Colors for Decorating
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Color is what give your creations
universal appeal in cake and candy decorating.
Today there are unlimited possibilities, and
because there are so many choices, you may never have to "mix up"
your own special color. Candyland Crafts offers dozens of possibilities
for "ready to use" products for adding color.
Color Mist Spray Colors.
Of course very often you need a
particular shade, or you know the color you want, but don't happen to
have it. Or you need to decorate a large cake, and the use of a icing color is much less expensive than the ready made. To create your
own colors you can mix & match from available colors using:
Icing Colors (Spectrum)
Icing Color Sets (Wilton)
Gel Based Food Colors (Chefmaster)
Liquid Based Food Colors
Food Color Kits
Where to start? A little basic knowledge about color mixing is
best understood by using a Color Wheel, explained below. This, plus some
information about factors affecting colors in decorating (below), will
get you started on the road to artistic perfection!
The color wheel is divided into three categories: primary, secondary,
and tertiary. The three primary colors are red, yellow and blue. These
colors are considered to be foundation colors because they are used to
create all other colors.
By combining two of the primary colors, three secondary colors are
formed. They are orange, green and violet. The six tertiary colors are
made by combining a primary and an adjacent secondary color. These
colors are red-orange, red-violet, yellow-green, yellow-orange,
blue-green and blue-violet. Colors are also divided into cool and warm
categories. The cool colors are green, blue and violet. Warm colors are
red, orange and yellow.
Another Color Chart Information courtesy of Chefmaster Co.
Colors for Cake Decorating
Some of the following information is abridged, with permission,
from an article by Earlene Moore on cake decorating colors. For the
complete article see:
Color Decorating Tips
There are no absolutes in mixing colors because of
the many different things that can affect the color. Some of these
l) Ingredients in the icing. 2) Temperature and humidity.
3) Time. 4) Light.
1) Ingredients in the icing: Shortening, margarine, and
butter make colors turn darker, whereas lemon juice bleaches out or
softens colors. If you use salt in your buttercream icing, mix your
colors the night before: because if the salt is not thoroughly
dissolved, it will leave little light spots in your icing. Canned Milk,
regular dark vanilla and cream cheese give an off-white color to “white”
icing and also affect other colors: such as, blue acquires a greenish
cast and soft pink will become more of a peach color.
2) Temperature and Humidity: In icings which contain
shortening, margarine or butter, the temperature of the room,
heat of your hands, and warmth of the liquid you add to your icing can
affect your color. The warmer the room, the softer the frosting gets and
color seems to darken or get deeper. The amount of time it takes
your frosting to dry (or get a crust on it) is controlled by the
humidity. The longer it takes to get dry, the more the colors seem
3) Time: When using buttercream icing, soft colors can be
made and used immediately and will only darken slightly. But when you
are striving for dark colors, mix in the colors and then let the icing
sit overnight before decorating: and you won’t have to use quite as much
color. Charcoal gray will turn black, and an “almost” red will turn
4) Light: After your creation is
finished comes the time to protect the colors from fading. Pinks are
especially susceptible to fading out. Hot pink can be reduced to almost
white when exposed to sunlight: purples to blues: blues to gray: black
to purple or green. Just be careful to protect your colored sugar work
from sunlight or other bright lights.
Decorating Products for Coloring
Vibrant colors can really "dress up" your
creations! Gel colors have a viscosity that offer the convenience of a
pourable or "squeezable" product and makes it easy to duplicate shades.
They are concentrated gels that help you create the exact shade you want
without watering down your icings. Gel colors will not breakdown
buttercream or non dairy icings like some liquid colors. We offer
Wilton Icing Color Gel Sets
Based Food Colors
and Food Color Kits.
2) Liquids: There are three kinds of
liquid color: liquid paste, airbrush colors, and liquid colors that you
buy in the grocery store. Most decorators started off with the grocery
store liquids, which are very weak compared to the paste colors that are
available to us now. Liquid paste is a strong concentrate of color which
is used like paste colors in small quantities. Air brush colors are a
specialized form of color for a specific need. The air brush requires
colors with as few crystals or minerals as possible because of the tiny
opening the color must pass through.
3) Powders: Since this is the driest form of color
available to the decorator, the selection of colors is a little limited.
Variations from the basic colors must be mixed by the decorator.
Powdered colors are very strong and should be handled carefully as the
powder is very fine and drifts onto cabinets, icing, etc. It will stain
porous surfaces, cake tops, etc.
Powdered Food Colors
at Candyland Crafts are available in small jar (3 or 9 gm.)
containers, as either individual colors
(12 choices available) or
an 8 bottle color set. The bottles come with a sealed top. Do not
remove the seal, but punch a small hole in one side with a
toothpick or pin and sprinkle out the powdered color. Powdered
colors are general purpose food colors, also excellent with foods
you do not want to mix with water.
Powders They are not a food
additive, they allow you to enhance a sugar paste or
Normally these are painted or brushed on a finished project.
Adding those highlights of silver or gold or soft shading for a
more realistic flower or leaf. They
cover a very wide range of color possibilities. Dusting
Powders from Candyland Crafts are specifically for the cake
decorating industry and available in 4 types:
Dust (48 colors) is used to achieve deep hues with a matte
finish. When brushed on petals of white or gumpaste flowers, a
realistic effect is created.
Luster Dust (50 colors) give subtle colors with a high
sheen metallic-like finish.
Sparkle Dust (7 colors)
is similar to Luster Dust in effect, but has a larger grain size &
gives gumpaste flowers a wet or dewy look, with just a touch of
Dust (7 colors) produces a shimmery luster. Candyland
offers only non-toxic ingredients & are ideal for use on
gumpaste, rolled fondant flowers, plaques, lettering, etc.
Intended for use in dry form, any of the powders may be mixed with
oil based flavorings or alcohol for painting and highlighting.