EVERETT — Sugar, sugar everywhere, but not a sweet to eat.
What’s up with that?
This weekend’s show sponsored by Washington State Sugar Artists at Xfinity Arena isn’t a bake sale. It’s about the artistry of working with sugar.
“You can make anything out of a cake,” said show spokeswoman Dawn Motes, owner of Dawn’s Candy and Cake Supply in Lynnwood. “Anybody can make a cake.”
Maybe so, but these confections by sugar artists probably don’t resemble what comes out of your kitchen. It’s more like a museum exhibit of colorful and elaborate creations. Under the icing, many are fake cakes with styrofoam inside.
Herald freelance writer and My Foodarama food blogger Reshma Seetharam whips up desserts, vegan recipes, fusion cuisine and Indian foods. She made a peacock cake for a previous sugar arts show and plans to enter this year.
Why does she partake in cake?
“It just brings back all my childhood memories because my mom always baked cakes,” she said. “I continued that on into college and at work. It has a special place in their heart when you are celebrating someone’s birthday and it’s always with cake.”
Bothell resident Renee Wesberry’s day job is working in the software industry. Baking cakes is her recreation.
“It’s so creative and I like to feed people,” said Wesberry, whose cakes have won awards at previous shows.
This year her focus is on a classic kitchen utensil. She is showing her collection of about 1,800 spatulas, no two alike, in an attempt to document having the largest collection in the world. It will take three cars to haul her dozen bins of spatulas for display in crocks and jars.
Wesberry started with a plain white spatula 20 years ago, then got a red-and-green set … and then it blew up from there.
“It become a thing,” she said. “One year my husband bought me 83 spatulas for Christmas. He created a database for me, to make sure, ‘Do I have this reindeer spatula or do I not have this reindeer spatula?’”
Reindeer spatulas? Yep, even the lowly spatula has gotten out of its rut.
“Friends started teasing me that I should contact Guinness,” Wesberry said.
You can witness the counting of the spatulas at 10 a.m. Saturday as she tries to establish a record. “It’s not exciting like watching someone hula hoop for 24 hours,” she said.
It’s free to see the display of sweets and spatulas. There is a fee for demonstrations on topics such as cake pops, cookie painting, gum paste flowers, truffle recipes and edible fabric.
Entries will be accepted Friday and early Saturday. The theme is “Barnyard Friends.” Entry fees vary by division, which include children (10 and under), youth (11-17), beginners, intermediate, advanced, semi-professional, professional and masters. Categories include buttercream, special occasion, fondant, novelty/sculptured, royal icing work, hand-molded sugar items, decorated items, chocolate and mixed mediums.
Don’t expect to get a slice.
The cakes are judged on what’s outside, not in. Most are dummy cakes, but the creator must include details on how the piece is possible with real cake.
Cookies and cupcakes at the show are the real thing. So maybe you can get a crumb.
Andrea Brown: 425-339-3443; firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @reporterbrown.
Washington State Sugar Artists show is May 6 and 7 at Xfinity Arena, 2000 Hewitt Ave., Everett.
Best times for free viewing of cakes and other confections on display are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday.
For information about classes and entering, go to www.wassacakes.com.