(Closed) Has anyone taking a cake decorating class?

posted 7 years ago in Cooking
Post # 3
Member
8354 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2011

I have taken the first course of the Wilton classes, and they were a lot of fun. If you are planning on making and decorating cakes and/or cupcakes, I do recommend taking the classes. They are a lot of work, but well worth it in my opinion.

Post # 4
Member
503 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

I considered doing it because the prize seemed reasonable (and I’m making my own wedding cake). But they really discourage you from taking the fondant class without previous ones (just for the money, in my opinion) and they make you buy a bunch of stuff on top of tuition. So its not as cheap as it looks. Ultimately I looked up everything on youtube and my cake came out great (See pic) lol. 

Post # 5
Member
1426 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

I did!  I loved them, it was such a great time!  I would recommend taking them with a friend if you can, because there is a lot of down time while you are practicing the skills, but if not, you can always make new friends 🙂

They’ve changed the class structure around since I went about 2 years ago, but when I did it, everyone had to take level 1, which was all buttercream icing.  I didn’t really like that one because I apparently just am not cut out for delicate piping, but I’m glad I stuck with it.  After that I took levels 3 and 4, which are the ones that involved fondant, and I LOVED it.  I learned a lot of basic skills there that let me make a lot of awesome things even beyond what Wilton suggested.  I skipped level 2, which was mostly royal icing, because it was more piping (which I am bad at) and royal icing is disgusting anyway so it wasn’t really a skill I wanted to gain.

The whole thing will set out to market Wilton products to you, but other than the actual cake decorating tools, you don’t really have to buy their stuff.  Like, they’ll tell you to use “Wilton cake release” instead of cooking spray.  It’s the same exact stuff as Pam, but more expensive.  Don’t fall for it. 

They give you a buttercream recipe which really sucks taste wise, but unfortunately you do have to use that one for class, since the consistency is really important and that can be fickle.  However once you’ve learned the skills they want you to know, you’ll be able to experiment with other icings on your own.  Don’t use the Wilton brand fondant.  It’s TERRIBLE, even by fondant standards.  Buy Satin Ice or Fondarific, or make your own marshmallow fondant (my favorite option- way cheaper and better tasting!)

I will warn you, in your first course, you will make so much cake that you will never ever want to eat a piece of cake again!  But it gets better in the subsequent courses, because you only make one or two cakes per level from then on.

So yeah, I do recommend them.  Of course a lot depends on the particular teacher and mix of students you get, but I had a great time and I still love making cool cakes now and again.

This was the first cake I ever made with fondant:

And this was my final project for level 4 (though go easy on me, the way the fondant is buckling still makes me cringe!):

Post # 6
Member
1426 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

@babymilka74:  I know exactly what you mean about the money thing.  I didn’t buy a single cake item without a 40% off Michael’s coupon, even if it meant popping in every day for a week just to buy the things one at a time.  It would have been such a rip off without doing it that way!

Post # 7
Member
988 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

I soo want to take these classes! Where do you take them? Michaels?

Post # 8
Member
8354 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2011

Michaels and Joanns both offer the classes. Check out both locations because the cost of the classes are different at each one.

Post # 9
Member
8354 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2011

BTW, awesome cakes ladies 🙂

Post # 10
Member
521 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

I am taking the basic class at the moment and really enjoy it. I think the teacher really needs some help because she really isn’t much of instructor that holds your attention. If you talk to the instructor, they usually have good methods to help save money and/or helpful information (or well, atleast mine does)

You have to take the basics first, but if you go to an open house you get 50% off so it’s only 25 dollars. I would definately stock up on coupons for the extra stuff like the Wilton book and little kit you have to buy. There is an open house today if you can get to a Joann’s. I just signed up for the second course!

I do feel like greenleaf mentioned about trying to upsell Wilton products. Wal-Mart sells the product for cheaper though if you have a coupon at Joann, it is usually worth it to buy there. I would also plan ahead (purchase the book early so you can look through the supply list in it to find out what is critical because not everything in the “kit” is what you need and not everything mentioned is necassary) so that you can buy things on amazon, ebay, or online for cheaper prices or a different brand but same thing. I’m trying to not buy too many wilton products because I’m not sure if I will use it afterwards, so I plan on using my regular cake pans. I did buy a turntable and a cake leveler from Wilton because I like theirs the best out of the other brands. But, you can do your own research.

Post # 11
Member
7779 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

I took the first 2 and then decided that I didn’t like all the added cost. I taught myself how to stack, dowel and do fondant off of the internet.

Course 2 is all flowers and royal icing. I didnt like that one so much.

They are useful though. I got that huge kit that comes with everything and it was SUCH a good investment. I use it all the time. I’m just slowly aquiring new tips and tools and such now.

Post # 12
Member
1701 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I took Levels 1 and 2.  I really enjoyed them.  They are work and the equipment does add up.  My mother has decorated cakes for years but I picked up some tricks that she uses now.

Post # 13
Member
436 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2009

If you have a Hobby Lobby in your area, they offer cake decorating classes too.  I called and they do a lesson for cakes, cupcakes and cookies.  I’m hoping to start in September.

Post # 14
Member
2767 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2009

I’m in the final one right now – fondant and gum paste.  I took course 1 last year, and the royal icing and flowers one last month.  They are so expensive and I hate how they don’t tell you all the added costs.  You buy that kit thinking it is all you need and then you get to class and find out you have to go and buy a lot more.  If you are going to start the classes the best thing to do is go out and buy that entire Ultimate decorating kit by Wilton.  It has everything for all three classes in it, and then some.  Plus it comes in an awesome storage case.  It’s normally $200, but buy it with a 50% off coupon for $100 and it will still be cheaper than buying everything separately for each course.

Anyways, the classes are fun.  I love learning all the techniques.  But I’m kind of sad because I have no one to make cakes for so I quickly forget all the techniques.  I wish I had friends that loved to eat desserts!  

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