|First attempt at sugar flowers|
It was quite a different sense of pressure however, to put myself out there and commit to making a three tier wedding cake for 150 people at a wedding where Tom would be joint best man and at the center of proceedings. We had both agreed that wedding cakes were exceptionally expensive when having a conversation about how the plans were going for our friends, and so Tom had suggested to Rob and Zoe that I made a cake. After all... I had done it before.
I couldn't even find a closeup picture of the cake I made all that time before, and so I thought I had better get some practice in. I created a mood board with Zoe and spent a couple of afternoons messing around with some fondant icing. The results were cute, but no where near what I needed them to be!
So I sought professional help with extra classes at college. With the cake decoration tutor 's assistance, I managed to ice a wooden lump with a level of precision that would rival an elephant. But nonetheless, not a bad attempt. I decided against this technique though as it was not the nicest icing to work with.
|First attempt at royal icing|
|Sugar flowers and leaves for wedding cake|
Well it was not fine! I took the advice of the lady in the cake shop and wrapped a polystyrene heart in clingfilm, before icing with purple fondant. Disaster and a sleepless night followed! But never fear, there is always a friendly hand and Hannah and her cake whizz mum, Pauline came to rescue me and offer some technique advice to get me back on track. We also made a little dog figure to represent Charlie dog, the farm yard lassie who chases alongside Rob's land-rover on the farm. A firm character and part of the family! This cheered me up and put me back on track!
|Purple polystyrene heart, covered with a little help from Pauline and Hannah!|
Then came the icing and doweling which was the least challenging part of the whole thing. Piping tiny dots was relaxing and satisfying.
|Piping and icing in full swing|
Transporting the cake in sections was the next challenge. Tom's speech recounted a horrendous experience on the farm with Rob, in which a cow had scaled a 6ft wall onto a busy main road, causing a lady to emergency stop and forcing her carefully crafted wedding cake into her footwell! I did not want this to happen to us. With this in mind, each groomsman had a layer safely in their clutches the whole drive to Bolton Abbey. At one point the Groom's button had made an impression on the icing and there were a few dots to be glued back on, but disaster was avoided. Phew!
|Smoothing is not as easy as it looks|
|Finished and dusted flowers. Thanks Jenny for the hints and tips.|
I swear I was more nervous than the groom when I came to assemble the cake on an insufficiently stable table. Despite Mini-Zoe making a dive from the top, I positioned the perfectly resembled figures she had given me on the top with Charlie dog and arranged the flowers strategically between the layers.
|Finished three tier wedding cake with leaning purple heart|
|Dusted sugar flowers|
|Happy wedding party at Barden Tower, Skipton on the wonderful sunny day!|