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Hurry down the chimney tonight!

If you’re a regular reader of cake decorating magazines, then I am almost sure that you will have seen the wonderful work of Laura Dodimead of Life in Sugar (previously known as Cakey Bakes Cakes). Last weekend, I had the pleasure of visiting the lovely Laura to guinea pig one of her new festive cake classes, The Sleepy Santa.

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I first discovered Laura when she entered her glorious BFG cake at Cake International in 2016, but she has been hard at work in the cake industry for many years. She has had her own market stall, supplied tea rooms and cafés with homemade cakes, made novelty cakes to order, produced countless published tutorials and taught classes at many locations around the country. It has been a genuine pleasure getting to know her over the last year and I was thrilled to have the opportunity to visit Laura at the new permanent base of Life in Sugar at the Badshot Lea Village Hall and Kiln, where she has set up her own classroom.

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Laura specialises in modelling with modelling chocolate and she is a real advocate of its benefits to cake artists. As primarily a cake sculptor, the thought of modelling often fills me with dread, so I was excited to have the chance to try something new and experience some new products.

On the day of the class, I headed up the A3 from Fareham to Farnham and easily found my way to Laura’s new workspace, where I was thrilled to discover ample free parking – always a plus when one has a cake to carry out to the car later that day. I was also delighted to find out that lunch is provided too.

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As soon as I arrived, Laura made me feel incredibly welcome with the first of many coffees (an essential part of any cake class!). Inside the workshop, she has decorated in a wonderful fusion style, pairing vintage fittings with a modern colour palette. Throughout the space, Laura has placed a combination of her own competition entries, tutorial cakes and upcoming class pieces, creating an inspiring work environment.

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We quickly got down to business and Laura’s relaxed and unassuming style of teaching immediately put me at ease. I enjoyed using the modelling chocolate to create my piece and thanks to the chilly weather, found it far easier to use than I have done on previous occasions. Laura encouraged questions throughout the class – not just about this particular class’ content either – and was happy to explain different ways that the topper could be customised based on attendees’ personal preferences.

As ever with classes, there are obvious unavoidable time constraints, but Laura never made me feel rushed and I was thrilled with the topper that I made under her expert tuition. The workshop was great fun and we were honestly laughing throughout the day.

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The topper I made under Laura’s expert tuition.

I would highly recommend heading over to Life in Sugar if you can. You will have a fantastic time, learn some fabulous new skills and get to spend some time with one of the loveliest cake artists I know.

To find out more about Laura’s classes at Life in Sugar and to book your place, you can visit her Facebook page.

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