Monday, March 17, 2014

March Madness

Thank you Virginia Marker for the latest blog post!

Here are the molds used for the project:  Basketball mold, Basketball Jersey mold, wood grain texture mat and basketball/football texture mat.  

Covering the board:  Roll out the fondant and texture with the wood grain mat.  

Cut the fondant into strips and arrange on the board for the flooring.

When doing the jersey mold, I mixed in some tylose so the jersey would stand next to the cake.

The unmolded jersey.  You may use different dusts and coloring to paint your jersey in a variety of colors.

Using the basketball mold, pour in some orange colored candy melts.

After the chocolate sets, pop out the basketball.  

You can then use some dust to enhance the lines of the basketball.  Wouldn't that make a great cupcake topper?

Cover your cake in orange colored fondant.

Using the basketball/football texture mat to texture the fondant.

Paint the board with a light brown to bring out the wood grain texture on the board.  Then draw on your basketball lines.

Add in the jersey and basketball mold to finish off the cake!

Check out more of Virginia's work on her Facebook page

DTC Products Used:
Basketball Jersey
Football/Basketball Texture Mat
Tree Bark Texture Mat

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Elegant Scroll Work

Did you see the February ICES newsletter?

If you haven't seen it, check it out!  M Anthony Pena, CMSA, has an article where he describes making the cake on the cover.  What molds did he use?  Some from Decorate the Cake, of course!

DTC Products Used:
Fancy Mini Scrolls
Jabot #2
Scroll - Single Fancy - Right and Left

Wednesday, March 5, 2014


Thank you Rosalynne for the latest blog post!

We’ve all been there. Exhausted, unable to squeeze any more creativity from our brains, and promising ourselves to prepare better next time. I’m talking about the ‘late night caking’ that I end up doing. Every time. It’s like I have it out for myself. It’s generally about that time that my husband ends up going to bed just to protect himself.

Over the last few years I *have* actually learned a few tricks to make the experience a better one. One of those things is to use MOLDS! There is nothing wrong with using molds on your cake. A lace press can enhance the look of a simple wedding cake, making it elegant. Button molds grouped in the shape of a heart, bring detail to an empty cake top when a client doesn't have money for a topper. I have found that my customers are in awe of not only things I have created by hand, but also when I use molds. They don’t feel cheated at all because every time they are intrigued on how it is done. (Now this is the experience I have personally had)

I’m going to share with you a mold I used recently that brought my cake a little extra umpf that it needed! My customer asked for a cake that had a theme of ‘Planes’. So I thought a propeller mold would be perfect.

 I gathered all my supplies.

Since I knew they were going to be propellers, I mixed my fondant to a grey color. It’s always best to mix the closest color possible when you are going to finish by dusting it. Example: grey when using silver dust, yellow when using gold dust, brown when using bronze dust. You get the idea.

Next I roll out balls of fondant that will cover the cavity I am using. This time I wanted to use 2 different styles of propeller. I made sure to press the fondant really good into all the nooks and crannies. Once that is accomplished, I scrape away the extra fondant with an artists' spatula. All you do is skim across the top, then re-press the fondant so that there are no spaces showing.

That’s when I put the mold into the freezer. Now, not everyone puts their molds in the freezer. The nice thing  about molds from Decorate The Cake is that they are freezer safe! On items that are larger, or not within reach of a fridge, I add Tylose to the fondant to help release it.

Once I stood around for a couple of minutes (contemplated eating something), I removed my mold from the freezer, turned the mold upside down, and bent it enough to let my cool propellers pop out!

I quickly added some silver luster dust and set the propellers to dry. Once they dried, I added them to my cake, and voila! My cake was finished. The propellers were the perfect addition to my cake, the customer thought they were awesome! What do you think?

To see more of Rosalynne's amazing work check out her Facebook page:  Ronnie's Cakes

Products used:
Mechanical Propellers Mold from DTC
Satin Ice Fondant
CK ‘Moonstone (Silver)’ Luster Dust
My refrigerator

Monday, February 10, 2014

Bottle 3 - 3D Bottle Mold

Thank you Sandy for the latest blog post!

I live in a small community and do not have a local source of specialized items such as isomalt and Venuance pearls. I have been making candy since I was in junior high and love making suckers. This is the recipe that I have adapted to make my beer bottles. I have adapted this recipe to make the amount needed for the whole bottle sucker mold.  I don’t make my sugar syrup for molds in the microwave because:

1) I don’t have the patience to want to reformulate it each time I get a microwave (different microwaves cook at different times- I still haven’t figured out the time needed for microwave popcorn in the microwave I’ve had for 4 years)

2) I don’t want to waste the sugar and corn syrup making the recipes over and over until I get the cooking time down pat.

Equipment needed for making a hollow whole bottle sucker:

  • Bottle 3 - 3D Bottle Mold
  • 8-8 1/2 inches of 4 inch PVC pipe
  • Small heavy saucepan with lid (if no lid then use a small plate) use a small pan so that the syrup will cover the ball of the thermometer when you are cooking it.  Do not use a large pan for this small recipe.
  • Candy thermometer
  • Wooden or heat resistant spoon
  • Measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • Hot pads or oven mitts

NOTE:  As a precautionary measure, fill a bowl with ice cubes and water. If you get any of this 300°F syrup on you, you must cool down the syrup on your hand/fingers immediately to help prevent a deep burn. If you try wiping the syrup you may just spread your burn or wipe the skin off. It just takes a split second and one small mistake to burn yourself. Please use caution. Do not work with this hot mixture with small children in the kitchen just to be safe.

I fit the full bottle mold together and wedge it down into a piece of 4” PVC pipe (available for purchase from a home hardware store. You may hold the mold sections together with strong rubber bands, I just prefer using the PVC pipe so I can roll the mold in the cooling process.

I don't like to have to look up the recipe every time I make a bottle so I took a permanent marker and wrote my recipe on the side of the PVC pipe.  Now I have the recipe right at hand when I need to make a bottle. 

                                Ingredients needed for one sugar bottle:

  • Distilled water- I found that my tap water had impurities so when I would make a clear bottle using tap water, it would come out yellowish. I solved this problem by using distilled water when I make my sugar bottles. Distilled water is not necessary if I want a brown beer bottle because the yellow tinge won’t make any difference, but I just I just used distilled water all the time.
  • Airbrush color -  have not used powdered colors but have heard they work with isomalt. I have use gel colors. 
  • Corn syrup- cheaper brands works just fine so get the store brand
  • Granulated sugar
  • Flavoring, optional (not shown)

Recipe to make one hollow Bottle 3 - 3D Bottle Mold using Decorate The Cake mold

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1 1/2 tablespoon distilled water

1/3 cup corn syrup

Cheap corn syrup

Granulated sugar

Flavoring, optional

 Place 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/3 cup corn syrup, and 1 1/2 Tbsp distilled water in the saucepan and stir until you have a homogeneous mixture. NOTE: If you are making a colored  bottle you can use your regular tap water, but to make clear bottles, use distilled water as the impurities and chemicals in regular tap water tend to give the bottle a slight amber tint.

Cover the saucepan with lid. If you don’t have a lid, place a cookie sheet or plate over the top. I am using an electric stove top, I’m not for sure how to adapt with gas. I set my burner on High and set the time for 5 minutes. Do not lift cover until buzzer goes off. Take this time to wash off the wooden spoon or heat resistant spoon used to mix the sugar and corn syrup. It is important that the sugar granules are washed off. The reason for the lid is to allow the sugar mixture to come to a boil and boil off the water in the recipe. The steam condenses and drips back into the saucepan which helps dissolve all the sugar granules deposited on the side of the saucepan when the mixture was originally mixed together. This is done to help prevent the recipe from failing. Undissolved sugar on the side of the pan or the spoon can cause the mixture to crystallize and ruin the batch. I’m sure someone else could give you the scientific explanation but just trust me on this. J This method has worked for me for over 40 years.

Place the candy thermometer in the boiling mixture and stir constantly so keep the boiling sugar syrup over the bulb of the thermometer to get an accurate reading. It will only take a couple of minutes for the temperature to get up to 300 degrees F. Immediately remove saucepan from stove top and move to hot pad or heat resistant surface.

Add few drops of coloring (I use airbrush color) and ½ tsp of flavoring if desired. Paste color will work and the cheap colors from the grocery store will work too. Stir being careful because the flavoring and some of the liquid colors will cause steam to rise.  Adding the flavoring and/or color may cause the mixture to be very bubbly. Allow to set for 30 seconds or so to help eliminate some of the bubbles. I did not wait too much longer because there is a small window of time before this mixture will set up since we’re working with such a small batch

Carefully pour the syrup into the mold in a thin stream.  This allows you more control over the hot syrup and more bubbles will pop as the syrup flows into the mold. 

After all the syrup is in the mold, carefully tilt the mold so that the syrup comes just up to the hole opening without flowing out.  Roll the mold slowly so that it coats the entire inside of the bottle mold.  Roll tilted for a couple minutes to allow enough of the candy syrup to coat and cool on the bottom of the bottle mold (the end that has the hole.)  

After that I rolled the bottle on it’s side for about 10 minutes, back and forth on my counter or coffee table.  Roll at a rate that the PVC pipe makes one complete revolution in about 6 seconds.  This allows the syrup to coat the sides. It will be a viscous liquid but will get thicker and thicker as it cools.  After 10 minutes, or the candy syrup is not longer moving, set it up on end (hole side up) and allow to completely cool.  This takes a couple of hours.  Do not rush this step.  Use patience and you will be rewarded.

When cool, remove mold from PVC pipe and remove the bottle.  Now you can decorate with edible images or wafer paper.  Bottle cap can be painted with gold or silver luster dust/everclear. 

Now that you have the bottle, here's a couple of different ways you can utilize them creatively,

I made two bottles and painted the caps with gold luster dust/everclear.  One bottle I made a little veil out of sugarveil and placed some very small marshmallow fondant (MMF) ribbon roses for the bride's headpiece.  The flowers in her bouquet were attached to the sugar bottle cap with gum glue. 4MM MMF beads were attached with gum glue for her necklace.  Her bouquet were little gumpaste plunger flowers dusted with a yellow petal dust and attached to the side of the bottle with some mossy green buttercream. The streamers were piped with a #2 tip and white buttercream.

The groom sports a vest made from a mossy green MMF that I rolled out with a moire texture rolling pin that was cut out to fit the bottle.  Little balls were attached to the front of the vest for buttons. A toothpick was used to make four little dots in each button.  A little baseball cap was formed out of the same mossy MMF and attached to the cap. 

The two bottles made up my topper for this groom's cake that I displayed at a Wedding/Valentine Vender Fair in our town.  The tiers are covered with buttercream. The tire tier was made with an impression matt over white crusting buttercream and then airbrushed black.  The middle tier was four different colored buttercreams piped with a #10 tip and then smooth out with Viva paper towels. The tree tier was piped with a #21 tip with mixture of several colors of buttercream.  The top of the cake was piped on in a circular motion and then smoothed with a Viva paper towel. Tree rings were airbrushed on it before the bride and groom bottles were set on top.  The camo tier was bordered with a mixture of moss green and brown icing slightly mixed with the grass tip # 233. 

Gumpaste leaves were airbrushed and gumpaste shotgun shells were made and scattered around the bottom of the first and third tiers.

For my daughter’s reception for becoming a partner in an accounting firm, I decided a wine/champagne bottle would be a more appropriate accessory to her book cake than a beer bottle.  I made an edible label with the announcement that she made partner.  I used a small amount of fondant around the top of the bottle around the neck to camouflage the bottle cap.  I used an unprinted section of edible image to wrap around the neck and over the top.  To attach the edible images, I dampened a paper towel so it was just slightly damp and wiped the sugar bottle on the section that I needed to attach the edible image to. I painted the edible image that was wrapped on the neck with silver luster dust/everclear to mimic foil.  A paper ribbon was wrapped around the neck and attached with a small amount of melted white chocolate.  The seal on the bottle was one of the mini hearts that was featured on a previous blog Gotta Have Heart!.  This seal was painted with silver luster dust/everclear just as the foil was painted. My daughter grabbed the bottle by the neck before I got pictures and you can see her fingerprints where the silver dust rubbed off. 

Anyone who knows my daughter knows that she is a pink and bling lady.  Thus, when making a book cake for the reception, I knew it had to have a pink cover and a “bling” binding.  The bling ribbon is available at

Edible image was used for her picture and the plaque with the new company name.  Rather amusing that one of her friends came into the reception and thought it was a scrapbook and tried to open it.  There went part of the border.  LOL  Thank goodness I had already taken pictures.  The pictures aren't the best because the lighting was less than perfect for taking pictures of the book and bottle presentation. Other items scattered around the cake were real company give-a-ways.

Any questions?  You can contact me through Sandy Swart Cakes on Facebook or at
Albums of my decorated cakes can be seen at:

DTC Products Used:
3D Bottle Mold
Heart Set of 6
12 Gauge Shotgun Shell
Bling Ribbon - Silver

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Cherry Blossom

Here is a quick view of the new cherry blossom mold after we dusted the finished flower with some petal dust.

The colors we used came from The Sugar Art:
Sugar Cookie
Jewel Heart

Brushing from the outer edge in to soften color towards the middle.

As you can see from this picture there is a large under cut on the mold -- If using fondant place the item in the freezer until firm before removing to prevent distortion. 

DTC Product used:

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Triple Scallop Trim

I would like to send a big Thank You to Kathy Finholt for helping me out with the latest blog post.

Kathy sent me a piece of her favorite lace last year telling me that she could no longer buy the lace and wanted a mold.  No pressure on me to make sure the mold came out!  Lucky for us both it turned out well.   I sent her the finished mold and she finally had an opportunity to use it to add a lovely border for this simple anniversary cake.

Start by rolling the fondant to a 3 in the pasta machine.  Then using a ruler as a guide and rotary cuter cut the bottom edge straight prior to placing it in the mold.

Next lay the fondant in the mold and place the insert on top.  Press down gently on the insert to ensure you get a nice impression.  Remove the excess fondant and clean up the edges.  Remove the insert and flip the mold over.  Slowly roll the mold back off the fondant gently coaxing it out of the mold.  Releasing this way helps to prevent distortion of the pattern.  Finally apply to the cake.

Additional details on using this mold may be found on the blog post "Of Corset's Lace!"

To see more beautiful cakes by Kathy check out her Facebook page, Kathy's Kakes, LLC.

Products Used:
Triple Scallop Trim

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Cute as a Button!

I created this cute button heart mold for a simple Valentine's Day cake.  

For the border we are using the new silver isomalt nibs from CakePlay and the new bead mold they are offering.  

Melt the isomalt in a microwave safe cup.  I used a silicone measuring cup.  Carefully pour the isomalt into the cavity in a stream.  

Once the isomalt is "semi-set" but not "cold" flip the mold over and gently bend back off the isomalt.  It may need a gently coax to get it started.

Then I gently shaped it around the edge of the board. 

I also used the silver isomalt in a few heart mold to add some contrast.  Again I carefully poured the isomalt to fill each cavity to see which I liked best done in the isomalt.  

The red buttons are fondant used in various button and heart molds available from Decorate the Cake.  

DTC Products Used:

Other Products Used:
CakePlay Bead Mold