Some of the things that I can't live without when it comes to decorating cakes and cookies.
Cue Julie Andrews' voice..."These are a few of my favorite things!" I've been in this decorating business for three years. In those years, I have tried so many different tools and products. Some have been a huge fail while others I buy in bulk now that I have found that they work for me. I also feel like these tools are very reasonably priced which is always a bonus.
I had to start off with a bang. Your first instinct will be to shudder at the price tag of these tools, but don't. THEY ARE WORTH EVERY PENNY. These tools will help shape fondant, gum paste, modeling chocolate, etc. Whatever medium you work with, these babies will shape it. Innovative Sugarworks Sugar Shapers come in a firm or soft tip and they also have some minis which are great for tiny figurines. I am not ashamed to say I own them all.
This particular brand is the one I use. The makers of this did not patent their product so there are lots out there. They all serve the same purpose-to extrude fondant (or clay) in different ways. Each one comes with an assortment of attachments. You can extrude thin ribbons, thick or thin ropes, or even straw like strips. CAUTION: May cause hand cramps.
I used to be that girl who would combine food color gel with Everclear to make my paints. Recently, I was introduced to these paints and I have not gone back since. The great thing about these is that most paints do not cover all mediums well, and these most certainly do. I have painted on royal icing, fondant, and buttercream and have been very pleased with the coverage. Shaking these very well before painting is a huge must.
I started cookie decorating by using toothpicks to spread my icing. I discovered these and it makes a world of difference. Many people sell these. The link I provided is to an Etsy shop where you have the option to customize your own. Look at my little stand mixer on mine! In the grand scheme of things, the extra customizable expense isn't worth it, but its too cute to pass up.
There are very few edible and non-toxic golds out there that are beautiful. Some have fantastic coverage but you have to advise the customer to remove before eating because it is not safe. Rolkem super gold is not one of those luster dusts. It can be used as a dust or combined with everclear (recommended for best coverage), vodka, or lemon extract and used as a paint. The best part is, you don't have to remove anything from the cake that is covered in this gold because it is non-toxic and completely edible.
On a related note of things that are beautiful and edible, I give you-SweetlyElite EDIBLE glitter. Most disco dusts that shine so bright are non-toxic but definitely not edible. Glitters or disco dusts are another product you would be wise to advise clients to remove, but not these. I love her selection of colors. I have personally emailed the owner before and she gave me a detailed list of ingredients. They are 100% safe. The only problem I have with these is that I don't own all the colors she offers....yet.
While Americolor Edible Ink pens are good, their tips are much too thick for some of the finer details in cake or cookie decorating. I have found these to be just right for clean lines. I have not tried these directly on chilled buttercream, but they have worked great on fondant and royal icing. My only complaint would be lack of color choices. The package I ordered came with red, pink, green, black, fuchsia, and blue.
So there we have it! A short list of some of the essentials at my work station. I could go on and on about some other supplies or tools I love, but we would be here all day. Happy baking and decorating!
*All of the headers with names of products are links to purchase.