nancylee61 Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 3:20am
post #1 of

And I cannot yet do buttercream that smooth!! Help!! It is for her wedding shower. They already picked out one cake that was fondant, and I told them there is NO WAY I could make it look like that. I don't seem to be able to explain this clearly. 

 

Also - I know I read about the burlap the other day. Is there an edible burlap I can get somewhere? I do NOT want to put real burlap, which shreds all over the place, on a cake.

 

Thank you,

Nancy

27 replies
Norasmom Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 3:29am
post #2 of

Tell her to pick out a cake you CAN do, otherwise she will be so disappointed.   Why is she insisting you do something you can't do well enough yet?  As for the burlap, I'm not sure if there's an edible version, I'm sure there's probably a way to make it out of fondant.  Good luck!  A lot of bakers are not able to make buttercream as smooth as fondant, that's why they use fondant.

ladyhawke917 Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 3:35am
post #3 of

Is this a gift, or is she paying for it? If it is a gift, just explain to her that you would like to gift her with a cake of your design to go with the theme. The burlap them is rustic, so show her some pictures of the rustic iced cakes. Some of those are gorgeous! If she wants to pick a specific cake outside of your current comfort zone, then she can pay for someone else to make the cake and you can get her a different gift. If she doesn't get it, show her the website cakewrecks.com so she can see what happens when people try to do cakes outside of their abilities. :-)

 

 

If you do decide to do a smooth buttercream cake for her or just to learn, there are lots of great tutorials on this site and on youtube. Try several different methods until you find the one that is comfortable for you.

 

Best of luck!

Di

nancylee61 Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 4:07am
post #4 of

AHi, It's a gift. I already shot down one cake,and suggested they find someone who can make it, but they said they'd change their design, but this is fondant too, or,at least it looks like fondant.

I'm thinking maybe some nice buttercream nderneath and modeling chocolate on top. No one hates modeling chocolate? Right???

Thank you for your help, Nancy

cazza1 Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 4:09am
post #5 of

You could do this cake with smooth buttercream instead of fondant if you start practicing like mad and then make sugarlace burlap.  They have a mould for it.  Be warned though, sugarveil is not as easy to use as it looks on their videos and you will need to practice.

nancylee61 Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 4:20am
post #6 of

AI have been practicing for months, and I still can't get my BC smooth! I've watched a dozen videos, taken a class at the CIA, tried the upside down method. I don't get iT.... I can keep tryiny, though.

Thanks for the info, Nancy

Lovelyladylibra Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 6:33am
post #7 of

AMaybe you should change your recipe or try a different type of buttercream. Its not hard if you pratice. If you cant get your buttercream smooth your fondant wont be smooth either.

bubs1stbirthday Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 6:37am
post #8 of

What about a rolled buttercream? or a fondant recipe that is made with butter? I made one the other day just for a try and it was basically a really thick buttercream with some glucose added (although I used corn syrup), it was crazy sweet though.

cakefat Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 11:15am
post #9 of

What's your question exactly? Sorry if I missed it. Is it just about the burlap? you can make a fake 'burlap' maybe out of fondant/gumpaste  or use a mold w/ sugar veil or something close to it. 

 

If you don't think you can do this cake in buttercream, then just tell her and pick another one that you can do. OR she gets in done in fondant if you feel that you can do it. 

 

I agree with maybe changing your buttercream recipe..try SMBC or IMBC. 

cakesbycathy Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 1:23pm

If you have been practicing like crazy, taken lots of classes, etc. and you are still having so much trouble I think you should try a new recipe for buttercream.  Sounds like that's the problem, not you.

 

If the cake is a gift then YOU should determine what you are able/willing to make.  I would have her pick 3-4 designs she likes then tell her you are going to surprise her with the final cake.  that way you can make something you are happy with and know you are capable of  and she gets a cake with a style she likes.

costumeczar Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 2:21pm

You can make gumpaste burlap with a mold that they're selling in the clay section of the craft stores no...It's one of those impression mats and it's blue, sorry that I can't remember the brand name.

 

There's no shame in telling someone that you can't do something. If she's being unrealistic it's your responsibility to tell her that you can't do it the way that she wants it unless you use fondant, and let her decide from there. She probably has no idea what's possible and what isn't, so you need to set some parameters and let her work within those.

JWinslow Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 3:10pm

Does she have to have the butter cream smooth?  You could try and tell her that as long as she wants the rustic burlap (which you will ONLY do in fondant or gumpaste) that she could go with a more rustic look with the icing.  There's tons of tutorials out there on the technique.

Something like this by creativecakesbymonica. with your details.  If not, you will have to tell her that you can only do this in fondant to make it Wedding Worthy  :)
 

 

Apti Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 4:32pm

Quote:

Originally Posted by costumeczar 

 

There's no shame in telling someone that you can't do something. If she's being unrealistic it's your responsibility to tell her that you can't do it the way that she wants it unless you use fondant, and let her decide from there. She probably has no idea what's possible and what isn't, so you need to set some parameters and let her work within those.

Well said and ditto. 

 

Nancy, these are opinions from VERY experienced cake decorators.  The quote from costumeczar is spot on. 

Whatever you create will obviously be made with love.  Congratulations to your goddaughter.

CLW Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 5:51pm

Nancy, I agree with some others about smoothing your buttercream. It must be your recipe. I use half butter,half crisco, powdered sugar, vanilla and a tad bit of water. After smoothing as best as I can, I let it crust over for about 10 minutes then use the Viva paper towel and fondant smoother and it looks very close to fondant!! As for the burlap trim...I do  many cakes and use the burlap you buy in the wedding section of craft stores and Walmart. It doesn't shed. I've looked for a mold to use for fondant but haven't had any luck yet.

ellavanilla Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 7:04pm

what about covering the cake in a ganache and then the fondant, so that the fondant can just be removed before slicing? This is what I 'm doing for a friend who lives out of state. This way I can travel with the cake but also please her desire to avoid fondant.

DeniseNH Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 7:16pm

Fondant is SOOOOOOOOOOOOOO easy.  PLEASE get a bucket of it and try it out on a smaller cake.  Instant love.  And as for the burlap, just go to your local DIY craft store and they sell it in rolls with finished edges..............no shedding!!!!!!  Easy Peezie.

hbquikcomjamesl Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 8:07pm

Quote:

Originally Posted by nancylee61 

No one hates modeling chocolate? Right???

 

Unless, for one reason or another, they don't eat chocolate AT ALL, PERIOD.

Gerle Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 8:14pm

You could try SugarShack's buttercream recipe and smoothing technique.  Maybe that would work better for your smoothing.  I've tried it and it really works.

nancylee61 Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 11:07pm

HI,

I use a SMBC for my cakes, I don't use any shortening, and I hear that the SMBC does get nice and smooth. It's just practice, I am better every time, but not ready to do this for a big audience. I am thinking I can do a more informal, looser buttercream. I am going to send her some pictures of cakes that I think I can do. 

 

Thanks!

Nancy

nancylee61 Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 11:09pm

HI,

I can do fondant nice and smooth. They are just being very stubborn about this, or confused, I am not sure which, but I am leaning toward the first!!! I can do a beautiful, smooth cake for her in fondant or modeling chocolate. 

 

Sigh. Be careful what  you volunteer to do. It generally bites you in the butt.

Nanc

nancylee61 Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 11:10pm

Thank you!! That cake is beautiful!!!
Nancy

Rudd Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 11:12pm

Do they not realize they can peel the fondant off if they don't want to actually eat it & there will still be buttercream beneath it? You'd be surprised how many people didn't realize there is still buttercream below the fondant.

AZCouture Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 11:28pm

AUnfortunately I have witnessed the fact that some people barely put a smear of bc underneath the fondant, AND I see other decorators tell others to only put a crumb coat, which is ridiculous, and no wonder people have the aversion.

AZCouture Posted 17 Mar 2014 , 11:38pm

AI don't let anyone tell me how to create my cakes, and you don't have to either. There's being accommodating and offering alternatives, and then what you're describing is just silly. Tell them to peel it off. End of story. And in the meanttime, get that sugarshack dvd Godot mentioned.

hbquikcomjamesl Posted 18 Mar 2014 , 12:06am

And not all fondant is created equal, I'm sure, any more than my dense, candy-like, hand-blended BC based on the recipe on the back of the C&H powdered sugar box is the same as a whipped SMBC.

 

(And I agree with the OP about real burlap being out the window and over the fence. I'll admit that most people in this country could use more fiber in their diets, but real burlap on a cake is barely a step up from the dreaded Disco Dust, and definitely [as Alton would say] NOT "Good Eats.")

costumeczar Posted 18 Mar 2014 , 1:24am

Quote:

Originally Posted by nancylee61 
 

HI,

I can do fondant nice and smooth. They are just being very stubborn about this, or confused, I am not sure which, but I am leaning toward the first!!! I can do a beautiful, smooth cake for her in fondant or modeling chocolate.

 

Sigh. Be careful what  you volunteer to do. It generally bites you in the butt.

Nanc

Just tell her that you can't do it, and that you can do it with fondant or not at all if she's stuck on that look. Burlap on SMBC would be nasty.

 

I have no problem telling people that I won't do certain things...this is a good practice experience for you, since the word "no" can save you a lot of grief when you're running a business.

nancylee61 Posted 18 Mar 2014 , 1:35am

I'm off to do that right now. Thank you!

Nancy

gscout73 Posted 18 Mar 2014 , 9:17am

There is an edible burlap that you can make with either Cake Lace or Sugar Dress. Either of these products can be used in the silicone lace molds. Global Sugar Art sells the Sugar Dress and it is very easy to use. I've used it and love it, and there are threads here where others have also used it and find it easy.

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