Help!! How Was This Effect Achieved?

Decorating By QueenOfSweets Updated 28 Jun 2010 , 9:01pm by live2create

QueenOfSweets Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 7:22pm
post #1 of 41

I have a bride who sent me the picture below as inspiration for her cake. She wants the same sparkly sugar look. It looks to me like the cake in the picture was covered in fondant first, but my bride wants buttercream instead. At first I thought perhaps this could be sanding sugar applied, but the grain of the sugar in the picture looks more coarse than that. The effect is almost "fluffy" and I can't figure out how it was achieved. I purchased some sugar crystals, but they don't seem large enough either. Do any of you have thoughts on how to get this look?
LL

40 replies
Rose_N_Crantz Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 7:31pm
post #2 of 41

Well, I can tell you how it was done. Ice the cake in buttercream, before it crusts hold the tier over a bowl of the sugar and using your hand press the sugar onto the sides. The excess will just fall into the bowl.

As far as the "fluffiness" goes, your guess is as good as mine. Are you sure it couldn't be coconut that's just been chopped real fine?

catlharper Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 7:31pm
post #3 of 41

It looks like large sanding sugar. You can brush on piping gel and then press on the sugar.

cncgirl00 Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 7:34pm
post #4 of 41

Here's a cake with a similar looking effect on the Wilton website.

http://www.wilton.com/idea/Rose-Romance-Cake

QueenOfSweets Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 7:42pm
post #5 of 41

Thanks to all of you for the quick replies! I've covered a cake in sanding sugar before, but this particular photo just looked like it used something different than what I used before.

cncgirl00 - YES! That cake has the exact same effect. The sanding sugar I have is definitely not as coarse as the Wilton sugar crystals. I'll have to pick some of those up. Thanks for finding that cake!

3GCakes Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 7:45pm
post #6 of 41

It looks pretty...but I wonder if it tastes gritty?

idocakes4fun Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 7:59pm
post #7 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3GCakes

It looks pretty...but I wonder if it tastes gritty?




I was thinking the same thing. I would definitely do a small test on this... and maybe even let the bride try it out to make sure she understands what she would be getting.

QueenOfSweets Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 8:07pm
post #8 of 41

That was my first reaction to this cake as well. She sent me the inspiration photo before our consultation, so for one of her tasting samples I did it with sanding sugar covering it. We've had discussions twice about the effect that this look will have on the actual texture of the cake; she's fully aware and is set on this design. Personally, I wouldn't want crunchy cake.

superwawa Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 8:09pm
post #9 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by cncgirl00

Here's a cake with a similar looking effect on the Wilton website.

http://www.wilton.com/idea/Rose-Romance-Cake




I have the Wilton "Tiered Cakes" book that contains a similar cake too - but it calls for Wilton's "Sparkling Sugar" not Sanding Sugar. Anyone know if Wilton has both/different options or if they are the same? I don't get to the Michaels often to check out the Wilton stuff so I don't know but if there is a difference it might help the OP.

QueenOfSweets Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 8:28pm
post #10 of 41

To my knowledge, Wilton makes dusting sugar, colored sugar, and sparkling sugar. The dusting sugar, according to their website, is powdered sugar intended for decorating brownies. The colored sugar is the same texture as regular sugar, just different colors. The sparkling sugar is the coarse texture seen on the cakes we talked about previously. Sanding sugar, in my experience, is somewhere in between Wilton's colored sugar and their sparkling sugar as far as coarseness.

KHalstead Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 8:31pm
post #11 of 41

you want to use "sparkling sugar" not "sanding sugar" there is a difference in the grain of it!

sparkling sugar -


http://www.littlebetsybaker.com.au/store/pc/catalog/purple-sparkling-sugar_1241_general.jpg



You can see how much BIGGER (or like you said "fluffier") the sparkling sugar is!

QueenOfSweets Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 9:09pm
post #12 of 41

Any ideas on how many pounds of sparkling sugar will be needed for a 4-tiered cake (6-8-10-12 rounds)?

3GCakes Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 9:14pm
post #13 of 41

To me it looks like Wilton Cake Sparkles...


Which is flakes of colored gumpaste. Fluffy, not like "sand" which "sanding sugar" will look like


Think "scales". Not that that's bad...just a different texture.

metria Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 9:26pm
post #14 of 41

ok, i'm going to try to help, but it's hard to tell based on these wilton pictures.

There are 2 wilton products that we mentioned.

Cake Sparkles:
http://www.wilton.com/store/site/product.cfm?id=3E310D1E-475A-BAC0-5E0EF1DB7697E8A1&fid=3E32ABF9-475A-BAC0-52EF871BDC4BFB50

Sparkling Sugar:
http://www.wilton.com/store/site/product.cfm?id=5230B2F4-802D-F658-0F81AB32FE9094B3&fid=5230B313-802D-F658-02D7FF9D2885EE44

I have Cake Sparkles from my Course 3 Student Kit and they look like little flakes or scales, like 3GCakes said.

I haven't tasted them...if I remember, I'll try some when I get home.

leah_s Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 9:34pm
post #15 of 41

I've done a LOT of cakes like that. Definitely Wilton's Sparkling Sugar. For a 6/8/10/12 you'll need four bottles.

It's my favorite cake to do. I LOVE it when brides choose that design. I charge extra for the sugar and I can decorate an entire four tier cake in 30 minutes or less.

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ for me.

Majie Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 9:50pm
post #16 of 41

the cake looks lovely, but the thought of tasting those large sugar crystals with the cake is not convincing enough for me. I would love to make it for a client though! Normal sugar in my country has those huge crystals and is reasonably priced, wouldnt charge any extras on it though!!!!!!!

greengyrl26 Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 9:52pm
post #17 of 41

leah_s....do you use fondant or just buttercream & add the sparkling sugar?

catlharper Posted 7 Jun 2010 , 10:10pm
post #18 of 41

I do love the look of the sparkling sugar and am tempted to make my own version of this but I, too, wonder about the texture when actually eating this?

hsmomma Posted 8 Jun 2010 , 12:39am
post #19 of 41

I've done this many times with the sparkling sugar (Bakery Crafts sells the sugar CHEAP in a big cardboard container). In fact I must have 6 or 8 bottles of the Wilton stuff leftover that I bought in case the Bakery Craft sugar didn't have the same texture. It looked exactly the same. The Bakery Craft cardboard box of it cost about the same as 2 small Wilton bottles...and is a ton more product.
To avoid the "gritty buttercream", I've opted to do this cake in a very thin layer of fondant first. Then I paint on piping gel. It's really easy to then sprinkle on the sugar crystals. That way guests still have the silky smooth buttercream underneath if they opt to peel off the fondant.
I'm with Leah...I absolutely love when my clients pick a cake like this. It's extremely quick to do and the look is very cool.
Have fun!

bobwonderbuns Posted 8 Jun 2010 , 1:02am
post #20 of 41

That is a lovely cake! icon_biggrin.gif

leah_s Posted 8 Jun 2010 , 1:22am
post #21 of 41

hmmm . . . I bought the CK large sugar crystals and they defniitely did not have the sparkle of the Wilton. Damn, can you believe I saying something nice about a Wilton product?

::faints::

OK, what's the product number of the BakeryCrafts sugar? And wouldn't you know I placed an order with them last night online.

bobwonderbuns Posted 8 Jun 2010 , 1:24am
post #22 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by leah_s

hmmm . . . I bought the CK large sugar crystals and they defniitely did not have the sparkle of the Wilton. Damn, can you believe I saying something nice about a Wilton product?

::faints::




Okay, who are you and what have you done with our leah_s????? icon_lol.gif

QueenOfSweets Posted 8 Jun 2010 , 1:03pm
post #23 of 41

Thanks to all of you for the replies! Leah - thanks for the info on how much to use. I have enough Wilton cake sparkles on hand that I won't have to order anything else. I appreciate everyone's help! I'll post pictures of my cake once it's done!

leah_s Posted 8 Jun 2010 , 1:23pm
post #24 of 41

::chuckle:: at Bob.

Queen - not the Cake Sparkles - that's edible glitter. W's Sparkling Sugar. Completely different product.

QueenOfSweets Posted 8 Jun 2010 , 4:15pm
post #25 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by leah_s

Queen - not the Cake Sparkles - that's edible glitter. W's Sparkling Sugar. Completely different product.




Thanks for catching! I have sparkling sugar on hand...just typed the wrong name. Is it Friday yet???

QueenOfSweets Posted 28 Jun 2010 , 12:58pm
post #26 of 41

I delivered this wedding cake this weekend and wanted to post a picture of it to follow up. The sparkling sugar was exactly the right thing, and the bride was ecstatic with the results. Thanks again for everyone's help!
LL

kger Posted 28 Jun 2010 , 3:11pm
post #27 of 41

Stunning!

Can you tell us how you did the ribbon? I thought it was a real satin ribbon at first, but the ends are laying just so perfectly, I wondered if it might be fondant. It's just so shiny! How about the brooches?

QueenOfSweets Posted 28 Jun 2010 , 3:22pm
post #28 of 41

Thank you, kger. The ribbon is very light cream-colored fondant. I rolled it using a pasta machine to setting #4. I then dusted it with super pearl luster dust. The bow loop and tail were formed, let dry 15 minutes or so, and then placed on the cake.

The brooches are inedible. The bride's dress had a satin ribbon sash and brooch, so she purchased 2 additional brooches from the dressmaker to match. They're attached with royal icing.

Debcent Posted 28 Jun 2010 , 3:45pm
post #29 of 41

Beautiful cake!! Did you end-up using the sugar over bc or fondant?

BREN28 Posted 28 Jun 2010 , 3:50pm
post #30 of 41

fantastic job,looks beautiful!

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