Wilton Workshop: Behind the Scenes at Cake Decorating Headquarters

A few weeks ago Jacinda and I (and our friend Rebecca from Cooking With My Kid) had the good fortune to be invited to jet off to Chicago for a Wilton blogger workshop of fantasy cake decorating goodness and joy. We learned some basic cake decorating techniques with buttercream and fondant, had a little competition with some bloggy friends, hit up the Wilton tent sale, and best of all, got a full behind the scenes tour of Wilton headquarters. There’s a “decorating room” full of people whose job it is to decorate cakes! All day! It’s amazing! Check out pics after the jump…

Here’s my team, including Alejandra of alejandraramos.com and Aggie of Aggie’s Kitchen.

We knew we weren’t going to win with our marginal cake decorating skills, so we went for humor with our “polluted ocean” themed cake…

Notice the dead fish floating belly up, the other fish drinking wine, and the fondant sign warning beach goers away…

We visited the cake decorating school, where we saw tons of practice cakes on every wall.

And this map showing where students have travelled from – pretty much everywhere in the world.

Some practice cakes that caught my eye…

We were kitted out with lots of decorating tools…

We learned how to paint icing…

And use star tips (i thought i knew, but i knew nothing)…

When they asked what we wanted to learn, I said I just wanted the icing on my cakes to look as smooth as this example cake at the front of the room…

The instructor replied “that will never happen.” I nodded in agreement. She added “because that’s a fake cake.” ha ha, the base is styrofoam! some of the fake cakes are made of sugar, we saw some being made, and it was pretty neat.

Rebecca and I made a lot of “that’s what she said” jokes in response to descriptions of how to apply frosting. We are immature. That’s all I’m going to say about that.

Jacinda is also immature. That is why I love her so much.

The hallways of the corporate office are loaded with cake stands and cakes and cake accessories and general goodness. It’s like candyland come to life.

Loved this fondant boutonnière used at a table setting.

These drawers in the prop room reminded me of something you’d find in your grandma’s attic, so charming.

These presents are all empty, props.

I’ll take one thousand cake stands, please.

In the photo studio they were shooting christmas images already… for christmas 2012!

Here’s all the lovely bloggers in attendance. I was especially excited to meet Not Martha for the first time after a long online love affair, and adored meeting some new friends too. We shared the full link love list here.

Did you enjoy seeing these behind-the-scenes pics? Because Jacinda has a ton more and she’s a way better photographer than me, maybe if we ask nicely she will share.




yes! more please! And will you share with us how you thought you knew about star tips but were wrong…meaning, what is new that you learned?

Heather Louise

I took the Wilton 2 week class out there seven years ago. It was an amazing experience. It is good to see that the same instructor is still there; she was a wonderful teacher. I am glad you all had fun out there as well.


I think the reason why I have to check your blogs every single day is because I have the same immature humor as you. And the crafts & sewing projects, but mostly the humor! Love the pictures. I will fantasize my slap dash cake will someday look like that licking frosting off with my finger. Ah, pipe-dreams!

Mrs. Fischer

I'm so jealous!!!! How fun. Is the cake pictured above the Tinkerbell one a Noah's Ark? The little peak of the boat with bright colors is such a tease, I really want to see more!


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