Thursday, May 27, 2010

Gumpaste Graduation Gal

My ex-sister-in-law Denise invited us (my husband David, too) to her daughter Rachel's graduation dinner party. Rachel is Jacob's first cousin on his dad's side; Denise is my ex-husband's sister. My ex-in-laws are all really terrific. I said yes, and after I hung up, I sent Denise a text message: "Want me to make the cake," to which she replied "YES!!!!"

I have the cake idea in mind (Thanks to, of course) and I started to make the gumpaste accents early so they would harden in time. One of the things that will be on the cake is a mini-Rachel in her cap and gown.

I started with the torso. I made the blouse and added some decoration to them collar.

Next up, I made the legs. She'll be kneeling.

Her school colors are purple and gold, and her cap and gown will be purple.

Time for the face. Hi Rachel!

Notice the hands holding the diploma.

"Rachel" was left to dry a couple of days, and then I got.....dum dum dum, a clay extruder! You can find them at Michael's or buy them on-line at Amazon.

So, why'd I get one?


Next up will be placing her cap on her head, and then on to making and decorating the cakes. The party's not for over a week & 2 days, and I am so excited!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Practice that Buttercream

I took cake classes in order to actually work with buttercream. Everyone now wants to to fondant, but I wanted to get the buttercream technique down. Unfortunately, the class was not what I had hoped. For Course # 1, the teacher didn't have us bring practice cakes in at all until the last of 4 classes. Other people I know who took the course had to bring a cake each week. Ours did not. He said it was a waste of our time. I disagree. He also was very clique-y with some women he knew who were taking the class, and I was disappointed with Course 1. THEN he says Wilton was changing their classes and there would be no Course 2. We skipped to course 3. So still no buttercream work. I almost want to take the classes again (he's moved on and is not teaching anymore.)

I have a hate/hate relationship with buttercream. I scour the Internet, I read, watch YouTube videos, change up my buttercream recipes over and over, and I still can't make a nice, smooth cake (which is probably why I have yet to attempt a wedding cake. if I can't make it perfectly smooth, what's the point?)

I purchased some $2 angel food loaves from Walmart to practice on. The first time, I tried making the buttercream as smooth as possible. You can blow up the pictures to see. I can't get the edges right and it's frustrating.

I decided to practice roses while I was at it, but my buttercream was to soft and the petals kept rippling.

Tonight I took the second Walmart angel food cake out of the freezer to try a different buttercream recipe I found on-line.

After smoothing it as best I could, I hand-piped Jessie from Toy Story on it. I am proud of my Jessie, just cause I drew it by hand. :)

The icing is still not smooth. I don't know if I should KEEP piling more on, or what. I am so over buttercream.
Someone help!

This was the end product. The wording was not anything I would do for anyone else, I was messing around, filling space on the cake. Isabel ADORED it.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Pottery Party Cake

A friend was throwing a surprise birthday party for his wife at a pottery painting place, and he asked if I would make the cake. I decided on a cake about pottery painting. :)

This is a carrot cake with chocolate cream cheese icing. All the items on here are edible. I made the cup, the cat, the tile and the plate. My sister Brenda made the paint brushes and the paint pallet. As added cuteness, I drew the family on the tile and Brenda engraved their 4 kids' names on 4 of the paint brushes.

I'm not too concerned with the icing; it's supposed to look like a table. It could have been smoother but I was frosting this at 10 p.m. on Friday after work and I was pooped.

The birthday momma was surprised! and everyone enjoyed the cake.