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Are You New to Cake Decorating? Welcome to the Magical World of Sugarcraft

Mar 27, 2008
The world of cake decorating is far more interesting and exciting than you probably think. There is a whole world out there that is dedicated to cake decorating. Cake decorating can be high edible art. It is known as sugar craft to some, and this is an appropriate term because it captures the fun and confectionary nature of cake decorating.

What Exactly is Sugarcraft?

Sugarcraft is an all-encompassing word that describes icing and any kind of decorative work that is used to create well-defined and sometimes elaborate cake designs. However, more specifically, sugar craft describes a specific kind of cake decorating that involves creating a three-dimensional modeling technique to create elaborate decorative cakes. Sugarcraft stands in contrast to more simple styles of cake decoration.

Basic Design of Sugarcraft

There are many basic designs that are associated with sugar craft. One of the most basic designs of sugar craft is the use of icing dots in order to form a larger overall pattern. Many sugar craft edible artists take these designs a few steps beyond in order to create more elaborate modeling figures on the cake. Many professional edible sugar craft artists liken their craft to the art of sculpting, and indeed the two have much in common.

Special Icings Used in Fondant

The art of sugar craft tends to require the use of specific icings. The most common type of icing is known as the rolled fondant. The rolled fondant is special icing dough that can be used in many different ways. It is a kind of icing that is used both for making specific icing decorations, and for covering whole cakes. If you have never used this type of icing, you will find that it can be compared to the texture of play dough.

How Sugarcraft Artists Use Rolled Fondant

Sugarcraft artists used rolled fondant in many different ways. The most common methods for working with it is to manipulate it into sheets and then drape it over the cake. The rolled fondant can also be cut into various shapes and sizes. Common shapes include flowers, ribbons and bows. In order to be able to manipulate the fondant, you will want to prepare it in advance and keep it stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

Preparing Rolling Fondant for Sugarcraft

There are many useful tips and techniques for preparing rolled fondant. One of the tricky parts of preparing it is to add color. You may be tempted to add liquid food coloring to your fondant in an attempt to add some quick color. You should resist this urge. Instead, use coloring paste, which works much better with rolled fondant.

Overcoming the Rolled Fondant Learning Curve

Working with rolled fondant can allow you to create exquisite and elaborate cake decoration designs, but it is also notorious for being difficult to work with. That is, there is a steep learning curve that often accompanies using rolled fondant. Many novices tend to find rolled fondant frustrating and difficult to work with. For many novices, it can take months of practice and visual guidance in order to master the basic techniques of cake decorating with it.

Using a Visual Guide to Learning Sugarcraft

Although there are many fine sugar craft books out there, you may find it helpful to take a more visual and hands-on approach to learning sugar craft and cake decorating. Many local community colleges offer cake decorating classes where you can learn the fine art of sugar craft. Another way to learn through visual instruction is to invest in a cake decorating video or DVD set. This is a fun and easy way to learn about cake decorating from the comfort of your home.
About the Author
Josephine Gauttier is the author of the popular eBook "The Art of Cake Decorating". You can find more information about cake decorating at http://www.artofcakedecorating.com
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