Hello, again! Welcome back for another exciting adventure into the world of cake decorating. If not exciting, I hope you at least find it mildly interesting. This time around, we are going to be having fun with leaf tips!
Leaf Tip Basics
I’ll be using two shapes of leaf tip. One tip is shaped like a “V” at the end; one is shaped like an “M.” For today’s demonstrations I will be using pink frosting with the M-shaped leaf tip and blue with the V-shaped tip.
You may be familiar with the classic use of the leaf tip already. With a little squeeze and pull, you can make a perfect little bit foliage. With your V-shaped tip, you want to make sure you are holding it like a bird beak to get the leaf to come out right. With the other tip, you want to turn the tip 90 degrees and hold it so you can see the M shape from the top.
Both do the job well, as you can see, but I usually use the V-shaped tip because the pointy tips of the leaves turn out nicer, with less fuss.
Leaf Tip Ruffles
So, what is there beyond making leaves for these little tips? How about ruffles! We can do swag-style ruffles or thick frilly ruffles. To make the classic swag shape, you just load up that leaf tip and draw some “C” shapes. I tend to do swag ruffles with the M-shaped tip. It’s not a huge difference, but I think the edges are a little thinner and lighter looking. What’s that you ask, why not use a rose tip? Well, sure, you could, but when you use a leaf tip, you get a little frilly edge to both sides of your ruffle. Wow! Now with extra prettiness!
To do the wide ruffle band, you hold the tip like you would if you were going to make a leaf and then make small, side-to-side motions. Pretend you are scribbling with a crayon. The wider your side-to-side motions, the wider and frillier your ruffles with be.
Leaf Tip Cupcake Ruffle
Now that we’ve talked about some ways to pipe, let’s talk about how to use these ideas for projects. To create a ruffle look on a cupcake, use your side-to-side squiggle to add a ruffled edge. Once you get all the way around, do it again, this time making a slightly smaller circle. Repeat the process once more to cover the top of your cupcake. Now you have a cupcake fit for a princess. Wouldn’t it look nice finished with a few candy pearls?
Leaf Tip VS. Rose Tip
But, why not use a rose tip? Well, yes, you could… check out that photo. It’s not a huge difference, but the rose tip has a more even, flower-petal appearance, whereas the leaf tip is more irregular and frilled.
Leaf Tip Carnation Cupcake
Let’s do another cupcake project. If you turn you tip 90 degrees and use it sideways, you can create a whole new look. Just wave the tip back and forth, making lots of little folds. Try not to go in circles or in a straight line. Make small clusters here and there as you work your way across the cupcakes. The end result has a carnation look. Imagine a bouquet of these in lots of pretty colors!
Leaf Tip Flower
Speaking of carnations… let’s make a flower! Get out that flower nail for this one. Start with just making a base like you would when making a rose. Start in the middle. On top of your frosting base, make small concentric circle like you would when making a rose. Give your hand a tiny bit of shake to get the edges frilled. You can stop and start at any point. The frilliness with hide any parts where the ruffles aren’t connected. Keep working your way out in the same way as making a rose.
Leaf Tip Flowers and Border
I placed my flowers onto a cake that I had already piped leaf tip swag borders onto. This cake reminded me of an arts and crafts project, more specifically sewing. I finished it off with some “stitching” vines to give it that artsy look.
Leaf Tip Feather Boa Boarder
Well, let’s give the pink a rest, shall we? Let’s get out that V-shaped tip. I wanted to do something a little more wild this time. I have a cake I’ve prepared with a cheetah print in blue. Girl’s night out, anyone? For this cake, a leaf tip will make a terrific feather boa border. Pick pretty much any color (I would avoid green, as it might look like a wreath) and start piping. Make lots of leaves going in lots of directions. You want them to go up, down, left, right. Think fluffy feathers! It might start out strange in the beginning but stick with it. Once you get all the way around, you’ll be rewarded. Try doing this with different shades of the same color to give it real pizzazz.
Leaf Tip Ruffle Cake
For our last project let’s make one more cake. Load up a bag with frosting and an M-shaped leaf tip. You’ll want to ice your cake first, in a color that matches your outside color for best results. Making these ruffles, it will be hard to completely hide what color is underneath. Using the technique for making those flat ruffles, start at the bottom of your cake and pipe a squiggly line up to the top. Make sure you go all the way up and past the top edge a bit. In the photo, I’ve made some ruffles with a tight wiggle pattern and some less wiggly. As you can see, the amount of shake you put into your piping really affects the look of your ruffle. Continue piping ruffles around the entire cake. Once you are all the way around, you can go back and knock all those points down toward the center if they aren’t already. The next step is to finish the top with ruffles. It works in the same manner as the cupcake we did earlier. Simply pipe a circle of ruffles on the outside edge. Then repeat again and again in overlapping circles. And now you have a super ruffle cake! Add a flower or two, or a tiara! It’s so easy – just let the leaf tip do all the work.
I hope you have fun and find ways to expand on the ideas we talked about. And I hope that lonely little leaf tip makes it out of the tool kit more often. With a little imagination, it’ll be a MVP in no time.
Coborn’s, Sartell, MN on Pine Cone Road
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