ICES 2011 Part 2--Royal Icing Cakes

I don't know if it was just me, but it seemed like a lot of the display space in the ICES convention cake gallery was empty this year. I've only gone to one other convention and it was a while ago, so I don't know how the number of entries compared this year.

I took a few photos of some of the displays (I refuse to call them "cakes") that I found interesting for whatever reason, so here are a couple that involve royal icing.

First was one by Rosa Viacava de Ortega from Peru. I think that the flowers on this were spider chrysanthemums made from royal icing, so I thought that was an interesting way to go about making those. It looked like the individual petals were done separately, then put together to make the flower. You could do the same thing using gumpaste, but the royal icing would be faster if you had a bunch of them to make.

Next was one that used royal icing to get a weird texture for the ground. This was by Lily Naidu from Utah. The board and the top part of the scene were covered with royal icing that was either green to begin with or airbrushed to give it a mottled color. This picture doesn't show it as well as I'd hoped, but the ground was really rough-looking, and it gave it a mossy effect, which was interesting.

The last one for today was white royal icing piping on black fondant. This is by Rebecca Carpenter from Ohio.

I just liked this one because it's a good example of the fact that you don't have to have a white wedding cake. Also, the piping that she used on this is a little more modern than brush embroidery, which would typically be what you'd see if someone did this kind of white-on-black design.

The organizers had also been promoting the idea of having some traditional-style techniques on display, so there were a bunch of extension work designs, Nirvana-style, etc etc royal icing cakes this year. Those are impressive just for the sheer amount of work that has to go into them, but style-wise they do nothing for me. My husband summed it up by saying "Miss Havisham's cake" when he saw one of them. I can appreciate the technical side of it, but I don't want to look at them for too long.

More tomorrow...

 Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC in Richmond VA, and cake supplies online at and

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