Feb 15

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Welcome to Sweetopia!

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About this website:

Sweetopia is a site about women’s lifestyle, home decor, fashion, finding balance and living a fulfilling life, and lastly but especially, my passion with sugar art. It also covers topics on fitness, cute things, recipes and tutorials related to sugar crafting.

about-me-photo-21-200x200About the author:

Hi I’m Marian, and I currently live in a forested area near Toronto, Canada, with my husband and furry friends. Besides my funny husband, spending time in nature makes me happy, as does my passion, sugar art.

My fascination with sugar design began seven years ago, when a illness (ITP), prevented me from engaging in physical fitness; what I had previously spent most of my free time doing. I needed to keep busy, and as I had always been charmed by gingerbread houses, I decided to try my hand at one. The first house I made wasn’t the prettiest, but I was hooked! The possibilities were endless, and the more I made them, the more I found there was to learn. Thank goodness the ITP only lasted about six months, and I’m grateful for it now, because it led me to find one of my favourite hobbies.

Eventually, I began delving into decorated, cookies, cupcakes and am now starting to learn about making cakes. It’s a hobby in which the learning and possibilities are endless; I have so many projects that I’d like to try, I know I’ll be busy for many years to come.

People often ask how I make my cookies, cupcakes etc., so I decided to create a fun place here to share all my information. By no means am I an expert! There are so many people with much more talent and skill than myself, but I can share what I know, even if it’s a yummy recipe or which tools I use to make my sugar crafts.

I teach Culinary Arts full time at a local Secondary school and have a B.A. in Modern Languages & Linguistics and a Bachelor of Education. I have worked in and around Toronto and on three different cruise ships with Royal Caribbean International.

I try to keep healthy and active, although I do have a major weakness for chocolate and sweet things. I love taking walks, jogging, yoga, swimming, and just generally being outdoors. I’m not very competitive, so I tend to shy away from organized sports, but play the occasional squash game with my husband. Living out of the city means giving up many conveniences, but for me, the pluses outweigh the drawbacks. Health and wellness are definitely a priority for me, so I’ll be including those topics in my blog.

I’m a bit of a shopaholic for clothing, shoes, accessories… fashion items basically. Shopping for clothes is my next major weakness besides chocolate. I do love bargains though; once in a while I stumble across great deals and/or stunning designs, and I’ll be more than happy to share them with you.

Cute and beautiful things also float my boat. =) I love Sanrio, home made crafts, jewellery, cards, scrapbooking paper, stamps, illustrations, graphic art… and the list goes on and on.

Decorating out home has become a bit of an obsession. We’re doing it slowly, renovating room by room. You’ll often find me engrossed in Pottery Barn catalogues, watching HGTV, or looking for unique finds on Avenue Road or Queen Street in Toronto. I’m looking forward to posting my inspirations here!

Snuggling in bed with a good book is also one of my favorite pastimes. Getting lost in a novel, or being inspired by philosophers is one way for me to relieve stress. There really are too many good books to mention… but a few I will anyways are: Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet, The Clan of the Cave Bear series, the Harry Potter series was a fun read… and that list goes on and on too.

I’m excited to have a place to journal about my loves, and am happy to share with you. I love to read feedback and comments, so drop me a line anytime. I may not add to my blog every day, as I try to keep my life balanced, but I do love to hear from you and will respond as soon as I can!

A huge thanks to the talented and kind Gisele Jaquenod, who created this gorgeous (if I do say so myself!) web design! I love it!!  You can click on her name at the bottom of this site to see more of her work.

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21 Comments

  1. Shannon
    February 19, 2009 at 6:43 pm | Permalink
    1

    Hi Marian,
    I’m so excited and happy to see that you have a blog page!! Hurray- now you can share your amazing talents and advise all of us want-to-be-bakers!! 🙂 Just wanted to say too that I’ll always be in your debit for those DELICIOUS gourmet cupcakes you made for my mother-in-law’s birthday recently! The cupcakes, tiered as a cake, were the hit of the event. Thanks soooo much!! I’m still secretly hoping you’ll leave teaching and open up a gourmet baking shop full-time!! You’re a baking goddess!!
    Shannon (Mississauga)

  2. February 22, 2009 at 5:53 pm | Permalink
    2

    Thank you so much Shannon for your kind and lovely compliments! I had fun making those cupcakes! I don’t know about baking goddess though =D
    YOU are definitely the chocolate making queen!! Can’t wait until you start posting pics of your delicious treats!

  3. February 28, 2009 at 8:04 am | Permalink
    3

    hi Marian,
    congratulation to your webside. It looks great “sweet”
    keep up the good work…..
    M oxo

  4. marian
    March 1, 2009 at 8:04 pm | Permalink
    4

    Hi Maria,
    Thanks so much for your support!! <3
    xo,
    Marian

  5. Mike Schmidt
    March 4, 2009 at 4:20 pm | Permalink
    5

    Hi Marian,
    I am very impressed with your site – it is very easy to navigate and the layout is really well done! It was nice to read what you wrote about yourself and your family. Your sugar designs show how talented you are – congratulations!!
    Your Flickr Friend,
    Mike

  6. marian
    March 4, 2009 at 6:30 pm | Permalink
    6

    Hi Mike,
    Thank you so much for your comments! I appreciate the support as I’m excited about my new place to share my favourite things and sugar craft projects.
    You are definitely talented with your gingerbread creations as well, and I have much to learn from your excellent photography!
    xo,
    Marian

  7. March 5, 2009 at 7:23 pm | Permalink
    7

    hi Marian,
    I love to see all your hard work and get exited to see it on your webside…
    M oxo

  8. Monika
    March 12, 2009 at 12:43 pm | Permalink
    8

    Hi Marian!
    This website is awesome! After looking at all your pics, I am starving!!!! You will definetly be hired by me when I need some professional sweetness in my life 🙂
    Keep up the amazing work!
    Hugs, Monika

  9. Samantha M
    March 23, 2009 at 1:15 pm | Permalink
    9

    Hi Mar,

    Reading your bio brought tears to my eyes.
    It seems lately that we have all grown so far apart in distance as well as our soul-sister connection. Reading your bio just reminds me how truly amazing, courageous, talented and all out wonderful and not to mention a knock-out you are! I am proud of you! On a more professional note your website is great! The cupcakes and butterfly cookies you did for my wedding were amazing, truly a work of art. You now have a second career if you decide to get out of teaching. You could teach in a culinary school or become a pastry chef or dessert chef in some chi chi restaurant. You go girl! You are amazing!

    Samantha M

  10. March 24, 2009 at 5:48 pm | Permalink
    10

    Thank you so much for your sweet and complimentary reply Samantha! I am blessed to know such a kind and talented fashionista as yourself <3 and I look forward to seeing you soon!
    xo,
    Marian

  11. Helena
    March 28, 2009 at 2:57 pm | Permalink
    11

    Hi Marian,
    Congratulations, this is wonderful, looking forward to seeing your blog flourish!
    Beautiful!
    Helena 🙂

  12. marian
    March 28, 2009 at 3:39 pm | Permalink
    12

    Helena,
    Thank you for your sweet comments!
    Your official Sweet Tiers site looks very elegant and your cake creations are gorgeous and inspiring. So much talent!
    xo,
    Marian

  13. Nancy
    March 28, 2009 at 7:29 pm | Permalink
    13

    Hi Marian,
    Love your website! I didn’t realize you are from Toronto! I live in the GTA too. Your work inspires me and I’ll be sure to visit this site often.

    Your flickr friend,
    nbarinque

  14. marian
    March 28, 2009 at 8:38 pm | Permalink
    14

    Hi,
    Thank you so much for your lovely comments. =) I didn’t realize you are from the GTA either! Nice to know you’re so close, your work inspires me too!
    xo,
    Marian

  15. April 28, 2009 at 11:37 am | Permalink
    15

    cooooolest domain name)))
    ————————
    signature: http://semev.ru/

  16. jane
    June 28, 2009 at 5:27 am | Permalink
    16

    love your website…I WAS hoping you were teaching adults,and that you were closer to me LOL…I’ll be checking in regularly…great information and inspiration!Thanks!
    Jane

  17. Sergi
    November 13, 2009 at 2:07 pm | Permalink
    17

    Me encanta su web, estoy enamorada de sus manos, usted es un hada

  18. February 11, 2010 at 7:13 am | Permalink
    18

    Hi Marian,

    I am a good web surfer and I kove finding new blogs and website that are inspiring just like yours. I’m very surprised to find your website so late. I am a cookie blog owner from Istanbul, and if you don’t mind I would like to ask you a question. I’m using sugar paste to decorate my cookies and cupcakes, so I am quite a pro on cookies but still need a lot of improvement on cupcakes. To be able decore a cupcake with sugar paste, I need a well domed cupcake, filled with a chocolate ganache. Do you have a good cupcake recipe for me with as less butter as possible? I prefer chocolate or vanilla cupcakes…I am very gratefull for your help.

    And will follow your blog and try all you icing tips 🙂

    Zeynep

  19. February 12, 2010 at 7:02 am | Permalink
    19

    Hi Zeynep,
    Thanks for your compliments; I’m still playing around with covering cupcakes with fondant but so far I’ve really enjoyed Peggy Porschen’s vanilla and chocolate cake recipe (which can be used for cupcakes). Can’t share that recipe because of copyright infringements, but I also liked Martha Stewart’s chocolate and vanilla recipe at http://www.marthastewart.com
    If I find another one that I like and I can post it, I will!
    Happy baking!
    Marian

  20. Dee salas
    April 4, 2019 at 4:45 pm | Permalink
    20

    Hi my name is Dee where can I buy this bunny cutter thank you
    I was diagnosed with post Polio and on my free time I like to bake and decorate cookies
    I work full time at shriners Medical Center in Pasadena

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