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Free Bark and Flower Tutorial

Angela is the creative genius behind successful cake business, Slate Couture Cakes. She is a very talented self-taught artist, drawing her inspiration and creativity from natural elements, textiles and organic textures. Angela’s style, artistic flair and talent is synonymous with her brand. When teaching, she makes learning what might seem the impossible, very easy. Multi-award-winning, Angela’s work is undoubtedly divine. Her designs are cutting edge, eye-catching, modern and definitely on trend. It’s very easy to understand why her work is in such high demand and why it’s been featured in so many leading bridal magazines. Angela was nominated as Wedding Cake Designer of the year in 2017 in Australia and also for ACADA’s Australasian Haute Couture Wedding Cake Designer of the Year Award in 2018. She’s renowned throughout Australia as the ‘Sugar Artist of Elegance’. These key elements for a vintage winter style cake use bark textures and a white flower. Apply these to any cake design you want to for a beautiful design.

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Take an orange sized chunk of white fondant and a blueberry sized piece of brown and mix together.

Take a plum sized chunk of white fondant and five pea sized pieces of brown and leave to dry. Let the fondant dry.

Step 1

Combine together just enough to get them to stick to each other. Roll into a sausage.

Roll the fondant out in a long panel to about 8mm and let all the amazing texture show through. This will act as the wood grain.

Moving quite quickly, place another sheet of wafer paper over the panel of freshly rolled out fondant. The panel should still be sticky enough for wafer paper to stick to. If it isn’t, use the clean Chux cloth to lightly dampen. Very very lightly wipe this over the fondant to make it slightly tacky then apply the wafer paper. Once the wafer paper is attached to the entire panel, use the damp cloth to lightly wipe over the wafer paper to make it tacky.

Trim off all excess wafer paper overhang and using a small non-stick rolling pin, roll over the wafer paper and watch it start to crack and tear apart.

This is the look you want the timber panel to look like as you roll it out. Roll the fondant as thin as possible to approximately 3-4mm. Repeat.

Once the fondant has been combined into a sausage, use the large rolling pin to roll out again to the same approximate size as the tree bark panel.

Use the damp cloth to lightly wipe over the freshly rolled out panel and place the texture on top. Use the large rolling pin to again roll over to ensure it is securely attached and create even more cracks.

Using the measuring tape, measure the diameter of the top tier and divide the length by the number of panels you would like. Remember to keep the timber panel size the same as the panel size you are going to use to go around the hexagonal tier. I cut mine to 0.75” - this was the perfect size for my panels and required no cutting down on the top tier or any panels. Once you have determined the size required, using the sharp knife or pizza cutter and ruler, cut the long panel strips.

Measure the size of the panels you need to go on the top and bottom of the hexagonal tier first. Measure the top to bottom distance and subtract the size of the panels from the top and bottom. Measure and cut the panels for the top tier. Keep the offcuts to use on the top of the top tier.

Using the aluminium foil, go back over the timber panels and give added depth and texture by pressing into the timber panels.

In a small container, add rose decorating spirit and a drop of brown airbrush colour. You want it to be very diluted as you don’t want a strong colour to come through. Using a small flat paintbrush, start painting the solution over the timber panels to bring them to life (you can see the subtle enhancement in the picture). Once the panels have had a little time to dry (they won’t need long, only about 10 minutes), take the top tier and paint a thin layer of piping gel to the top of the tier. Using timber panel offcuts, start to arrange to cover the top.

Working on the side, paint a thin layer of piping gel (I only ever paint a three panel wide space each time so I’m not working with a sticky mess). Apply the timber panels on the top tier one at a time. Use the ruler to ensure you are applying perfectly straight.

Lay the petal cutters out cut the following from wafer paper: 11 x Size 1, 5 x Size 2, 10 x Size 3, 5 x Size 4, 5 x Size 5 Once all petals have been cut out, take six of the Size 1 petal and lay flat on a paper towel. Lightly spray with Paper Potion. You don’t want to saturate them, when you see them start to curl, take the water pen and lightly wet the bottom centre of the petal. Place a wire on top of the now tacky surface and twist the wafer paper around the wire. You want to create a ‘curl’ look. Repeat on the remaining five petals and place in bumpy foam to dry.

Repeat for all the other petals only don’t add the wire in. Ensure with all of the petals you are drying that you add movement so they are all different.

Take your six centre wired petals and arrange together. Use white floral tape to fix.

On the back of the six petals, attach the remaining five smallest petals using a thin layer of piping gel.

Repeatuntil you have attached all the petals.

Once all petals have been added, lightly dust the centre of the flower with light pink and a small pointed paintbrush. Hang upside down and allow the outer petals to dry.