Jan./Feb. 2012Wedding cakes from some top shows, includ-ing some of the Oklahoma Sugar Arts All-Stars•Meetthreesugarartistsworkingtoward2012CMSA certification • Mixing methods andtheir purposes • Thinking outside the plate •Tutorials: Contemporary Color, Wedding DressWedding Cake and Stencil-Cut Spiral Rose
www.americancakedecorating.com 1INSPIRATIONTHE ULTIMATE WEDDING FANTASIESWedding cakes are the stars of almost every cake event.Here are some amazing entries from a range 2011 showsincluding ICES.OKLAHOMA SUGAR ARTS ALL-STARSMost of the top ten entries from the annual decoratingextravaganza, with special thanks to all those who helpedround up these images.TUTORIALCONTEMPORARY COLORA clean, architectural wedding cake design inspired by therunways of Paris and New York.By Chef Nicholas LodgeWEDDING DRESS WEDDING CAKEA design based on the client’s wedding dress—from theruffled skirt to the pleated bodice.By Annie DamSTENCIL-CUT SPIRAL ROSEInspired by a Martha Stewart papercraft project, createroses from one basic pattern and dozens of other bloomswith just small variations.By Lew ChurnickCERTIFICATION 2012: MEET THE NEW CLASS FOR RENOQ&A with some of the industry members seeking CMSAstatus at the Reno convention.18,000 BRITISH CAKE DECORATORS CANT BE WRONGBeryl Loveland shares her experience at the massive CakeInternational show in Birmingham, U.K.SWEET SCIENCE: MIXING METHODS AND THEIR PURPOSESThe debut of a new column that digs into the ‘hows’ and‘whys’ of cakes, sugarwork and chocolate. This issue featuresan excerpt from the acclaimed text, How Baking Works, onwhat’s really happening when you make dough or batter.By Paula FigoniTHINKING OUTSIDE THE PLATEHow to create a hanging cake and other innovative cakedisplay ideas.By Lori Sladyk Gilmore and Karen SladykEVERY ISSUEINTERNET SHOPPING DIRECTORYLETTER FROM THE EDITORFAVORITE TOOLS FROM OUR CONTRIBUTORSContributors to our wedding showcases sharetheir top tools.CONTENTS746245250404234384THIS ISSUEWedding Cake DesignsSPECIAL IN THIS ISSUE662ON THIS PAGEShownleftisadetailfromaVictorianhatboxdesignbyJuneLynchofOntario,Canada. PhotobyCraigMierop. ShownrightisadetailfromAnnetteHala’sentryinthe2011OSSASweddingcakecompetition. FormoreOSSAScakes,seepage24.ON THE COVERAn award-winning wedding cake designed by Irene B. Maston, CEC,AAC, o fLudlow,. Vermont, where the challange was to create a cakefor a fictional couple using at least four concepts from their imaginarybiography. Photo by Craig Mierop.
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4 January/February 2012AMERICANCAKEDECORATINGEditorial DirectorArt DirectorManaging EditorContributorsFeatured Decorators& ChefsSpecial ThanksPresident & CEOVice President of OperationsSales ManagerEditorial Advisory BoardSubscriptions:Susan SchultzCraig MieropNichole Day DigginsLew Churnick, Annie Dam, Paula Figoni, LoriSladyk Gilmore, Nicholas Lodge, Beryl Loveland,Karen SladykLisa Bugeja, Kim Bush, Joseph Cumm, Ahngross, Annette Hala, Edith Hall, Bob Johnson,Linda Kelly, Carol Lowe, June Lynch, Irene B.Maston, Theresa McCollum, Nancy Mitchko,Earlene Moore, Kim Morrison, Dawn Parrott,Vivian Pham, Barb Sullivan, Ruth Rickey, RebeccaSutterby, Daniel Swift, Kimbla Trahan, PamelaTsaldaris, Joanne WienekeValerie Hatton, Claire Holzman, Annette Hala,Bob Johnson, Rebecca SutterbyGrace McNamaraPeggy YungKaren GriffithsDalila Cabrita de Peña, Variedades DalilaMary Jo Dowling, CMSA, Elegant EdiblesMichael Joy & Beatrice Schneider,The Chicago School of Mold MakingRuth Rickey, CMSA, Ruth’s Sweete JusticeMarsha Winbeckler, CakeSuppliesPlus.com–A.J. Winbeckler EnterprisesCall 877-467-17591 Year: U.S. $28. CAN. $36. FOR. $48.2 Year: U.S. $50. CAN. $66.50 FOR. $48.All subscriptions payable in U.S. funds,drawn on U.S. bank or postal money order.The staff of American Cake Decorating magazine and AIM Communications LLC havereviewed contributions and advertising materials with the understanding that the informationis original, accurate, and reliable, but we cannot be held responsible for such content. Pleasenote that some of the techniques may be suitable for private home use, but are not necessarilyappropriate for cakes destined for sale.American Cake Decorating (ISSN 1094-8732) is published bi-monthly by AIM Communcia-tions LLC. 4756 Banning Ave. Suite 206, St. Paul, MN 55110. Periodicals class postage paidat St. Paul MN and additional offices. Postmaster: Send address changes and subscription cor-respondence with mailing label to American Cake Decorating, 4756 Banning Ave. Suite 206, St.Paul, MN 55110. Copyright 2012 by AIM Communications LLC, New Phone: 651/330-0574,fax 651/653-4308, email@example.com., www.americancakedecorating.com.Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited.Editorial Director: Please direct all correspondence, photos, and press releases to SusanSchultz, firstname.lastname@example.org or mail to American Cake Decorating, 94 Ninth St, 4th FloorStudio 30, New York, NY 11215.Subscription Questions & Changes: Send address changes to, New Mailing Address:American Cake Decorating, PO Box 0567, Selmer, TN 38375-9907 or e-mailAmericanCakeDecorating@magcs.com. Please notify us of address changes 4 to 6 weeks aheadof time. The post office is under no obligation to forward your magazine. If the postal authoritiesnotify us that your magazine is undeliverable, we have no further obligation unless we receive acorrected address within one year. We cannot be responsible for nondelivery.To be a part of the Internet Shopping Directory,contact Karen Griffiths, 612/715-2977Karen.GriffithsACD@gmail.comATECOwww.atecousa.comBERYL’S CAKE DECORATINGwww.beryls.comCAKE CRAFT SHOPPEwww.cakecraftshoppe.comCAKE CRUISEwww.cakecruise.comCAKE DECORATING SUPPLIES BY CAKES BY SAM,INC.www.cakesbysam.comCANDYLAND CRAFTSwww.candylandcrafts.comDESIGNER STENCILSwww.culinarystencils.comwww.designerstencils.comDELUXE OVENS—CONVECT-A-RAY CAKE OVENSwww.deluxeovens.comGERALDINE’S CREATIVE CUTTERSwww.creativecutters.comGLOBAL SUGAR ARTwww.globalsugarart.comICING IMAGES: EDIBLE PHOTOS FOR CAKESwww.icingimages.comINTERNATIONAL SUGAR ART COLLECTIONwww.nicholaslodge.comKITCHEN KRAFTSwww.kitchenkrafts.comMY LITTLE CUPCAKEwww.lmylittlecupcakepop.comLORANN OILSwww.lorannoils.comNATIONAL HEART ASSOCIATIONwww.goredforwomen.orgNY CAKE WESTwww.nycake.comPHOTOFROST: THE ICING ON THE CAKEwww.photofrost.comSUGARVEIL CONFECTIONERY PRODUCTSwww.sugarveil.comINTERNETSHOPPINGDIRECTORYDecorators! Learn more about products and shop online for allyour cake decorating supplies at these fine retailers, distributors andmanufacturers.
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6 January/February 2012EDITORIAL For most of my adult life I have had the premoni-tion that how I felt on New Year’s Day would be anindication of how the rest of the year would go. I’mexcited to report that I woke up feeling that 2012will be a terrific year for not just me personally butmy business, which includes all of you passionatecake decorators!A recent survey gave us a good perspective of whatyou want. For your favorite section, most readerschose cake photos, followed by tutorials. When weasked what you wanted to see more of, the mostpopular responses were how-to tutorials and bakingtechniques. To demonstrate that we do listen to ourreaders, we introduce a new feature in this issue, SweetScience on page 40. Each issue we will tackle a specifictechnique, ingredient or other aspect of baking thatwill make your final piece better than ever.Because we only have so many pages that we canproduce in print, we will be bringing you more ofthe information and ideas that you want on our newly designed and launched website,www.americancakedecorating.com. Check out our website regularly to see new tutori-als, fabulous new products, an ingredient of the month, industry news, and coming soon,‘tidbits’, where we ask our readers to share photos, stories and ideas. And don’t forget, ourmonthly newsletter SLICE (you can subscribe on our website) to round out your cakedecorating and baking skills.I predict 2012 to be an exciting and fulfilling year for the cake industry. We will do our bestto bring you fresh, timely ideas to inspire your passion. Please send us your thoughts andrequests—we are listening!Happy New Year!All the best,Grace McNamaraPublisherWHATAREYOUUPTO?We’re interested in the successes (and interesting failures!) of ACDreaders. We’d like to hear from you regarding your projects, your latestdiscoveries, your proudest achievements and more. It’s all part of thenew ACD website where we invite our readers to share, inform, inspireand encourage each other. Get in touch with your photos andcomments: email firstname.lastname@example.org.And, if you go to a cake show, let us know! Beryl Loveland shared herexperience at the Cake International show in Birmingham, U.K., andwe would not have had the pages of great Oklahoma State Sugar ArtsShow cakes without the help of readers and participants such as An-nette Hala, Rebecca Sutterby and Bob Johnson. So please, let us knowwhere youre going and we can share more shows with readers. Emailsusan@spacedowntown.comLOOKING FORWARD
www.americancakedecorating.com 7WEDDINGFANTASIESTHEUTLIMATE Beautifully designedwedding cakes are alwayscrowd favorites at theshows… and why not?Decorators go all out tocreate these sweet andstunning looks, followingvisions of their own orthose inspired by clients.Cake by Bob JohnsonPhoto by Craig Mierop
8 January/February 2012Bob Johnson, Couture Cakes,Huntsville, ALKnown for his ‘Grand Formal’cakes, Bob Johnson says one ofhis favorite design periods is theFrench Baroque and the influencescan often be seen in his work, suchas this seven-tier cake, left, wherehe uses different shapes and sizesto create multiple ‘stages’ and areasof design interest. A fantasticalbird, made of gumpaste shaped andsculpted over an egg form, sits ona bed of roses and hydrangeas. Thehead and feathers of the bird weremade with gumpaste sculpted overfloral wire. A gold crown decoratedwith a large pearl and featuringmore flowers tops the cake, carry-ing the pearl and gold details fromthe cakeboard all the way up.A more restrained version of hisdesign style in shown on the previ-ous page—five tiers with a shapedseparator, all decorated with a sten-ciled damask pattern. “I used royalicing, made a bit thicker than usualto create a slight stucco effect,” saidJohnson. “This allowed me a bettersurface to hand paint the patternwith silver luster dust thinned withalcohol.” To finish the edges of eachtier he created gumpaste ribbonsand pearls.When asked how he got thesetowering cakes to the show safely,he gladly explained, “All of mycakes are supported by a centralrod, no matter what size,” saidJonhson. “I screw a base pipewrapped with white tape into a1/2" thick Masonite board. Eachtier is then placed on a very thinMasonite board covered withwhite foam core with a 1" hole inthe center for securing around themain support pipe.”Photo by Craig Mierop
www.americancakedecorating.com 9Irene B. Maston, CEC, AAC, Irene’s Cakes by Design, Ludlow, VTThis cake won the grand prize with a perfect score at the 2011 National Capital Area Cake Show Wedding Cake Competition. “I get veryfew requests for string work so it is both a treat and a frustration to do it for competition cakes,” said Irene Maston. “I spent 12 1/2 hoursjust on the crossed drop strings of the lace edging.” The endless knot detail under the monogram on three sides of the cake was also a bittrying. “I probably made 30 or more of them, first from royal icing, but they kept breaking when I tried to move them to the cake. ThenI tried SugarVeil,” said Maston. It was tough piping for that long a period in one squeeze to get a nice even line.” Her favorite part of thecake, in addition to the peonies which she loves to make, was the lace repilca on the top two tiers. “I loved how it came out,” she said. “Iused actual lace to make the impressions on my cut-out flowers.”Photo by Craig Mierop
10 January/February 2012Earlene Moore, Earlene’s Cakes,Lubbock, TXUsing the newest versions of the lacemolds she created with Dominic Palazoloof Make Your Own Molds, Earlene Mooreonly had a few days to create this cake. Us-ing only one color of ivory fondant for thecovering and the decorations, along withnearly a dozen of the new molds, Mooredesigned this lace fantasy. Some moldsshe used ‘as is’ and others she trimmed outonly certain elements to use. The top tier isa three-layer cake with the bottom beveledto make a smooth transition, accented, ofcourse, with another lace pattern. The topof the cake was also designed with molds,while hand-shaped fondant pearls wereadded as accents throughout the design.Everything was then painted using a flat1/4" wide brush with pearl sheen so thatonly the raised areas picked up a hint ofshimmer.Photo by Craig MieropNancy Mitchko, Dream Sweet, Hamilton, NJ andJoanne Wieneke, The Little Cake Patch, Robbinsville, NJThis unique and elegant cake features a seldom-seen technique—hand-piping on wires. NancyMitchko and Joanne Wieneke collaborated on this design to create a cake that updates traditionalPhilippine-style wedding decorations, such as the white Sampaguita (Philippine Jasmine) flowersand buds. The cake structure uses a tall candlestick pillar support above the first tier, accented withcascades of floral sprays to create a dramatic, sculptural effect.The cage at the top was made out of gumpaste. In creating a structure that appears fragile yet will sup-port a fair bit of weight from the top bouquet of flowers, Mitchko and Wieneke needed to find a wayto support the roof without destroying the airy quality of the delicate cage. Their solution came in theform of a central footed pillar, covered in fondant and decorated to create a central focal point in thecage. When assembling the top tier, the cage walls were placed around the central pillar, the roof wenton, and then the bouquet was placed into the pillar through the roof.For the hand piping on wires, Mitchko and Wieneke needed to research a variety of differentmethods, tricks and approaches to achieve the look they wanted. In the end, they realized that thesuccess of wire-piped flowers relies on a good recipe for royal icing.As a display cake, the tiers were sytrofoam dummies. The team traveled from New Jersey with allthe elements in pieces and, once in Charlotte, assembled the cake in their hotel room. Once it wasfinished, they needed to move it across the street, down the block to the convention center, andthen down to the lower level of the convention center to the cake gallery. The hotel let them bor-row a luggage cart to transport the cake and both confess it was quite a site. It arrived whole andintact with no damage whatsoever.
www.americancakedecorating.com 11Barb Sullivan, Barb’s Cakes, Alabaster, ALBarb Sullivan’s cake was fit for a queen, as indicated by the interlocking M and A gold monogram (as in Marie Antoinette) on the second tier.This all-white confection is draped in shimmering swags and strands of pearls, all accented with roses, orchids and small touches of lace. Top-ping it off is a gumpaste vase filled with even more flowers, completing a design that is rich and opulent without being overpowering.Photos by Craig Mierop
12 January/February 2012Photos by Craig Mierop
www.americancakedecorating.com 13Linda Kelly, Chadbourn, NCLinda Kelly took advantage of her ‘local’status to create several cakes forthe ICES show including these twowedding designs. The pale blue Victorian-inspired cake, left, was developed with hershop in mind. She wanted something shecould look at every day and never tire of,while also incorporating several designideas she had in mind. These included ovaltiers and the use of a divider betwen thesecond and third tiers. The cameos weremade using a mold based on one of herown pieces, while the lace and pearls usedcommercial molds.For the ivory cake, right, she wanted todesign something that used 6" tiers. Sheloosely based the design on the idea of awedding dress, combining medium ivoryfor the fondant covering and light ivoryfor the decorations. The ribbons, cornerdraping and the bow are all lace-im-pressed. The center of the bow is a froma mold Kelly made from one of her ownpieces, while the other decorations werecommercial molds.For the floral topper, she cut a Styrofoamball in half and covered in it fondant, creat-ing a lip and the support. The bouquet ofroses, lilies and other blossoms fills thevase and gracefully spills over, accentedwith ‘crystal’ drops.Photo by Craig Mierop
www.americancakedecorating.com 15June Lynch, Picture Perfect Cake &Art, Dundas, OntarioJune Lynch created a cake designedaround a theme of Victorian hatboxes, a concept that let her includemany of her favorite touches—lock-ets, pearls, cameos, tassels, lace andlots and lots of flowers. She choseflowers popular in Victorian gardenssuch as lily of the valley, old-fash-ioned roses, honeysuckle, stephano-tis and ivy.Lynch made her own silicone moldsfor the lace patterns used on thecakes, a first for her. She had alsonever tried making a honeysucklebefore, so picked several from hergarden to use as her guides.She used a 24k edible gold ‘paint’for the tassels, the lockets and theborder of the cameos. The cameosthemselves were made with a mold,but she made the filagree borders foreach by hand.Anh Gross, Blythewood, SCFor her ICES wedding cake, Anh Gross decided to focus on soft, fabric effects combined withintricate piping. And although she enjoys creating realistic elements, in keeping with the fabrictheme she designed her flowers to look like folded fabric and ribbon.For the royal icing piping, she marked six equal intervals around the sides of the tiers and thentraced the pattern on o the fondant, making sure that everything lined up correctly. She paintedthe background of the area to be piped over with a mixture of pink petal dust, lilac petal dust,super pearl dust, and vodka. The lattice was piped next with a PME #1 tip. The most challengingpart of piping were curling border lines. She used a PME #2 tip and applied different pressure asshe went to create different thicknesses. The fishnet piping was done with a PME #0 tip.Gross said that the most challenging part of this cake was the drapery on the fourth tier. She hadplanned to have the entire upper tier wrapped with one piece of fondant, and the lower tier inanother. However, without an extra pair of hands, that proved to be impossible. Instead she di-vided the draped area into three parts and covered the overlapping seams with pleated ribbons.To make that unexpected added element cohesive with the rest of the cake, she created pleatedribbon around the cake board and accented it with ‘fabric’ blossoms.Photo by Craig Mierop
16 January/February 2012Kim Morrison, Cakes for Occasions, Spring Mills, PAThis prize-winning cake at the 2011 National Capital Area CakeShow was designed by Kim Morrison. It traveled to Virginia,Maryland and then on North Carolina, with no real damage to thedelicate gumpaste flowers or the over structure.Morrison created most of the cake on dummies, except for the sec-ond tier. The sculpted shape was made with an almond butter cakethat she was also making for a client. She spent an entire monthworking on the gumpaste flowers—roses, orchids, peonies andcalla lilies—with the top bouquet taking one entire day just to wire.“The floodwork monogram was the trickiest part,” said Morrison.“Attaching the monogram to the separator posts took some timebecause I wanted it to appear as if it were floating.”“I also had some difficulty getting exactly the right sheen on thefabric-effect drapes. I finally resolved it by rolling the paste out onluster dust, then rubbing the dust into the paste. That gave it justthe right sheen.”
www.americancakedecorating.com 17Photos by Stringer Photography
18 January/February 2012Kimbla Trahan, Sweet Sensations by Kim,Jennings, LAThe original design of this cake is by Sweet South-ern Ladies, Becky Guidry and Martha Hebert, butKimbla Trahan loved the Victorian look and wantedto try her hand at the spherical tiers, so she enteredthis in the 2011 Austin That Takes the Cake show.She used a variety of lace molds, but all the pearlsand draperies were hand shaped. “I’m particularlyproud of the birds,” said Trahan. “Each feather ishand cut and layered for a delicate, realistic look.”Photos by Adrian Williams
www.americancakedecorating.com 19NEW!2012 CATALOGNo. 5266 - Plain Tear DropCutter Set $10.80No. 4206 - Fondant StripApplicator $ 36.00No. 4950 - 4 Piece Round FoodMolding Set $18.00No. 5207 - Fluted CommaCutter Set $10.80No. 1377 - Dipping Tool Set $22.50No. 1355 - Rolling Circle Cutter $6.80No. 4845 - Geometri ShapesCutter Set $19.00No. 14428 - Jumbo Frill/RuffleCutter Set $9.80No. 4208 - Tweezers $1.60No. 1327 - 2 Sided Cake Maker $6.00No. 4849 - Flower & LeafCutter Set $19.00No. 1481 - 2 Rose Cutters $12.00No. 4915 - 2 Hangable DecoratingBag Cones $ 12.00No. 1449 - 4 Heating Cores $4.20Ask for them at your favorite bakery distributor or cake decorating supply shop or visit www.atecousa.com
20 January/February 2012Ruth Rickey, CMSA, Oklahoma City, OKDesigned for the 2011 Art of the Cake show in Ohio, whichhad a wedding cake theme based on men’s ties, Ruth Rickeychose the bolo tie her husband wore at their wedding. “Iused the Make Your Own Mold product to create a mold ofthe bolo, the hat band from my husband’s cowboy hat and ofthe conchos on one of my western belts,” said Rickey, addingthat she used a purchased mold for the ladies jewelry on thetop tier.The pieces were all molded from gumpaste and then paintedwith gold, silver or bronze and finished with Leaf Glaze on allthe metal surfaces for extra shine. The turquoise stones weremade from a marbled turquoise fondant that Rickey furtherenhanced with painted accent line. The necklace lines werepiped with gray royal icing and then painted silver.All roses were made with Platinum Paste, then dusted withshimmers/pearl accents and steamed to set the colors. “Aftercomments from the judges in Ohio, I changed the blue rosesto white ones for the Austin show and I added silver leaves,”said Rickey. “I thought it was more attractive and it is now thecover cake for the 2012 ICES Brochures for the Reno Conven-tion!”Photos by Adrian Williams
www.americancakedecorating.com 21Photos by Adrian WilliamsRuth Rickey, CMSA, Oklahoma City, OKFor her second cake at the Austin That Takes the Cake show,Rickey was inspired by a demo she saw at the ICES convention. “Isaw Dalia Weinman do Zari Embroidery and I wanted to do a cakewith that style design ever since,” said Rickey. “I finally started toresearch it and learned that it often features stones or sequins, aswell as metallic thread embroidery. I found some pictures onlineand adapted my design from a blend of those images.”All the cut outs are in fondant. The details were piped with yellowroyal icing and then painted with gold. For the sequins, she used a#9 tip to cut out gumpaste circles, poked them with a straight pinand shaped them slightly. These were then painted gold, given aglaze and then applied to the royal icing detail lines as accents.This cake was originally developed for a class Rickey taught atNicholas Lodge’s open house, but she felt it was too pretty not toenter. “I added some gumpaste peonies and felt that it made a verysweet display.”
22 January/February 2012Photos by Craig MieropTheresa McCollum, Florence, SCRuffles and lace are familiar themes for weddingcakes, but for her ICES cakes, Theresa McCollumwanted to incorporate those themes in a uniquemanner. For the cake topper she used an acrylicball and applied molded fondant lace. This sits ona stand made of molded cereal treats covered infondant. She used rock candy around the outsideedge of each tier to give the same glistening effect asthe acrylic ball.Continuing the lace theme with her chocolatecake, McCollum used brush embroidery on thebottom tier, molded lace on the second tier andvintage-style buttons on the top tier. As a topper,she created a saucer rose. Using round cutters andstarting from the outside working in, she cut circlesof fondant mixed with gum-tex. Each circle wasslightly ruffled, then added on top of the next largerlayer. The saucer’s outside perimeter is the perfectsize to make a rose that will just cover the top tier.“Place some small pieces of wadded paper towl inbetween the layers to keep the ruffles shaped whiledrying,” said McCollum. “The result is a beautiful,full, open rose that is super fast and easy.”For the chocolate cake, McCollum’s husband madethe custom stand, which included a stationary dow-el through the center to stabilize the cake. It wasscrewed from the bottom of the stand and the tierswere placed over the dowels as it was assembled.“Both cakes and decorations used my own marsh-mallow fondant,” said McCollum. “I did add somegum-tex to the fondant I used for the rose and ruf-fles for additional support. When I first started cakedecorating, I hated fondant—I did not like the tasteor the texture. But then I discovered marshmallowfondant and I realized you really limit your creativeabilities if you rule fondant out. I was determinedto find a way to make it work. ACD
24 January/February 2012SUGARARTSALL-STARSOKLAHOMA The theme for this year’sOklahoma State SugarArt Show was“WeddingCakes Rock”a conceptthat let designers’ imagi-nations run wild—withinspiration ranging fromancient warriors to con-temporary art.
www.americancakedecorating.com 25Pamela Tsaldaris, Great BakesCakes, Port Huron, MIPamela Tsaldaris loves competitionsbecause they allow her to createcakes with the goal of pleasing onlyherself. For this unique and color-ful cake, Tsaldaris used a photo of aJapanese Samurai warrior she’d hadin mind for a while.“I love using color, and I think thismakes my work stand out,” saidTsaldaris. “The Samurai image al-lowed me to use strong, bold colorswithin a theme with lots of distinc-tive design elements.”Most of the designs were handmade.Tasldaris handpainted the cornersusing black food color gel. A newtechnique she used for this cake wascoiling extruded fondant arounda wooden skewer. She was able tocreate edges and borders in twocolors by wrapping the colors sideby side on the skewer. When she hadfinished with the main design, shefelt the overall cake was very bold,but almost a bit too masculine, so sheadded some more delicate touchessuch as scrolled piping with tinyblossoms, little golden embossedpulls and other little touches.
26 January/February 2012Annette Hala, Annette’s Cakes,Denver, COSince this year’s theme for OSSASwas open, Annette Hala decidedto create a cake that included onlythings she liked—blue hydran-geas and piped designs. “I love todo piping and came up with theidea to do piping that looked likea soft lace overlay. Lace moldsare very popular right now, butthey didn’t suit the style I wantedfor my cake—a lace that was soft,light and fresh.”Hala had only made hydrangeasonce before and was determinedto make the ones on her cake real-istic. She estimates she eventuallyspent more than 100 hours juston the flowers—cutting, veining,drying, dusting, steaming andwiring each of the more than 600blossoms used on the cake.The lace pattern was inspired by avintage lace table cloth Hala foundon eBay. “After covering the layerswith fondant, while it was still softI marked the basic elements ofthe floral design on the cake,” saidHala. When the fondant was dryI did drop strings for the scallopsand then filled the entire upperarea with freehand cornelli laceusing a PME tip #0. I stopped andstarted the lace at the edges of thefloral pattern I had pre-marked onthe fondant so that I would stillbe able to see where I would over-pipe the flowers and scrolls.”In spite of meticulous siftingand straining of her royal icing,a clogged tip was her greatestfurstration during the 65 hoursit took to complete the pipingdesign. She then added tiny pearldragées to the center of the flow-ers for additional interest.“I believe that successfully enteringa cake competition has as much todo with the patience and endur-ance to complete the cake asartistry or skill,” said Hala. “It’s likerunning a marathon. You don’t ap-preciate the blood, sweat and tearsuntil you’ve done it yourself.”
www.americancakedecorating.com 27Dawn Parrott, CWPC, Cypress, TXA beautiful piece of fabric embellished with sequins and stitchingserved as the starting point for Dawn Parrot’s cake. To create thesequins, Parrott used gelatin. “This was a new technique for me,”said Parrott. “They are amazing—they look just like the real things. Imade 4000 of them for the silver leaves and when I finished them theresult looked exactly like the fabric.”Another first for Parrott was the stringwork in colored royal icing.“The base of the bottom tier was painted in an emerald luster dustand the black extension stringwork created a rippling visual effect asyou walked round the cake,” said Parrott.Asproudassheisofthisdesign,thisisnotthecakesheplannedtobringtoTulsa.“Iwasplanninganotherdesign,butitdidn’tworkout,”saidParrott.“Idecidedtostartfromscratchtwoweeksbeforethecom-petitionandworkedonthisalmostexclusivelyduringthattime.”
28 January/February 2012Carol Lowe, Auburn Hills, MIFor her classically elegant weddingcake, Carol Lowe based her design ona porcelain plate handpainted withgreen vines, colorful butterflies and agold rim.Lowe is proud of her skill with gumpasteflowers and developed an overall designthat showcased a wide range of blos-soms. The butterflies she made with gel-atin, a relatively new technique for her,but she felt they turned out well. Theone design aspect she feels she needs towork on is her brush embroidery.
www.americancakedecorating.com 29Edith Hall, Cakes with the PersonalTouch, Hallsville, MOEdith Hall called this design “vintagecouture” where she used a differ-ent textile effect for each tier. Thebottom tier features 16 panels ofweaving, done with black, sliver andoff-white strips. In order to keep thelines straight and keep the strips fromstretching, Hall cut each on the anglebefore wrapping them around the tier.Other layers feature what Hall called“fantasy flowers”— layers of eversmaller cut-outs, in gradually lightercolors, each piped with black outlines.The narrow, black tiers have simplerversions of these flowers. A ring ofstringwork surrounds the tier, withcurtained openings to showcase thesetiny blossoms.The top tier includes some of theweaving technique, as well as a moreelaborate version of the fantasy flow-ers—some placed on wires for addeddimensionality. A pearl border wasadded to the base of each tier as afinishing touch.
30 January/February 2012Lisa Bugeja, Flour Confections, Pickering, OntarioDuring the 2011 ICES convention in Charlotte, LisaBugeja visted the Bechtler Museum and saw one of theOp Art paintings of Bridget Riley. “Prior to the conven-tion, I had been toying with the idea of doing an Op Artcake,” said Bugeja, “and seeing Riley’s work made it allcome together for me. I love the graphic nature of thedesigns, how they make your eyes practically vibrate,making you feel uncomfortable yet comfortable at thesame time.”Each year for the OSSAS show, Bugeja sets a goal forherself. Her first year, her goal was simply to enter. Thesecond year, her goal was to create as clean a cake—infinish and style—as she could. This year, her chosengoal was to take a classic technique and present it in amodern and contemporary design. She chose Orientalstyle stringwork and decided to encase an entire tierusing that technique in her Op Art theme of blackand white. It took over seven hours to complete the‘cathedral-window’ style stringwork and piping for thattier, while the striping of the base board and the top tiertook six hours each.Although a contemporary version of stringwork washer stated goal, Bugeja is equally proud of her gumpasteflowers. “I had perviously avoided doing realistic flowersfor this competition. I was always afraid they wouldn’tbe ‘good enough’ when compared with the work of allthe other talented designers who entered, but I’m reallypleased with the results.”
www.americancakedecorating.com 31Vivan Pham, San Jose, CAVivian Pham was inspired by Fabergé eggs; she was intrigued bythe delicate, jewelry-like metalwork the famous designs featured.And because she didn’t want her cake to be just round, square oroval, the theme also gave her the idea to explore other shapes.Pham describes her typical style as very intricate, with a lot ofsclupting, so a Fabergé-type look was something she felt comfort-able attempting, although it did require plenty of research into thedesign elements.Because she is self-taught, Pham often experiments to get theresults she wants. For example, she wanted a metallic look that wasneither silver or gold, so she mixed several different combinationsof these dusts together in order to finally achieve the warm, agedsilver she had in mind.To create her ‘silverware platter’, she mixed tylose with water to cre-ate a very thick paste and applied this in only certain areas. She letthis set, but not fully dry, and airbrushed it in this still-tacky stageto create an antique finish.The purple fondant sphere does not touch the encasing ‘crown’,which necessitated some tricky wiring. Pham, who said that it feltlike she worked on the cake “forever”, admits she has no idea howmuch time the design took in total, but says the the 26-hour driveto Tulsa was the most nerve-wracking part of the whole experience.
32 January/February 2012Rebecca Sutterby, Sugar Creations, Uniontown, KSBefore she became a professional cake designer/baker, RebeccaSutterby studied commercial graphics in college. She worked forseveral printing companies doing typesetting, logo design, dark-room work, plate burning and proofreading. As a result, she’s stilla bit infatuated with fonts and typography. Her inspiration for thiscake was an ornamental character font called Calligraphia Latinathat she was drawn to for its gracefulness and complexity.In working to get the designs to fit exactly to her cake sizes, shediscovered that the characters weren’t as symmetrical as they seemedat first glance. “They may have looked fine printed on a page and at asmaller scale,” said Sutterby, “but I needed them to be perfectly even.”To correct and manipulate the characters, she eventually needed tore-draw each one while trying to maintain the overall elegance. Sheused a clay gun to extrude all the finished typography designs.“Asthecakedesignbegantocometogether,IaddedasmanyofmyfavoritethingsasIcouldtothecake:elegantbowsandpleats,alacycut-outedgedetail,beautifulshadesofpurple,somesparkle,andflow-ers–lotsandlotsofflowers,”saidSutterby. Theflowerdesignsincludehydrangea,hellebore,peonies,ranunculus,anemonesandberries.With all the work that went into the typography design, Sutterbywas most exited with how the butterflies turned out. Gumpastewings were hand-cut, wired and veined, then dusted with fiveshades of pink and purple and finally painted each wing was thenindividually wired to a body for finished positioning. ACD
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34 January/February 2012MEETTHENEWCLASSFORRENOCERRTIFICATION2012:Throughout the course of the year, ACD will once again follow the plan-ning and preparations of some of those dedicated cake decorators whohave signed on for certification testing at the annual ICES show and con-vention. We’ll look into their motivations and goals, check in with theirtraining progress and follow up with them after the test. Here are threeprospectiveCMSAs,allworkingtowardCMSAaccreditationinReno.ACD: How did you get startedin cake decorating and sugararts? What’s your background?Chef Joseph Cumm, Philadel-phia, PA:My daughter was born 11 yearsago and when I finished her firstbirthday cake, I realized that Iwas in the wrong field. I beganmaking cakes for friends andfamily. The cakes turned intopastries and I soon found myselfcatering for many weddingsand special events. This was thebeginning of my pastry/cakedecorating career.I graduated summa cumlaude from Johnsonand Wales Universitywith a degree in Bakingand Pastry Arts. Upongraduation, I worked twoyears at Bank of Americacorporate center as As-sistant Executive PastryChef. In October of2008, I took the positionof Department Head ofPastry Arts at SoutheastCulinary and Hospitality College in Bristol,VA, and was nominated for OutstandingFaculty Member 2010 for two-year Virginiastate schools. Currently, I am a Pastry ChefInstructor at The Pennsylvania School ofCulinary Arts, a Division of YTI CareerInstitute. I have been an active member ofICES for the past three years.Kim Bush, Tacoma, WA: When I wasyoung, I never wanted to play sports or takedance classes, I just loved to cook and bake.There was a small cake shop in a little whitehouse near where I lived growing up. When-ever we drove by I begged my mother to letme take classes and, in 1986, I took my firstWilton classes there—I still have my originalWilton instruction books!I made cakesfor friends andfamily off andon and eventu-ally movedon to candymaking aswell. Life takesover as we allknow and cakedecorating un-fortunately wasput on the backburner. But Ihadalwayswantedtoattendthe Wilton SchoolinDarien,IL,andtheonlyperson stoppingmefromgoingwasme.SoIscheduled a vacationfromworkandflewtoChicago. Then,in2009IgraduatedfromtheBaking & PastryprogramfromtheInterna-tional CulinarySchoolattheArtInstituteinSeattle. OvertheyearsIhavetakennumerousclasses from someofthebestintheindustrysuch as NicholasLodge,BronwenWeber,Debbie Brown,LorraineMaKay,KathleenLange, KaseyLackey,LaurenKitchensandRon Ben Isreal.Chef Daniel Swift, Las Vegas, NV: Mybackground with baking started when I was19 and took a job as a baker at The Sand-piper restaurant in Boise, ID, my home town.I did not have any experience so I went andbought a book on baking and started to readand learn as much as I could.After I started school at Boise State’s Culi-nary program, I knew I was going to makebaking a part of my life forever. My first busi-ness was making wedding cakes for friendsat church; they were standard Wilton-stylecakes with lace and ribbons, etc. None ofthe fondant and fancy stuff for me back inthe day.I beganenteringcookingcompetitionsand won ascholarshipto Johnsonand Walesin RhodeIsland, so I took their pastry arts program.There I learned more of the classical cakedecorating, chocolate and sugar work. Leav-ing JWU, I was well rounded as a cook, bakerand pastry chef.Over the next 10 years I traveled and workedat some of the finest hotels, restaurants andprivate clubs from Rhode Island to Hawaii,including the Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua, So-noma Mission Inn and Spa and Stars Seattle,among others. In 2007, I opened my ownbakery, the Pomona Baking Co., with mywife Alice, running it for three years beforeselling it in 2010.IreceivedmyMastersinEducationalFounda-tionsfromtheUniversityofHawaiiin2005andhavetaughthospitality,culinary,bakingandpastrycoursesforthelast11yearsatsuchinstitutionsasKapiolaniCommunityCollege,TheCollinsCollegeofHospitalityManage-mentatCal-PolyPomona,andmostrecentlyastheExecutiveChefInstructorattheUniver-sityofNevada,LasVegas.I am currently in my third year of my doc-toral studies at the University of La Verne,Editor’sNoteIf you have registered for the 2012 Renotest and would like to be included in futureissues, please contact email@example.com. If you previously responded andreceived no reply, I apologize. I had a com-puter crash in October and lost some data,including emails from just before the crash.So please, get in touch with me again!
www.americancakedecorating.com 35working on a Doctorateinorga-nizationalleadershipandfocusingonleadershiptheoryasitappliestoMasterChefs.I am a Certified Master Bakerthrough the Retail Bakers ofAmerica and hold certificationswith the American CulinaryFederation (ACF) as a Certi-fied Executive Chef and a Cer-tified Executive Pastry Chef.ACD: Why are you takingthe test for sugar art certifica-tion?JC: I am constantly trying tochallenge myself in all aspectsof my field, so I suppose this isthe main reason for trying forcertification. I need to prove tomyself that I can do it.KB: Obtaining the CMSA/CSA title has been a personalgoal of mine. It’s one thing to betold by your friends and fam-ily that your cakes and sugarwork are good and that you have talent, butactually being tested on a set of skills withspecific adjudication standards is completelydifferent.DS: I chose to go for the certification inReno because I very much believe in profes-sional development and lifelong learning.The test is very complex and thorough andwill prove to be a great challenge for me. Iam a new member of ICES so this is sort ofjumping into the deep end, but having justcompleted my certification as an executivepastry chef with the ACF and having ownedmy own bakery from 2007-2010, the timingseems right.ACD: Given your overview of the certi-fication handbook, what do you feel areyour strongest skill sets?JC: I have not completely decided on all mytechnique choices but I am getting close. Ifeel my strength will be in intricate pip-ing work, such as Oriental stringwork andbridge and extension work. I also feel quitecomfortable with cast, pulled and blownsugar work.KB: I’m still working on which skill setsI want to be adjudicated on. There are soAn example of string work by Chef Joseph Cumm.A flower-filled wedding cake by Kim Bush.many different skill sets to consider in orderto not only receive the highest point value,but to also complete an aesthetically pleas-ing and cohesive piece of sugar art in thetime allotted.My absolute favorite things to make aresugar/gumpaste flowers. I love all differentkinds of flowers. Gumpaste flowers willmost likely be one of the skill sets I choose.I’m also a fan of what I call “old style” cakedecorating. I love buttercream cakes withroses, swags, stringwork and borders. Ithink piping skills are becoming a lost art.Lambeth is truly a favorite of mine, in addi-tion to pulled sugar.DS: Looking at the handbook it is hardto say what exactly I will create, as theguidelines very detailed. I have alwaysdone well with marzipan, pastillage,chocolate work and sugar, workingvery fast, clean and organized, but nowthat I am 44 and just got my first pairof glasses, all that detail work requiresa bit more attention than when I wasyounger!
36 January/February 2012ACD: Which skills do youfeel you need to devote themost time to?JC: I plan on developing allof my skills to my utmostability. I’ll work on master-ing each skill, practicingthem over and over, and willdo several test runs over thenext several months.KB: I won’t be givingaway any of my secrets formy design plans, but I willshare my plan in the comingmonths. I’ll be working onsome mold-making designsand skills, new flowerdesigns and some new skillsI’ve never tried. Mostly, I’mgoing to practice to makemy dad proud—and havea lot of fun in the process.My dad, who just died thispast December after a longstruggle with cancer, wasso proud of my sugar workand wanted me to be happy.Cake decorating is the onething that has always mademe happy! It’s the absolutebest feeling in the world towatch a person’s expressionand excitement when theysee the special cake for thefirst time that you madeuniquely for them.DS: Planning is critical fromstart to finish in competi-tion and certification tests.One needs to be precise andfocused and practice a greatdeal. As I choose my specificareas, I will let you know asmuch as I can (gotta keepa bit of a surprise for thejudges) but we do submitour drawings in April. Finepiping and fondant workwill be an area to practice,as will flower making andairbrushing.ACD: How to you plan toput your MSA/CMSA titleto work in your future?JC: Certification can onlylead to a bigger and brighterfuture, and I can take whatI learn through the processand share it with my currentand future students. It willalso give me the opportu-nity to perhaps travel andteach sugar arts aroundthe country at local andnational cake shows.KB: Due to my father’shealth, I’ve put my profes-sional goals on hold for thepast two years. I’ve beentaking baby steps with mycake career, but now it’stime to take the leap. Mygoal is to make 2012 mybest year ever. I’m hopingthat the CMSA accredita-tion will open new doors forme. I would love to have myown bakery, teach classes …the sky’s the limit.IwantACDreaderstofol-lowmystory,beinspired,andknowtheycandoittoo!KB: Professionally addingCMSA certification willenhance my marketabilityas a teacher and allow me tointroduce more people tothe benefits of membershipin ICES and the great net-working opportunities thatexist when you participatein an organization focusedon a craft/art that you love.In the end, I would also liketo explore the connectionsbetween great organizationssuch as ICES, the RBA andthe ACF, as well as othertrade-related organizations.There does not seem to bemuch going on betweenthem and with a little effort,I believe that many win/winoutcomes can be created forall members. ACDGumpaste decoration by Chef Joseph Cumm.Lambeth piping designs by Kim Bush.
38 January/February 2012CAKEDECORATORSCAN’TBEWRONG18,000BRITISHIn the past two years the number of visitors to Cake International, the huge and hugely popularBritishcakeandsugarcraftshow,hasgrownby72%.BerylLoveland,ownerofBeryl’sCakeDecorating&Pastry Supplies, attended the most recent Cake International, held in Birmingham, from November 4-6,2011. Here she shares her experience, as well as some of her favorite photos.The first thing you notice is the crowd. The exhibit hallis the size of three football fields and features more than100 exhibitors, but even with all that space, the aisles werepacked! There were more than 18,000 pre-sold tickets andmany additional registrants at the doors for three packeddays of decorating and molten sugar demonstrations, com-petitive judging, vendors from around the world and prizewinning displays.For cake decorators and sugar craft practitioners of all skillsand ages, it was a wonderful place to be. When we left for lunch, theystamped our hands, just like at a dance. As I put my program down topresent my hand, the guard jokingly told me to watch it carefully as allthe programs had sold out the first hour the show opened.This is truly an international cake show. Vendors, attendees and par-ticipants come from not only the U.K., Europe, the U.S. and Canada,but from as far as Australia, South Africa, Korea, as well as most of theSouth and Central American countries.Isawnewproductsincluding cutters, fast-acting silicone molds,newcol-orsofdiscoandlusterdust and many new books. One of the bestpartsoftheshowformewasbeing able to meet some of my favorite authorsandcelebritycakedecoratorsincluding Massie Parish, Carol Deacon,MarionFrost,AnnPickardandDebbie Brown.Cake International has become so popular that the show producershave decided to add a spring show, to be held in London. So mark yourcalendars now for April 27-29 and November 9-11, 2012. And for any-one who might be worried about driving on the ‘wrong’ side of the roadto get to these shows, we never needed a car. We took public transporteverywhere, from London Heathrow to the London Underground tothe railroad to the bus right to the entrance of the exposition in Bir-mingham. There is even a railroad station at the NEC and (I checked) astop by the London venue as well. ACDWeblinks: ichf.co.uk/cake/Beryls.comFacebook.com (search for Beryls Cake Decorating)Twitter.com/BeryLovelandPICTURES FROM AN EXPOSITIONSugarcraft is alive and well in the U. K. Perhaps it’s because they start them young.There were competitive displays for ages 8-9, 10-12, under 18, and of course, adults.The adult competitions included International (outside of the U. K.), novelty cakes,Christmas cakes, wedding cakes (more than two tiers), figurines, miniature sugarflower displays, floral sugarcraft and much, much more. At top, that’s me in the pinkshirt with Ann Pickard, the author of AnIdiot’sGuidetoChristmasCakesand manyother books.
www.americancakedecorating.com 39CHARACTERSWELCOMEI admit I love character cakes and Cake International was filled withamazing examples —whimsical, humorous, romantic and charming.These particularly appealed to me because of the skill and subject. Itwas difficult to choose from the incredible array of cakes on displaybut I felt these were quite spectactular.
www.americancakedecorating.com 41Water is a convenient means for adjustingthe temperature of batters and doughs. Usingcold water in pastry dough, for example,keeps fats from melting and ensures a flakiercrust. Likewise, carefully controlling watertemperature in bread-making ensures thatmixed dough is at the proper temperature forfermentation. Heavy doughs, in particular,generate frictional heat from mixing. A smallamount of frictionalheat is acceptable,even desirable, butwith yeast doughs,too much heat warmsyeast above theideal temperature forproper fermentation.The amount of waterin a batter or doughaffects its viscosity or consistency. In fact,the consistency of a flour mixture defineswhether it is a batter or a dough. Batters areunbaked flour mixtures that are relativelyhigh in moisture, making them thin andpourable or scoopable. Examples includeCommonMixingMethodsMethod Description ExampleStraight dough All ingredients combined and mixed until dough is smooth and well developed Yeast-raised breadsSponge and dough Liquid, yeast, part of flour, part of sugar mixed into a batter or dough (called a Yeast-raised breads made with sponge or pre-ferment) and allowed to ferment; added to remaining ingredients poolish (liquid sponge), biga and mixed until dough is smooth and well developed (Italian sponge, usually stiff), levain (naturally fermented sponge), or other spongeCreaming or conventional Shortening and sugar creamed; eggs added, then liquids (if any) added alternately Shortened cakes, coffee with sifted dry ingredients at low speed cakes, cookies, cake-like muffinsTwo-stage or blending Sifted dry ingredients blended on low speed; softened fat cut in with paddle; liquids High-ratio cakes added slowly to blend in two stages (eggs added in second stage); beaten to aerateLiquid shortening All ingredients blended on low speed, then whipped on high, and finally on High-ratioliquidshorteningcakes medium speed to aerateSponge or whipping Warmed whole eggs (or yolks) and sugar whipped until very light and thick; Sponge cake (biscuit), genoise, liquids added; sifted dry ingredients gently folded in, followed by melted butter ladyfingers, madeleines (if any) or whipped whites (if separatedAngel food Egg whites and sugar whipped until soft peaks form; sifted dry ingredients Angel food cake gently folded inChiffon Sifted dry ingredients stirred or blended on low speed; oil and other liquid Chiffon cake ingredients added and lightly blended until smooth; egg whites and sugar whipped until soft peaks form and folded into flour-oil mixtureMuffin or one-stage Sifted dry ingredients stirred or blended on low speed; liquid fat and other Muffins, quick breads, liquid ingredients added in one stage and lightly blended just until moistened quick coffee cakesBiscuit or pastry Sifted dry ingredients stirred or blended on low speed; solid fat rubbed or cut Biscuits, scones, in by hand or with paddle; liquids stirred in gently pie pastry, blitz puff pastrycake, crêpe, and muffin batters. Doughs areunbaked flour mixtures that are relatively lowin moisture, making them thick and mold-able. Examples include bread, pie pastry,cookie, and baking powder biscuit doughs.Batter and dough consistency is importantfor proper shaping and for proper leaveningof baked goods.Unlike manyingredients used inbaking, fats do notdissolve in water, norare they hydrated bywater. Rather, solidfat breaks into smallchunks, and liquidfat (oil) breaks intotiny droplets duringmixing to form anemulsion. These small chunks and tiny drop-lets spread throughout batters and doughs,coating particles that they are attracted to.Anything coated with fat or oil cannot easilyabsorb water. In fact, that is one reason whyfats and oils are effective tenderizers. Fats andTheSpecialRoleofWaterEven when water is not an ingredient in aformula, it plays a part during the mixingof all batters and doughs, because manyingredients are significant sources of water.Ingredients do not need to be fluid to containhigh amounts of water. Sour cream and ba-nanas, for example, are over 70 percent water,cream cheese over 50 percent and butterover 15 percent.Paula Figoni is a food scientist and associateprofessor in the College of Culinary Arts atJohnson Wales University in Providence,Rhode Island. She also has more than tenyears of experience in product developmentand food science at The Pillsbury Companyand Ocean Spray Cranberries, Inc.oils coat structure builders such as glutenproteins and starches, and interfere with theirability to hydrate and form structure. ACD
42 January/February 2012THINKINGOUTSIDETHEPLATESugarartistsLoriSladykGilmoreandKarenSladykareknownfortheirinnovativeapproachtocakepresentations.American Cake Decorating spotted their‘hanging cake’(shown below right) at the 2011 ICES show and conven-tion in Charlotte, NC.We asked for more information and the pair gladly shared information on where they lookfor inspiration and some how-to advice for creating your own hanging display.Whether you are a serious hobbyist or a career professional in sugararts, you are likely looking for something new to impress friends orclients. We like looking for cake ideas in everyday items, so shop-ping is always a cake adventure, whether it’s in a garden shop, homeimprovement store, thrift shop or a store known for home decor.Inspiration EverywhereIf flowers can be displayed on a stand, so can a cake, which is whywe love shopping at garden centers. Look for stands with varyingsupport heights to set off different tiers—check out the bird baths,solar light posts and decorative lanternsas options for pillars or bases.After checking out the garden shop, try ahome improvement store. There you canpurchase decorative chains often used forceiling fans and hanging plants. These col-orful chains can be used to hang individ-ual tiers of cakes from the ceiling or froman arched trellis. Consider glass blocks foruse as a base, or as a separator betweentiers. Some big box stores also have homedécor sections where you might choose adecorative birdcage to display your cake.Similar wrought iron pieces, shaped asbicycles or carts, can be used. And whileChristmas lights are a popular addition totable edges, consider also that a revolvingChristmas tree stand is sturdy enough tohold and light your cake.The thrift stores can always provideinteresting, although inconsistent ideas.Look for retro items such as a recordplayer, which can be used as a base andas a way to make your cake revolve. Anddon’t ignore the toy section which mightprovide an idea for a cake on wheels!HANGING CAKESStands designed for hanging plants work greatfor cakes.When evaluating them for use, look fora wide base to reduce the possibility of tipping.Choose materials such as wrought iron, strongenough to support a layer cake. On the left, anelegant tapered structure supports one tier onthe bottom and another hanging from a chain.On the right is the‘mirror image’hanging cakewe showed in Charlotte.Photo by Craig Mierop
www.americancakedecorating.com 43A walk in the woods can result in another type of inspiration. Atree stump is an obvious plate from nature, but what about a tieredstump with several protruding branches accommodating three ormore tiers? For one event we positioned a stump under a tree so thatwe could have ‘falling leaves’ suspended by fishing line floating justabove the cake.And who isn’t drawn to a swing hanging from a tree? So justimagine a well-placed cake anchored on a swing—that will reallyturn some heads. Winter brings a new set of ideas: Create your owndecorated ice base by using a large plastic bin filled with distilledwater and float some pine cones, pine needles and holly berriesfrozen into place. For one of our winter events, we made a batteryoperated snow machine which gently dispensed wafer-punched‘snowflakes’ falling from the sky.Many clients are looking for a traditional cake, while others are hop-ing to have something new and unique. We’d like to report that all ofour risks have paid off but the reality is, some experiments were justthat. Others, like our first hanging cake, were only successful in thatwe managed to deliver them! It certainly wasn’t a financial success, asit took about twenty hours to produce. But with each successive onewe’ve been cleaner and more efficient. And even though our ideassometimes don’t come off the way we hoped, we believe it’s best tobe armed with a variety of options and ‘what ifs’ to stay competitiveand to keep ourselves fresh and excited.How to hang a cakeYou will need the following supplies:• Two wood plates the size of the bottom layer• One wood plate the size of the middle layer• 1 diameter wood dowel, 36 long• One drywall screw at least 1 1/2 to 2 long,narrow enough to fit in the 1 dowel• 12 of decorative chain (75 lb. hold)Note: Your decorative chain must be 75 lb. support weight, the standardfor hanging a plant or ceiling fan. This chain is available in many colorsat most hardware stores. Choose a color to match or compliment the cakeand the hanger.• One hook with a screw end to join the dowel to thedecorative chain• Wood dowels or your preferred cake supports• Cordless drill with a 1 bit and slightly smaller bit as well• Saw to cut the 1 dowel to sizeFirst, plan the finished height of your cake, taking into account all thedifferent tiers. For a 12 finished cake, cut an 11 1/2 section from thedowel.Using a drill bit smaller than the dry wall screw, carefully drill a guidehole in the center of one end of the dowel. Do the same for the woodplate which will be the bottom of the cake. Screw the bottom plateinto the wood dowel.CAKES FOR THE BIRDSBird baths and decorative bird cages can be fantastic pieces to use for displayand presentation and can be adapted to many different themes and events.When using any non-typical stand or display, be sure to select foodsafe, non-permeable materials, or use a cake board. All photos by Conway Chuong,except where noted.
44 January/February 2012Drill 1 holes in the center of the two other remainingwood plates, checking to make sure the holes are largeenough to accomodate the wood dowel. Screw the hookinto the top of the dowel. If the wood dowel should splitfor some reason, begin again.If you plan to decorate the bottom of the cake, frost orplace fondant on the plate now. You can also hide smallteacup hooks on the bottom plate to make flowers staysecurely after the cake is set up.Begin putting the display together by cutting a 1 corefrom the center of the bottom tier and placing this tiercentered sround the dowel. Then, using small wood dow-els or your favorite cake supports, add several supports tothis tier of the cake to nearly the edge of plate.Place the next wood plate on top of the tier you just as-sembled, remembering to frost the bottom if it is going toshow. Add the cake and supports as with the bottom tier,then repeat for the last tier. The core dowel should now behidden but the hook visible just at the top.Transport the cake as you usually do but do not hang thecake until the final set up. If you are using any dummytiers, these should be on the bottom as the cake can becut while hanging.Note: We also hung a cake using plexiglass instead ofwood. This enabled us to have a photo sheet on the bot-tom of the cake, which was then reflected in mirrors placedbelow the cake. ACDLori Sladyk Gilmore is a high schoolculinary arts teacher who also teachesvarious adult ed classes. She is par-ticularly interested in working with,and eating her share and your share ofchocolate.Karen Sladyk is a creative sugar hob-byist who teaches food crafts in thecommunity and at a local college. Tofinance her cake decorating purchases,she works as a college professor teachingOccupational Therapy. They both livein northeastern Connecticut.
www.americancakedecorating.com 45MakeSUREyouregettingyourSLICE!SubscribetoSLICE,yourFREEonlinemonthlynewsletterfromAmericanCakeDecorating,bringingyouuniqueandspecializeddecoratingideasandnews fromcakeeventsanddecoratorsaroundtheworld.VisitAmericanCakeDecorating.comandclickonMonthlyeNewsletter’Cake and Sugarart Show CompetitionFebruary 25 26, austin, tX• Judged Divisional Competition• Themed Showcake Competition• Onsite Decorating Contest• Celebrity Demonstration Panel• Vendors and more!Celebrity Classes before and after theshow with:Lauren Kitchens, Kaysie Lackey, KathleenLange, Nicholas Lodge, Mike McCarey, Roland Marsha WinbecklerMini-Classes during the show with:Lisa Berczel, Lisa Bujega, Amy Eilert, MikeElder, Burton Farnsworth, Debbie Goard, DianeGruenberg, Yvette Humbert, Lauren Kitchens,Ewald Notter, Lourdes Reyes, Ruth Rickey,Janet Rosebeary, James Rosselle, MarinaSousa, Wayne Steinkopf, Michaelle Stidham,Peggy Tucker, Eric Woller and Sharon ZambitoNorth Austin Event Center10601 N Lamar Blvd, Austin, TXCompetition rules, online registration andinformation:www.ThatTakesTheCake.orgSponsors:
www.americancakedecorating.com 47COMPONENTS:One 3 x 3 square cake or dummyOne 4 x 2 square cake or dummyOne 6 x 4 square cake or dummyOne 8 x 5 square cake or dummyOne 10 x 2 square cake or dummyStress-Free Cake Support System or doweling method of choice1 kg Massa couture orange rolled fondant750 g Massa Americana white rolled fondant250 g Massa white gumpasteChef Nicholas notes: Massa products are available at auiswiss.com.FOR DESIGN AND ASSEMBLY:Large white square pedestal cake plate10, 8, 6, 4 and 3 square corrugated cardboard(only if using real cake)Kitchen Aid mixer with pasta attachmentClay extruderCarved-end toothpicks“Fun Foam” sheetsTuscan tile impression matFMM straight frill cutter (Set No.1)FMM geometric cutter setFMM patchwork cutter setPatchwork trellis/lattice cutterPatchwork large alphabet and key setPatchwork Christmas rose setStyrofoam disc (covered in plastic)ISAC foam formerISAC flower drying cupPatchwork/Tap-It mat3 1/4 fluted square cutterSilk toolMini palette knifePME cutting wheelMetal knife toolLarge stick (or ball tool)Small parchment paper cone for piping gelConfectioners glazeSemolinaGel colors in leaf green and lemon yellowPowder colors in yellow and orange or Harrison’s YellowSuper pearlCornstarchShorteningEgg whitePiping gelTylose powderCosmetic sponge with a hole in the middleHOW-TO:Chef Nicholas notes: When designing contemporary themed cakes, add-ing visual interest by alternating colors, varying the height of the tiers,and offsetting their position will really make the cake ‘pop.’This cake was stacked directly onto a modern white cake stand, securingthe layers with a mixture of fondant softened with piping gel.1 Roll out the fondant —both orange and white—to cover the fourlargest cake tiers; dowel as needed (if using real cake), and stack, sothe creativity can begin.2 On the bottom 10 cake, roll out some white 50/50 paste (50/50paste is made by taking equal quantities of Massa Americana andMassa gumpaste, combining them together with a little vegetableshortening). Feed the paste through the pasta attachment on settingtwo. Rub a little shortening onto your work surface, and lay your pasteon top. Cut out eight sections of the border design using the straightfrill cutter. Trim to 3/4 wide, lay face side down onto a strip of foam.The vibrant orange and bright white color combination for this cake by Chef Nicholas Lodge is taken straight offthe European fashion runways, while the design was inspired by a mix of contemporary and traditional ceramicsand fabrics.
48 January/February 20123 Brush a little piping gel over the back and flip up to attach to thebase of the cake. Repeat this process on all sides. Extrude someorange fondant using a small plain round disc through the clayextruder to create a strand border, and attach with small dots ofpiping gel at two or three points on each side.4 For the 8 cake, roll out some white 50/50 paste and modifiedorange fondant. (Thisis done by mixing150g of Massa orangefondant with 3g oftylose powder and 3gof shortening. Place ina zip-top bag to firm upfor approximately 10-15min. before using). Rollout both pastes on thepasta machine on set-ting three. Cut out usingthe 1 square from thegeometric cutter set.Place on foam to firmup for a few minutes,then attach aroundthe 8 cake with a little piping gel, starting in the back corner andcontinuing around the cake.5 Extrude and attach an orange fondant strand border as for the10 tier.6 For the 6 cake, roll out some white 50/50 paste and run itthrough setting two on the pasta machine. Cut out using the smalldecorative cutter from the patchwork cutter set. Trim the pieces forthe top and bottom rows as shown in the photograph using a minipallet knife and attach to the cake using a little piping gel.7 Extrude and attach an orange fondant strand border as for theother tiers.8 For the 4 cake, roll outsome white 50/50 paste,followed by the previouslymodified orange fondanton setting three on thepasta machine. Rub someshortening on the cuttingedge of the patchwork trel-lis/lattice cutter. Press thehandle of the cutter intoa Styrofoam disc coveredin plastic wrap. Roll thepaste over the cutter andremove the trellis, leavingthe squares. Tap the cutteron your work surface to re-move the squares, or pressout with a modeling tool.Transfer squares and allowto dry on the foam for ap-proximately five minutesthen attach as per thelarger squares on the 8cake. Extrude and attachan orange fondant borderas for the other tiers.
www.americancakedecorating.com 499 For the 3 cake, take 100g of orange fondant, roll out to a 7 by 3wide rectangle and run through the pasta machine on setting one.Emboss with the Tuscan tile impression mat. Cut a 12 by 3 strip,roll up and attach around the 3 cake, starting in the back corner.Trim as needed.10 Roll out white 50/50paste,1/8 thick and cut outusing a 31/4 fluted squarecutter. Attach to the top of the3 cake.11 Roll out some orangemodified fondant, 3/8 thick,and cut out a 1 1/2 squareusing the medium squarecutter in the geometric cutterset. Make a slit in the paste toaccommodate the monogramframe (see photograph for placement).12 Remove an offset 1 1/2 square from the white top of the cakeusing the same medium square cutter, to accommodate the orangesquare. Attach. Extrude and attach an orange fondant border as forthe other tiers.13 For the monogram frame,roll out white gumpaste, usingthe setting three on the pastamachine. Cut out a frameusing the large and mediumsquare from the geometriccutter set.14 Roll out some orangemodified fondant, using thesetting four on the pastamachine. Rub a little shorten-ing on the yellow side of theTap-It mat and on the cuttingedge of the letter. Cut out theletter of choice from the largealphabet and key set.15 Attach in the frame with a few dots of pip-ing gel. Allow the monogram frame to dry onthe foam for three hours, then turn over andallow to dry for several hours or overnight.16 Once dry, secure in the preparedcavity with white 50/50 paste softenedwith piping gel.17 For the flowers,take a ball of gum-paste, about the sizeof a corsage pin head,and color it with theleaf green.18 Dip the carved end of a toothpick into eggwhite and insert into the ball of paste. Form into a3/8 long teardrop shape. Mark eight vertical lineswith the metal knife tool.19 Roll out some gumpasteand color it lemon yellow. Pressthe handle of the stamen cutterfrom the Christmas rose setinto a Styrofoam disc coveredin plastic wrap. Rub the cutterwith some shortening, lay thepaste on top and roll over thetop with the large stick to cutout. Remove the paste with astraight pin and place on foam.20 Brush the base withegg white and attach thetwo layers separatelyaround the center. Moldto secure at the base.Separate the points witha toothpick and brushthe tips with confec-tioners glaze and dip into ‘pollen’ (semolina colored with a mix ofyellow and orange powders) or Harrison’s yellow dusting powder.Allow to dry for 30 minutes.21 Roll out some white gumpaste, setting four on the pastamachine, and cut out a Christmas rose on the yellow side of themat. Transfer to the foam and roll over each petal with the silk tool.Soften the edge of the petals on the back side with the large stick.
50 January/February 201222 Turn over, place on a cosmetic sponge with a hole in its center,and using the rounded end of the large stick, hollow out the centerof the Christmas rose, then brushwith the pearl dust.23 Brush egg white around thebase of the stamens and threadthrough the center of the petals.Mold to secure and place into athe former and flower drying cupto set.24 Once dry, attach to cake. ACDChef Nicholas Lodge was inducted into the International Cake Explora-tion Societe (ICES) Hall of Fame in 2001, being the youngest person everto receive this honor. In 2010, Dessert Professional magazine named ChefNicholas one of the top 10 cake artists and top 10 pastry chefs, making himthe first to receive both awards in one year.Chef Nicholas divides most of his time between teaching at his retail storeand school in Norcross, GA, The International Sugar Art Collection, and theFrench Pastry School in Chicago where he is a chef instructor in the L’Art duGateau program. When not teaching, Chef Nicholas spends his spare timesearching for new and innovative ideas that can be introduced and adaptedinto cakes and sugar art. Part of this inspiration comes from his love of gar-dening, fashion and interior design.Weblinks: NicholasLodge.com
54 January/February 20123 For the 10 tier, level all three cake rounds and split them in halfhorizontally. Fill between the layers with buttercream. Stackjust two of the cake rounds (four layers of cake in total) on the 10board. Cut six pieces of dowel to 3 long, and insert them verticallyinto the filled 10 cake. Spread a layer of buttercream on top.4 Place the remaining 8 round cake board in the center. Take thetwo remaing 10 cake rounds and fill between the layers with but-tercream. Stack this on top of the 8 cake board. The result will be a10 tier measuring 6 high.5 Cut another six pieces of dowel to 3 in length. Insert the dowelsvertically into the top half of the stacked 10 tier.6 Spread a thin layer of buttercream on all three tiers. Refrigeratefor 20 minutes. Cover the top and sides with a second, thicker coatof buttercream. Smooth with the dough scraper and refrigerate forone hour.7 Roll out all the remaining white fondant to 1/4 thick and coverall three tiers. Smooth with the fondant smoother and trim theexcess with the pizza cutter. Save the trimmings, wrapped in plasticwrap. Transfer the 10 tier to the cake drum, securing in place witha dab of royal icing.8 Roll out the leftover fondant to1/8 thick. Using the mediumleaf cutter, cut out medium-sized leaves.9 Working on one leaf at a time, place the leaves on the thin pieceof foam and thin the edges with the round stick.10 Starting from the base and working your way up, attach theleaves to the side of the 10 tier with water.
www.americancakedecorating.com 5511 Cover the entire tier, leaving an 8 diameter opening on the top,where the second tier will sit.12 Mix 1 teaspoon of gumpaste with 1/4 cup of water to make anedible “glue.” Brush the side of the 8 tier with this glue. Holdingthe tier at an angle, sprinkle the side with the fine silver dragées orfondant beads. Try to coat the sides as thoroughly as you can. Fillin the gaps without silver dragées with the pearl dragées or fondantbeads.13 Roll out the remaining white fondant to 1/8 thickness. Withthe fondant ribbon cutter, cut 1 wide strips that are long enoughto wrap around the 6 tier. Moisten half of the strip lengthwisewith water. Fold it over so that the strip is 1/2 wide.14 With the seam facing out, attach the strip to the top of the6-inch (15 cm) tier with a little water. Allow the ends to overlapand trim the excess with a knife.
56 January/February 2012Annie Dam was born in Saigon and grew up in Canada. She currentlyowns and operates a cake boutique in Edmonton, Alberta. She haswritten about cake decoration for a range of publications and has hadher wedding cakes and cupcakes featured on blogs and in magazinesaround the world.Weblinks: FireflyBooks.comCakeCouture-edibleart.ca15 Roll 1/2 teaspoon of fondant into a ball to form a button. Attachwith a little water where the ends of the strip overlap.16 Repeat steps 13 and 14 until the entire tier is encircled withstrips of fondant and you have a row of buttons down the front ofthe tier.17 Cut six 2 pieces of dowel and insert them vertically into the 8tier, approximately 2 from the edge.18 Place a dab of royal icing on top of the dowels. Set the 8 tier ontop of the 10 tier. Then, set the 6 tier on top of the 8 tier.19 Sharpen one end of a 12 long dowel. Drive it vertically into thecenter of all three tiers. Cover the hole on top with some royal icing.20 Using royal icing, attach medium silver dragées or fondantbeads to the top edge and base of the second tier.21 Finish off the cake drum by attaching the ivory ribbon with aglue stick. ACD
www.americancakedecorating.com 57With our NEW minimagazine, we areoffering you anopportunity tosample the wealth ofinformation and ideasthat can be accessedthrough a subscriptionto American CakeDecorating.This free taste offersthe chance to:• See our signaturestep-by-stepinstruction firsthand• Try a completedecorating idea• Sample theinspiration eachissue offersRequest your freecopies of our newmini-magazine today!www.americancakedecorating.com/mmorder.htmlGIVE YOURAUDIENCEA FREE“TASTE”…of AmericanCake DecoratingMagazine!The perfect take away for your cake decorating students, yourlocal events, competitions or get togethers!
www.americancakedecorating.com 59FOR DESIGN AND ASSEMBLY:PhotoFrost® Cut-N-Frost Sheets™ in greenPhotoFrost® Cut-N-Frost Sheets™ in red (or your choiceof flower color)Foam cutting matStencil for rose pattern (included upon request with PhotoFrostSheet order)Leaf cookie cuttersNon-toxic food-safe felt tip highlighter markerNon-toxic food-safe felt tip black markerScissorsSpatulaTylose-water gel for glueApplicator wand for tyloseHOW-TO:1 Remove the green PhotoFrost sheet from the backing, lay onthe foam cutting mat. Firmly press the leaf cookie cutter to cut theedible sheet.2 Repeat using multiple size leaf cutters if available, creating twoor three leaves for as many flowers as you plan to make. Use a non-toxic marker to draw veins on leaves.3 A standard spiral stencil has been modified with mild scallop pat-tern to create a rose petal effect. Lay the stencil over the red Photo-Frost sheet and use the non-toxic felt highlighter to trace the patternresulting in a faint line on the edible sheet to guide your scissors.Lew notes: If you have an electronic die cutter we can supply the file toimport into the program for a perfect cut via your computer. The rest of uscut by hand. The result is a spiral with irregular outer edges.4 Turn the shiny side of the sheet upward. Curl and roll the spiralinto a cone-shaped coil.This simple rose by Lew Churnick is an adaptation of a coiled paper rose ornament. “I am told the originalmethod may have been shown by Martha Stewart many years ago”he said. If so, thank you Martha!
60 January/February 20125 At the end of the coil strip apply tylose gel under where the coilwill stand upright.Lew notes: Apply a very thin layer of tylose to avoid melting through thebottom flower layer and use a non-stick or waxed surface to allow finaldrying. A spatula will then slide easily under the finished flower to beremoved without breaking.6 Insert leaves, pressthe back end into thetylose to attach.7 Roll the coiled flowerupright, gently unfurlto arrange petals andpress into the tyloseto anchor. Repeat foras many roses as yourdesign requires.Lew notes: Altering the stencil pattern allows you to create a variety offlowers using the same technique, such as this water lily. ACDStarting in 1995 with a smallcustom cake shop, Lew and TriciaChurnick created the PhotoFrostEdible Photo Method and wenton to become manufacturers ofedible inks and icing sheets underthe PhotoFrost Decorating Systemsbrand name, supplying more than50 countries. This technique isbrought to you by the team at Pho-toFrost Decorating Systems to showone of many ways to use PhotoFrostCut-N-Frost Sheets. They are alwaysat work thinking up new techniquesand share many of their ideas onlineat their website or their YouTubechannel. The company is currentlyrunning a contest—wedding cakesfeaturing innovative PhotoFrost product techniques—with a top prizeof a new ZING electronic die cutter.Weblinks: Photofrost.comFacebook.com/photofrostYoutube.com/user/photofrost01Photofrost.com/contest
www.americancakedecorating.com 61Serving bakeries,pastry chefs andspecialty candy145 uniqueessential oils,flavorings,extracts andemulsionsAvailable at ﬁnecake and candysupply storeseverywhere.Est. 1962Bulk and ConsumerSizes AvailableKosherCertiﬁed800-862-8620 • www.LorAnnOils.com
62 January/February 2012FROMOURCONTRIBUTORSFAVORITETOOLSDecorators from the wedding cake showcases share what tools they turn to again and again.f “My favorite tool is by farmy own hands. I love creat-ing small edible art pieces forour customers,” said PamelaTsaldaris. “But I have foundthe small tools typically usedfor working with clay to be invaluable. You can usethem to make small eyes, details on hands and faces,evenhair.”g “My favorite tool is myExact-O knife. Its a basicone that I got from HobbyLobby,” said Anh Gross. “Iswitch the blade out regu-larly; you get cleaner cutswhenthebladeissharp.”f “I often talk about the tentools I can never be without,”said Kim Morrison, “but if I haveto choose just one, it wouldbe the Holly Products CeramicRandom Veining Tool. With justthistool,Icanveinmanyflowerswithout needing all the siliconveiners. Daisies, pansies, peonies, sweetpeas and poppieslook softer and more realistic, and the tool is wonderful forhelpingtoreflextheedgesofotherflowerpetals.”f “The dresden tool—veiner on one end andfoot tool on the other,”said Earlene Moore. “Ilovetousethistooltoaddalittlemoredimensiontoa design. A deeper vein-ing, cleaning up edges,trimming in small places and pressing the extrafondant down between the pearls when you use thebeadmakers.Thenusefootendforsmoothingdesignelementsordeepeningraiseddesigns.”i “One of my favorite ‘go to’ tools in the summer and when I amin a hurry is my food dehydrator,” said Nancy Mitchko, below left.“Themotorhasagentlywarmingfanthatallowsmetodrythingsquicklyandcontrolthesummerhumidity. Ifmypiecesaretaller,Iplacetheminasturdycardboardboxandthenplacethetopmotorovertheboxtop. Piecesarereadyquickerandcanbemovedoncethey have cooled to room temperature. It works like a charm, especially in thethickNJhumidity.”i “I love the Viennese Spatula from Geraldine Randalsome,” said JoanneWieneke,belowright. “ItisalwaysbesidemewheneverImakeflowers,ribbons,mold figures, decorate a cake, trim and cut—fondant and gumpaste does notsticktoit!”
www.americancakedecorating.com 63ProductsEverything for the Art, Craft Businessof Cake Decorating Candy MakingCK Products,LLC • 310 Racquet Drive,Fort Wayne IN 46825Tel:888.484.2517 • Fax:800.837.2686CKproducts.com • firstname.lastname@example.orgThe one-stop shop for all yourcake decorating needs.wholesale • retail • mail order • decorating classeswww.nycake.comNY CAKE BAKING DIST.56 West 22nd StreetNewYork, NY 10010212-675-CAKENY CAKE WEST10665 W. Pico Blvd.Los Angeles, CA 90064310-481-0875Hydrangea Plunger Set#14813Peony Cutter Set #7032Peony Petal Veiner #7026Fancy Mini Scroll Silicone Mold #W319h “Probably my one most indispensable tools is my palette knife. It’s anartist’stool–foundintheartsupplyaisleofthelocalcraftstore,”saidCarolLowe.“Ipreferthestylewithafairlylargetriangularblade. It’svery,verythinandveryflexible—makespickingupthoseultra-thingumpastepet-alseasy. Ialsouseitforcuttingedges. It’salwaysrightathand,soIrarelyhavetogolookingformypizzacutter,insteadIjustzipitalongtheedgeofarulertocutafondantribbon.”g “My favorite decorating tool is mypasta roller,” said Theresa McCollum.“It is easier to roll the fondant andgumpaste thin when making sugarflowers.Italsohelpsmakethefondantmore consistent in thickness to use insomeofyourmoldsandcutters.
64 January/February 2012f“My favorite tool,” said Lisa Bugeja,“… how can I pick? I have a fewtoolsIcouldnotlivewithout. OneofmyfavoritesismyPME1.5tip—Iloveit! And I cannot live without my small palette knife—I get angry if anyonetries to borrow it! Its perfect for gliding under strips of fondant or gum-paste, for lifting small items, and for making small adjustments to ribbonsand bands on cakes. And my ultimate favorite cutter set—the nine pieceteardropset—Iusedittomakealltheflowers(shortofthesweetpeas).It’samazing.Youcanmakeazilliondifferentflowersfromthatset.h “My favorite tool is theRound D/S Multi-PurposeVeiner by Sunflower SugarArt,” said Annette Hala. “Ihave used it for so manydifferent flowers, includingmyhydrangeas!”f“ThetoolIuseonalmosteverycakeis a sugar craft gun, or clay extruder. Itcomes in three sizes—from small tolarge—with various discs,” said BobJohnson.“Iuseittotrimoutmyboardsbecause it gives a professional finishwith less time. It can be used to framepatterns or give added dimension toa design. I usually use a mix of 50/50gumpaste/fondant with extra short-ening kneaded in and place a smallpiece of plastic wrap on the end thatwill be loaded into the gun to preventitfromsticking.”g “My favorite tool ismy ball tool,” said Irene B.Maston. “Its one with ballbearing type ends and awooden handle center. (Ihave a tendency to breakplastic ones!) I make so many cakes with flowersandleavesonthem,asweareratherwoodsyherein Vermont, that I find I use it like another hand. It’salso great for sculpting and making impressions incakestoattachedflowerssothey havea3-Deffect.”f “Its hard to pick a favorite tool,” said Rebecca Sutterby. “Thereare several that I find indispensable. Something Ive been experi-mentingwithlatelyaretheMarthaStewartborderpunchesmadeforscrapbooking.Theresahugevarietytochoosefromandwhilenot all of them are suitable for gumpaste, many make wonderfuledgedetailsonbowsanddraperies.”g “Although I love my pasta machine,”said Vivian Pham, “my other favorite tool isthe Sculpey Style and Detail tool set—threepiecesthatareamazinglyverstatile.Notonlydo I love the metal balls, the other end ofthe tool has this rubber shaping piece, thatmakes it easy for me to sculpt faces, necks,arms,etc.It’ssomethingthateveryoneneedsforsculpting.”
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