Food Styling Challenge: Verses From My Kitchen

filed under: Chocolate Cakes on February 26, 2013

So very exited to share this months Food Styling Challenge participant!

12 Talented Bloggers Show off Their Styling Skills! February: Mike from Verses From My Kitchen


The month of February is all about Mike from Verses From My Kitchen.

I cant say enough amazing things about the talent that Mike possess.  His blog is not only photographically visually stunning, but beautifully written.  It reads like a novel, an enticing and captivating escapade of love, food, and everything in between.

Having him participate in this little food challenge is such an honor, I am still wrapping my head around it!  Thank you Mike, for sharing your passion, your love, and your talent with the world!

And please, whatever you do, make a moment of your day to stop by and see what amazing talent this man has.  And dont forget to check out this Chocolate Fudge & Coconut Cake. Can we just all agree that gorgeous doesnt do it justice?


Food Styling Challenge: Verses From My Kitchen

The beautiful creation that Mike has made for us is a Blackberry Chocolate Cake.  Mike has the full recipe on his blog, and you are going to want to make it as soon as possible!

I asked Mike a few questions about his experience:


I would say it was more difficult than it was easy. I think a large part of that was my lack of cake styling. I don’t bake a lot on my site so trying to ice and style a cake pushed me to try a few new things.

Food Styling Challenge: Verses From My Kitchen


Actually, it was more than I normally spend on props.I normally look everywhere for props, including wood thrown out behind commercial stores. So this challenge worked out well. We’re lucky where we are to have a wide variety of antique shops and second-hand stores nearby. I found the chair and wood at one shop for $6, the cake pans at an antique shop for $3, the plates in the ASIS department at Ikea for $2, the vintage milk bottle for $1, a $4 glass cake stand, the sifter for $2 and a $3 vintage cake spatula at a second-hand shop. All these stores are within minutes of one another. And most of these are props I’ll use again and again.

Food Styling Challenge: Verses From My Kitchen


I love different colours and shapes of fabrics and napkins and props. They can add colour and texture and dimension to an image. I also love weathered wood and antique silverware and to try to find the right items for the food I’m highlighting.



Baking and icing a cake! I can’t say I’ll turn into a baking blog, but it was fun trying for this post. I also loved trying to style a cake, which brings a different dimension than I’m used to. I think I’ll stick to smaller cakes in the future, but don’t be surprised to see a cake show up from time to time.

Food Styling Challenge: Verses From My Kitchen


Just look at that.  How on earth he manages to make an empty plate look appetizing and beautiful is beyond my realm of comprehension!

A huge, HUGE thank you to Mike for his beautiful contribution to the this project!  You can see more of Mike’s awesomeness on facebook and twitter!

Be sure to check out January’s Food Styling Challenge participant, Kristen from Dine & Dish. She made a heavenly White Chocolate Confetti Cake!

Also stop by and see what I thought 2013’s Food Styling Trends were.  (Mike and Kristen are definitely trend setters!!)

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  • Kristen says:

    So glad I went first… would have hated to have to follow Mike. Wow! This is gorgeous and I love all that he was able to pick up for the price! Now I want a slice of cake.

  • TidyMom says:

    Mike you did a fantastic job!! I only have one antique shop close by………but you’ve made me want to make an antique run to some local towns my mom has been bugging me to go to!

    LOVE all this!…….off to check out the recipe

  • Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet says:

    I discovered Mike’s blog just recently and I could browse his gorgeous posts for hours! His styling is very inspiring. Love this series, Amanda!

  • Diane {Created by Diane} says:

    I love all the wood. Mike’s cake looks delicious, great job! I love go junkin’ for props, problem is I just have to remember to use them 🙂

  • HeatherChristo says:

    Oh jeez- Mike is SO TALENTED!!! these pictures are totally and completely stunning. I love to read his stories too. THanks for featuring him Amanda- a greta reminder to scoot over to his blog, it’s been a while.

  • Annalise says:

    Beautiful cake! You’d never know that building an elegant layer cake wasn’t something you did all the time. Love it!

  • Natasha says:

    Love Mike’s blog! This cake looks fantastic!

  • Amber @ Sprinkled With Flour says:

    Your right, this cake is so visually stunning, nevermind sounds absolutely delicious too! Thanks for sharing, I’ll go check out Mike’s blog now. 🙂

  • Wendy Lewicki says:

    So proud of my amazingly talented husband! Thanks for featuring him 🙂

  • Sue {munchkin munchies} says:

    I definitely need to check out the local antique stores and secondhand shops! Love the cake, love the styling!

  • Julianne @ Beyond Frosting says:

    I love this food photography challenge! Such a great idea. Cakes are very difficult to shoot!

  • MikeVFMK says:

    Thanks so much for the kind words! And thank you Amanda for featuring me and my little blog. I’m honoured to be on your beautiful site! I’m constantly inspired by what you come up with!

  • Brooks says:

    Mike, gorgeous work here both in the styling and the cake. It leaves me inspired and challenged. Thank you for sharing your insight, and I too am off to check out the recipe. Cheers!

  • Kiran @ says:

    I love this series, Amanda! And love Mike’s blog. His styling looks so effortless 🙂

  • Katie says:

    What an excellent idea, and this cake is stunning. My mouth is literally watering. I am so glad to know about Mike.

  • Heidi @ Bits of Sunshine says:

    He is good! That cake looks amazing! I love it that he looks for props everywhere! Makes me feel less scroogy for looking for old wood in my parents back yard 🙂

  • Sunny says:

    Love this. I’m so glad you showed me his blog. It’s beautiful. I love his rustic style and the food looks amazing.

  • Maria says:

    Love this post! Thanks for sharing so many great tips!

  • Carla @ Carlas Confections says:

    IN LOVE with that styling! Such a cool idea to use the chair like that. So amazing! I need to go get thrifting now 🙂

  • Jessica says:

    LOVE the way this turned out and adore Mike’s honesty about his lack of experience with baking/styling cakes. Love even more that he was inspired to perhaps “consider” adding a few future cake posts on his own blog. Inspiration is awesome – and sometimes we find it in the most unexpected ways.

  • Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen says:

    That’s some savvy shopping! Such great finds for so little.

  • Holiday Baker Man says:

    Looks pretty great!

  • Rachel @ Baked by Rachel says:

    I’m completely baffled by those finds. How freaking lucky. I need to move some place that has better options 😉 Gorgeous shots!

  • Mary says:

    I love everything about these posts, Amanda. Thanks for sharing your finds and that awesome looking cake, Mike!

  • Capturing Joy with Kristen Duke says:

    Wow, I love this idea for guest posts!! I am a photographer, and I’ll admit, food styling is HARD!!! So much more than people in my opinion! I’ve bought books and studying up, but I am exciting to watch for this!!

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