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Friday, January 29, 2010

Ready for Takeoff!

We have a super busy day getting ready for parties and I don't have time to do a long post, but I thought I would share some pictures of the party I did for my very own 'lil boy's birthday yesterday. He has an infatuation with planes right now so we did a "ready for takeoff" party. I need to "take off" now to take care of other parties, but I hope you all enjoy the pics below! Be back Monday!
PS - yes, that airplane suspended in the air is a cake!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Not Your Average Hanky...

I'm so sorry that I have not blogged for the last two days. Both work and life have been exceptionally busy (will fill you in those deets soon!) I see that you all have been busy, too! With over 600 contestants in the last couple of days, everyone is really excited about the Rosanna giveaway that we are offering with Rosanna, Inc. Well the good news is that we've had lots of great vendors who have offered up wonderful products so I will be offering more giveaways on the blog!

We've also been inundated with emails from people across the globe since our last guest dessert table feature. I'm so happy that you were all inspired by the post and I'll do another feature soon after we sift through all of the wonderful pictures! In the meantime, my staff and I were going through our vendor inquiries and we found Happy Hanky, a fashionable handkerchief line with unique and chic designs. You'll have no fear of tearing up at special occasions when you have these stylish hankies in your pocket. Happy Hanky has a great selection of designs and they're even coming out with a men's line. Finally, someone thought of creating stylish hankies! Check out the whole collection here. Really cute, right?

Monday, January 25, 2010

Rosanna Decor Bon Bon Cake Stand Giveaway!

I am so excited to tell you that I have a giveaway for you today from Rosanna, Inc ! I recently used Rosanna's beautiful tableware for a magazine shoot and I fell in LOVE with their new Decor Bon Bon collection. I really adore their footed square cake stand and that is what we are giving away today! Here is a picture...isn't it darling?

Rosanna's new victorian-inspired collection is perfect for dessert, breakfast/brunch, or any type of buffet. Planning your own Marie-Antoinette style spread and need a great serving piece to serve cake, religieuse, or other pastries? Then be sure to enter this contest!

Some details about the giveaway contest... Enter by simply adding your comment to this post and mention what you will use this great serving piece for. I will randomly choose one person for this fantastic giveaway. The contest will end by Monday, February 1st at 6pm EST, and I will announce the winner on the blog on Tuesday, February 2nd. The cake stand will be available for shipment in March. Now get going and enter the contest!

And don't forget to check out Rosanna's whole collection here. You won't be disappointed!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Spiked Sweets for Superbowl

Spiked sweets are definitely becoming a trend, especially with Superbowl season just around the corner. This chocolate beer cupcake with salted caramel icing {yum!} would be great to serve to your Superbowl guests. These cupcakes are from Brooklyn Kitchen {via the Kitchn}. I've included the recipe below!

Looking for more spiked sweet recipes? Try the amazing David Lebovitz's guinness milk chocolate ice cream, these chocolate whiskey and beer cupcakes, or modify a Bacardi rum cake into Bacardi rum cupcakes. When you're ready to dress up your cupcakes, head over to my friend Jenn's site for some football cupcake styling tips from Jeanne Benedict!

1 cup flavorful dark beer– I used Rogue Mocha Porter but Lagunitas Cappucino Stout and Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout (hometown love!) are also faves. Ask your favorite beer geek for a recommendation.
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 cups dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
3/4 cup sour cream
2 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 cups flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

Combine the beer and butter in a large sauce pan and heat to melt.
Remove from heat; whisk in the cocoa, sugar, and espresso.
In a bowl, whisk the sour cream with the eggs and vanilla, then whisk into the beer mixture.
Sift together the flour and baking soda, and fold into the batter.
Pour into cupcake pan (you can go a little more than ¾ full on these) and bake for 25 minutes. Cool completely on a rack.

Salted Caramel:

4 tablespoons water
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt, kosher or sea

Combine the water, sugar, and the corn syrup in a deep saucepan and cook over medium heat—stir with a wooden spoon to combine
Cover the saucepan and let it cook over medium/medium-low heat for 3 minutes.
After 3 minutes, remove the lid, increase the heat to medium-high, and bring to a boil.
(Do not stir from this point on, but once it starts to turn brown at the edge you should carefully shake/swirl the pan so that one area of the caramel doesn’t burn.)
Continue to cook until the caramel turns an even amber color then remove from the heat and let stand for about 30 seconds.
Pour the heavy cream into the mixture. Be careful. The mixture will bubble up!
Stir the mixture. Add the butter, lemon juice, and salt. Stir until combined.
Pour into a Pyrex measuring cup.
Stirring occasionally, allow to cool until thick and warm, about 20 minutes.

1.5 sticks butter at room temperature
6 ounces cream cheese
4-5 cups powdered sugar
3/4 cup salted caramel

Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed until creamy.
Sift 2 cups of powdered sugar into the cream cheese mixture and beat to combine.
Add 3/4 cup of the salted caramel and beat to combine.
Sift rest of powder sugar, in 1 cup increments and beating between each, until you arrive at the thickness and sweetness you desire.

To Assemble: Frost the cakes, drizzle leftover caramel on top, and sprinkle a few grains of salt on each one. Top with a chocolate covered espresso bean if you’re feeling fancy. Pair with the rest of your beer! Makes 22-24 cupcakes.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Guest Dessert Table Feature

I get a lot of emails from aspiring dessert table designers with pictures of their creations. This is the second one that I am posting from Sharnel Dollar of My Life My Loves from Brisbane, Australia. She created a pinwheel-inspired dessert table for her young son's birthday party and it is just too lovely not to share! I love the use of the wooden crate boxes, the play on the pinwheel theme, and the color palette. With my inbox often flooded with pictures of dessert tables from people all over the world, I am thrilled to see that Sharnel just gets it! Maybe I should start a regular column on my updated blog of featured dessert tables. Would you all like that? I could give constructive criticism for those who need it in those features since I can't personally get back to everyone's emails. What do you think? Anyway, Sharnel, no advice for you except to keep doing what you are doing! Fab job!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Town and Country Magazine Jewelry Story

Remember when I shared the sneak peek into the Town & Country Magazine shoot? Well, the issue just hit the newsstands and below are the images of the glamorous jewelry/candy spread. The story was about "sugar coating your wedding look with delicious jewels" and the confections that we procured were a wonderful canvas for some of the most exquisite jewels I've ever seen. Jewels from Graff, De Beers, Harry Winston, and many more were placed upon opalescent truffles, marshmallows, and candy sticks. What can be better than gorgeous jewels and delicious confections? Below is the story from Town and Country Magazine.
Photography by Karl Juengel.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Last week was filled with special projects like this and this, but our days this week are filled with client meetings, site visits, and planning parties! One of the places we'll be visiting today is the Metropolitan Club, an ideal venue for a special event due to its ornate architectural design and proximity to the Central Park! We'd love to hear from you about where you held your special event (wedding, shower, birthday, or whatever!) and why you loved it. Were you happy with the venue that you picked? What was it about the venue that you loved? We'd love to hear your thoughts!

I'll also be working with my webmaster on blog re-design and functionality this week so please send in comments of what you would like to see on the blog in 2010!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

More Behind the Scenes Photos from Brides Magazine Shoot

Yesterday was the last day of a three day shoot for Brides Magazine.
We created some fabulous edible spreads and I can't wait until the spring so you can see the dessert bars in print! Brides Magazine brought in Andrew McCaul and his team to capture everything. Not only does Andrew have a wonderful eye for capturing stills and food, but his calm demeanor and fun personality made it a pleasure to work with him for the last few days. Below are some shots of us prepping and shots of Andrew and his team at work. This was a great experience and you will be thrilled with the results when you pick up your copy of Brides in the spring! This weekend I am going to spend some much needed time with my family and get some rest, but I'll be back next week to fill you in on more exciting projects. Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Behind the Scenes in Studio on Brides Magazine Shoot

I know I mentioned yesterday that we are working on a shoot for a magazine. Well here are some behind the scenes photos of day one of a three day shoot. We're working with the fabulous Donna Ferrari, the Gift Registry and Entertaining Director at Brides Magazine. Brides Magazine is doing a feature of our dessert tables in their spring issue. Stay tuned because these spreads of edible confections are going to be fabulous! I'll be sure to remind you when the issue is coming out so you can grab a copy for yourself. In the meantime, here is a sneak peek of us prepping the tables at the studio.

Behind the Scenes - Magazine Shoot Prep

It is another photo shoot day for us at Amy Atlas. We are putting together three dessert tables for an upcoming magazine spread. Above is a picture of my staff crafting away in preparation for the shoot. I'm off to the studio and can't post about much right now, but I will be back to fill you in with some behind-the-scenes photographs!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Behind the Scenes - Getting Ready for TV Segment and Magazine Shoot

We are super busy getting ready for a three day magazine shoot and a tv segment this week. We're putting together four dessert bars this week and by the end of day yesterday, my head was spinning out of control with all the details that go into planning our tables. We did some of the prep work in my home and my kids were so excited to see candy everywhere in my home and be around my staff. My boys couldn't go to sleep (can I really blame them?) with all of the excitement. They were still up at 9pm when Jerome of Macaron de Paris popped by our home with a delivery of his delicious confections. In pj's and with with teary eyes and all, my older son fought to stay up so he could be a part of the fun. Jerome was so kind to include my guy and together they built a special macaron treat. Here are some behind the scenes sneak peeks of us getting ready for the first shoot.

My staff getting the linens ready...

Bins packed to send to a studio for the shoot...

Jerome and my guy making a special treat...Jerome was so amazing to not only come by after a long day, but also to include my son in the activities. I am so blessed to work with such great vendors!

Monday, January 11, 2010

La Maison du Chocolat

Last week, I mentioned in my post that I would reveal my fave macarons in New York. Well, here it is... La Maison du Chocolat. I've tried my share of macarons and La Maison's are simply irresistible. I stopped in their Upper East side location this weekend and met with my friend Michael, who manages the La Maison cafe. Not only did I get to nibble on their amazing macaron, florentin, and nougat bouchee, but Michael also sent me out with the most delicious dark hot chocolate. It was the perfect treat on a bitterly cold day in NYC. If you have not yet been to La Maison du Chocolat, it is definitely worth the trip!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Inspiration for Upcoming Project with Wiley Valentine

Okay, we're off to a better start today than yesterday , and one of the reasons is that luckily we are FINALLY working with the amazingly talented ladies at Wiley Valentine. Wiley Valentine has mastered the art of creating beautiful designs on letterpress stationery. Their designs are fresh and fun, yet still romantic and effortlessly chic. I am always inspired by their great use of colors and unexpected patterns. They create custom stationery as well as boxed notes, coasters, and much more. See for yourself here.

We are working with the Wiley Valentine gals on something special for an upcoming tv segment and this is an inspiration board that they quickly put together for the project. Isn't it darling? More to come, but I just wanted to share with you a sneak peek of the inspiration behind our project.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Umbrella Prints

We're working with Kate Sullivan on a big project next week {more on that to come, she's amazing!} and she introduced me to Umbrella Prints. I had seen their fabric before, but had never been to their site. On a day where everything seems to be going wrong {and it is one of those days}, this picture just make me happy! Check out their site filled with "eye candy" fabrics, which you can cleverly use for covering vases, making table runners, creating backdrops, or really anything. Here's to a better rest of the day!
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