I’ve always struggled with cake designs for boys/men. I’ve always felt that trends in cake decorating, be they flowers, butterflies, glitter or diamantes, are far more suited to the women in your life over the men. Sculpted cakes have always been an easy answer – my husband has had a Darth Vader cake, a camera cake and even a Lego cake but after a hectic month sculpting a Big Red Car (of The Wiggles fame), for my son, I wanted something gender appropriate but without the stress/time of sculpting.
When I came across Stevi Auble’s class on Craftsy (which you can see at the end of this post) I already had ideas. I’ve been following Stevi or “Hey There, Cupcake!” for ages. It was through Stevi that I first discovered the trend of wafer paper flowers and I’ve been following her amazing creations for quite some time. I knew that if anyone could introduce me to wafer paper and also get me to think about it in a less “girly” way, Stevi was the lady. Boy was I right.
Stevi’s class goes through every thing from wafer paper flowers to wafer spirals, confetti, water colour effects and gumpaste toppers. The most inspiring thing for me was Stevi’s method for making stripes on cakes and creating an amazing horizontal striped cake. The method Stevi demonstrates is precise & accurate, and gives such a beautiful finish. It’s a style that I keep seeing pop up, and I’m so excited that I now know how to create it.
Once I watched the entire tutorial, I planned my cake. The beauty of Craftsy was that once I knew what techniques I needed, I went back and simply watched the matching parts of the video.
With Stevi’s guidelines and based on the templates she provided I was able to find my own pictures to turn into toppers. The simplicity of the confetti design allowed me to turn it into my own simply by varying the colours.
Watching Stevi work also provided a really helpful technique for cutting and forming toppers. While I had done this before, watching Stevi’s precise and careful hand allowed me to perfect my technique and produce toppers that look a lot more polished and “funky”.
I am still working on getting the stripes perfect, with a 9-inch cake I ended up needing an almost 28-inch piece of fondant, which was perhaps too long for my first attempt. I’m aiming to try this on a smaller cake soon to perfect the technique.
My husband, who has just read this, reminded me that getting the wafer paper spirals right was tricky. As a first time wafer paper user, I advise caution and patience. Curling the papers took gently coaxing on my part and there were a fair few more torn pieces of wafer paper then I would care to mention. Without an edible image printer, I also used powders to colour the paper which I found worked quite well.
Before this tutorial, I was convinced that I couldn’t learn from videos. I was a firm believer that I needed a teacher in the same room as me to learn from. Stevi’s class has done a lot to change my view on this. I found her style of delivery easy to follow, and easy to learn from. I also enjoyed the Craftsy style of lesson and easy navigation. Now to figure out what I want to tackle next!
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