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Sweet Celebrations: The Art of Decorating Beautiful Cakes Hardcover – October 13, 1999


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Frequently Bought Together

Sweet Celebrations: The Art of Decorating Beautiful Cakes + Sylvia Weinstock's Sensational Cakes + Colette's Cakes: The Art of Cake Decorating
Price for all three: $80.17

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; First Edition edition (October 13, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684846756
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684846750
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 9.3 x 10.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #657,932 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Sylvia Weinstock designs beautiful cakes. Sharing that opinion are Oprah Winfrey, Donald Trump, and several Kennedys, among other clients of Weinstock's New York cake business. In Sweet Celebrations, Weinstock and coauthor Kate Manchester show readers how they can produce similar edible fantasies--bedecked beauties for all occasions, from weddings, birthdays, and anniversaries to bon voyages, bar mitzvahs, and baby christenings. Readers wanting to learn or refine cake-decorating skills, or those interested in this ever-evolving craft, will welcome the book.

Beginning with basic cake, filling, icing, and wash (syrupy soak) recipes, Weinstock then presents fundamental and advanced cake-designing techniques, including sugar dough work, flower and ribbon creation, and piping methods of all kinds. She then offers 24 cake projects of her own design, each illustrated in color, with detailed blueprints for their construction. Of these, readers will doubtlessly be most entranced with Weinstock's signature flower- and fruit-wreathed marvels such as her Peach Rose Wedding Cake and Marzipan Fruit Cake, but other Weinstock classics, including the Hatbox Cake, the "lace"-covered Cornelli Heart Cake, or the Clown Cake (perfect for children's parties), will prove equally tempting. Weinstock offers a level of difficulty notation for each cake so readers can choose their projects wisely and advance as their decorating skills develop. Not the least of Weinstock's success is due to her commitment to producing cakes that taste as good as they look, further cause for celebrating with her special creations. --Arthur Boehm

Review

Town & Country Exquisite, edible sculptures...unforgettable.

Pepole The rich and famous call Sylvia Weinstock to make their sweet dreams come true.

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 55 people found the following review helpful By Toni VINE VOICE on February 18, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I normally have a great affinity for any cake decorating book, but as I have progressed in my knowledge and skills, I have learned what "industry secrets" are needed to truly educate. Unfortunately, Ms. Weinstock only offers information in the guise of wanting to share, but in reality, she gives very little.

Much of what is in the book is very generic information on cake decorating. There is little actual teaching because I feel that in the world of Master Cake Decorating, there is a fierce competition and trade secrets are heavily guarded.

She shows you several complex cakes that many people simply will not be able to replicate, due to the intense detail and need for training/education that it requires. You need tools and recipes and formulas and knowledge, which she has failed to impart. Yes, there are the obligatory simple recipes and basic skills given, but you do not get a true cake decorating education.

This is a nice book for working towards the skills needed to reach those fabulous looking creations, but do not expect much in the way of education. If you wish detailed instruction and education, there are several other wonderful books in which to choose.
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31 of 35 people found the following review helpful By jen on July 30, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I am a professional cake artist, and have of course heard of Sylvia Weinstock for some time. I was glad to finally have a chance to see some of her work. For someone with such a big reputation, the cakes were very disappointing. Most of the novelty-type cakes were fairly amateurish, and all the wedding cakes have the same basic design, iced smooth and smothered with gumpaste flowers. Seems like piping is definately not her skill. I expected much better quality in the flowers for someone so well known and who commands such high prices! I know many other cake artists whose flowers are much more realistic. Also, the directions were very vague and sometimes inconsistent. This is definately more of a coffee-table type picture book than a serious cake decorating book.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 3, 2000
Format: Hardcover
i loved sylvia's book. i love to make birthday cakes and special occasion cakes. when i saw this book, i had to have it. the pictures were amazing, such detail. the instructions, step by step with such explanations are so helpful to make everything come out right. i don't know what to do first. every baker, or artist, needs a copy.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on March 21, 2000
Format: Hardcover
The cakes and photos in this book are glorious, but this is not a book for a casual baker. The decorations while beautiful are not simple and require special tools. I liked the book very much. The recipes taste good, and the pictures are very detailed and helpful.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 28, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I was so nervous about whether to invest in this book (due to some of the reviews in here)I actually took it out at the library to check it out first. I was pleasantly surprised.
It is true that the cakes featured here aren't that spectacular, so if you are looking for a coffee-table book on cake art, this isn't it. I saw only 4 or 5 cakes that stood out from the 40 examples shown. Some pictures in the book were used as filler, I guess...a few of these were nice cakes, but had no directions to go along with them.
However this book offers so much still. First and foremost, it is for American cake enthusiasts. There is no rolled fondant here; (not that there is anything wrong with fondant, but culturally, here in the states-it is not something familiar.) It is a book that can be enjoyed by cake decorators of all levels and nationalities, since many cake styles/techniques are represented. Weinstock rates each cake featured as to its level of difficulty and gives good directions on how to complete each project. You don't need any fancy cake pans or special ingredients for the most part, to make these cakes either.
I think that Weinstock probably wanted to focus on making a book that is more of a manual that anything else. The two main features of this book are the range of styles/techniques offered and the author's interest in motivating the reader to explore inventive possibilities on his/her own. The examples shown are well-known to cake novices...marzipan, cornelli lace, structured cakes, character cakes, white-on-white, basketweave, tier, gumpaste florals, and dotted swiss. The instuctions are clear and complete. Creativity is encouraged by showing one cake style and variations of that same style with additional photos.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 24, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I was given a copy of the book as a gift from a friend in the States. Mrs. Weinstock did my wedding cake and I was so thrilled that she finally wrote a book! The cake recipes were easy to follow, but most of all I really appreciated the diagrams for the sugar figures and flowers. It was an easy read and easy to follow. I think Mrs Weinstock is a true artist and culinary expert. Thank goodness it was not just another coffee table book of impossible cakes to make! Thank you, Sylvia!
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 8, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I was VERY impressed with this book. If you have ever dreamed of baking a grand cake, then this is THE book to own. Sylvia Weinstock presents many different cake designs and recipes, even so far as to explain the best method for assembling them. The variety of cakes was impressive; this is the best book on cake design I have ever seen. The book features wonderful color photographs of every cake, very professionally done, which made it easy to see the end-result of the recipes. I was grateful for those photographs, which helped to select the appropriate designs I wanted to try. The photos are truly beautiful --- it is tempting to keep the book out upon the coffee table. When I tried some recipes, I was pleased with the results. The directions were easy to follow, written in a straightforward manner, and offered explanations along the way. For anyone interested in baking, both amateur or sophisticated bakers, this book offers many ideas and techniques to try. After seeing and hearing about magnificent cakes in magazines and on television, the book was great fun to read, to look at and to attempt those cakes on my own! Thank you, Sylvia!
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