standing out. 

I handmake my Christmas cards each year. They are certainly not as beautiful as those which come from the printers.  And believe me, the burns on my hand from the glue gun, the sore back from bending over them, aching hand from signing each one, make me reconsider every year around this time.  But I end up doing it because it is not that often that you receive something that people take the time to make?  I do it because I love the impact that it can have.  

Here are a few items from my shop which I have created and I think would make nice gifts, for the right person.  Let's be honest.  Not everyone feels the sentiment I am expressing in this post.  But I know a few who do.  





(I believe that the same person who would appreciate this also shops at farmer's markets)


Vintage grain sack apron finished with French linen ribbon






Shams which are clearly well loved




Maybe for the hostess, hand monogrammed tea towels


And my newest item, white linen napkins 



Please use code GIVETHANKS13 for a 10% discount on any item in my shop, 



Thanks for visiting

Michele

Promotion good through November 30th 2013