Name: Tessa Huff
Blog name: Style Sweet CA
Where were you born? Northern California
Where are you living now? Vancouver, BC
Why did you start your blog?
After I closed my cake boutique and moved to Vancouver, I wanted a way to connect with a larger audience beyond just my past local clients. I fell in love with food photography along the way, and starting a blog was the best way to share my stories, inspirations, and recipes.
How did you decide on your blog name?
I mostly write about cakes and pastries. I also love food styling and taking inspiration from the stylish city I get to live in. The “CA”portion stands for “CAlifornia,”“CAnada,”and “Culinary Arts.”Just a Cali girl, living in Canada, exploring the culinary arts =)
What do you blog about?
Mostly sweets and sometimes edible “crafts”and projects. I used to run a cake boutique, so you will find a lot of cake recipes on my blog. I love to explore all types of pastry, so there are recipes ranging from classic French desserts to savoury and more contemporary pastries. When I have the time, I enjoy putting together more intensive and detailed cake decorating tutorials.
What post on your blog most encapsulates you?
This post for my Blueberry Lavender Cake most describes me. Not only do I write about how I plan a new recipe and where I might find inspiration, you get a peek into my crazy thought process behind creating a cake and a touch of my daily life. Plus, you get a link to a whimsical Watercolour Frosting Tutorial!
Which post do you wish received more love and why?
If you read the post, then you will get a sense of my love for the Olympics. I created these Black and White Russian Cupcakes last year during the winter Olympics in Sochi. They just might be my favourite cupcakes to date, but I am afraid not too many tested them out. Perhaps others just don’t share my level of enthusiasm for competing countries and snow sports…
Which post’s success surprised you and why?
I was surprised how well-received this Watermelon Cake Tutorial was. Sure it’s super cute and summery, but the idea seemed simple and I made it just for fun. I was surprised that my readers loved the idea of a step-by-step cake decorating tutorial possibly even more than the artsy photos and unique flavours that I previously thought were my blog’s highlight.
What’s your biggest challenge as a blogger?
My biggest challenge as a blogger is probably sitting down and actually making a schedule for the posts. There is always something new that I am dying to try out, and sometimes I get too ahead of myself and don’t give all my posts the love and attention that they deserve. Also, keeping up with social media and connecting with other bloggers/readers can take up more time than you think - especially when you are doing it all yourself. I feel that I consistently have good ideas and information to share, but sometimes it’s the marketing and getting-my-voice-out-there parts that can be difficult.
Share a couple of your favourite food blogs to read. Why do you like them?
Local Milk - I could get lost in author Beth’s photography for hours - then spend another hour trying to decide which mouth-watering recipe to create next.
Sprinkle Bakes - Author Heather has mastered art meets dessert. She always has completely original ideas, but they are never too obscure or totally out there. When I read her blog, I always catch myself saying, “Why didn’t I think of that?”
Bakers Royale - Author Naomi covers straight up deliciousness on her blog. Something about her recipes seems so trustworthy, and It’s a blog that I always finding myself going back to and actually baking from - not just look at the gorgeous photos (of which there are plenty).
My Name is Yeh - Author Molly is so fresh and authentic. She makes any reader feel like they’ve been the best of friends for years. Not only are the recipes unique yet completely accessible, I love going to her blog just to read about her adventures.
Favourite food - care to share a recipe or a restaurant destination?
I have always had an affinity for noodles. From traditional spaghetti to ramen, I love them all!! My husband and I moved to the West End (Vancouver) a few months ago. Our new place just happens to be a 1/2 block from my favourite Italian restaurant, Tavola. I can’t help but order their burrata and bucatini every time I go.
What are you working on next for your blog?
I just finished writing and photographing my first cookbook (Abrams 2016), so I am so excited to dive right back into blogging in 2015. I am working on some new photography styles to further tell the food stories I want to share.
What else should we know about you that may or not be in your “About Me”page?
As I answer these questions, I am currently 39 weeks pregnant with our baby boy! I look forward to seeing how my cooking/baking point of view may evolve by being a mom and what new inspirations my growing family will bring to my work.
What makes your blog unique?
All of the photography is my own and I really try to write about what I know or wish to know more about. My goal is to make dessert and pastry more approachable to the home baker and I am not afraid to share my true opinions about certain practices or my own blunders in the kitchen. And cake. My blog shares a lot of industry tricks and tips from my years of experience baking and decorating cakes.
What’s your Favourite FBC Feature?
I love the articles on food photography. A beautifully-lit, well-styled photo makes all the difference!! In this blogging world of ours, you could have the most amazing recipe with a terrible photo, and no will ever know just how spectacular it tastes.
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