Saturday, October 16, 2010

Wedding cake, phase 3: the final decorations

Around 1:00 pm yesterday afternoon Andrew and I headed over to his grandmother's house where the cake was being kept. Once again, things didn't go exactly as I planned. I learned something yesterday (that would have been helpful to have known earlier): there's a huge difference in the colouring abilities of Wilton gel products. The ones in the small tubes are not effective in colouring fondant--these are also what I tried to use on Wednesday. We attempted to transform the white fondant I'd purchased into vibrant reds, yellows, and oranges for leaves, but were only coming up with pastel pinks, and peaches--no good.
The cake, uncovered. I really wasn't happy with the base fondant colour, but now I know what to use in the future.
When Andrew had gone through the entire tube of orange we agreed we needed something else, so off he went to the Bulk Barn (thankfully only a couple of blocks away). He came back with more tube colourings, and also with the type of Wilton colouring that comes in little jars. I'm not sure what the difference is, I didn't look at the labels, but apparently I should have been using the jar colouring all along. We got the nice dark colours we wanted without using all of the gel.

Once we'd sorted the colour problem out we were on our way. I started cutting out leaves with various sizes of cookie cutters and drew little veins into them with a nut-pick. Then I placed them into an empty egg carton so they would curl like real leaves. Once I'd prepared a small selection of shaped leaves, I took the assortment of orange leaves Andrew had prepared and arranged them on the cake. As I stuck them to the cake, Andrew continued onto the yellow and red fondant, and after I thought I had enough of the other colours we marbled the leftovers together.
Leaves drying so they will rest curled on the cake,
Andrew, cutting out leaves.
The cake, with its first layer of orange leaves.
Two colours of leaves applied.
The cake, more-or-less completed, just a few finishing touches to go.
The second thing that didn't work out like I would have liked was how I arranged the leaves. Initially I thought I would create a spiral of leaves around the entire cake, but as I laid the decorations out I ended up covering half the cake and the other was bare. The cover side looked great, while the other half did not--surprised? Probably not, so then we had to roll out what was left of the coloured fondant and cut out as many new leaves as we could.
All colours of leaves applied.
A close up of the top.
Overall, I'm happy with the way the cake turned out. The bronze under-colour seems to photograph better than it looks in real life, but that's also part of why I decided to cover the entire cake. Ideally, I would like to take another cake decorating course, one for wedding cakes from NAIT so I can learn more advanced fondant techniques--we'll see if I ever get the time. Maybe next summer?



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