Cake Techniques, To Cake or Not, Tools and Gadgets

Inspiration – Seeking Ideas for Cake and Sugar Art Projects

When I started this blog over 2 years ago the main purpose was to share my love of cake decorating and sugar art with others who were like-minded.

As time has gone by it has become a little bit cake, a little bit sugar art and a little bit about myself. 🙂

One of the things that always leaves me in awe of other cake decorators and sugar artists is how they find inspiration for the work they do.

I can find a picture of a 5 tiered wedding cake that is coordinated perfectly with some beautiful bride’s bouquet or it could be a simple dozen cupcakes with a perfect swirl and simple decoration that just looks so yummy you can almost taste them.   Both will leave me thinking about my own ideas for a project.

I am especially in awe of those that use fashion as inspiration.  Whether it’s a trendy Haute Couture bag, outrageous looking footwear or a beautiful bridal gown the ideas become endless.

The only obstacle is one’s own imagination and creativity.

So today’s topic is about finding inspiration and trying something different.

In this project I used the following for inspiration:

Flamenco dancer 2Flamenco dancer – Red Dress

I really liked the look of the ruffles on the flamenco dancer’s dress.  I normally will use a circle or heart cutter for making individual ruffles or a long strip of fondant to make a continuous ruffle but wanted a different look.  After practicing with different cutters I really liked the look I got with the four-leaf clover cutter.  I cut out the pieces and then cut it in half.  I ruffled the rounded edges using a ball tool.  When I placed it on the cake, it draped nicely.


Front View Ruffles Pic 7

At first I initially thought about covering the whole cake with ruffles but I’ve seen hundreds upon hundreds of cakes like that and have done a few myself.  I wanted it to be different and found this pic of the flamenco dancer swirling with a fringed shawl.

Flamenco dancer

Flamenco dancer with shawl

I liked the look of the fringe and had a new cake tool that I hadn’t used yet.  It is a small clay extruding tool using a 50/50 mix of Gumpaste & Fondant with the small string die.


I wanted the fringe to look like would have some movement to it so I ended up placing the fringe on 4 to 6 strands at a time and laying them across the ruffles.  This was extremely time-consuming but I think it was worth it.

Fringe Closeup

Fringe Closeup

After I started planning and putting some of the components on the cake I thought it needed something more but was kind of stuck.  After talking to my youngest son, he’s a very creative artist himself, we started looking at fashion pictures and he showed me this Alexander McQueen dress that I loved.

McQueen Red DressAlexander McQueen Dress

The look of the flowers was beautiful but I didn’t have a cutter that would exactly match the pattern.  So I dug through my cutters and decided the daisy cutters in two sizes were my best option.

Daisy Cutters

I originally was going to hand paint the flowers then attempt to do brushed embroidery but didn’t like the way it looked.  It was too flat and I wanted the flowers to stand out more.

So I scraped them off and went with fondant cutouts with brushed embroidery instead.


Fondant Flowers

I wanted the flowers to be similar in color to the ones on the inspiration dress so I painted them with new dusting powders I had not used yet.  It’s a brand called Roxy and Rich.  I got a really nice deep red color and a nice gold color.

After the painted fondant was dry I then started adding brushed embroidery to edges of the flowers.  I was a little shaky at the beginning but it got better as I went along.

Brushed Embroidery on Fondant

Once all the components were on the cake I thought it needed something else and went with a mixture of black piping gel and a little water. This was painted over all the black parts of the cake to give it a slight shine.  I liked that it deepened the black color a little more.  It had been sitting on my dining table for over a week and was starting to fade a bit.

Top View Pic 6.jpg

So overall I’m pleased with the cake that came out of the inspiration pictures that I found.  It is far from a perfect cake, there are flaws in the fondant covering and the fondant pieces but I got to practice some techniques that I haven’t done in quite a while and found some new ones too.  I know my last cake project was a black cake as well, lol, I have a lot of black fondant left over from another project. 😀

The best thing is to practice, practice and more practice to get better at anything you do or what your heart desires.

I hope you found something useful in this cake project.

Find something that inspires you today!

Thanks for stopping by.

Happy Caking!

To all the mothers out there that are being celebrated, I hope you have a wonderful Mother’s Day!