String Work Technique

There's no doubt that string work and detail are making a comeback, as you can see from this winning wedding cake at the Connecticut Cake Competition, held Feb. 26-27 in Hartford, CT.

Kathy Farner, the show's co-director, led a class on string and lattice work and offered these valuable tips.

When mixing royal icing for stringwork, it's best to use egg white icing rather than merengue powder. She mixes 1 lb. powdered sugar with 3 egg whites at room temperature. This version of royal icing also freezes well in an airtight tupperware container.

Remember that all tips are different, so Farner suggests using no larger than a number 1 tip.

The most important trick is to be light-handed. Farner says to let the icing and gravity do all the work.

For lattice work, pipe the icing onto a piece of wax paper. When you have the design you want, place the paper inside a plastic cup and let it dry. This will create a curved effect.

Take care to space your strings evenly. Remember, if you are entering your work in a competition, the judges will scrutinize the spacing on lattice and string details.