I currently ice my cakes with the Wilton BC recipe. I always have to cover them with fondant because I can't get the icing to not clump and get crumbs in it. Is this because my icing is too thick? Even if I try a crumbcoat this happens. Help!
Your icing is definitely too think. The wilton recipe as it is written is a stiff icing. for each cup of icing you need to add 2 tsp of water to go from stiff to thin and thin is what you need for icing a cake.
When you get it all mixed up and stand your spatula in it, if it is thin it should easily fall over if you wiggle your bowl. If it is thick it will remain standing.
Hope that helps.
You want about 4 tablespoons of your water/milk per 1lb of sugar.
It does sound like your buttercream is too thick. You should be able to smooth it on. I usually use Indydebi's buttercream recipe that can be found in recipes on this site. It tastes really good, and holds up great, even in the heat. Another suggestion is to watch videos by Edna on you tube, or go to her wesite designmeacake.com. She is an amazing cake artist, and she shows you how to get a smooth icing on your cake, and how to make the right consistency for your buttercream, along with other "how to" videos. I hope this helps you. Also, you have to make sure that you are putting enough icing on top of your crumb coat so that you are not disturbing your crumb coat. This is what holds down the crumbs so that you don't get crumbs in your final coat. Good luck