DIY Diecut/Cut Paper Cake Topper: Dessert First

I had a great discussion with my friend Jen about the place my photos have in my life and maybe in the lives of others. Sometimes I feel like my work is frivolous. Is there much meaning behind a picture of a pretty cake with some flowers and a "dessert first" sign? Sometimes it feels indulgent and superficial.

And maybe it is. But sometimes life is so heavy, no? I work and live in a neighborhood most often characterized by violence and poverty and a serious lack of hope and opportunity. And certainly there are beautiful parts to this neighborhood: the sense of community, the cultural pride, the vendors on every corner reminding people of home, the spirit of resilience and joy. So much joy. But sometimes, oh sometimes, it's hard to remember those good things when life just seems so heavy. 

In the midst of a dark Winter, it's hard to remember that Spring is in fact coming.

And I think that, that's why I make these photos. To remind myself that there is a light at the end of this proverbial tunnel. That flowers will bloom and birds will chirp and we'll watch movies in my backyard. We'll have drinks and laugh and string lights up so we can stay out long after the sun as set. And when that first ice cream truck of the season makes its rounds, we'll be out there waiting in line because Spring has finally come and the darkness has passed.

So here's this cake I bought and these flowers I chose and this little sign I cut, reminding me that sometimes I should eat dessert first. Because the small joys can get us through the tougher seasons.


  1. ok seriously i feel you on this. I post about fashion + recipes and it's like, ok, is this worth it? who cares!? but honestly, it's so true. the world can be so dark and sometimes we need light-hearted good things.

    also, where in chicago do you live? i am not super familiar with the city, but i have read articles about the divide in neighborhoods and am kind of nerdily fascinated by stuff like that.

  2. I think we inherently crave beauty. Even though it may seem frivolous, looking at this well-designed cake/flowers/clever topper makes my day a little brighter and more enriching. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Thank you for your kind words! I love seeing something I've imagined come to life. And I love seeing what others are creating and how their visions differ so greatly from my own!


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