Thursday, June 25, 2009

all you gotta do is repeat after me: ABC...

first of all, RIP to Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson, what a sad day for the entertainment world. I suppose these first images could be considered a coincidental tribute to Jackson 5's hit "ABC." Continuing on with the fondant-covered-styrofoam-separator-baby-blocks from yesterday, Joan had bought these alphabet stamps for me. Unfortunately they weren't cookie-cutters so they didn't actually cut the letters out from the fondant, but I could at least indent them and cut out the letters with the Exacto knife. You can apply fondant on top of buttercream [always when we're covering full cakes with fondant because it's moist, flavorful, and acts as an adhesive], but when working with smaller details like this, I just dabbed a bit of water on the back of each letter with a small paintbrush and applied it right onto the fondant cube.

Along with letters spelling out B-A-B-Y on each cube, I also applied colored borders. However, the thing about fondant is that it does not mix well with the hot and humid weather we've been having lately, so it starts to melt, run, ooze, stain, etc. Definitely not perfect and all the red took me one hour.

And two hours later. And three hours later. And almost four hours later:
That's another thing about fondant: while it can be smooth, crisp, and precise, it takes FOREVER to work with, even just for a mediocre appearance and level of cleanliness. So that's why fondant designs cost more - fondant costs more than buttercream as a material and there's also all the labor involved. As Joan says, "they [the customer] just don't know what we go through to get that look!" So if you ever start to shake your head at something like this, just remember someone had to put in that time. Put the blocks aside until tomorrow when we'll put the rest of the cakes, tiers, and toppers [more fondant baby blocks - but cake this time] together tomorrow.

Spent the rest of the afternoon finishing up another set of graduation books [totally completed by me!], this time in a gold and garnet color. About 2/3 the size of the previous set [this one has a mini grad hat!] but still a heavy tray to haul around:

Quick reflection: things have definitely been looking up for me at the cake shop, I feel more confident and able in taking on tasks. I don't really need to ask for supplies or answers anymore [unless I need to, of course], and it's like I've subconciously moved from intern to project manager, in architect-speak because I don't rely on Joan as much and I really take on the projects [read: cakes] on as my own and make my own decisions. Joan will ask me about colors, fonts, and other things from time to time and I think she likes that she has someone else to throw ideas around with. She's also trying out some new flavors and fillings tonight [amaretto, mimosa, etc] so maybe there will be some samples to try in the morning...

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