Cake Central Is Full Of Amazing Talent!!

Decorating By Amymnn Updated 19 Jun 2009 , 8:00pm by jenlg

Amymnn Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 5:08am
post #1 of 28

Anyone else have the thought "Wow, I'm pretty good at this cake decorating stuff" and then come here to Cake Central, start looking at the photos here and realize "Wow, I don't have a clue how to decorate cakes!"
Just wanted to share.
Having one of those horribly insecure days.

27 replies
Texas_Rose Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 5:18am
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Just ask some of the people here how many years they've been doing cakes icon_biggrin.gif Since it's a skill, everyone gets better with practice.

I know how you feel though...I was feeling like that until I started using fondant, and then all of a sudden it seemed like the lightbulb came on above my head icon_biggrin.gif

KacieMeredith Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 5:20am
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All the time...Im so glad someone else said this because I think it nearly everytime I look at one. Im glad Im not alone. But I think your cakes are adorable, and I really love your cupcake bouqet things. icon_biggrin.gif

Amymnn Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 5:24am
post #4 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by KacieMeredith

All the time...Im so glad someone else said this because I think it nearly everytime I look at one. Im glad Im not alone. But I think your cakes are adorable, and I really love your cupcake bouqet things. icon_biggrin.gif




Thank you, can you come to IL and mentor me in all you know? Your photos show so much talent! I love the Love in many languages and flight of the bumblebee. icon_smile.gif

Amymnn Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 5:27am
post #5 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas_Rose

Just ask some of the people here how many years they've been doing cakes icon_biggrin.gif Since it's a skill, everyone gets better with practice.

I know how you feel though...I was feeling like that until I started using fondant, and then all of a sudden it seemed like the lightbulb came on above my head icon_biggrin.gif




I know they must have years of experience, but the artistic talent, creative design and attention to detail - there really isn't a word to describe how talented the CC'ers are. I've been doing cakes for about four years now and have only worked with fondant once - on my last cake and it was MMF and it cracked. I've smiled over cakes that I thought I couldn't pull off and I've cried over cakes that wouldn't cooperate. But I always want to do it again. And again!

KacieMeredith Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 5:29am
post #6 of 28

Oh you are so sweet thanks!!! Honestly Im terrible at buttercream, so maybe you should come to california and we swap stories....hahaha...

But I do love love love the work I can do with fondant. So for now friends and family are stuck with fondant cakes...I have a wedding for my best guy friend in august and Im doing the cake and Im praying they want fondant....

Texas_Rose Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 5:43am
post #7 of 28

I used buttercream for 10 years before I tried fondant. I wasn't very good at it, partly because my recipe wasn't any good for the climate here. If you look at my cakes, I've got barely any buttercream pictures, and that's not because I didn't make any icon_biggrin.gif or take pictures of them, they just didn't come out good enough to show. I tried to make buttercream roses for many years before I ever managed them.

KacieMeredith Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 5:48am
post #8 of 28

Really...10 years...that does make me feel better because I have only been doing cakes for a little over a year and I new to practice practice practice, but I just thought I wasnt making progress. But sometimes I lack patience with myself. Ill keep at it, thanks!

Texas_Rose Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 5:54am
post #9 of 28

Well, after 10 years of buttercream and 1 and a half of fondant, I still suck at buttercream. I can pipe a shell border and I can make the big swirl on cupcakes. I can make buttercream roses as long as I have access to a freezer. Other than that, it's going to be fondant or nothing icon_biggrin.gif When I use fondant I can make the cake look like the picture I have in my head, or the design that I've drawn. When I use buttercream, I usually get the urge to add a lot of sprinkles to cover up my design.

To be fair to buttercream icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif I was working long hours (not doing cakes) during the time I was trying it, so I would usually be doing one cake a month, except September when my whole family has birthdays. I've started the fondant thing to fill my free time as a stay-home mom so I have had a lot more time to devote to practicing it. I think the reason it appeals is that it doesn't melt into a puddle between the front door and the car the way my buttercream used to.

KacieMeredith Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 6:10am
post #10 of 28

I agree about the buttercream melting...While I dont get the humidity I do get 115 degree summers...fondant really does hold up a lot better...

Amymnn Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 6:18am
post #11 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas_Rose

Well, after 10 years of buttercream and 1 and a half of fondant, I still suck at buttercream. I can pipe a shell border and I can make the big swirl on cupcakes. I can make buttercream roses as long as I have access to a freezer. Other than that, it's going to be fondant or nothing icon_biggrin.gif When I use fondant I can make the cake look like the picture I have in my head, or the design that I've drawn. When I use buttercream, I usually get the urge to add a lot of sprinkles to cover up my design.




First of all, I just went through your photos and would LOVE to have HALF of your talent!! You can make buttercream roses? I wish you could teach me! I took the first Wilton course JUST to learn the roses and still couldn't do it. I was also the only one in my class who couldn't figure out how to fold the parchment bags. Something with the instruction gets lost from my brain to my hands, but if I'm getting creative with cake design on my own imagination, I can do it. Still, every time I see roses on a cake I feel really inadequate that I can't do them.

I've only worked with buttercream for the past four years. I spent most of that time working on getting my recipe just right and getting my cakes level and smooth. I still have a long way to go. I tried MMF and Satin Ice recently. The Satin Ice rolled out so smooth and was so easy to work with, my MMF cracked and just kept cracking. Moments like that I wonder if I'll ever be good at this or if I'll ever have enough opportunity to get good at it. Right now my philosophy is that I'll spend hours and hours to get a cake right just to learn how to do it. Hopefully, at some point, those hours I spend will decrease while the quality of work increases. Hopefully! icon_rolleyes.gif

Texas_Rose Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 6:39am
post #12 of 28

I still spend hours on stuff...although maybe not as many hours as I used to. And don't worry about those parchment bags...just go to Michaels and use a coupon and get a big box of disposable plastic bags icon_biggrin.gif I love those things, no more scrubbing greasy bags and turning them inside out, or trying to figure out how to make a triangle into a cone and make it stay together long enough to drop a tip in and some icing.

The secret to the buttercream rose is to put the rose centers in the freezer and get them nice and stiff before you put the petals on. Always when I had tried it before, it would look okay and then the middle would flop over or the whole thing would look kind of flat, more like a cabbage rose. One of my neighbors offered to show me how to make roses and it turned out she didn't really know, but she told me about putting the centers in the freezer and after that it worked just fine. It looks funny though, a whole plate full of pink rose centers sitting in the freezer (just picure it for a minute icon_biggrin.gif)

Anyhow, the first time I tried to cover a cake with fondant it didn't work. I used too much powdered sugar when I was rolling it out and it cracked up on the cake. The second time that I tried it, I made MMF and I rolled it out with crisco and it worked. I thought I had just gotten lucky, but then I tried it again and it worked then too. Now I roll the fondant on vinyl and I use just a little bit of cornstarch because I don't like the shiny finish I was getting with the crisco. One thing to consider is to plan a design that's easy to cover up mistakes with, so that if you get a wrinkle in the fondant you can stick a polka dot or a stripe or a flower over it.

I'm procrastinating tonight...I have to make a female torso cake and I just can't seem to get off the computer to go work on it.

Texas_Rose Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 6:42am
post #13 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by KacieMeredith

I agree about the buttercream melting...While I dont get the humidity I do get 115 degree summers...fondant really does hold up a lot better...




Have you tried Indydebi's recipe? It holds up a lot better to heat than the Wilton recipe.

KacieMeredith Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 6:56am
post #14 of 28

Just recently for the first time I did, because I needed a really white buttercream and I had only made wilton or buttercream with the butter so it had a yellow tint. I need to continue to practice for my climate, but I did like the taste and it was easy for me to work with, but I still struggled.

Amymnn Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 7:02am
post #15 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas_Rose

I still spend hours on stuff...although maybe not as many hours as I used to. And don't worry about those parchment bags...just go to Michaels and use a coupon and get a big box of disposable plastic bags icon_biggrin.gif I love those things, no more scrubbing greasy bags and turning them inside out, or trying to figure out how to make a triangle into a cone and make it stay together long enough to drop a tip in and some icing.

The secret to the buttercream rose is to put the rose centers in the freezer and get them nice and stiff before you put the petals on. Always when I had tried it before, it would look okay and then the middle would flop over or the whole thing would look kind of flat, more like a cabbage rose. One of my neighbors offered to show me how to make roses and it turned out she didn't really know, but she told me about putting the centers in the freezer and after that it worked just fine. It looks funny though, a whole plate full of pink rose centers sitting in the freezer (just picure it for a minute icon_biggrin.gif)

Anyhow, the first time I tried to cover a cake with fondant it didn't work. I used too much powdered sugar when I was rolling it out and it cracked up on the cake. The second time that I tried it, I made MMF and I rolled it out with crisco and it worked. I thought I had just gotten lucky, but then I tried it again and it worked then too. Now I roll the fondant on vinyl and I use just a little bit of cornstarch because I don't like the shiny finish I was getting with the crisco. One thing to consider is to plan a design that's easy to cover up mistakes with, so that if you get a wrinkle in the fondant you can stick a polka dot or a stripe or a flower over it.

I'm procrastinating tonight...I have to make a female torso cake and I just can't seem to get off the computer to go work on it.




Wow! How kind of you to share all of that with me. I'm anxious to try the freezer trick for the roses. Maybe mine won't look so floppy! If I lived closer, I'd come help you with the torso cake. I'm sitting here, can't sleep and would be able to at least mix icing for you or something! icon_smile.gif

Texas_Rose Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 7:15am
post #16 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amymnn


Wow! How kind of you to share all of that with me. I'm anxious to try the freezer trick for the roses. Maybe mine won't look so floppy! If I lived closer, I'd come help you with the torso cake. I'm sitting here, can't sleep and would be able to at least mix icing for you or something! icon_smile.gif




Aww...that's sweet of you icon_biggrin.gif

I'm mostly waiting for the kids to go to sleep...it's probably shocking that they're still awake but it's too hot to go outside during the day lately and my husband has to sleep during the day, so I've been letting the kids stay up so they'll sleep when he does and not make too much noise for him.

The last time I made a torso cake, it was at least partly clothed, and it stopped at the waist. That's not what I'm making this time and I don't want to shock my kiddos icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

Oh, I almost forgot, the other part of the freezer trick for the roses is to put the whole rose in the fridge, on the flower nail, to firm up for a little while before you put it on the cake. If it's not as hot and humid where you live, you might not need to do that part.

Amymnn Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 7:23am
post #17 of 28

I'm getting quite the visual on your cake- sounds like a unique project! My kids just fell asleep not to long ago because they are night owls like me and enjoy every last second of it during the summer. icon_smile.gif

Texas_Rose Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 8:08am
post #18 of 28

Glad to hear I'm not the only one who lets the kids stay up in the summer! My mom acts like I'm the world's worst mother because I let them stay up. It just makes more sense for us, it's 100 degrees outside during the day, the complex pool is broke (it looks like pea soup!), they're doing construction at the playground...It's so nice not having to get up at 6 am though, I wish summer lasted longer icon_biggrin.gif

Angfastic Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 8:23am
post #19 of 28

Glad to see I'm not the only person up icon_biggrin.gif. I finished up a baby shower cake a couple of hours ago, cleaned my kitchen, uploaded my photo and now just up for no good reason. I need to sleep soon since I have to get up and make lunch for the baby shower later today.

I agree the talent on this site is absolutely amazing!! They say with practice you get better. I need more practice.

Michellet62260 Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 9:10am
post #20 of 28

WOW! It's nice to know I'm not the only one having problems with buttercream roses. Where I work, that's all we use. I have been an apprentice for 2 years, but they never give me a chance to do the customer or freezer cakes , just the store specialty cakes and floor stock back up stuff. Our store cakes don't have many roses on them but I have become a pro a cornelli lace which is on a few and carrots.(if you see my pics. you will see that's what's on most of my cakes! LOL!)
Some of the girls make roses on a stick and they turn out pretty good. rather than spreading out the frosting when you swirl around the nail, they go more in an up and down motion moving out about a 1/4 of an inch. when they are done and put the scissors on the bottom to scoop it off the stick, the rose spreads out on it's own and looks pretty!
I did make one out of Play doh the other day in hopes of working with fondant soon and it turned out pretty good for my first time. I was just asked to do a wedding cake with butterflies and I am terrified. Have never done a wedding cake, butterflies or worked with gumpaste! Wish me luck. Have pic of play doh rose. it doesn't stick to itself so I had a hard time making it stand up.
I am also glad I am not the only insecure one around here. Wish we ALL lived in the same little cul de sac and could be each other's mentors, kinda like Desperate Housewives, Could be " Desperate Cake Designer's "
Well, I give up, tried 3 times to post pic and it is no larger than any other close up pics I have uploaded or close up of others work, but it says it is too large, even tried one that wasn't zoomed and it wouldn't work, must be something wrong with the sit this morning.

Texas_Rose Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 9:32am
post #21 of 28

Michelle, here's a link to some beautiful gumpaste roses http://www.flickr.com/photos/franjmc/2927935625/ and if you scroll down there's a link to a tutorial on how to make them. I tried her method and it works great. I didn't use the styrofoam balls that she uses, just a ball of gumpaste for the center. I use Nicholas Lodge's gumpaste recipe and it works a lot better than the Wilton one ever did when I tried making it.

Michellet62260 Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 9:43am
post #22 of 28

Thanks Texas Rose! I will check it out. I watched a video here before I did the play doh one. I don't know why my pic won't upload? None of my other pics ever said the pixels were more than 800 by 800? Maybe they changed something. I took it with the same camera and the same setting as I did all my cakes and they were fine?

Texas_Rose Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 9:49am
post #23 of 28

Were you trying to post it as an attachment or to upload it to the gallery? I know the photos in the gallery can be bigger than the ones that it allows as attachments. You could try this http://www.shrinkpictures.com/ to make the picture smaller so you can post it.

slush Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 10:11am
post #24 of 28

Texas-rose - thanks so much for that link!
absolutely stunning roses! I can't wait to have a go now!

Amymnn Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 6:18pm
post #25 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michellet62260

. Wish we ALL lived in the same little cul de sac and could be each other's mentors, kinda like Desperate Housewives, Could be " Desperate Cake Designer's "
.




Ohhhh I love this idea! The only drawback is I would probably get nothing else done - just cake decor all the live long day!

By the way, I looked at your photos, very good work! The chocolate cakes look so good I wish I could just grab a piece. YUM

Lita829 Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 6:29pm
post #26 of 28

I didn't read the whole thread so I might repeat something already said. I agree that I am astounded EVERDAY when I log onto this website. I am inspired and in awe at the cakes and cookies I see on this site. It has helped me to grow as a baker and decorator. I have learned soooo much from the seasoned cakers and cookie decorators. I know that my work pales in comparison to the decorators on this site. I still have a lot to learn.

And the forums.....THEY ROCK!!! I've learned from some and others made me laugh so hard that my belly ached from some of the replies.

Amymnn Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 6:34pm
post #27 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lita829

And the forums.....THEY ROCK!!! I've learned from some and others made me laugh so hard that my belly ached from some of the replies.




So true! I was just sitting here thinking, why do I have do anything today? Can't I just hang out in Cake Central all day? Then I remembered, I have five kids, one husband and a dog. They will probably tear me away from this computer at some point - kicking and screaming, but they will tear me away! LOL

jenlg Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 8:00pm
post #28 of 28

I agree with their being incredible talent here on CC. Out of everything I've ever made oddly enough I still and do the small piping details or scroll work. Heck, I still can't make a shell border right!

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