The Violet Cake Shop™

Sharing inspirations for my designs, and tips I've discovered along the way in my caking journey! <3


Leave a comment

Time Saving Way to Make Scrunch and Rosette Ruffles – How-To Tutorial below

OMG…these new Simpress moulds by Marvelous Molds are a total TIMESAVER, not to mention game-changer in cake decorating!  (I show you how to use them below in the mini-tutorial)

If you’ve ever done a fully ruffled tier in any of your designs, even as small as 4″, you KNOW that they are absolutely TIME-CONSUMING, wow!  I used to avoid including full ruffle tiers in my designs and almost NEVER used them for a celebration cake order because quite frankly, the client would cringe at the cost lol.

A single 7″ tier (at standard height of 4″) could take up to 11 hours or more depending on the type of ruffling you’re doing.  Even with my innovative standup ruffling technique, which saves a bunch of time, it would still take upwards of 7 hours.  With these new Simpress moulds by Marvelous Molds, it took me just 1.5 hours for the bottom of my niece’s recent wedding cake.  And that included redoing one of the panels because I had a brain-fart and forgot to press firmly to pick up the details of the mould.

 

Full view of the cake I made for my niece’s rustic chic wedding

I could not have been happier with the results!  Normally, I only use moulds if they add clean, ornate detailing that cannot be achieved manually.  So ruffles, because I can make them by hand, would normally not be something I would consider using a mould for.  Especially because I always felt the details on those I’ve seen made using other moulds, rarely looked natural or authentic.

The original plan for my niece’s wedding cake was to use my standup ruffling technique on the bottom tier.  But when Marvelous Molds sent me their new line to review, I decided to test out the Scrunch Ruffle mould on a dummy and see if I liked it better.  Well, I was SO happy with how natural and custom the ruffling looked, that I decided to go ahead and use it on her cake, which saved me hours and hours of work!  Serious TIMESAVER I tell ya!!  Now you KNOW, if I am using it on a cake for my niece’s most special day, it HAS to be fabulous.

On a side note, here is a rare pic of me with one of my cakes.  I usually look like total crap after I finish a cake because I’m totally exhausted and disheveled after pulling an all-nighter, so never take pics with my creations.  As you can see, I cleaned myself up enough to attend the wedding hence how I was able to take a pic, but if you look closely, my eyes are a bit glazed because I’m literally a walking zombie at this point haha!

So here is the promised mini-tutorial.  It shows you my tried and tested way of using the Simpress line by Marvelous Molds and which actually works for any of their moulds including the Onlays.  Enjoy and Happy Caking Y’ALL!!

Top: new Scrunch Ruffle Simpress, Bottom: new Rosette Ruffle Simpress

~~

Mini-Tutorial on how to use the new Scrunch Ruffle Simpress (and any other mould actually)…

 

Add 1/4 tsp of CMC or Tylose powder to 4 oz of fondant to fortify it so it can be used more easily in the mould. ALTERNATIVELY, you can use a 50/50 paste of gumpaste and fondant. NOTE: for the 7″ tier pictured on the wedding cake above, I used approximately 1 pound or 16 oz of fondant and added a full tsp of Tylose powder.

 

Use cornstarch to dust the crevices of the moulds to prevent the paste from sticking. Make sure to dust into all creases, grooves and crevices, especially the borders of the mould. ALTERNATIVELY, you can use shortening if you prefer. PRO TIP: I like to use BOTH shortening and cornstarch just to be on the safe side though either one works well on their own.

 

Roll out some of the paste so it’s large enough to fit over the mould, approximately 7″ long and 4.5″ wide. The thickness you roll it to will vary depending on the mould you are using. For the Scrunch Ruffle mould, 3-4 mm is a good thickness.

 

Lay the sheet of paste over the mould and press firmly downward with the palm and heel of your hand so the paste fills the mould beneath. Gently lift your hand and move to another area of the mould and repeat until the entire surface has been pressed into the mould below. Try not to slide the fondant around or push it side to side as this can mess up the impression. PRO TIP: dust some cornstarch on the surface before you start pressing the paste into the mould – this prevents the paste from sticking to your palm.

 

After pressing all areas firmly into the mould, you can now press more firmly so the blades of the mould cut through the paste and so the paste can pick up more of the impression from the mould. PRO TIP: I like to go over the entire surface, pressing firmly, two to three times.

 

Take a sheet of paper towel and fold into quarters. Wet the paper towel so it is damp but not dripping, and use it to wet the back of the paste.

 

Take the panel and lay it against your cake so the entire back surface of the paste touches the side of the cake. Press along the entire panel with your hands so that the paste starts to adhere to the cake underneath – this can take a few seconds, up to one minute if necessary. TIP: the cake should be iced already in either buttercream, ganache or covered with a thin layer of fondant before applying the panels.

 

Starting on one end, start peeling away the mould slowly, revealing the paste below. PRO TIP: if any of the paste sticks to the mould, you can ease it out with a thin brush that has some shortening on it.

 

Repeat all previous steps to create another panel. Line up the second panel with one end of the first panel as shown, and unmould.

 

Gently press the edges together to clean up any gaps between the panels.


Leave a comment

How to Make a Shimmer Fondant Princess Tiara

WOW! I can’t believe it’s been almost a year and a half since I’ve made a blog post! I have NO idea where all the time went. I have been in quite a prolonged decorating and creative funk lately, not feeling motivated, but I HAVE still been making cakes here and there, just not posting much and I guess blogging NONE, lol!

Some of my latest cakes:

 

Each time I think I want to post something about a cake I’ve made, I feel overwhelmed or have doubts that anything I post would be worth reading.  So I don’t.  But then I get a lovely comment on an Instagram or Facebook post and am reminded of the many times people have said I’ve inspired them with what I share – even when it’s about my struggles – and then instantly it seems worthwhile.

I guess I really need to just push through despite my doubts or I fear I may end up losing all interest in sharing my caking journey altogether (insert frowny face emoji here).  So today, I’ve chosen to share a quick mini-tutorial on how I made this princess tiara using the new Satin Ice Shimmer Gold fondant and hopefully, it will be helpful to someone out there.

Now to preface, you can make this with any type of fondant.  It just so happened that the idea for this tiara came when I was deciding what I could make with the new Shimmer fondant that I was sent to try out (which by the way comes in Gold, Silver and Pearl and can be mixed with their regular colours to make all kinds of shimmer shades).  This new line from Satin Ice is such a game-changer and serious time-saver.  I can see them being super useful and convenient for making all kinds of birthday cakes, including Carousel, Unicorn, Princess, Mermaid and even Outer Space themes…the list goes on.  It adds that extra bit of magic to any design!

I had a hard time narrowing down what idea I wanted to try it out on first.  I finally decided that a tiara would be the perfect way to showcase the gold shimmer.  It’s hard to see in the daylight pics, but the shimmer in the fondant is amazing and would work equally well for wedding or glamour cakes.

Here are a couple of cell phone pics of the cake under flash setting.

  

As I was making the tiara, I decided I HAD to take progress pics.  Mostly, I do this when I want to remember what I did, for next time, just in case there is a next time – haha!  But once in a while I think to myself, I might as well share them with my followers since it might be super helpful.  Also it’s been a while since I’ve shared anything, and it really is too cute not to share.

So hope you all enjoy this quickie tutorial and remember, HAPPY CAKING Y’ALL =D

~~

How to make a Shimmer Fondant Princess Tiara:

 

Treat your paste so it can dry stiff and sturdy enough to hold its shape on its own.  To strengthen your fondant (this works for all kinds), add 1/4 tsp Tylose to 4 oz. paste and knead well.  Use more if you feel your paste is still too soft.

 

Roll paste to 2 mm thickness, approximately 11″ long and 3″ wide.

 

Trim your paste to 10″ long and 2.5″ wide. TIP: it’s helpful to use a crafting mat with grid measurements imprinted.

 

Mark the halfway point (5″ mark) using your craft knife.

 

Next, mark the point 3.25″ over to the right of the midway mark (or 1.75″ in from the outer right edge).

 

Now, mark the mirror point on the opposite side – 3.25″ to the left of the midway point, or 1.75″ in from the outer left side.

 

Line up a circle cutter (that is approximately 3.5″ or 88 mm wide) so that one side touches the midway mark and the other side touches the mark on the right side, and cut. Do the same with the marks on the left side.

 

Next, using the grids on the mat as a guide, mark the point that is 2.25″ to the left of the midway point.  Do the same on the other side (2.25″ to the right of the midway point).

 

Using a ruler to confirm, mark the point that is 1″ up from the bottom edge and 1″ in from the right edge.

 

Do the same on the left side.

 

Line up an edge of the cutter with each of the marks and cut, as shown.

 

Mark the point that is 1/2″ up from the bottom edge as shown and line up the edges of the cutter with that mark and the one marked previously (the one that was 1″ up and 1″ in), and cut.

 

Cut an angle that connects the point that is 1/2″ up on the left edge with the point that is 1/2″ in from the left on the bottom edge. Do the same on the right side.

 

Using a small leaf cutter, make cut outs under the three middle points as shown.

 

With a small heart cutter, make a cut out as shown.

 

Using a number 8 piping tip, make a few marks as shown to dress up the design.

 

Wrap the paste around a 4″ dummy or similar size tub and allow to dry overnight or until completely stiff.

 

Add some small blossom cut outs to further dress up the tiara.

 

Finished tiara embellished with blossoms.

 


Leave a comment

Western Steampunk Plaque Tutorial

Time sure does fly by so fast sometimes!  It’s been a while since my last post and so much has been going on both with cakes and home life and the recent holidays, that I haven’t had a chance to blog until now.

I still have so much to share and will have more time soon to share more, but for now, I wanted to let everyone know some great news from Marvelous Molds.  Their new Flexabets line has been such a successful addition to their offerings that they’ve had requests for more and more font styles.   Well good news!!  They just released two new fonts – WESTERN and ACTION COMIC.

I am lucky ’cause they send me prototypes of some of their new lines to try out and I have to say, I was so excited when I got these and just love the new styles!  They are so needed in the cake themes that we cakers get asked for today.  And the Flexabets system is SO easy to use.  Much better than struggling with the old hard plastic style alphabet cutters from when I first started decorating.

I’ve put together a quick mini-tutorial for making a birthday plaque using the new Western font.  It’s a great way to dress up your cakeboard.  Or just add it to the front of a western or steampunk style cake and voila!  I hope you enjoy the tutorial and if so, you can get your own moulds here.

 

MMWF - 1

Roll out some brown coloured paste made from 50/50 fondant and gumpaste to 1/32″ thickness (you can also use fondant with CMC added to make it stiffer instead of adding gumpaste). Brush some shortening into the cavities of the mould.

 

MMWF - 2

Lay the brown paste over the letters of the mould and press into the grooves with the palm of your hand.

MMWF - 3

Once firmly in the grooves, go over the back of the mould with a smoother until the cutting blades cut through the fondant.

MMWF - 5

Here the blades have cut through the paste.  Continue until all lines are clear and clean.

MMWF - 4

Once all lines are clean, remove the excess paste.  Remove the excess cutouts inside the letters with an exacto knife.

MMWF - 6

Roll out some white or ivory paste to 1/32″ thickness and using a large cookie cutter, cut out a shape for your plaque base.

MMWF - 7

Wet the back of the paste in the mould with some water or edible glue.  Remove any excess with a paper towel.

MMWF - 8

Position the onlay over the plaque base, ensuring it is centered.

MMWF - 9

Press the back of the onlay with your palm so the letters adhere to the plaque below.  Use your fingers to go over the letters again.

MMWF - 10

Once the paste has adhered to the plaque below, lift away the onlay carefully.

MMWF - 11

Roll out some brown fondant, large enough to fit the plaque.  Add some water to the back of the ivory plaque base and attach to the brown paste.  Using an exacto knife, cut out a border around the plaque.

MMWF - 12

Now it’s time to embellish your plaque.  You can add any decorations you like, to style it to the theme of your cake.  Here, we will style it in a Western Steampunk style.

MMWF - 13

Brush some shortening into the cavities of a mould with gears, keys and other Steampunk decor.  Add some 50/50 fondant/gumpaste into the cavities to create some moulded pieces.  Allow the pieces to dry at least 10 to 15 minutes before adding to your plaque.

MMWF - 15

Mix some gold lustre dust with lemon extract to create gold lustre paint and brush some onto the moulded pieces.

MMWF - 14

Mix some silver lustre dust with lemon extract to create silver lustre paint and brush onto the letters.  Add some rolled roses and voila!  You have a beautiful plaque to adorn your cake!

 


Leave a comment

FREE Gumpaste Anemone Flower Tutorial by The Violet Cake Shop™

Recently, I created a tutorial for my Industrial Steampunk Chic cake (a cake designed originally for the Steam Cakes Collaboration) that appeared in the October issue of Cake Masters Magazine, UK.

The Violet Cake Shop - Steam Cakes - 2 - IMG_8881 - ii - watermarked

The original cake featured an orchid coloured anemone flower in the design, sitting between the two tiers, but the flower was not included in the print tutorial since it would have added at least 28 more steps to an already lengthy tutorial. This was communicated to my contact at Cake Masters and passed along to the editors when the tutorial was submitted.

Steampunk Chic Blog Title

Unfortunately, there was a miscommunication or misunderstanding somewhere along the line when the magazine went to print, so although the printed tutorial did not have those steps included, there was promotional material created and posted that indicated the flower was part of that tutorial in the print issue.  Of course, a few people were a bit disappointed to find out it was not in the magazine.

img_20171024_144158

As a happy solution, I created a free tutorial for the anemone flower that I posted on my Facebook page, to share with Cake Masters, their readers, and anyone else that was hoping it was part of the tutorial.  I am also adding it permanently here to my blog so it will be easier to find later on for those looking!  See below for the step-by-steps details and pics…but first…

GREAT NEWS:  A few people sent me messages when the magazine first came out, asking if the full Steampunk Chic Cake tutorial would be available to download in PDF file format and I’m happy to say that it is finally now available for sale in my Facebook SHOP.  It’s on for an introductory price of 50% OFF, for a limited time.  So that’s just $11 CAD for over 135 high quality pics and 85 pages of step-by-step instructions, tips and best practices, which works out to less than $9 USD (reg. $22 CAD or $17 USD).  It also includes a printable version of this Gumpaste Anemone tutorial as a BONUS.

The Violet Cake Shop - Steampunk Chic Full Tutorial - 1 - cover

Here is what the tutorial covers…

Steampunk Chic Full Tutorial - 4

I’m also putting ALL my other tutorials on SALE for 40% OFF in celebration of the release of this latest tutorial.

So now on to the good stuff, the free stuff…😉

The Violet Cake Shop™’s FREE GUMPASTE ANEMONE TUTORIAL:

TVCS Anemone - 1

Tools and supplies you will need:
– 3 petal flower cutter (alternatively, you can use an oval cutter – pictured) – floral tape – #2 piping tip and #12 piping tip – 5 petal flower cutter – small silicone rolling pin – dresden tool – ball tool – craft or exacto knife – needle nose pliers/wire cutter – wide mouth Japanese soup spoon – 1 oz (large gumball size) gumpaste coloured black – 2 oz (golf ball size) gumpaste coloured orchid/magenta (2.5 parts deep pink to 1 part purple) – thin foam pad – flower veiner – 20 or 24 gauge floral wire cut to 3″ length – lily stamen (if cannot find long black stamen) – black gel colour for dyeing stamen – aluminum foil – paper towels (not pictured)
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 2

STEP 1 –
If you cannot find black stamen (which I could not find readily), you will have to dye stamen of similar size and length as those found on anemones, which I find lily stamen work well.
You can dilute the black gel colour with some vodka before dipping your stamen, or you can paint the colour on with a standard brush dipped in the colouring. Let your stamen dry on some paper towel. Wipe off excess colour if necessary.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 3

STEP 2 –
Spread out the stamen with your fingers, into a line, so they are not so bunched together.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 4

STEP 3 –
Roll out a small ball of black gumpaste approximately 2/3″ or 1.5 cm wide, to create the centre. Flatten the top slightly against your work surface.
Use the needle nose pliers to make a hook at the end of the 20 or 24 gauge floral wire. Insert the hook end of the wire into the gumpaste ball, approximately halfway up.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 5

STEP 4 –
Use the small end of a #2 piping tip to mark small circle details on the top surface of your centre.
TIP: hold the wire just under the gumpaste ball, to prevent the ball from slipping down the wire as you mark the top.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 6

STEP 5 –
Insert into a styrofoam dummy to dry a few hours, until the gumpaste ball is set fairly firmly onto the wire.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 7

STEP 6 –
After a few hours, your centre should have set a bit and your dyed stamen should be fully dried.
Add your stamen bunches to your centre, one or two at a time, wrapping well with floral tape before adding the next bunches. You will need approximately 6 to 7 bunches to go around your centre nicely.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 8

STEP 7 –
Once all the stamen are added, wrap the stem of your centre all the way down. Set aside to dry fully, overnight.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 9

STEP 8 –
To create your petals, use a 3 petal cutter OR use a small oval cutter, 1.75″ long (refer to alternative steps 20 and 21).
First, colour your gumpaste with 2.5 parts deep pink to 1 part purple colouring. Next, roll out the gumpaste to 1/32″ or 1 mm thickness. Next, cut out two cut outs using the three petal cutter. You will need four cut outs overall but work with two first, to prevent the petals drying out.
If using oval cutters, you will need two sets of 6 cut outs for a total of 12.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 10

STEP 9 –
Using the large end of the ball tool and pressing gently, thin out the sides of the petals slightly, with the ball half on the paste and half on the foam pad.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 11

STEP 10 –
Use the veiner to imprint vein detail onto each of the 3 petals.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 12

STEP 11 –
Frill the edges of your petals with the large end of your ball tool and mark two lines down the centre with the thin end of your dresden tool.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 13

STEP 12 –
Use a Japanese soup spoon as a flower former. It is deep enough to create a lovely cupped shape and is the perfect size for the anemone flower.
Dust the cavity of your Japanese soup spoon with some cornstarch to prevent the gumpaste from sticking to the spoon as the petals dry.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 14

STEP 13 –
Lay the first frilled and veined 3 petal cut out into the cavity of the spoon. Using a brush, dab some water onto the very centre.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 15

STEP 14 –
Place the second prepared 3 petal cut out on top of the first one, with the petals of the second set, in between those of the first set.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 16

STEP 15 –
Repeat STEPS 8 to 11, to prepare a second set of petals. But for this set, you will need to cut the petals as shown so they are small enough that they can lay inside the petals of the first two sets.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 17

STEP 16 –
Add the petals individually. First, dab some water with a brush onto the centre, brushing slightly towards the petals, approximately 1/3 of the way up.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 18

STEP 17 –
Position the first set of three petals evenly, in a trillium shape, in between two petals of those from the first set.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 19

STEP 18 –
Position the second set of three petals evenly on top of the first set.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 20

STEP 19 –
Add some small pieces of paper towel in between the petals to add some movement and shape to the petals.
Using a #12 piping tip, cut out a small circle in the very centre of all the petals and set aside to set for about half an hour.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 21

(ALTERNATIVE) STEP 20 – If you do not have a 3 petal cutter as shown, use STEPS 20 and 21 instead to create petals.
Use a 1.75″ long oval cutter to cut out 12 petals total. Work with 6 at time, to vein and frill the petals.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 22

(ALTERNATIVE) STEP 21 – If you do not have a 3 petal cutter as shown, use STEPS 20 and 21 instead to create petals.
Frill and vein the petals as shown. The first petal is untouched. Thin the sides with the ball tool, vein with the veiner, mark the centre details and frill the edges.
Cut out a small circle of gumpaste to sit under the petals. Add each petal on top of the circle gumpaste in a similar position as that shown in STEPS 13, 14, 17 and 18.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 23

STEP 22 –
After the flower petals have had a chance to set, start making your calyx.
Create the calyx using a 5 petal cutter. Roll out some green gumpaste to 1/32″ or 1 mm thickness. Use the 5 petal cutter to cut out one shape.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 24

STEP 23 –
Using your craft or exacto knife, cut out slits in the petals as shown.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 25

STEP 24 –
Use the #12 piping tip to cut out a hole in the centre.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 26

STEP 25 –
Shape some folded aluminum foil into the same cupped shape as a Japanese soup spoon and place on top of a cup. Poke a hole in the centre with something pointed, like a skewer.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 27

STEP 26 –
Dab some water around the centre of the prepared calyx cut out, brushing outwards.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 28

STEP 27 –
Place the calyx in the foil cavity. Gently remove your flower petals from the Japanese spoon former. The petals may still be a bit soft but that’s ok so long as you are gentle.
Place the flower petals on top of the calyx where the water was dabbed and ensure the petals adhere to the calyx. Add some water to the centre of the semi-set petals and insert your prepared flower centre. You may need to add some fresh fondant if the petals are too dry.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

TVCS Anemone - 29

STEP 28 –
Reposition the paper towel bits between the petals and leave to dry overnight.
Once fully dried, dust as desired to bring more life to your flower.
**All Images, Content and Technique Ideas Property of The Violet Cake Shop™ – All Rights Reserved – 10/25/17**

I hope this will come in handy for those of you out there that are new to decorating and sugar flowers!  Please keep in mind that I tend to try things out on my own so these techniques are ones I’ve come up with and are not the only way to create this flower, nor are they necessarily the best.  But they are shared for those who might not have other resources or who just want to use what is easily available.

IMG_9573 - wm

So please use for your own pleasure and I hope you ENJOY!  Remember, you can always share your creations with me on my Facebook page.  I love seeing what you create using one of my tutorials!

Happy Caking Y’ALL!!


Leave a comment

Meet Sir Jacques Steampunkin! A Steampunk Pumpkin Head Cake

It’s almost Hallowe’en and we just revealed a new cake collaboration.  My newest creation has been getting lots of love on Facebook and Instagram and I’ve gotten a few questions and lots of amazing comments, so I thought I’d introduce him here and answer a few of those questions at the same time…

Meet Sir Jacques Steampunkin! 🎃🎃🎃

He is my contribution to the 5th installment of our Sugar Spooks collaboration. 😈👿👹👺💀👻👽👾🤡

He is a culmination of my love of the Steampunk genre and what I imagined a creepy old jack o’lantern would look like. I wanted to do something not seen before. As I was creating him, he started to take on a stately look so I decided to make him a ‘Sir’ lol… I hope people like him as much as I do.

The-Violet-Cake-Shop-Jacques-for-Sugar-Spooks-IMG_9508-ii-wm
I’ve been asked what moulds I used and they are a variety of moulds that I’ve found throughout the years, some for cake decorating and others, not.  The cogs, frame and fleur-de-lis are from Mod Podge which are food safe silicone moulds made for use in polymer clay crafting but can be used for creating cake décor as well – just make sure you use them only for food and if you do crafting with clay as well as cake, make sure to get a separate set for use in each.
The-Violet-Cake-Shop-Jacques-for-Sugar-Spooks-IMG_9525-ii-wm
The other moulds I used (for the gold vest texture, and to detail the cakeboard – see closeup below) are from Marvelous Molds who make products that I love using in my decorating.  I have used their products for FORever (!!!) and use them in SO many different ways!
For example, to add detail to Sir Jacques’ vest, I decided to use their new Symmetrical  Sequin Simpress Panel.  It’s meant to be used to texture a tier with sequins, easily and quickly.  But I used it here to give a luxe look to his vest which is a characteristic of the clothing often seen in Steampunk.
The-Violet-Cake-Shop-Jacques-for-Sugar-Spooks-IMG_9552-ii-wm
Sir Jacques’ pumpkin head is made from rice krispie treats (RKT) that I shaped into a flattened pumpkin shape, only so it wouldn’t be as heavy and round, and would sit better on the cake tier.  I then covered the RKT with a very thick panel of fondant, making sure the seam was at the bottom.  I used my Dresden tool (the flatter end) to mark the grooves and used the length of my right pinky to impress the grooves more until I was happy with the ‘pumpkiness’ of my creation.  Again, unfortunately, I did not take photos and now I wish I had, lol.
I then coloured him with a variety of orange petal dust and shortening (which I know many claim as their own but is a technique I have used since I first started decorating, mostly when using lustre dust).  I then added dark brown in the grooves to create depth.
The-Violet-Cake-Shop-Jacques-for-Sugar-Spooks-IMG_9533-ii-wm
Since this was for a collaboration and I wanted to save him to use as a Hallowe’en prop at home, I used styro dummies for the cake tiers.  But this can just as easily be made from real cake, with the proper support for his head of course!
His single goggle is handmade and detailed…using circle cutters, a piping tip to add the outlines for the screws, and an exacto knife to add the slit in the screws.
 His hat is also made from RKT which I shaped into a tapered tier, then iced with ganache and covered with fondant (same as I would if made from cake).
His mouth was handcut and painted.  I then added metal ‘staples’ which were cut from fondant and painted with silver lustre mixed with lemon extract (much better than vodka people!  I swear by it…and smells great too lol).
The-Violet-Cake-Shop-Jacques-for-Sugar-Spooks-IMG_9538-ii-wm
Hope you enjoyed meeting Sir Jacques Steampunkin!  I certainly enjoyed creating him.
Happy Caking Y’ALL and have a spooky Hallowe’en!!

You can check out the other seriously amazing pieces by going to our website (http://www.sugarspooks.com/).

It’s an honour to be part of this group again. Big thanks to Avalon Yarnes of Avalon Cakes for spearheading such a talented group and including me in the mix.

I don’t normally do scary or creepy so it was so much fun to be able to stretch my creative wings!!


1 Comment

FREE Peek into how I make my Signature Standup Ruffles

Finally, I can share with everyone how I make my signature Standup Ruffles as seen in my Modern Tropical Ruffles Cake below.  Since this tutorial was originally made for publication in Cake Decoration & Sugarcraft Magazine, I had to wait until the issue, came off sale.  I share key steps of the technique further in this post but having taken pics of all the steps for that tutorial, I had all the makings for creating my own paid tutorial in pdf version so have made it available in my SHOP.

The Violet Cake Shop - Modern Tropical Wedding Cake - Stand Up Ruffles

So if you could not get your hands on the magazine, you can now purchase your own copy of how to make this cake HERE.  I’m starting it off at an introductory price of just under $10 USD (depending on exchange rate as I can only price it in Canadian dollars in my SHOP).

BUT……..

I did promise in my previous post to share some key steps for my Signature Standup Ruffles, (which are great for making structured diagonal ruffles and many other directions, shapes, patterns and colour sequences), so here I go!

Oh…but another BUT first…….

**Keep in mind, I am generously sharing a technique that I came up with after experimenting with different ideas and theories on how I could make these ruffles in fondant/gumpaste so I ask you to please, out of professional courtesy, not share this technique in any way, whether in live classes or publications or in tutorials of any form (video, pdf file, pictorial, print, album on Facebook etc.), without my written consent.  If you must share, please share from this post or my Facebook page and give credit where credit is due!  Thanks so much!**

Now, back to the good stuff…

I first thought of doing these after seeing some beautiful buttercream piped versions done by Shannon Bond of Shannon Bond Cake Design.  But I suck at piping – I neither have the muscle strength in my arms to pipe a full tier, nor the steadiness needed.  So I set about looking for a fondant/gumpaste version.

I did a lot of research and never could find the tight, clean and structured look I was going for in the standard fondant or gumpaste ruffles because all of them lay flat against the surface of the cake and only the ruffled portion would dance a bit above it due to the frilling.  So I thought, ruffles would be so much more versatile if I could make them stand up.  Making them stand up would allow them to be manipulated more easily and used in different patterns, directions, colour sequences…

BUT…what would make ruffles stand up?  All ruffles I’d seen were thin and flat.  If I saw a ruffle effect that had pattern and structure, it was when people twirled strips of flat fondant that they folded lengthwise in half, like the technique used most often by Tortik Annuchka who’s work I discovered on Instagram.  But I know, having tried it, that this technique doesn’t give clean straight lines around a curved surface like those on cake.  So, it’s great for straight up and down vertical lines and bunched patterns, but was not as effective for straight diagonal lines.

Then I thought, what if I could make the bottom of a ruffle flat, so it could stand, and keep the top thin and frilly?  And the idea was born…

So here are pics of a few critical steps in the process of making my Signature Standup Ruffles along with a high level description…for more info or detailed instructions on how to create these, unfortunately you will need to purchase my tutorial.  But these steps below should be straight-forward enough for the seasoned cake decorator to figure out and use…and I hope they inspire others to use them in creative and new ways.

Sneak Peek into making my Signature Standup Ruffles:

My Signature Standup Ruffles FREE Peek - cover

 

TVCS - Modern Tropical Cake Seaside - 39 - wm

I roll out my paste using dowels as spacers, to get a thick, even strip

 

TVCS - Modern Tropical Cake Seaside - 40 - wm

I then thin out the top end of the strip to create a frilled or ruffled effect

 

TVCS - Modern Tropical Cake Seaside - 41 - wm

Next, I trim just under the ruffling where the paste is still thick

 

And here are just some of the other ways I’ve used them so far.  One design is for a collaboration that has not yet been revealed so I can only share a sneak peek of it…

The Violet Cake Shop MIL's Greenery 75th - diagonal stand up ruffles       The Violet Cake Shop - Elegant Indian Fashion Collaboration - Utsava

The Violet Cake Shop - Incredible India Elegance - IMG_9236 - ii - wm - cropped to ruffle

I hope you’ve found this post engaging and informative.  I’d love to see what you create using this ruffle idea.  Feel free to post pics of your creation on my Facebook page.

Remember, if you’d like to purchase the full tutorial with 44 pages jam-packed with detailed instructions, tips and techniques, and 64 high resolution pics and steps, teaching a variety of not seen before techniques, you can go to my shop on my Facebook page or click HERE.

Here is just a peek of what’s covered inside!

Modern Tropical Ruffles Wedding Cake Tutorial by The Violet Cake Shop - 08-05-17 - cover

Modern Tropical Ruffles Wedding Cake Tutorial by The Violet Cake Shop - 08-05-17 - content

OH and it happens to be on for half price as an introductory offer so you can get it for just under $10 USD for a limited time!  The price will go back up to $20 USD one week after my Facebook page hits 125K followers…which can be anytime.

Have fun and Happy Caking Y’ALL! =D


Leave a comment

Stylized Wafer Paper Rolled Rose – The Violet Cake Shop way – FREE Tutorial

It’s been a while since I’ve posted a new tutorial and this one for the stylized wafer paper rolled roses, is a long time in coming.

I first designed this cake for Cake Masters’ August 2015 issue and promised I would share how I made the wafer paper roses due to the amount of response I’d gotten on how unique they were.  I mean, it should have been easy because I had all the pics taken already since this cake was also my first ever full length magazine tutorial…

But then life kind of got in the way as it often does, and things came up like mystery health issues that I’ve had to deal with (and am still sorting through) and what do ya know, two years has now gone by!  But I was able to find some free time to edit my pics so I could share them with you all here today…FINALLY haha.

Now this style is simply a hybrid of a wafer paper rose I already came up with before in 2014 (for which I have a paid tutorial), plus the standard rolled roses you see in paper craft.  What makes it unique is the addition of these pinched outer petals which is a technique I came up with for my original wafer paper rose.

So hope you will enjoy this FREE tutorial.  Please feel free to share with me how you use them to embellish your cakes, on my Facebook page.  I look forward to seeing what you create with my tips and tutorials!

Stylized Wafer Paper Rolled Rose Tutorial – The Violet Cake Shop way:

SWP - 1

Colour your wafer paper by airbrushing (using a few light coats with drying time in between), an edible printer OR my oil & petal dust method

 

SWP - 2

Cut out a 5.5” x 5.5” square of the coloured wafer paper (or any size you prefer)

 

SWP - 3

Cut off corners of the square to create a circle – you can just go by eye as the rose is meant to look organic so does not need to be perfect

 

SWP - 4

Cut your wafer paper circle into a spiral-like strip moving concentrically in towards the middle as shown; cut so that the strip is just under 1″ wide

 

SWP - 5

This is how it will look once you’ve cut your spiral strip

 

SWP - 6

Using the tip of a brush, roll up the strip starting on the outer edge

 

SWP - 7

Add small dabs of water as needed so the centre holds together as you are rolling it

 

SWP - 8

Continue rolling

 

SWP - 9

Every few inches, dab water along the bottom edge of the strip to help hold the rolled shape you are forming

 

SWP - 10

This is your completed Stylized Wafer Paper Rolled Rose centre

 

SWP - 11

Using a circle craft punch (1.5” diameter), punch out circles to make your outer petals; alternatively, you can use a circle cutter as a template (use a dull tool to trace inside the cutter so you have a guide where to cut with scissors)

 

SWP - 12

Take one circle and pinch in on one end and hold for a few seconds

 

SWP - 13

Using scissors, cut a small slit opposite the pinched end (approximately 1/2″ up)

 

SWP - 14

Dab a small amount of water on one side of the slit

 

SWP - 15

Fold one side of the slit over the other so the bottom of the petal has a concave or cupped shape

 

SWP - 16

You will need approximately 8 petals and one rolled rose centre to create one Stylized Wafer Paper Rolled Rose

 

SWP - 17

Dab some water at the bottom of the petal along the cupped edge – NOTE: do not use too much water or the wafer paper will disintegrate!

 

SWP - 18

Attach the first petal to the rolled rose centre – NOTE: the bottom of the centre should sit nicely in the cupped section of your petal

 

SWP - 19

Attach your second petal making sure to overlap half of the previous petal; continue applying the rest of the petals, working clockwise until you have completed one full row of petals, then use the rest to fill in where there may be gaps; use more or less petals as needed

 

SWP - 20

Your finished product – a beautiful Stylized Wafer Paper Rolled Rose!!

 

Hope you all like this tutorial!  If so, please feel free to share this post =)

Happy Caking Y’ALL!! =D