My Writing Ruins My Cakes! Help!

Decorating By rachelh37122 Updated 1 Feb 2011 , 12:03am by rachelh37122

rachelh37122 Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 3:53am
post #1 of 24

ok so i'm a beginner with cake decorating, and i'm really struggling with my writing on my cakes. i made a pretty nice birthday cake for my cousin, but after i had written "happy birthday" the cake looked verrry amateur. how can i get my writing to look good on my cakes? also, how can i get all the different styles of writing down? is it just a ton of practice, or do people use image transfers to get an elegant look? thanks for any hints or tips!

23 replies
All4Show Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 3:58am
post #2 of 24

I'll admit I gave in and got Windsor Clix Stix. I make my letters out of fondant that has a little Wilton gum-tex added to it.

simplysouthern Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 4:00am
post #3 of 24

PRACTICE! I know it's not the fun or easy answer but it really is the only way! I practice a lot! AND I mean A LOT! I use shortening in a piping bag so I don't have to always have BC and wasting BC is a no no in my kitchen! Just keep your practice shortening seperate from the stuff you use to bake with etc. It flows just like BC would so you can practice with pretty much the same resluts. Start searching fonts you like and then enlarge them. Print and lay wax paper on top and practice that way, eventually it will be like second nature.

I have awful handwriting! It looks like something my 2 year old wrote so it took me years to break my writing habits and relearn how to print evenly and make professional messages. It sucks but I promise you'll get it icon_smile.gif

EmilyJo9 Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 4:14am
post #4 of 24

I am new to this too but I am a pre-service teacher so by nature I have good handwriting but it is definitely different using BC on a cake... They have these things that I saw on a tutorial (not sure what they are called). It's like a stamp that imprints a message onto a cake and then you just trace the imprint with BC... I want to get one and try it to see if it's useful or not worth it... Anyway, just another idea for you!

FromScratchSF Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 4:14am
post #5 of 24

I had the same problem, I hate my writing, even with extensive practice. I use fondant cut outs now, as well as (gasp!) Cricut Cake. It's really the only reason I bought the stupid thing.

Sorelle Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 4:42am
post #6 of 24

Wilton sells "Make Any Message" a letter press kit. It works like a stamp, you put the letters in a holder, spelling the message backwards, press it on fondant or crusted buttercream and it makes an impression then just trace over.

Coral3 Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 4:45am
post #7 of 24

I'm can't pipe text (or anything else for that matter!) to save myself (no piping on ANY of my cakes! LOL) I use either Tappits, or recently Windsor Clickstix to cut out nice neat lettering. Nothing ruins an otherwise great looking cake quicker than badly piped writing!

hebberd Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 4:47am
post #8 of 24

I have purchased sets from Wilton that you gently press into your frosting and then all you have to do is trace over the imprints with your BC. The one set from Wilton is called: Italic Make-Any Message Letter Press Set. Check them out! They are worth the price!!

simplysouthern Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 4:53am
post #9 of 24

Ok wait, if you're wanting to improve the writing the only way is practice! But uh heck yeah get some Clikstix, Wilton press letters or tappits if youre not looking to handwrite the message!! No need to make thngs harder if you're not stuck on the idea of handwritten messages......go with through ladies suggestions above!!

Sorelle Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 5:00am
post #10 of 24

If you are lacking in your piping skills, yes practice. Piping is really not that hard and I bet you can find a tutorial on youtube they have everything else on that site!

Carolynlovescake Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 6:19am
post #11 of 24

One thing to remember with premade sets... you want to keep your writing proportional to the size of your cake.

If you do an 8x3 pan the Wilton 1 inch letters are perfect. If you are doing a sheet cake, those letters are going to look small and awkward on it and some what out of place.

I use the piping gel transfer method. This way I can print in any font or size and put it on my cake and then do the decorating and finish up with doing my writing.

By doing the piping gel transfer first it ensures I won't accidentally get carried away with decorating and over decorate and having that "oh tapedshut.gif " moment when I realize I didn't leave room to write.

nursingnellie Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 6:29am
post #12 of 24

Carolynlovescake (or anyone else), can you elaborate on the piping gel transfer method? I feel like I know about this but a quick run-down would be much appreciated!

jillyscakes Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 7:57am
post #13 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coral3

I'm can't pipe text (or anything else for that matter!) to save myself (no piping on ANY of my cakes! LOL) I use either Tappits, or recently Windsor Clickstix to cut out nice neat lettering. Nothing ruins an otherwise great looking cake quicker than badly piped writing!




Thats what I use too thumbs_up.gif

solascakes Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 8:24am
post #14 of 24

I struggle too, I have a good handwriting normally but not on cakes, so I just use fondant all the time, even on BC. I'm not loosing sleep over some writing. icon_twisted.gif

noahsmummy Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 8:27am
post #15 of 24

what are "windsor clix stix?"

Coral3 Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 8:35am
post #16 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by noahsmummy

what are "windsor clix stix?"




They are ejector letter cutters, there's a thread on them here:
http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-705403-clickstix.html+letter+cutters+examples

CakeandDazzle Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 1:26pm
post #17 of 24

Tappits!! LOVE THEM!! I REFUSE to write on my cakes icon_wink.gif

Sangriacupcake Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 1:49pm
post #18 of 24

I do mostly buttercream cakes, so fondant cut-outs don't always work with the design.
A beautifully piped message really looks elegant when done well. I learned a lot about piped lettering from Roland Winbeckler's dvd:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B003IHA2L4/?tag=cakecentral-20

The dvd doesn't mention it, but I noticed that Winbeckler's buttercream was quite soft. My writing improved just by using BC that wasn't too stiff.

As others have said, practice really helps. I made some practice buttercream (1 C. shortening, 1 lb. powdered sugar, water to achieve writing consistency) and I practice writing in different styles & fonts with different tips. It's fun, and the icing keeps forever in an airtight container.

cfpeoples Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 2:17pm
post #19 of 24

I'm no good at writing either. Tappits!! They work great. I used them on buttercream and fondant. I either make the letters with gumpaste or 50/50 gumpaste/fondant. They stick to fondant with water. On buttercream i have gotten them to stick with water before, but i normally put tiny dots of icing on the back of each one.
i have quite a few in my gallery using various tappits.

tonilynn Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 2:22pm
post #20 of 24

http://www.wilton.com/store/site/product.cfm?id=3E30D8A1-475A-BAC0-5461563D81E0C0CF&killnav=1

I bought this set at Michaels craft store, they have different types of lettering as well. you just lightly push down on the cake and it indents the word into the frosting and then just go over it with your writing icing, basically a stencil. Hope this helps.

Unlimited Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 5:03pm
post #21 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sangriacupcake

I do mostly buttercream cakes, so fondant cut-outs don't always work with the design.
A beautifully piped message really looks elegant when done well.




I agree on both!

Besides the cutouts not working with BC designs, it's also too time consuming. In the same amount of time it takes to pull out your cutters, the writing could have been completed already. One who decorates in a high-production facility would get it done in the quickest way possible to be profitable, and "the boss" wouldn't allow those who couldn't write to "improvise" with another method. You'd either have to learn the skill or let the skilled ones do the work.

It does take practice, and helps to be able to watch others do it.

scociny Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 10:59pm
post #22 of 24

I have only made a few cakes, the few that I had to write on, I went into Word and found a script that I liked. I printed it out and then used a pin to trace the letters. I put the paper on the cake and pressed lightly and the pins pushed out the paper on the other side creating a template for me to trace with BC. And I have only used this on crusting BC.

noahsmummy Posted 31 Jan 2011 , 11:21pm
post #23 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by scociny

I have only made a few cakes, the few that I had to write on, I went into Word and found a script that I liked. I printed it out and then used a pin to trace the letters. I put the paper on the cake and pressed lightly and the pins pushed out the paper on the other side creating a template for me to trace with BC. And I have only used this on crusting BC.





best idea!!!!! will def. be trying this out!! ive heard another method using word but it sounded very complicated.... this is so simple! thanks so much!

rachelh37122 Posted 1 Feb 2011 , 12:03am
post #24 of 24

thank you everyone for your help! i was practicing tonight with some left over BC from my wilton class last weekend and i found that by thinning my icing a little more, my writing improved slightly. i think i just need to practice a lot and not freak myself out when it comes time to actually write on the cake. scociny & carolyinlovescake: love your idea to print out different fonts! i will def. be doing that for practice!

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