IT took 40 years for Kathryn Every, of Wellington Point, to discover what she wanted to be when she "grew up". Yet it's only taken two years for her talent to be recognised. At this year's Ekka, Kathryn's flamboyant flamingo cake won first place in the overall intermediate and intermediate novelty sections of the decorated cake competition. It's a meteoric rise. She entered the competition for the first time last year, tasting success as the winner for overall novice and novelty novice for her Miss Penelope cake, a large bust of a woman with long hair and flowers. For Kathryn the wins are literally "the icing on the cake" of a passion she has only discovered in recent years. "It's an opportunity to express yourself as you want - to go over the top. The competition gives me creative license," she said. The daughter of artist Barry Shea, and herself a graphic designer, Kathryn left a soft furnishings business to tackle the world of cakes. "I used to home-school my son and then when he started at school at Ormiston State School, I used to walk past Your Cake Kitchen just down the road. I met Jenny Williams there and did classes with her. She mentored me," Kathryn said. Now, Kathryn sculpts in cake, using her baking/painting/sculpting experience to create her lavish designs. "I have finally found my niche," she said. Kathryn now takes on orders for novelty cakes via everycakes.net.au. The Ekka continues at the RNA Showgrounds, Bowen Hills until Saturday, August 17 www.ekka.com.au.