It’s Wilton Yearbook time again! No matter how hard we work designing the inspiration for the inside pages of the Wilton Yearbook, there is still one major decision to be made…what are we going to put on the cover? To answer that question, we asked our online audience, “What would you like to see on the 2014 Wilton Yearbook cover?” One answer, BUTTERCREAM!
But we still needed a topic. What were we going to design our cake to look like? What could we do that we have not already done?
Our job was cut out for us and we went on a search. A search that made us determined to give you the buttercream design you yearned for. After weeks of researching trends and styles, we landed on a unique way to incorporate the Steampunk style into our 2014 Yearbook cover.
What is Steampunk? It’s science fiction with steam powered machinery. It is inspired by the Victorian era blending with 19th century wild west civilization with an edginess. Top hats, corsets, lace, metal flowers, tulle, buttons, and even monocles are only some of the fashionable accessories that bring this trend to life!
We finally had a topic we felt we could work with. Something that definitely was edgy and different, but most importantly it had elements that were recognizable and familiar. Our biggest concern? Could buttercream work with this trend? Could we take classic techniques and put a spin on them? Yes…yes…we could!
Designing the Cake
What pans will I use? How many tiers? What color will I use for the cake and its accents? These are questions I must answer before I put pencil to paper. The decisions I make not only affect how the cake will look in person, but also how it will look through the camera’s eye.
The next step is to create a sketch of what the cake could look like. With reference images, colors, and other details confirmed plus plenty of sharpened pencils, I began interpreting what was in my mind on to the paper. Sometimes it takes many sketches, but this time I sketched one cake, liked what I saw, set the pencil down and knew this was it.
Creating the Cake
Now that we have a sketch, it is all in the hands of Wilton’s talented cake decorators. First, what techniques are we going to use? How do we pick from our vast decorating tip assortment and over 100 classic techniques?
The testing begins. Our decorators piped close to 50 technique samples so we could determine just what would look right to make the Steampunk theme rock! We narrowed it down to 12 techniques.
The actual cake was decorated by three different Wilton decorators: Diane Knowlton, Mark Malak and Kathy Krupa, with Jenny Streicher supervising the production.
When the cake was finished, we had a reveal in our office. The reaction…everyone loved it! We were excited for many reasons, but three stood out the most. We gave our audience what they asked for – buttercream, classic techniques, and we put an edgy fun spin on classic techniques, just like the definition of Steampunk!
I hope you enjoy the cover cake as well as all the other 250-plus designs inside the 2014 yearbook! The 2014 Wilton Yearbook of Cake Decorating will be available online and at local retailers in June. Let me know what you think!