I am so disillusioned. I just don't get it. My cakes were the ONLY ones entered in the fair...and I didn't get a first place! I walked in after the judging, saw my second and third place, and asked the kid working there where the first place cake was. He said all the cakes were out. So I asked why there was no first place, and he said sometimes the judge doesn't think the cake merits a first place. I can understand that, but come on! It was a good cake! On top of that, I saw the entries from last year, and my cake is better! Also, they were entered in separate classes...the crooked cake was in "other", and the dog was in "Fair special"...it followed the theme of "Paws in Placerville".
I am just so irritated! Anyway...the cakes are in my photos. Doghouse ("Doggie Daydream") and flower crooked cake.
Judges award the ribbons based on the individual cake, not compared to others. I did not see the two cakes you mentioned in your photos.
Judges look for technique, difficulty, any errors. they look for even edges, even borders, color, etc.
There might be only one cake, and they might not award a ribbon at all.
The cakes are not showing up yet...
And trust me...compared to the first place winner last year...all white, all buttercream, uneven edging and borders...
On top of that, I only saw one woman judging. It was odd. I will be curious to see if there is a scorecard. I did not notice her using one with any other entries (cookies and breads and pies).
Your cakes are showing up in the photos now, and they're both great. I especially like the one with the flowers. Here's what you should have gotten for them:
I think I remember you talking about entering, and that there was a separate category for pros...my guess would be that your cakes looked to the judge like they should be in that other category, because they're so nicely done. Usually the judge of a cake decorating contest has some interest in cake decorating, and most people tend to judge others by their own abilities. You probably did a nicer job than she would have been able to and that was the issue.