Designing on White…


White is both an easy and difficult color (and I don't think it is considered a color in some circles) to work with. It is a blank canvas that lends itself to all the colors of the spectrum but care must be taken if it is used dominantly in a design as the slightest smudge can ruin its pristine impact.



Anyway, I thought I’d come up with a sample of a “cutting cake” to use for a cupcake wedding cake. As the name implies, this cake is for the bride and groom to cut when the rest of the wedding cake is made of cupcakes. Cake dummies (cylinders made of Styrofoam) come in handy for proof of concept work because they almost last forever until you get tired of them. I am no decorator of cakes and I state that up front when I meet with brides and their wedding planner (usually mom or sister). My base cake is 8-inch or smaller. I use fondant exclusively since I hate “spatulating” – a term I first heard from Lisa’s wedding – besides I find it more therapeutic etching floral designs with beads of pearlized sugar than wielding a piping bag. Over the past several weeks I have amassed a variety of sugar paste cutters – and the desire to get just one last cutter shows no sign of abating.



I’ve been infatuated with Dogwood blossoms ever since I moved to Virginia – the state's flower. Their markings are gorgeous and their grand display each spring is always a sight to behold. I first came to know about the dogwood while watching The American President. In this movie, the President, Andrew Sheppard (played by Michael Douglas) wanted to gift Sydney Allen Wade (played by Annette Benning) with some flowers. Instead of roses, he wanted to give Ms. Wade a bouquet of the state flower of Virginia. What followed was a hilarious exchange between the president’s staff about whether the dogwood was a tree or a flower and it ended with the florist hanging up on the president thinking it was a prank call. Unable to get her flowers, he got Sydney a Virginia Ham!He did manage to get her a bouquet at the end from his own rose garden.




Anyway, back to the dogwood…I am still playing with this fondant cutter and thought to showcase its details with white fondant as a background to get that bridal look. Of course, I should have baked the cupcakes in a silver liner instead of brown but my foresight has been lacking these days. I do admit that fondant does not taste as good as buttercream (though there is a thin layer underneath) but depending on the look you want, it is really a matter of choice.



* the blossom above is a generic floral cutter

33 thoughts on “Designing on White…

  1. SO elegant and beautiful! White is an extremely difficult color to work with in my experience, so that stuff really takes an incredible amount of talent. Bravo!

  2. Your comment about having time for baking bread and the patience
    for it made me laugh. This is what you are infatuated with, passionate about.
    That's how bread has me at the moment.
    Really what you do is what take time and patience.
    We're blessed to have a passion and can follow it.
    I have to look for that movie, sounds fun. We've been enjoying a couple
    of PD James BBC mini series.

  3. Thanks T.W.! I was looking at a picture of it as I brushed on its markings.
    Thanks Hannah! It's hard to make white pop…but I love using sugar pearls to give it a textural pop.
    Thanks Marina!
    Thanks Tanna! When I think of it that way I see your point :). You have patience for what you are passionate about. have to get that movie, it is funny and the dialogue is fantastic! It's one of my favorite romantic movies of all time.
    Thanks Big boys Oven!Coming from you a cake decorating maestro, I am extremely flattered!

  4. I don't know why you tell clients that you are no decorator of cakes, that is some of the most beautiful wedding work I have seen. I prefer simple, and that is simply elegant.

  5. I've watched The American President more times than I care to admit. I've watched Ace of Cakes more times than I care to admit, too, so I love watching the development of your cupcake ideas, because now I understand how much work and planning goes into these projects. Love the white on white, which I think must be the hardest to achieve. The cupcakes are lovely.

  6. These cupcakes and cutting cake are GORGEOUS! Whenever (if ever at this point) I get married, you may be getting a phone call! 🙂 I love the dogwoods, they really are gorgeous flowers. Yours look so lifelike! I especially like the real ones that are white and pink, but I am a sucker for pink! You are such an artist!

  7. Oh wow. I'm helping my sis with her wedding planning right now and this looks sooo beautiful! Definitely sending her your link for some inspiration!

  8. I love how delicate and ethereal these look, Veron. I think white is beautiful but can become boring. But I don't think that will happen as long as it's you decorating the yummy cakes and cupcakes.

  9. thanks Liz! That is a very flattering compliment!
    Thanks Maria! I was impressed with the dessert spread you had in your wedding and you made them yourself.
    Thanks Lydia – yes that movie I never get tired of watching.
    Thanks pigpigcorner – I like girly things a lot as you can tell, although Iw as quite the tomboy growing up.
    Thanks Jess – I would love to do your wedding cupcakes!
    Thanks Nikki!
    Thanks Sues – I hope your sister will find my site useful.
    Thanks Peabody!
    Thanks Patricia! Such a sweet compliment!

  10. snookydoodle, you can use a combination of a little gumpaste and water…but I think royal icing is better and it dries white unlike the one I used and it might leave a little sheen. Another option I want to try is using just water while the fondant is still soft and pushing the pearls in.

  11. You made a comment about fondant not tasting as good as buttercream. Have you ever tried the Satin Ice brand and also Choco-pan which comes in a dark chocolate or white chocolate. Most Cake decorating supply sites advertise this product. Thought that might help. Otherwise, your cakes and flowers are really well done!

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