Using Stencils on a Cake - Guest Post by Saym Barnham of Velvetier
Welcome to Stencibelle's very first guest blog post!! I'm so excited!
A very special thanks to Saym of Velvetier for this tutorial on using our stencils on cakes. Saym used our Clouds & Grass (all three styles), Geo bunny, Old Picket Fence, Woodgrain, Row of Eggs, and our Geo Hex stencils (on the balloon) to create the two amazing cakes!
Even though our stencils are predominately designed for cookies, I always want to push boundaries and I wanted to showcase how they can be used on a cake as well. I think the Clouds & Grass, Picket Fence with wood grain could be used as the base for so many themes! I think Saym did an amazing job!
And now over to her tutorial...
When Belle first asked if I would create a stencil cake I jumped at the chance to try something new. So many things ran through my mind. I wasn’t sure how air brushing on the vertical would go compared to the usual horizontal of cookies. How was I going to attach the stencils? Then there was the design. How did I get that to seem natural and not weird on cake scale rather than cookie scale?
I soon discovered I wasn’t going to be able to layer everything the way i wanted to. There would be far more layers than the average cookie and some of the colours would not spray over the previous. There was potentially too many layers to royal icing stencil them all because it would be lumpy and messy. I would have to come up with alternative solutions. Lucky I like “mixed media” art right!
Because I wasn’t sure about how the ideas I had come up with would go, I decided to make two versions. Both double barrels, one a 6” and the other an 8”. It worked out this way because they were the sizes I had.
Here’s a quick summary of how I created the layers
- Sky and hills - airbrushed with clouds and grass stencils
- Fence - royal icing stencil directly onto the cake
- Wood grain on fence - combined fence stencil and wood grain stencil to create a mask. Then I airbrushed with a darker brown for wood grain effect
- Long grass foreground - royal icing stencil directly on the cake. I then darkened the colour with the air brush
That process was the same for both cakes. Then I decided I’d try a couple of different designs. One for Easter and then a general Spring one
- Easter eggs - transfers by royal icing stencil onto baking paper. Once dry I dusted them and painted multi coloured dots. I ended up attaching them in a random arrangement, rather than the straight line that was on the stencil. This was to fill space and make the design have more dimension.
- Geo bunnies - rolled stencil onto fondant, then painted multiple colours for a mottled effect. I cut around the bunny and once it was dry attached them to the cake
- Flowers - piped directly onto the cake with a small star nozzle. Once dry I dusted them with a variety of colours (even though the base colour was the same)
- Hot air balloon - similar process to the geo bunnies, except the fondant was already dry so more of a stipple action rather than painting of the colours.
The most important outcome for me was that there is more than one way to use a stencil. You don't just have to use an airbrush or royal icing. You can paint, you can combine techniques and you can make transfers!
Stenciling with an airbrush on the vertical is actually way easier then on flat cookies. When it came to royal icing stenciling, I needed to put it up on a styrofoam dummy so the working height was right.
Make sure the fondant on the cake is dry so you can tape the stencil on and not create dents. There are other ways to attach stencils, eg pins and tulle etc but this is the method that works best for me.
Less is more paint wise when you are using a stencil with a paint brush on dried fondant. I had to go back and touch up a couple of areas where I had been a little over enthusiastic with the gold paint. Doing two lighter layers would have been better.
Working with “wet” fondant meant that the stencil could sink in a bit and create a seal for a nice crisp finish when using a paintbrush.
Would I do it differently if I was to repeat the same cake? Nope, in the end I found the techniques that worked and I would do it the same way.
I am looking forward to trying some of these techniques to create more unique cakes in the future.
I hope you enjoyed Sayms' tutorial, I think it demonstrates that you can stencils in a variety of ways, be it on cookies or cakes!
Please give Saym a follow on her social media...
Velvetier on Facebook
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Thanks Again Saym!