Hand Painted Details Question

Decorating By tsal Updated 6 Feb 2010 , 4:31pm by sylly

tsal Posted 6 Feb 2010 , 3:51pm
post #1 of 2

Hi,
I love the idea of hand painting details onto cakes - I feel it gives it a really personal touch. However, I'm running into a few challenges along the way.

Firstly, I have been using Wilton gold pearl dust to paint on gold accents on fondants and gum paste I mix the dust with clear vanilla and paint. I notice that I get tiny lumps - what am I doing wrong? I also notice that I have to put on a few coats to achieve the desired richness. Is that normal? I see so many cakes on CC with REALLY beautiful gold and am wondering how this is achieved (like on tappits letters).

I bought some really fine makeup brushes hoping that they would give me a precise point to paint with, but I find that my lines look mushy. Any recommendations for brushes?

I have the Wilton edible markers (which I find horrible for precise writing and thin lines), and I just tried the ateco edible markers (which are better but the end of the marker got a little mushy after writing 2 words on hardened gum paste). Any advice in terms of using these products?

One last question: how long do edible markers last? I have to keep them in the fridge once I use them, right? How long do gel colors last once open? Ok, I guess that was 2 last questions!

Thanks for your help!

1 reply
sylly Posted 6 Feb 2010 , 4:31pm
post #2 of 2

Hey there! Well, as far as the gold is concerned, I find that I have to use more of the the Wilton than I do with other gold dusts but, when it's all you have, it will work. My first dragon cake I did was all done in the Wilton gold pearl. That was before I knew I had a choice. icon_wink.gif It took many of those little viles to get it done, but it got done and finished nicely. I also used to used vanilla but have moved on to either vodka or lemon extract. I think it is the amount of alcohol in it that makes the difference. The lemon extract seems to give me a smoother transition than vanilla and the vodka is the best for smooth results. I put the dust in a bowl and add a little bit of extract or vodka at a time until it becomes like the thickness of latex paint. Alcohol dries pretty quickly, so you will have to add more to bring it back to life now and then. I used artist paint brushes. They offer better sizes and a smooth coating. Use the ones with horse hair or another hair that is used for water colors or acrylics. The softer the hair, the less you have to worry about lines in your covering. When you get a little bump of color on your brush, which you will, don't use it. Wipe it off and dip your paintbrush in the mix again. If you keep getting lumps, it is probably a sign that it is time to add more liquid. If you add too much liquid, you will get very little color hue on what you are painting. Add more gold or wait until it dries up a little before using it. I hope this helps!

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