What Inspired You To Start Decorating?!

Decorating By sweet_teeth Updated 25 Dec 2008 , 2:10am by cakesbykitty

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sweet_teeth Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 4:41pm
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I've been very curious on how all of us picked up the hobby.. or passion.. or profession!

I know mine started after all of those cake shows were being aired on the TV. I have always loved to bake, so the shows usually had me glued to the TV set. Then one day I decided to "carve" a cake like duff... with a non-doctored cake mix. After the first try, which obv. fell to pieces, I decided they had to be "overcooked" to be firm.. much like how many wedding cakes have tasted to me (such a shame..) so I decided to overcook it this time and then carve it.. WITH A BUTTERKNIFE!

Anyway, I ended up making a PacMan cake covered in yellow canned frosting with only a wedge 'carved' out of it, and rolled up cake to make the PacMan dots. It was quite comical.

Afterward I decided to do a bit more research, jumped on the fondant bandwagon, and haven't looked back since! I quickly became addicted icon_smile.gif

As soon as I get off work i'll post a picture of that beautiful pacman icon_smile.gif

22 replies
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Chippi Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:00pm
post #2 of 23

I would have to say my family inspired me after doing birthday cake after birthday cake. I also have a passion for art, so I think that is part of cake decorating although I really one day want to create my first wedding cake! Sounds so exciting!!!

Happy Holidays,

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bobwonderbuns Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:19pm
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Actually I was inspired after going to a couple of birthday parties for friends and seeing these crappy grocery store cakes that were dry and didn't look good. My response (to myself) was "geez, even I can do better than that!" (In spite of the fact I had never held a pastry bag in my life!) icon_lol.gif Sooo, I signed up for the Wilton classes at Michaels, did that for a while then discovered the Wilton way was NOT the only way and the rest is history! icon_biggrin.gif

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tracycakes Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:35pm
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When I was younger, I tried at various times to decorate cakes but did a lousy job. I bought tips and a book and couldn't make it look worth a darn. My boyfriend at the time was one of 7 kids and his mom always made cakes for her kids and grandkids. She and I were talking and decided to take the Wilton classes together at Penney's. We took all 3 classes together (all they offered at the time) and had a lot of fun. This was in 1990.

After making about 3 cakes a week for 1 1/2 years for co-workers, etc., I got burned out. From 1992 until around 2005/2006, I probably didn't make a cake a year. Then, I began to be inspired by what I was seeing on Food Network, I found Cake Central and my passion was renewed. I've been able to take the time to learn new skills and I've got the time to learn what I want to learn. I'm more mature and not afraid to say 'no' to a cake and that helps keep me from burning out.

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CatherineR Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:37pm
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I got inspired by my daughter's beautifully decorated cakes that she was making after a few Wilton classes. I started saving all sorts of pictures for her from this site, which she had told me about. We would talk about these "saved" pictures. I have never been interested in baking so that is why I would say that I would never decorate cakes. Well, one thing lead to another when I realized that I could do decorating like some of the picures I would see. I have posted a Hannah Montana guitar cake and did a really neat Little Mermaid cake which I have not yet posted. I recently retired so I think that I may being doing a lot with this new "hobby". Thanks to all who have been so helpful with your ideas and advice in the Forum.

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ASimpleBaker Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:39pm
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For my sixth grade graduation, I was given a Wilton decorating course. And my Grandfather taught me how to make all my homemade frostings and gave me his tips and tricks for baking.

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annacakes Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:40pm
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When my daughter was very small, we discovered that she had a serious peanut allergy. This meant any bakery cakes were off limits to her. At this time of her life, all her little friends were having birthday parties - sometimes she would not be invited because the Mom was afraid to feed her - the cake in particular. Sooo, I started offering to make the cakes for these parties. At first I dabbled with Smarties, sprinkles and store bought icing but being a baker knew it could be better. My first success was an "Inspector Gadget" cake. I traced his face off the TV screen and "transferred" it to the cake top.

Took the Wilton I course in 2000 and have never looked back. Have since taken all the professional classes I can manage and have become a WMI.

It's all been good.

Hoping to open my own business soon!

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Getus Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:41pm
post #8 of 23

My Grandmother decorated cakes when I was a little girl....in the 60's and early 70's. Those were the days of "froo-froo" cakes...silver dragees, tons of swags, flowers and very elaborate borders. Tons of stuff made of royal icing and sugar molds, tuck and ruffle, and the old metal tube for the icing!
She was an amazing cake artist, and always let me have a little cake of my own to decorate while she worked on hers. My birthday cakes were always wonderful. My fondest memory is one that was an awesome merry-go-round.
I spent a lot of time at my grandparent's home...a LOT of time. I have many wonderful memories of things I did with them both. These were hard working farm people. Everything they did earned them an income. But they always made me feel special and loved. My cake decorating never amounted to more than simply "piddling" with my little cakes.
Now...fast forward 40 years...both my grandparents are gone...I moved into their little farm home a year ago. I was going through old slides and came across several of Grandma's cakes...including me and my merry-go-round cake. Well....here I am, in the same kitchen I used to watch my grandmother decorate cakes....but now I'm decorating full sized cakes. Having a blast and re-living some great memories!
BTW....I am simply a hobby decorator...no pressure! thumbs_up.gif

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UltimateCakes Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:44pm
post #9 of 23

This thread was already done a while back.

Feel free to see how the others got started.

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grannys3angels Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:45pm
post #10 of 23

My mother in law (God rest her soul), she would do cakes for birthdays and holidays. So I ask her one time to show me and to help me get started, so I could do cakes for my children (she had never taken a class). She show me what she knew and I took it from there.

I went over 20 something years without doing cakes. I got started back, when my DD wanted me to do a birthday for my grand daughter's 4th b-day. I found CC and with all the helpful members, informations, tips, photos and sharing of others....I started doing them again.

I would also have to say, the cakes I do now are not like the cakes I did then...thanks to CC, the helpful members and all they have offer on this site, my cakes are so so much better then 20 some years ago icon_biggrin.gif

God Bless & Happy Holidays,

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yeastconfection Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:49pm
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I was also inspired by all the cake shows and Duff in particular because he is so relaxed and fun when it comes to making cakes. I also have an art background in different types of media but I have always enjoyed working with clay. I took a Wilton class two summers ago and was so frustated with the Wilton way- I "graduated" the level 1 class and haven't looked back. Wilton was too confining for me and is best for people who need step by step instructions. I was so irritated when my instructor told me I had too many petals on my rose and it wasn't the Wilton way! Anyways after that I learned everything I could about fondant and chocolate work, mostly from the TV and internet. I started out making free cakes for our homeless shelter. This was great practice and they loved them! I make cakes for friends and family and hope someday to make it more of a career.

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sweet_teeth Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:53pm
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I've never taken a wilton class.. I can't believe they said you had too many rose petals! What crap!

I must say.. this site has really propelled my interest. It keeps the ideas flowing and makes it even more exciting when you finish your cake since you're able to upload it and get critiqued by some of the best decorators around. Without this site I would never of known about sugarshacks DVD's, had to confidence to do some of those crazy topsy turvy cakes, or know so many ways to doctor a cake!

Each little trick/recipe I learn here refuels my passion.. it makes me so excited to get off work and get baking!!

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mellormom Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 5:59pm
post #13 of 23

I got started making my mom's wedding cake. She had a casual backyard wedding and we did all the planning and things. My SIL used to work at a bakery and knew how to construct one. So I said lets make it ourselves with fondant. I'll see how hard fondant is to make and we will make it if we can. I looked on the web and found MMF and practiced. It turned out to be easy enough so we did her cake in MMF. Everyone loved it and thought it came from a fancy bakery. Then about 6 months after I was so bored in the winter that I decided I had to do something and cake decorating was something I could do in my house and still be a stay at home mom. So that was it and a couple of months later I had a business out of my home.

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msulli10 Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 6:11pm
post #14 of 23

I wanted to make my niece's wedding cake. So I took all the Wilton courses and started watching all the Food Network shows and got hooked on this website. Although I never was able to make her wedding cake (not a licensed kitchen), I have made numerous cakes and hope to make this a business when I retire.

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rockytop Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 6:17pm
post #15 of 23

I was inspired when I would go to Micheals and see the signs for the cake decorating. One day my wife signed my up for a class as a Christmas present. I enjoyed so much I took all 3 classes I would like to see more men to get involved in cake deco. Ifeel like a fish out of water but that didnt stop me from going. I would like to take the 4th class but it always interfers with my schedule .

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BakingGirl Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 6:20pm
post #16 of 23

My start was a combination of two disasters, Hurricane Ivan and crappy grocery store cakes. My house was really badly damaged in Hurricane Ivan 4 years ago. We had to leave the island for a while, then stay with friends until our house was livable. Once I was back home I was so thrilled to be back that I turned into Martha Stewart and could not stop baking, despite my kitchen being in a real state - no kitchen counters and no running water for the longest time. Despite having baked a lot off and on since I was a little girl I never really decorated. After a couple of birthday parties where the cake was inedible a friend asked me why I did not decorate, after all my cakes are good to eat. So that was the start of it for me.

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pumpkinroses Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 6:53pm
post #17 of 23

My kids definately inspired me. My DS was always into a certain cartoon character, so I started off with the shaped pans and star tip. But then when my DD was turning 2 she wasn't into any particular character and coming up with an idea for her cake became an obsession and that's when I found Cake Central. I decided on Twinkle Twinkle little star theme (cake in my photos) and never looked back.

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Beckalita Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 7:04pm
post #18 of 23

I started baking when I was 9 or 10 (with supervision of course) and always loved sharing my sweet treats. Later, my co-workers would ask me to bring in birthday cakes but I lacked the decorating skill to make them look really nice. I took all three Wilton courses at Michael's, and have been learning and practicing ever since!!

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banananutmuffin Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 7:59pm
post #19 of 23

When my mom died in April of this year, I wanted a way to carry on her legacy of charity and good deeds. Then I saw a sign in a local sandwich shop advertising a bake sale to benefit a local woman with cancer and no health insurance. The sign was requesting food donations. I decided to make a few cakes to donate. Then I realized that starting my own little charity cake baking/decorating biz would be a great way for me to honor my mom (who loved to bake, loved to serve people food, and had a sweet tooth of her own). So now I am baking cakes for charitable causes that organizations can sell at baked sales, bazaars, silent auctions, etc.

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Lil_Belle Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 10:45pm
post #20 of 23

I too had been watching some of the baking shows and walked the aisles in Michaels wondering mostly about fondant. One day a very good, but insane, friend and I were watching Sweeney Todd in theaters and during one of the baking scenes I turned to her and said 'hey after this do you want to go to my house and bake?' she actually said sure! So after a trip to the store and many jokes about who we could bake into this cake, my cake decorating life started.

Haven't taken any classes yet though, they're on my list of things to do!

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liapsim Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 11:02pm
post #21 of 23

Mine inspiration would be my daughter who will be 7 in January. She has suffered from nosebleeds since she was 2 years old. I don't mean normal nosebleeds....I mean she loses about a pint to pint and a half in about 1.5 hours. She bleeds about 3 to 4 times a week and we don't know why. She has seen several specialists and went through many surgeries, but to no avail. Our only help has been some trial medication she has been on now for 3 years. The medicine reduces the amount of blood she loses, however she still bleeds about an hour and half still. She isn't able to play sports or run around crazy like other kids because of this.

Anyways, about 3 years ago, we were watching a Food Network Cake Challenge (she loves FN). And she was so into it. I was so amazed that this little 4 year old was just dazed by this show, I decided it was time to introduce her to the kitchen. So she and I started baking and it turned out the little booger has some great ideas! This Christmas she actually asked for her own Kitchen Aide, but money is tight so it will have to wait until things get better.

So, still to this day, we watch Food Network together-her new favorite is Duff- and we bake together. And she works her little heart out on things and gets mad when I get to stay up until 2am working without her!

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Amia Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 11:36pm
post #22 of 23

A friend of mine worked in the bakery at Target for 3 years, and in that time, learned how to decorate cakes.. She wasn't the cake decorator there, but she helped out and made cakes for friends. I was hooked after looking online for a design for my son's 1st birthday, and then watching her make his cake. After I saw his finished cake, I knew I could've done it myself. Six months later, I made my own baby shower cake and I've been decorating ever since.

Actually, his 1st birthday cake was the start of my CC addiction as well. I signed up on here several months before his birthday so I could browse the galleries on here.

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cakesbykitty Posted 25 Dec 2008 , 2:10am
post #23 of 23

I had wanted to take a Wilton class for years but just had never done it. When i lived in Anchorage Alaska 2 years ago, and it was dark all winter, I finally decided it would be a fun thing to pass the long dark days. After taking all 3 courses I actually ended up teaching them. Not liking the idea of "pushing" Wilton products (and discovering Cake Central!) I opted to just "do my own thing" and have never looked back. And, as of 2 days ago I am (with a partner) opening a bakery! Amazing how things start!

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