How did you start food styling?
I assisted various Cape Town based food stylists such as Lisa Clark, Diana Heierli, Justine Kiggen and Nicky Werner. You will gain better experience in the industry by working as an assistant rather than doing a food styling course. It’s also a good idea to assist different stylists, as you’ll be exposed to different styles and ways of doing things.

Who takes your photos?
Most of the travel photos on my blog are taken by myself, but some of the styled shots are taken by my good friend and very talented photographer, Jill Chen, also based in Cape Town. If a photo on my blog was taken by someone other than me I will always credit the photographer.

Can I hire you for a food styling job or commission an article from you for my magazine/website/book project?
I am currently a food styling contributor for Spar for their online magazine, Savour and am always keen for new projects. So, if you’d like to hire me for a food styling job or for a writing project, please contact me at nelleke.elston@gmail.com

What other professional services do you offer?
Apart from food styling, I do recipe development and work as a consultant for smaller restaurants or cafés needing help with the presentation of their food, staff training or menu development.  I also have experience in kitchen design and the sourcing of equipment in the planning phases of café-style restaurants.

Where do you source your props for your shoots?
I have quite a collection of props that I find at markets, but I do hire some props at Plush Bazaar in Cape Town.

Do you sell your baked goods?
As mentioned, I currently have a catering company and do sell my baked products too. You can contact me on nelleke.elston@gmail.com for more details on my baking range.

How did you become a pastry chef?
After completing chef school I knew that I wanted to become a pastry chef, so I got a job as an apprentice under a well know Austrian chef. A lot of what you learn in the chef industry is ‘on the job training’, so be prepared to work hard and earn little! I then went to Dublin where I worked in a French Patisserie for six months and returned home where I got a great job at a fine dining restaurant. After a season, I decided to work for myself and started my own catering and novelty cake business.