In its second year, the Great Brandwave Bake Off is a celebration of cake, competitiveness and remembering to stop and spend some quality time with your colleagues. This year’s champion Vicky chats us through what happens when a bunch of creatives are given free reign with bunting, eggs and icing sugar.

A few weeks ago some of our German Brandwave Team superstars took part in the Alpentriathlon, and Christian wrote this lovely blog about the experience (read the full article here). Christian mentioned something that has been referenced countless times in the UK office since…that at Brandwave it really is all about the winning, not just about taking part. No event brings this competitive spirit to life more than the Great Brandwave Bake Off.

Started as a 5-minute joke between the design team and the power of photoshop, this beautiful photo started a 45-long email chain of excitement amongst the entire office about how to truly bring the Brandwave Bake Off to life.

Reigning Brandwave Bake Off 2016 champion and Brandwave General Manager Emma was nervous as having also been crowned “Most Competitive” staff member at our summer AGM she knew this competition had the potential to bring out the worst in her…which happened 10 minutes later when she and our Creative Director Sam had a full-on scuffle when she thought he was passing notes to the design team about her baking skills, when in fact Sam was just passing notes about his epic cake plans…

The competition date was set for two weeks later, with half the team vowing to spend hours practising (none did) and the rest claiming they were above an inter-departmental baking competition (they weren’t).

As Studio Manager I knew we had to put in some effort to making this competition truly Brandwave so capitalising on the fact I had a team of creatives at my fingertips we decided to create some last-minute Brandwave bunting and called out for judges on social media and were joined by freelancers and local businesses keen to eat free cake.

The judges scored with a watertight system that had been devised to keep the most competitive in the office happy and to put Pru and Paul to shame. In case you were wondering, all cakes were scored as follows:

  • 50% taste
  • 25% aesthetics
  • 25% originality

As a creative agency, I knew we’d get some original ideas but my favourite had to be Tommo and his breakfast cereal cake made with milk soaked in crunchy nut cornflakes and covered in Lucky Charms marshmallows.

Lucy also created something stunning – cupcake ice creams with mint choc chip and vanilla flavoured cupcakes placed in tiny cones – unsurprisingly, they came second.

However much to my surprise, the winner was my Eton Mess Cheesecake. However, as it was taken from Bake Off champ Nadiya Hussain I can’t take much credit (but you can recreate the recipe here)

Events like the Great Brandwave Bake Off are one of the many reasons I’ve loved my four-month stint at Brandwave this summer. This is a dedicated team that works hard. Long days, working at breakneck speed with the expectation that we can and should always do better. As much as the work can get stressful, Brandwave remembers to make time for fun – BBQ’s on the deck on a Friday afternoon, team workouts in the office back garden, Sunday cycling trips around the Isle of Wight, sneaky windsurfing trips at lunchtime. Brandwave brings the ethos work hard, play hard to life and that passion shines through all the work we create.

We’re an agency, obviously, we made a video. Check it out here:

Hugh Cadge

Author Hugh Cadge

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