Decorating Tips/tecniques For Cupakes

Baking By augurey Updated 21 Jun 2011 , 10:04am by amaryllis756

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augurey Posted 4 Jun 2011 , 3:05pm
post #1 of 11

I really haven't used decorating tips too much -- so I'm very inexperienced with them. I mean, I can do some (really) basic pipping around cakes (and I still have improvement to make on those).

Last night I made some cupcakes because I wanted to practice icing them with tips (for my boyfriend's sister's bachelorette party in a week). I wanted to see what each of the tips did and what I could do with them.

Everything looked absolutely *awful*. I know it's lack of experience/technique. I know that many use the 1M tip for swirls, and even trying to do that, it just looked so mushed down and just really bad.

I know that this is something that has to be learned and practiced. I'm giving it another shot with a different icing (used SMBC and I don't think it came out 100% or just that it was just to warm to use). I'm going to try again today with a buttercream.

Does anyone have any suggestions or tips on how to make a nice swirl? Techniques? I just have no idea how to make them really swirly/defined shaped and fluffy. I've seen people do this, and it just looks so nice and effortless. (But then again, watching experienced people, everything to do with decorating looks so easy and effortless)

Also, when decorating a cupcake, do you decorate with the tip with it on the table or do you hold it in one hand while using the other to pipe on the icing? I notice that when I hit a certain spot on the cupcake, it always looks weird because I don't know if I'm not going with the right flow or what, but it just doesn't look right. I really can't explain.

But if anyone could offer any tips or suggestions for someone that's not experienced with icing tips, I'd be really grateful!

10 replies
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Crazboutcakes Posted 4 Jun 2011 , 3:30pm
post #2 of 11

The only thing that I can ask is what kind of icing are you using? It sounds like yes, you more experience but if it's mushing, it sounds like the icing is too soft! Try make firmer icing and see if that works, you really need a firmer icing to keep it's shape. HTH icon_smile.gif

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augurey Posted 5 Jun 2011 , 3:43am
post #3 of 11

^^I was using SMBC for those. It could have been that it was just way too soft. Besides that it was pretty warm in the house, I also struggled a lot to get it to resemble anything of any kind of icing. Well, it did look better before I started icing anyway, but I am guessing heat was more the factor than anything.

I used the buttercream recipe off The Bakers Kitchen website this afternoon. I went with a more stiff consistency and didn't press down as hard. I tried to let the icing flow a bit more. These ones turned out 100xs better than the ones from last night. Although I still have a lot of improvement to make, I think should at the very least work fine for my cupcakes next weekend.

Thanks! icon_smile.gif

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mena2002 Posted 5 Jun 2011 , 4:19am
post #4 of 11

Keep practicing, the more you do it the better you will be. I think that's how we all grow and improve our skills icon_smile.gif

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globalgatherings Posted 5 Jun 2011 , 4:28am
post #5 of 11

I like the 1M tip, but I also like the 2D. many people on CC use it. Try it, I think you'll like it and like everyone else said, you just have to keep playing with it. thumbs_up.gif

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MUAKPsi Posted 5 Jun 2011 , 4:56am
post #6 of 11

Try watching some videos on youtube for technique. I found Xanthe Milton's videos to be helpful. There are even some videos produced by Wilton.

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Crazboutcakes Posted 5 Jun 2011 , 1:57pm
post #7 of 11

was just way too soft. Besides that it was pretty warm in the house.

This does play a big part in how your cuppies turned out and you had both factors playing a roll. To get a firmer butter cream, just add a little more PS till it feels right and using a large size tip also helps. and if it is warm in the house than that will also not help, but a firmer icing should help hold up better too. Happy baking icon_biggrin.gif

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Valkstar Posted 5 Jun 2011 , 3:12pm
post #8 of 11

What I've done is make a batch of buttercream and piped it on to a couple of leftover cakes or on to some baking parchment. The scrape it off and do it again, and again. Plenty of practice will really help your technique.

I did the same with royal icing, to try out all the tips I had.

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Cupcations Posted 5 Jun 2011 , 11:22pm
post #9 of 11

I suggest you start working on your BC icing before you work on your piping...

I dont think anyone can make a swirl if the icing is mushy. I suggest you uses Indydebi's BC recipe you can never go wrong with that... as shes says "Too thin? Add more sugar. Too thick? Add more milk.."

Then I second the previuos poster when he/she said watch Youtube videos... I've never seen anyone piping infront of me, I owe it all to youtube & cakecentral (thank you everyone icon_biggrin.gif )

I hold my CC with one hand & pipe with another... but everyone is different try to find your comfort zone...


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augurey Posted 6 Jun 2011 , 1:19am
post #10 of 11

^^I did try with a different BC recipe, and the swirls came out so much better -- though I know I need more practice with it.

I'm actually not going to use the SMBC on the cupcakes for Saturday because I just haven't been able to get it right yet, and I would rather spend my time decorating to the best of my abilities rather than spending the majority trying to get the icing right and then being rushed to decorate. After using a different BC recipe, I could tell a huge difference.

I spent a good portion of the afternoon on youtube. Quite a bit of interesting stuff that I'm really looking forward to trying.

I also got a 2D tip today as well.

I think before I frost the cupcakes Saturday morning, I'm going to try a few out on wax paper so I can at least find/get into some sort of rhythm.

Which icing consistency is better for using icing tips on cupcakes -- medium or stiff? Or it is pretty much a personal preference?

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amaryllis756 Posted 21 Jun 2011 , 10:04am
post #11 of 11

I was just trying to teach my granddaughter how to frost my cupcakes for my business, and seeing her do it, I realized some of the problems she had. For one thing, her hands are smaller, and I had filled the bag too full for her, so she felt she had to use 2 hands. That cause more melting of the frosting while it was still in the bag. (SMBC). Another thing she was doing, was holding the bag too close to the cupcake itself. I didn't realize how far away I am from a cupcake when I frost. I don't touch the cake in any way with the tip. I use a 1M tip normally, but I also use others for different looks on my specific cupcakes. I hope this might help.

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