Cakes are staples in birthdays, weddings and anniversaries - virtually any celebration you can think of. If you already know the basics of making cakes and pastries, you could increase your skills a notch by learning creative techniques for decorating them. Cake decorating classes are a fun way to learn how to make beautiful cakes for any occasion.
Know what takes place in cake decorating classes. You will first learn the basics, such as putting icing on a cake and adding elegant touches to a plain cake. After only a few sessions, you will learn finer, more specific techniques such as putting on different flowers and borders (which are the most common cake designs), and also learning about different designs which cater to specific occasions. You will also get experience with using cake decorating tools and specialty products such as fondant. Basically, you should not only be trained in the aesthetic aspects of cake decorating, but also about foundations such as what ingredients are best used for design and what ingredients can be mixed to make the best combination. You should know enough of the fundamentals to equip you to conceptualize your own styles and designs.
These days, there are many options for those who want to enroll in cake decorating classes. One is taking very short courses that a cake company offers. One example would be the Illinois-based Wilton cake decorating courses. These classes are offered in many locations, including Los Angeles (in California), in many cities in Ohio, in Texas, and many other states in the US; you can also sign up for classes in local crafters' stores such as Jo-Ann Fabrics, so it should be relatively easy for how to find cake decorating classes. If you're taking the official Wilton course, you can complete the course in four intensive lessons.
Cake decorating is usually part of a basic culinary/baking curriculum of a culinary school; if you're already enrolled at a culinary school, then you can easily register for this class.
You could also enroll at other cake decorating schools in your area; for example, check out websites such as mccalls-cakes.com (for Canada) and caljavaonline.com.
Another option is to take cake decorating courses at your local community college. You can also opt to take online cake decorating courses, although a main disadvantage here is limited actual interaction between you and your instructors. If you are already fairly familiar with the basics of cake handling and preparation, online courses are definitely a viable alternative. Another option is to do some self-study. You can purchase or rent DVDs or buy a book on decorating cakes; this way, you will have step-by-step instructions in front of you. If you prefer, you can watch lifestyle shows that focus on cake decorating instead.
There you have it! Just remember, as with any skills-based activity, the most important thing here is to constantly practice and do hands-on application to make sure that you refine your craft. Good luck, and happy decorating!