Slaying a dragon with a high-heeled shoe

A whole lot of learning has been accomplished, a mass of experience gained and just over one year elapsed since the failed first attempt at a high heeled shoe cake.  Just look at the difference a year can make…High heeled shoe cake…well, a year plus having cutters and moulds plus using the appropriate medium!

This three tier stacked cake was for a friend’s 30th birthday.  From bottom to top the flavours are: vanilla Madeira with strawberry jam and vanilla buttercream; chocolate fudge cake with chocolate buttercream; firm carrot cake with fresh orange buttercream.

I’m generally pleased with the finished cake but there’s still a ton of room for improvement…not least, remembering to check that the top cake is big enough for the shoe!  I think I got away with this but it wasn’t the finished look I had in mind.

High heeled shoe cake - back viewForward planning, or lack thereof, is to blame for almost all the elements of this cake with which I’m unhappy.  Forward planning is not really to blame for the sightly barrelled shape of the top cake…that’s just down to needing to take a little more time.  However, the crooked ’30’, the marbling effect of the purple glitter (I intended to have it more solid), the off centre positioning of the cake on the board, the purple ribbon on the top cake instead of the intended diamanté…all of this was down to me not checking, measuring and thinking ahead.

High heeled shoe

The cutter set undoubtedly made things a lot, lot easier when doing the shoe, but I have to say that I was disappointed with it.  Several of the elements didn’t fit together well: when the heel and sole were put together after drying on the polystyrene form, the heel was a fraction too short and needed to be built up at the top in order to keep the shoe’s correct shape.  The polystyrene piece provided to hold the heel strap in place whilst drying was too lightweight and allowed the strap to sag.  Most annoyingly, the solid resin piece for holding the toe strap in place whilst drying was far too wide for the shoe and I had to resort to using crumpled up kitchen roll and cling film.

This was not a cheap set and I would have returned it, except for the fact that I received it as a gift over four months ago and although this is the first time I’ve used it, I feel the time for complaint and return has probably passed.  Not to worry, the problems are not insurmountable and when I get a new set I know not to go for anything within that particular product range.  And having this one has shown me the potential for what can be achieved with a better set.

High heeled shoe - close upHaving said all of that, I’m happy with the way the shoe came out.  I can’t describe the anxiety suffered when handling it…but the dragon has been slain and I’ve now proven I can make one without breaking it!

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