In the Kitchen

Wilton Cake Decorating Class: Buttercream Skills Day 1

A few weeks ago while web-surfing on JoAnn’s  (craft store) website, I came across some Wilton cake decorating classes. As an avid baker and lover of all things sweets, I have always wanted to take a cake decorating class to perfect my skills. I’ve seen Wilton class offerings before, but my schedule never aligned with the times the classes were held. This time around I snatched up a spot for a condensed class that was to be held on 2 Sundays for 3 hours each session. I decided on the beginner class called Course 1: Building Buttercream Skills because I wanted to make sure I got the basics before I tried getting any more advanced.

Last Sunday rolled around and it was time for class #1! I convinced my mom to sign up with me, so I would have a partner in class. I’m so glad I did because we ended up being the only 2 in class and I’m sure they would have canceled it had there not been 2 of us. I was not mad at all that it was only the 2 of us in class because we got a lot more one-on-one attention! Prior to class, we had to purchase a few items from a supplies list: Wilton decorating kit, guidebook, tubs of buttercream, etc.

Our instructor started out by teaching us how to make different consistencies of buttercream for piping various items on a cake. I had no idea that stiff buttercream should be used for certain things while thin buttercream was best for others! Next, we moved onto coloring the buttercream. We used gel colors and mixed them into our buttercream.

It was amazing how a light pink color I mixed intensified in shade throughout the class and became more of a dark pink over time! We transferred our buttercream into a piping bag and got to work. The rest of the class was used for taking us through the various piping tips that exist for actually applying the buttercream to the cake.

We had “practice boards” to try making a collection of patterns. There were so many kinds of piping tips that you could use to make different shapes! For instance, there was a tip to make leaf shapes, a tip to make rosette swirls, a tip to make “grass,” etc. Then, our instructor had us try to pipe the patterns we learned onto actual cupcakes to practice our techniques in a more realistic way.

I’m a nerd and liked just practicing my shapes on my little board. I could have done that all day and totally lost track of time. Our instructor has been teaching Wilton classes for 9 years, so I definitely was happy to have her knowledge and get feedback on what I was doing wrong throughout the session. The class only increased my love for making cupcakes and using my creative skills “in the kitchen.” This coming Sunday we are designing our own full cakes! Our instructor is having us prepare homemade buttercream, a filling, and a two-tier cake to use in class. She will be teaching us how to create flowers to transfer to our cake for decorating, as well as some more fun things I’m sure!

I can’t wait for the weekend, so I can shut off clinical-mode in my brain for a little while and let my decorating ideas flow! I enjoyed my class so much so far that I even signed up for another Wilton class in July. If you’re in need of sweets for a special event, I might know someone…. 😉

Until next time, keep on the sunny side.


xoxo- K