Never Too Full for Cake!
Two years ago, Lisa McRae, left, was a systems analyst—a far cry from the baker extraordinaire she is today. Here, the professional cake decorator and owner of Elizabethan Delights discusses the art of designing the ultimate dessert.

What types of desserts do you offer?

Wedding cakes, pictured, cookies, and petit fours. I offer a variety of cake, filling, and frosting flavors with several choices for coverings, too.


What’s your favorite?

First, English pound cake with lemon raspberry filling and lemon icing. Second would be chocolate cake with chocolate/orange filling and vanilla icing. And last: chocolate ganache with anything!


How long does it take to create a     typical wedding cake?

It takes about three to four days. If there’s string work involved, that’s another six hours.

What’s string work?

String work is a very fine line of icing. It gives a cake an ethereal feel, a lightness. It’s beautiful and meticulous.

What was your most unique request?

Someone asked for a cake using fresh blueberries in December. Since blueberries are out of season in December, the blueberries alone would have cost $300!




HED: Spot it! Find It!


While meeting a friend for a drink one Friday night at Town, I couldn’t help but notice the cool pendant lights that line the restaurant’s bar. Turns out, Cicely Sullivan with Charlotte-based design firm Shook Kelley helped choose the lighting and other hip accouterments for Pierre Bader’s hotspot. The Crystal Ball bubbles and blown-glass balls by LBL Lighting are clear at Town, but they also come in amber, blue, red, and, a favorite, pink, all available at Metro on Morehead Street. Though the cost is a bit pricey ($150 each, including the mounting hardware), they’re perfect above a kitchen island, wet bar, or billiards table. —B. M.


Metro, 911 E. Morehead St., 704-375-4563


HED: Shopping At…Design Within Reach

SouthPark recently added mod home store Design Within Reach (4310 Sharon Road, 704-365-6514) to its list of cool new retailers. Here’s a selection of the store’s hippest must-have pieces this season.


Arco Floor Lamp

The iconic 1962 design by Achille Castiglioni provides freestanding overhead light.



Eames Lounge and Ottoman

A staple for any modern living room, this classic duo is entirely hand assembled.

Starting at $3,245


Nelson Ball Clock

This trendy 1950s-esque timepiece designed by George Nelson provides a bold, creative touch to a room.



Saarinen Dining Table, marble top

A dining table that feels retro and modern is also available as a side table and coffee table.

Starting at $2,048


Bertoia Barstool with Seat Pad

These fine-sculpted indoor/outdoor stools offer a fresh, airy feel to a patio

or bar area.





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