Monday, March 18, 2013

Tutorial: How to pipe basketweave

Being so close to Easter, I thought now would be a good time to have a little tutorial on how to pipe basketweave.  It is a fairly easy decorating technique that visually packs a lot of punch.  First, you want to start off with a basketweave tip :)  I use mostly Wilton tips and so the Wilton basketweave tip is tip number 47.  


Now that you have found the right tip in your collection of tips, fill your piping bag with your desired frosting.  To make the basketweave pattern really pop, you should use an icing with a fairly stiff consistency.  Pretty much what that means, is your spatula should stand straight up in your icing and not fall over.


What is kind of neat about the basketweave tip is that you can get two patterns using only one tip, it just depends on how you hold your piping bag.  To get the traditional look (on the left) you want to be sure that the teeth side of the tip is up so that you can see the teeth.  To get the smooth look (on the right) make sure that the teeth are pointing down toward the cake.  It's a good idea to have a piece of scrap parchment to practice for a minute to be sure that you have the correct side up before you start on your cake.


To start your basketweave, pipe a straight vertical line the length of the surface you are trying to fill (i.e. the side of the cake).


Next, pipe horizontal lines overlapping the first vertical line.   Make the spacing between the horizontal lines about the width of your piping tip.  Make the length of the horizontal lines a little more than twice the width of your piping tip.


Now make another vertical line, overlapping the ends of your horizontal lines.  


Start the next set of horizontal lines in the gaps from the previous step.  Again, make the horizontal lines a little more that twice the width of your tip.


Place another vertical line overlapping your horizontal lines.  The closer the vertical lines are to each other, the tighter your basketweave will appear to be.


Keep following the same steps until the entire surface is covered as desired.


If you like the smooth look, flip your tip over and pipe using the exact same steps.


Or, mix it up and use both sides of the tip for a mixed look.


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