In recent years, the world of baking has seen a tremendous rise in popularity. This is partly due to shows such as The Great British Bake Off and Choccywoccydoodah. These shows showcase both experts and beginners alike decorating a whole host of baked goods. The fantastic thing about cake decorating is that it is so accessible. It doesn’t matter if you’re 8 or 80, you can experience the joy and creativity it brings. So if you’ve been inspired and want to give it a try, read these tips for beginners to help get you started.
Practise makes perfect
Learning a new skill takes time. While you might pick some parts of cake decorating up quite quickly, it’s unlikely you’ll be a professional overnight. Your first attempts may be messy and not turn out as well as you hoped. But that’s all part of the process and shouldn’t make you feel disheartened. If you learn from your mistakes, you’ll become a better baker all round. Even the experts were beginners once and probably made the same mistakes you have. Practise as often as you can and remember to take pictures of your creations once they are complete. Keep these images in an album or folder and track your progress. It shouldn’t take long for you to see how far your skills have improved.
Don’t buy everything at once
In the excitement of starting a new hobby, it can be tempting to go out any buy every baking and decorating item available. But believe it or not, you probably have everything you need for a beginner already in your kitchen. Cake tins, baking trays, spatulas and knives are some of the best tools for a beginner to have. So even though you might want to buy four packs of cookie cutters, try to resist. When you’re trying a new technique, only buy what you need and don’t get distracted by other items. Otherwise, you may find that your kitchen soon becomes overwhelmed with stuff you don’t need or use.
Get experimental and bold with your designs
As with most art forms, there are no rules when it comes to your creativity. So don’t be afraid to unleash it as often as possible in your decorating. Look at sites such as Pinterest and in baking magazines for inspiration on cake decorating ideas. Even if a cake looks particularly intricate and difficult to execute, come up with alternatives that you could use instead. Sticking to simple designs initially is perfectly fine, but don’t let your lack of experience hold you back. Otherwise, you may find that you are limiting your skills and preventing yourself from reaching your potential. So think outside the box and push yourself. You could experiment with Swarovski elements, paper flowers or boiled sweets. Or you could try cutting the cake into different shapes instead for a modern look. Alternating sizes of cake can also make beautiful decorative features. The possibilities are truly endless so go wild.
So whether you’re hosting an afternoon tea or creating a birthday cake, these tips will start you on your cake decorating journey. Have plenty of fun and thoroughly enjoy eating your cake afterwards.