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A new look for Paul Bradford: Cakeflix is here!

Paul Bradford has a new look – and I don’t mean he got his hair did…

Having released a tutorial every week since his online learning platform, the Paul Bradford Sugarcraft School launched seven years ago, Paul Bradford prides himself on always having his finger on the pulse of what his online audience are looking for.

However, last year, Paul and his partner David started to notice that things were changing. Their weekly tutorials were getting fewer views, while shorter, snappier techniques, and their hints & tips-led content were growing in popularity.

With more and more cake artists beginning to share their own content via short videos and tutorials on YouTube, it seemed that cake decorators were starting to find themselves spoiled for choice.

Not wanting to rest on their laurels, Paul and David decided to look to their discerning members to see how they could develop their platform to meet the evolving requirements of their subscribers.

After reviewing what their 195,000(!!) members were saying they wanted, they set about designing the new-look Paul Bradford Sugarcraft School – but then inspiration hit: why not use this as an opportunity for a full rebrand? And after a LOT of planning and hard work – including securing the all-important domains and Trademark – CakeFlix was born.

Having produced high quality content every week for seven years, Paul and David already had a huge number of fantastic classes and tutorials that were hidden away in the murky depths of the original site. It all needed to be catalogued and thus the Techniques section of Cakeflix came to be. On the old site, you would quite literally have had to search through every single tutorial if you were after a specific skill or technique. If you wanted to learn how to make a selection of different roses, well, you’d have had your work cut out trying to track them all down!

On the new site, it will be as simple as clicking: Techniques > Flowers > Roses and you’ll find a whole host of rose-specific lessons to choose from.

And it’s not just roses, either. You’ll be able to find dedicated sections on flowers, models, royal icing techniques, chocolate work and they’re even working on a structured stands section. It really does sound like Paul and David have really listened to their members and, based on the feedback they have been given, I know they have plans to collect even more tutorials and classes to develop these sections even further – and to top up any areas where they have identified any content shortfalls.

Their members had also mentioned that they didn’t always have time each week to watch the weekly course, so for a few months now Paul and David have been providing a 10-15minute Highlight edit, as well as the fast forward Quickbite video, which condenses the course down to just one minute! After all, I’m sure we can all spare one minute a week, can’t we?

You will also be able to find a wide selection of promotional videos explaining how to use various specific cake products and tools, but importantly, CakeFlix do not get paid to host these or take any commission from them. The aim of the site is to be educational and a neutral shopping place – Paul and David won’t be pushing one product over any other.

The final key addition for the new site was that members wanted more live shows. Paul had been using Facebook Live, but the problem is that then Facebook own that content, so it can’t be easily catalogued and used after the event. Hosting Live events on the CakeFlix site will allow for audience interaction and the videos can be edited and reused after the show too.

All in all, a lot of changes happening at the same time is always going to be a bit risky, but as Paul and David have identified, you have to be able to move quickly if you want to say relevant in any developing industry, and none seem to be moving as quickly as the cake industry at the moment. It really is a great industry to be involved in, but as Paul and David have identified, our clients and customers can never be taken for granted, so it’s important to listen, learn and act in response to what they want.

Paul and David are very excited about their new site, explaining that they are looking forward to opening up the platform to many new artists and they can’t wait to work with and support a whole new generation of cake artists. As Cakeflix develops and grows, it will continue to provide a platform where cake artists worldwide can have their content shared and catalogued on a professional site and allowing them to reach an engaged cake decorating audience – and it will ensure they get paid for their hard work.

With their Feefo Gold Trusted Merchant status and having won the Cake Masters Magazine award for the Best Learning Experience three times in the last four years, Paul and David already have some excellent foundations on which to build this great new brand and I wish them every success with it.

If you would like to find out more about Cakeflix, Paul and David are offering a seven-day FREE Trial to allow visitors to check out the 775 courses that they already have on offer.

Click here to see it for yourself…

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‘To Have and To Hold’ – Wedding Cakes in Miniature by Sarah Bray

It’s not often that Mr Baker’s Blog gets an exclusive preview, but then it’s not often that you inspire a truly awesome project!

Recently, I introduced you to the work of Sarah Bray of Daisy Cakes by Sarah, when she created her stunning Miniature Picnic Cupcake Toppers tutorial for Mr Baker’s Blog. An award-winning cake artist and tutor from Wokingham in Berkshire, Sarah recently took home a gold award and second place at this year’s Squires Kitchen Exhibition in the Miniature Wedding Cake category.

Sarah’s gold award-winning piece…

Lately, Sarah has been working away on a delightful project recreating some of her favourite wedding cake trends – in miniature. And I mean in SERIOUS miniature.

Sarah explained that, at the start of the year, she created a ‘wannado’ list – a list of projects that she wanted to do to challenge herself beyond her everyday orders. Creating a collection of miniature wedding cakes was just one of the challenges on her list, but after seeing the cake I created for the wedding of my brother Martin to his new wife Sarah, she decided it could be fun to recreate some of the most recognisable cakes by her favourite designers.

She chose her favourite contemporary cake trends, reached out to the artists and the idea evolved from there.

Entitled ‘To Have and To Hold’, the finished collection includes work from Ben Fullard of Ben the Cake Man; Laura Loukaides of Laura Loukaides Cakes; Emma Stewart of Truly Scrumptious Cakes by Design; Vicky Teather of Yellow Bee Cake Co.; Dominique Pickering of Poppy Pickering; Tracey Rothwell of Little Cherry Cake Company; Shannon Bond of Shannon Bond Cake Design; Rachel Teufel of Intricate Icings Cake Design, Jen Rojas of Cupcakes and Counting; annnnnd little old… me!

I am so incredibly honoured to not only have inspired such an amazing project, but also to have been included in such an incredibly talented line up – I can’t believe how much detail Sarah was able to replicate from my original cake in miniature.

The entire collection took Sarah around three weeks from start to finish and I know that it hasn’t been easy! Some of the pieces were already incredibly intricate, but once reduced the size of a cupcake topper, those intricate details become insanely fiddly!

I’m genuinely so excited – I literally cannot wait for you all to see the full ‘To Have and To Hold’ collection – this is merely a teaser after all!

Be sure to keep a close eye on Sarah’s Facebook page, Daisy Cakes by Sarah, for the full reveal later this week.

 

And thanks for giving us an exclusive preview, Sarah! x