Unfortunately the handle didn’t show up well in the picture…but there is one on top. I’m still getting used to lighting a black background…so the lighting isn’t quite right yet. And, if you haven’t noticed already, yes, I’m SUCH a dunce and totally forgot the knitting needles!!!! Sorry Auntie…they are here…but they didn’t get into the cake before I helped your sister pack the cake up in her car!! Good thing she is family or I would have been driving to Canby that night!
Now onto the cake…I hand cut out the Amy Butler flower design from black modeling chocolate. All the black designs/elements on the cake are modeling chocolate. I hand carved the cake shape and all the contours from 5 – 9″ layers of chocolate mudcake. It’s filled with ganache since I needed a stable surface to carve and since it would be traveling around Portland before it’s final destination. It was a little difficult to get the crumb coat really smooth since I carved in so many ripples and contours. So, my fondant didn’t go on “as smooth” as I wanted. If anyone has any tips/tricks to get a crumb coat really smooth on a “wrinkly” surface, let me know! I applied the fondant in two pieces…one on the front and one on the back. I attached the black piping to the fondant before I put it on the cake. That was a learning experience…The front looks much better than the back as the fondant ended up folding over a bit in the back and left me with elephant skin folds. Ben said he thought it looked like the leather lines on a leather purse…that was sweet of him…but not my intention to do! I guess I’ll know how to achieve that effect – when I want too!
One more lesson learned…I actually didn’t dowel/support the cake. The cake layers were pretty thin and the cake ended up being about 5″ tall (not including the fondant edge). So, I didn’t separate out two or three layers and dowel those because it felt pretty secure with four layers of ganache. HOWEVER, what I had forgotten was that I would be putting 8 small balls of yarn (cake balls) on top of the cake and that weight would question the integrity of the cake. So, I got it in the fridge before too much sagging occurred!! But, next time, I’ll have to remember to think of all the components that will be on the cake and what the weight of those components will do to the cake. Note to self and all those cake makers out there!!
All in all it was a great cake and I’m happy with the END result! Despite the knitting needle whoops, this is one of my favs to date!! Thanks for looking!