My partner’s favourite thing about me working as wedding stylist is that sometimes I get to bring home the left over wedding cake. When I walk through the door balancing gorgeous couture gowns and a little white box – he rushes over to take the box off my hands. Sweet? No, he just wants what’s inside all to himself! So when I came home from a recent shoot with some of Bella Sweet’s treats following a shoot (this one here if you want to take a look!) he was delighted. And the cakes didn’t disappoint!
I thought I’d catch up with her again after the shoot to ask her about all things sweet’s related!
Introduce yourself and Bella Sweets
I’m Monaliz and I am the owner of Bella Sweets. I specialise in beautifully rustic cakes and desserts for the happiest of occasions. With a focus on using quality ingredients and baking from scratch, I ensure that your cake and desserts taste as good as they look. Whether it is classic flavours like the white chocolate and raspberry or the unexpected fig and red wine, I work with clients to provide cakes and desserts that are reflective of their style.
Why did you start Bella Sweets?
Working as a radiographer (x-rays, CT & MRI scans, breast screening), I needed a creative outlet and that’s how Bella Sweets was born. I also enjoyed planning my wedding so much and working with some amazing and (some not so great!) vendors that I wanted to provide clients with a really great experience by giving them an amazing product and customer service.
What do you find captivating about the world of sweets?
I love the quote by Julia Childs ‘A party without cake is just a meeting’ and how everyone gathers around cake! I am instantly drawn to the colours and visual appeal of a beautiful looking cake or a gorgeous dessert spread. I love everything about cakes and desserts from the oozing caramel drips on my cakes or the ‘feet’ on my macaron shells. For me it is definitely all about the pretty details!
The start of the week involves replying to emails and enquiries, cake design sketches, ordering stock and cleaning all the cake stands and platters that have been used on the weekend. Towards the end of the week, it’s all about baking! I love how excited everyone gets about Friday and having a break as that is only really the beginning for others and myself in the industry! However I really do look forward to the end of the week as I get to catch up with other vendors and meet clients when I do deliveries, working on your own can get so lonely! I’m also a mother to Georgia and Lachlan so the juggle is real! I couldn’t do any of this without the help of my husband and immediate family.
I am very fortunate in that a lot of my clients trust my style and allow me creative freedom when it comes to the design of their cake and desserts. I find out what flavours the clients like and then I guide them to what is in season. For example, during the warmer months, my lime, chardonnay and coconut cake is very popular since it is a very light and refreshing cake. I use fresh flowers or edible flowers on my cake and I always trust the florist’s that I work with. They know what’s in season and so I always keep that in mind when I am designing cakes. I source nearly all of my flowers from Clover Flowers. Margie and her team are so great at what they do and they understand my style!
When it comes to the design of my cakes and desserts, I love using flowers so you could say that is my main source of inspiration. I love macarons, watercolour, marble and gold so you will see a lot of that in my work. My favourite local artist is Morgan from Colour and Skulls. Her work is amazing and I have been very fortunate to make hand painted watercolour cookie favours based on her invitation designs.
What’s your favourite part of what you do?
Eating cake off cuts for breakfast (for quality purposes of course!). In all seriousness though, I love being a part of someone’s special occasion and nothing beats receiving a message from a client saying how much they love what I have made for them.