From Finland with love: American Sweetie
Back in January I was just doing my “thing” of causing havoc at wedding fair in Helsinki: I’d decorated my exhibition stand with garlands made out of recycled bin liners, had my Cymbeline wedding dress spray painted by a radical Finnish graffiti artist – you know me, I don’t sleep-walk into marriage! Then I bumped into someone else who stood out from the sugar-coated crowd and that was American Sweetie, cake artist Jenae Seppälä.
A Whimsical Topsy Turvy cake, which Jenae created for a Alice in Wonderland themed graduation party.
Jenae came to Finland from San Diego in July 2009 to be a professional footballer. In the beginning she missed sunny California (who the hell wouldn’t) and baking was her way of feeling “at home”.
– Baking is a tradition among the women in my family. I baked a bunch of cookies and shared them with teammates and friends. Soon, people started requesting that I bake for their parties. They really enjoyed the American style sweets that I made and that is when the idea for American Sweetie was born.
First Jenae only made small items such as cookies and cupcakes, but soon people started requesting decorated cakes. So, after initial hesitation, Jenae the athlete turned into Jenae the cake artist and loved it! She decided to specialize in themed cakes, for Finland seemed to live in the dark ages when it came to party cakes. It was time to move things on!!!
White Frills wedding cake by American Sweetie
– There are a limited number of custom cake decorators in Finland. Most bakeries create factory-style cakes with the same flavor (strawberries and cream) and design over and over again. My cakes are custom-made and no two cakes are the same.
Jenae is a cake decorator and artist who can spend hours getting her cake design right. Making cakes with imagination and flare has become a real labour of love.
– I always make sure the cake has sharp, crisp edges and that it sits on a matching cake board. Any cake design can be impressive if the decorator takes the time to make sure the basics are covered.
Yes, why spend days – and yes, she means DAYS – working on a single cake to put it on a board that doesn’t match? Come on!
– The board should enhance the cake’s design. With the basics done properly, any design – simple or over-the-top – has the ability to stand out.
When it comes to wedding cakes, Jenae likes to create designs that leave a unique touch to a couple’s big day. One of her new specialities is groom’s cake.
A Jaloviina themed birthday cake
– Let’s be honest, wedding cakes can be very feminine in nature and many modern couples now opt to have two cakes on their big day. In a groom’s cake anything that matches the groom’s personality, goes. The possibilities are endless.
Tattoo inspired His and Hers wedding cakes
Through baking to make herself feel more at home, Jenae has developed roots in Finland – and outside the kitchen, too! After a fortnight of living in the country, Jenae fell in love with Finnish golf coach Samuli Seppälä. Three years later the sporty couple married in Jenae’s home town of San Diego and are now living happily in Espoo. When Jenae is not baking she enjoys travelling and cooking Mexican food for her hubby. Her love of football is still very much alive, too.
Sporty Jenae and husband Samuli cutting their own wedding cake in 2012.
– I recently went on a trip to Madrid with my husband to watch the Champions League game between Barcelona and Atletico Madrid. We had a great time celebrating American Sweetie’s second birthday, which by the way is on May 10th.
Happy Birthday, gorgeous American Sweetie!!! And thank you for sharing your story with us. May 1st marks the second birthday of Rebellious Bride and to celebrate, Jenae is making a special themed cake, to be revealed here later this week. Cannot wait…