A few weeks ago I made this lovely tree of life cake for my Aunt’s 60th birthday. She makes beautiful tree of life necklaces so I thought it was time for someone to make something for her! The party was a small intimate one so the cake is an 8 inch round. I frosted it in chocolate buttercream to have a rich dark canvas.
To make the Tree of Life I first did a google image search to find a good example. There are so many variations it was a touch decision to narrow down. I design I finally decided to go with was actually on a tattoo design website. I took the image I liked and put it into a word document so that I could size it to be 7.5 inches in diameter (it was going on an 8 inch round cake).
I printed the template out and taped it to a cookie sheet. I then taped a piece of wax paper over top of it so that I could use it as a guide to pipe out the design using an amazing product called SugarVeil. SugarVeil is easy to mix, you just add water, and it has the consistency of royal icing. You can pipe out design with it and after it sets the designs remain flexible for a while. Eventually the design will harden, but after it has set you can keep it stored in an airtight container so that it doesn’t harden.
I like using SugarVeil for intricate designs like this tree of life because I can make the decoration in advance and it will stay flexible until I’m ready to put it on the cake. I piped out the tree and let it set overnight. I then used my airbrush to spray it with an antique gold color. If you don’t have an airbrush you can always paint on the gold luster dust using a paint brush and some vodka or lemon extract to dilute it. Once the gold “paint” was dry I stored it in an airtight container so that it didn’t harden. Then once I made the cake I was able to just place the design on top.
I also created lots of little leaves out of fondant using a small leaf mold I have. I painted them in a variety of luster colors that I thought would accept the antique gold of the tree. I’m always trying to think of ways to use SugarVeil. The first time I used it was for the ornate decorations on this beautiful peacock themed Indian Wedding Cake.