Thinking of making your very own cake for your big day? Then check out our question and answer with Jesuit Nugas, the winner of ACD magazine’s Out of the Box Cake Challenge, telling all on how he came to create this stunning design!
Q1. How did you go about planning your design?
- Planning the actual design was really challenging. Part of the rules were you had to use the items in the box from each of the different sponsors in your design. I could not start design conceptualization until I received the box and saw the contents. I had to make sure that each design element made sense to the overall flow of the wedding cake I planned to make.
Q2. Why did you choose to make these sugar flowers?
- The main goal I had for this wedding cake was to express romance, and nothing could be more romantic than roses. For the floral spray, I used David Austin Roses, climbing roses, and some hydrangeas as filler. I think that roses are very classic and never go out of style.
Q3. How did you achieve the textured tiers on your cake?
- The textured tiers were made out of icing sheets. I sprayed the icing sheets with blue airbrush color, dried them out, and pulverized them in a coffee grinder. Piping gel was brushed onto the tiers and the pulverized icing sheets were applied.
Q4. What was your favorite Renshaw Americas product to use?
- I actually used all the Renshaw Americas’ products on this cake, from fondant to cover the tiers, gum paste for my florals, royal icing for piping, and ProGel Colors to color the fondant and gum paste. I love the superior quality of the Renshaw products, which made the whole process even easier for me.
Q5. What is your favorite feature on your cake?
- My favorite feature on this cake are my royal-icing elements, such as the pressure-piped detail and the filigree around the base. Making those sections took up most of my time. They were very delicate! I had to make four times more of what I needed to use to allow for breakage. It was worth it.
Q6. How long did the cake take to make?
- I made the whole cake in five days. I work as a nurse practitioner during the day and would come home and make the cake until midnight. I enjoyed the process and I learned a lot from just the experience itself.
Q7. What made you choose the different tier heights within the design?
- I chose to display various heights to create a contemporary-ish wedding cake that is modern, yet without losing the classic and romantic feel. As a cake artist, I like to explore ways by breaking away from the standards and giving something a fresh and new twist.
Q8. What is your favorite cake-decorating technique?
- My favorite cake-decorating technique would have to be piping and making sugar flowers. I believe that the very core of every cake decorator should be his/her piping skills. It allows me to re-create designs that are delicate and exquisite. Making sugar flowers is another technique that I love. I have explored my ways in making clean and chic sugar flowers to the most organic sugar-flower arrangements.
Q9. What other tips, tricks, and advice can you give to our readers?
- Get inspiration from travel, architecture, floral arrangements, gardens, textures, etc. I think that there is so much art around that we can always translate into cakes. I use Pinterest to search for color Pantones and design inspirations, not necessarily to copy a cake design.
- Create a mood board before getting hands on to make the cake. It makes it easy for the artist to create a plan on how to make the cake on a specific timeline.
- You can make a variety of generic filler flowers like hydrangea, jasmine, lisianthus, or berries. Use pastel colors so it’s easier to adjust the colors when you need them to be darker. This will save you so much time.
- Learn, learn, and learn! There are a lot of learning platforms around. While it is important to have a signature mark on your cake aesthetics, learning from your co-artists just broadens your knowledge on cake decorating. It gives you depth in understanding how different mediums work.
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