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Must Haves for the Beginning Decorator

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I've been baking since I was a little girl. But was never taught decorating. I've always been interested in it, but never took that leap. But, I'm diving in head first now, and I need to know what tools I really need.

I thought about picking up the Wilton Ultimate Decorating Set and possibly taking the Wilton classes at one of the craft & hobby stores.

Any books I should get? I love reading/learning different techniques!

[ I start culinary school next year and want to focus on being a pastry chef. I also plan on taking business management courses online as well. ]
post #2 of 12
I think taking the Wilton classes would probably be a good idea. It would give you a chance to find out if you love decorating as much as you do baking and the classes are fun. Make sure if you are buying the kit to use the coupons for 40-50% off. You get the class books when you start the class.
As far as books go I would watch the tutorials online and read this site, you will learn a lot and can then decide which direction you want to get more involved with.
Good Luck and have fun!
Rusti
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Rusti
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post #3 of 12
I agree w/the previous postericon_smile.gif Take those Wilton lessons. Hopefully you will get a really good instructor and learn much - well the basicsicon_smile.gif Yes, wait for the class to buy. I've been away from teaching and decorating for so long now I don't remember what is in the Ultimate Decorating Set so can't advise if there is unnecessary stuff. Just know that the instructor is there to *sell!* 1st and teach 2nd so there will be things recommended that one can do w/o by improvising w/things one already has on hand at home.
I was (well, still am) very much a book person. I still have a few books. When I started in this the internet was not available so I never really got into using YouTube etc much. Also, I find having books gives you better access and pictures; often good instructions etc. Trying to learn from books didn't do it for me, until after I had taken the Wilton lessons. Most of what was in the books just confussed me until I had learned the basics. & I have heard of people who had learned on their own who were doing things backwards & such. Having someone show you how to do it right from the start is much better than hav ing to UNlearning what you taught yourself wrongly.
post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
From what I have been told, is the first three classes are included in the Ultimate Kit. The only not included is class #4. I have to wait until my birthday to take the classes (present from my Dad).

I've never been one to really learn from watching videos. As much as I would love to, I just cannot do it. My main passion is cupcakes, but I love regular cakes just as much.

My Mom has been talking about purchasing me a Cricut Cake, too. Hopefully I can find one soon!
post #5 of 12
If you have never done any decorating, then the Wilton class is a good place to start just to learn the basics. Don't buy everything that is mentioned in class. They will be many things that you will never use beyond the class. It is very tempting when you see everyone else in class buying things but before buying all they try to talk you into if it is really something you see yourself using in the future. I have a few things that I don't know what I was thinking. I took those classes last year but did not buy the ultimate. I bought whatever kit I needed for the class. I always used the 50% off coupons to get the kit. After I took the classes, I watched utube videos, looked for online tutorials and bought some books for gum paste flowers.
post #6 of 12
My husband and I took the Wilton classes at our local craft store. What a blessing that was to get us on the right track ! We didn't get the "Ulitmate Kit" because it seemed to us there were alot of things we didnt need in there. Just the kits required for each course (3 of them) was all we needed. Classes were 50% off at our craft store and those 40%/50% coupons for all of the kits was great - Good luck to you, to say the least the classes were a kick being we were all beginners and our teacher Rani was soo funny and most helpful !
thumbs_up.gif
post #7 of 12
The absolute minimum would be whatever individual tips you need for what you plan to do, and some fittings to attach them to a piping bag. And at least one frosting spatula.

A regular or freezer zip-top bag with a corner cut out of it makes a serviceable (and disposable) piping bag (it's what I use). A sandwich bag, on the other hand, is a blowout waiting to happen (don't ask me how I know that).

I've never taken a decorating course, which is probably why I've never bothered to make any fancier frosting than the cold-process buttercream recipe that's been on the back of the powdered sugar box since before most of us were born.

James H. H. Lampert
Professional Dilettante

Web site: http://www.hbquik.com/jamesl

Flickr "baked goods" set http://flic.kr/s/aHsjvZvdTh

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James H. H. Lampert
Professional Dilettante

Web site: http://www.hbquik.com/jamesl

Flickr "baked goods" set http://flic.kr/s/aHsjvZvdTh

Reply
post #8 of 12
Watch a lot of videos on youtube. I have never taken a Wilton course, but I have taught myself and was guided / taught by a lot of people here on CC. I love this place. I do have all of the Wilton course books and the certificates, but I taught myself and did it on my time. Get the coupons for your local craft stores. I use them all of the time.

Welcome!
post #9 of 12
Perfect timing! I was about to ask many of the same questions, I will be watching this thread closely icon_smile.gif

Unfortunately there are no cake decorating classes where I live (let alone Wilton classes!!!) icon_sad.gifSo it will all be "self taught" for me.
I only decided to try cake decorating a few weeks ago, it has been on my wish list for many years. I decorated my first cake about 2 weeks ago, up till that point I had never heard of fondant or gumpaste LOL. Oops, sorry did not mean to hijack the thread.
Just getting started....and totally addicted!
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Just getting started....and totally addicted!
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post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiWOWa

Perfect timing! I was about to ask many of the same questions, I will be watching this thread closely icon_smile.gif

Unfortunately there are no cake decorating classes where I live (let alone Wilton classes!!!) icon_sad.gifSo it will all be "self taught" for me.
I only decided to try cake decorating a few weeks ago, it has been on my wish list for many years. I decorated my first cake about 2 weeks ago, up till that point I had never heard of fondant or gumpaste LOL. Oops, sorry did not mean to hijack the thread.



It's fine! I had heard of fondant, but never used any. Never heard of gumpaste until a year ago, either!

I did a quick google search for "Cake Decorating Classes New Zealand" and found a few. The NZ based blog, Kiwi Cakes has a list of cake classes offered all around NZ.
post #11 of 12
You may also want to look up if there is an ICES chapter in your area. I have learned many amazing tricks of the trade from pros at their days of sharing and mini class events. ICES stands for International Cake Exploration Society. Also, some people I know have gone thru adult ed classes at community college to take decorating classes, too.
post #12 of 12
Thanks for letting me know about kiwicakes, Piink. I have just checked out the site for classes ( I have bought supplies from there, but did not notice the classes!)
Unfortunately the nearest classes are about an 8 hour drive away LOL icon_cry.gif
Mind you, I am having loads of fun trying things out on my own icon_smile.gif

Does anyone have a "must have" book they can recommend? I have the "International School of Sugarcraft - Book 2 and it is amazing!! I would like to add one or two more to my collection though. ...books are my other addiction icon_smile.gif
Just getting started....and totally addicted!
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Just getting started....and totally addicted!
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