Larissa Neto, an Atlanta-based entrepreneur originally from Portugal, founded and owns Bakey Bakes, a boutique bakery. Her journey into cake artistry began in 2020 with a client’s request for a cake inspired by Belle from “Beauty and the Beast”. Larissa crafted a stunning rendition of Belle’s iconic yellow dress, complete with graceful sweeps and delicate ruffles.
Larissa swiftly gained recognition as a “buttercream artist” due to her exceptional talent. Inspired by the success of the Belle cake, she started creating mini cakes in the same ornate style to test demand in Atlanta. Much to her delight, they sold out almost instantly, unknowingly spearheading a nationwide trend for extravagantly decorated cakes.
These lavish cake styles draw from 19th-century European over piping and Lambeth cake decorating techniques. While traditionally made with over piping, modern Lambeth cakes predominantly use buttercream. A quick Instagram search for Lambeth cakes showcases their vintage charm, leaving brides captivated by Larissa’s meticulously piped wedding cakes.
Remaining true to their Victorian roots, these cakes require a significant amount of labor, which is reflected in the price. Factors like the intricacy of the piping, cake size, and number of colors all influence the final cost. According to Larissa, many are drawn to these cakes for their appreciation of formality, history, and a sense of nostalgia.
Growing up in Portugal, Larissa was surrounded by ornate historical architecture, instilling in her a deep appreciation for the days when meticulous care was poured into cherished creations. Larissa believes that these cakes, much like embroidery, cross-stitching, and crochet, resonate with Southern sensibilities. They represent an art form that demands time, dedication, and a patient hand.
For those who revel in creativity and relish the beauty of vintage aesthetics, Larissa’s whimsical cake artistry is a true delight. Each creation pays homage to a bygone era, where romance and hospitality were celebrated, and beauty was an art form in itself.