In less than two weeks I will be a grandmother for the first time. Needless to say, I am extremely excited about this momentous occasion. The baby is going to be a darling little girl and she has already been named Violet. For me this is extra special since her name is also that of a cute little flower and a very pretty color.
So, from now on my gumpasting creations will occasionally be swayed by (a hopefully understandable) affection for sweet violet flowers and their coloring. For my first such creation I made this gumpaste/fondant bib which will be part of an upcoming cake I plan to make. One thing that will be different now (as that I will want to share these special cakes with my family) is I will be using “real” cakes in these projects unlike what I usually do which is to use cake dummies.
I do have a confession to make though…I haven’t really frosted any cakes with real buttercream icing (which is my family’s favorite) since my children were much younger. So, I decided to look into some type of refresher course. Fortunately for me there was a fabulous information-packed mini course, Modern Buttercream, by the very talented Joshua John Russell. I am still speechless after hearing all the incredible advice Joshua John gives his viewers in this course! I would be remiss if I did not thank Craftsy.com for their extreme generosity in offering this video, which is over an hour long, free of charge. Here’s hoping I will do Joshua John proud with my future frosted cakes.
My Gumpaste/Fondant Sweet Violet Bib
Not only has my sugarcraft bib been devoted to the birth of my upcoming granddaughter, it also gave me the opportunity to try the “Vincent Marquetry” technique which was developed by one of my gumpasting heroines, Kerry Vincent. This is the art of applying pieces of fondant (or gumpaste) in an inlayed fashion. You can read about it in her captivating book, Romantic Wedding Cakes. Normally you would leave these cutout pieces as is, but I wanted to mimic puffed embroidery on my bib. So, with my dresden tool I also added some tiny-little indentation marks around the inset sweet violet flower and three leaves (but not on the six small lavender flowers). For a little extra visual interest I added two rows of one of my favorite gumpasting standbys, dragees (also known as edible beads or pearls). I also painted some luster dust with alcohol on the flowers and leaves in order to give them a satin-ribbon finish.
If you decide to make one of these baby bibs, be sure to make it several days in advance so that it can set up (i.e. dry) properly. You could dry it so it’s completely flat, but I wanted to give a little life-like feeling to it so I elevated two of the outer edges slightly.
FYI: It also makes a very lovely “keepsake” which is another reason I adore gumpasting so much!