Category Archives: Sugar Play

Suuuuuuuuuure, I’ll make the cake!

This cake, along with a Miami Hurricanes groom’s cake traveled (unassembled) a little over 6 hours to make it to a reception for my brother’s step-daughter.  Normally (NEVER) I do not use real flowers to decorate any cake.  I prefer making wireless sugar flowers for floral cakes and I made them for this cake (real flowers are on the cake in picture)  The flowers came back home with me.  Don’t get me wrong, I love real flowers.  But rarely, if ever, do people special order cake/food ready (pesticide free and/or properly prepped for food contact) flowers/greenery to adorn their cake/food and that can be a problem.

For next Sunday, I get to play a bit…an Olivia themed (not necessarily with her on/around it) cake for my Granddaughter’s 2nd birthday.

LaLaLoopsy Cookie Project

After seeing the incredibly adorable LalaLoopsy Doll cookies shared by Daily Cookie on CakeCentral  and on Facebook , I knew I wanted to attempt to make them for my granddaughters!

(The above are the work of Carla (CakeCentral’s DailyCookie and Facebook’s Daily Cookie) )

The steps I took to make them are below.  I didn’t photograph the attaching of the sticks (absentmindedness) but I will upload more pictures later.

 1)   I gathered several different styles of the dolls

to try and cover as many attributes (hairstyles, clothing, arm

positions) as possible.  I copied them to one sheet in MS Publisher and sized them all to be about the same size, printed out the sheet on cardstock and cut each doll out making sure to leave areas of weakness (extended arms and other thin details) with paper for structure.

2)  Using one of these mats (found near the cutting boards

at Walmart), I attached the cut out dolls with tape.  This way, I could

position them so that more fit on the mat than could be printed out

on one sheet of cardstock.

3)  Using an X-acto knife, the dolls were carefully cut out of the mat.

I used double-stick tape on the backs of the cardstock cutouts as well

as clear tape on the edges when they were positioned.  This allowed

the dolls to remain attached to the cut out plastic pieces.

Here, they’re all cut out of the mat.

4)  Using cookie sticks as thickness guides on either side, the dough

was rolled out on parchment (waxed or freezer paper will work as

well) and slid onto a pan (1/2 sheet cake boards are ideal for this step)

and placed in the freezer to get firm/hard for cutting.

5)  Once the dough is chilled/frozen firm enough,  remove from freez-

er, place the cut out doll mat on top and using an X-acto knife, care-

fully cut the dolls out.  Remove mat.  With a small spatula or table/

butter knife (or whatever tool you prefer), remove excess dough…

being careful not to pull too hard or too fast just in the case of possi-

bly having areas that weren’t completely cut, …leaving the doll cutouts on the papered pan/board. 

I attached sticks by brushing the area lightly with water, positioning the stick, brushing the stick lightly with water and pressing small amounts of the excess dough onto the dough and smoothing gently, encasing the stick.

Return pan/board to freezer.  Continue rerolling dough and following the above steps until all cookies are cut out and have sticks attached. 

Beginning with the first set, remove them from freezer.  Before they have a chance to soften, using a spatula, flip them over so the patched stick area is against the papered pan.  If needed, replace paper on pan (I’ve never baked on waxed paper or freezer wrap so I can’t recommend doing so.  Parchment paper is what I recommend baking the cookies on).

Bake them according to the directions given with your sugar cookie recipe.  Use your favorite decorated cookie icing to finish these adorable cookies.

These can be stored, baked or unbaked, in your freezer for a considerable amount of time if well wrapped/bagged/packaged, making them an ideal gift to make if free time comes in small increments! 

Another idea, for those with limited time, use the cleaned mat to cut out thinly rolled fondant to place on the still hot cookies for a quick base.  When cool, use edible pens, air brush colors and brushes and icing to add details.  Don’t forget to add some edible glitter!

 I’ve yet to decorate mine.

So far behind

 The plan was to finish up outstanding projects but instead, I have started others along the way.  Some of the new projects, as well as some of the old (er) projects have been completed.  I can’t say that I’m completely satisfied with how they turned out but, I now know how to make those less than ideal items better should I decide to attempt them again.  (I tried to make a small bench/box without measurements beforehand.  I need to take a photo of that one to share for sure…we all could use a laugh from time to time, right?)

 

 

 
 
      The pink and brown jumper was my most recent project.  It was completed in less than 3 days.  It started out to be this dress .  I followed the pattern and wound up unraveling it twice due to sizing issues.  Since I wasn’t up to dickering with the stitches, I opted to save that pattern for another day and embark on a creation of my own.  It began with a crocheted rope or cord that was made long enough to go around the subject (my granddaughter) at mid chest area (think empire waist).  Then, working in the loops along one edge of the rope/cord, and using the shell pattern from the dress originally planned, I made the skirt portion, working back and forth for several rows before connecting and working in the round.  After finishing off the skirt, I began the bodice.  I made another rope/cord long enough for the neckline.  Working in the loops along one edge and with this type pattern in mind, made the bodice to fit her, working back and forth or side to side (however it’s termed working from one edge to the other).  When the bodice was long enough, I attached it to the skirt and continued on to the pants (minus the waistband), again, working side to side until the length of the opening lined up the the opening of the skirt.  Then, worked them in the round.  I made a few decreases while doing the legs to taper them a bit.  Basic bow with contrasting disc were made and attached to one side of back.  A length of rope/cord was made and attached to opposite side from the bows at back opening so that there were two loops large enough to fit the bows through snugly…the bows and loops were the closures.
     I’m sorry I don’t have a pattern for it but, patterns, like the ones above (hyperlinks), were pieced together to create it.
 
     The  sweater (you may have to sign up (it’s free) for the pattern), including the assembly time,  is one of  the easiest, fastest working pattern I have ever made.  It can definitely be completed in one good (good = a long stretch of  time to devote to the project only) day.
 
     The pants can be completed so quickly that, as long as the pattern is followed, one can have several pairs made by the end of the day (given, the day has been a good one).
 
    

     The black and green pants were made with the same pattern but instead of making a ribbing at the bottom of each leg, I incorporated a version of the crocodile stitch.
 
    

     I still need to tidy up my tails of yarn and add a closure to the black sweater.  I’m all for all in one designs…little or no piece work and fast working ones, like this one, are ideal for gifts and make for a productive donation season as well.
 
     I absolutely LOVE the pattern for the hat with the lattice looking pattern!  I kept buying yarn just so I could see it in another color!  I did have problems with the pattern.  The problems were actually with me, the reader, and not the pattern.  The pattern is perfect as is.  If you try it, there may be some trouble areas around row 5 and again at row 7.  If you find yourself getting aggravated ’cause it just ain’t workin’…unravel it to the point before it jumped track, put the piece down and REREAD the pattern sloooooooowly.  The pattern is gorgeous and well worth the time it takes to understand and complete it.  I know not everyone has difficulty with it but for those who do, know the trouble is not in the pattern.
 
   The hat with the cables and posts  is a fast working, interesting pattern as is the other hat pattern by the same creator.  I love all of her hat patterns!
 
     The afghan below was made using the beautiful pattern from yarncrazy.com and an absurd amount of green and rust colored yarn I had in my yarn box and had so long I don’t even know why I bought it.

Miniature Square Cakes Tutorial Part 2

Miniature Square Cakes Part 1

It took a bit longer than expected but, I managed to get the first tutorial done for the mini squares. I’ll work on the remaining part(s) today. They should all be up (however many they wind up being) by the end of this week.

Miniature Tiered Cakes -More Tutorials

All the tiers are complete with 3 coats of buttercream and this next set will be covered in rolled fondant.

Using tiers that have had 3 coats of buttercream applied, these tiers will be given a poured fondant application.

Please, remember that tiers should not be frozen…cool is okay, just not frozen…when applying poured fondant.

Miniature Tiered Cakes – Filling and Crumbcoating

Video tutorials in the works!

The first video tutorials, from me, will be on miniature cakes.  You’ll be able to see various techniques I use in making them.

If you have a suggestion for a future video tutorial on cake/cookie decorating or dessert making please chime in.

Stenciled in Pearl

Vision in White

This cake was made using the wonderful tutorial by Sweet Creations by Stephanie.  Many thanks to her for sharing!

Poured Fondant

     Poured fondant, so few and basic the ingredients but, so elegant a finish it produces.
Have all items to be covered prepared before making poured fondant.  Cake items should be crumbcoated with a thin layer of icing or brushed with a simple syrup (equal parts of sugar and water heated to boiling then allowed to cool or, apricot or apple jelly/jam melted (they’re both clear like when melted and don’t interfere with the finished icing color.
  3/4 cup whole milk
         5 Tbsp light corn syrup
1 1/2 tsp extract
                                                                                                                6 cups powdered sugar(sifting isn’t necessary but,
                                                                                                                       if you do, do so after the sugar is measured)
Stir all ingredients in a heat safe bowl and heat over simmering water(don’t allow bottom of bowl to touch water).  Stir frequently until warm (98-105 degrees (it should feel just slightly warm to the touch).