Humidity & Fondant Disaster

Decorating By galaglow Updated 29 Jun 2005 , 6:20pm by SquirrellyCakes

galaglow Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 12:19am
post #1 of 18

AGH! I did my grad cake and it looked not too bad and as I'm sitting here, the scrolls start breaking off. They've been dry for a couple of days, so I'm thinking it has to be the humidity. I don't know what I'm going to tell the lady...I'll do my best to stick them back on with melted candy, but geez!! I'm wishing I'd never agreed to this one. Should I drop my price now? What would you do? Here's what it looks like, you can see some of the scrolls that have dropped off...

17 replies
gotcake Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 12:38am
post #2 of 18

Thats one beautiful cake! Maybe royal icing will help hold them on. Or just place them around the cakes...It will still be a gorgeous cake!

Mable_21 Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 12:52am
post #3 of 18

I think the cake looks fine! I wouldn't even say anything to her unless she brings it up (or a lot more fall off!)

SquirrellyCakes Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 3:51am
post #4 of 18

It is a gorgeous cake. Not sure what the fondant thingies are sitting on, it the cake also covered in fondant? If so, I always use Royal Glue, 1 tsp. meringue powder mixed with 1 tsp. of water and you lightly brush on with a brush. Or Royal Icing as suggested. What is the cake covered with and what did you attach them with?
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes

KayDay Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 3:53am
post #5 of 18

Its awesome! I wouldnt drop the price a would use one of the remedies to glue em back on...and ship it's gorgeous and looks like a ton of work..can I be nosy and ask how much you charged?

tcturtleshell Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 4:02am
post #6 of 18

I think it looks great Galaglow!! Don't change a thing!! I wouldn't bother using royal to fix it either. It looks just like the one in the book!!! Except you did round. Great looking!! Don't change your price!!!

galaglow Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 4:59am
post #7 of 18

Thanks for the tips gals! I'm going to try and patch it with royal icing tommorow. Don't know why I never thought of that! icon_smile.gif Thanks for the compliments too by the way. It was a TON of work. I figure it took me about 15 hours total. I'm asking $170 CDN (the ingredients alone were $100) on one hand I felt like I was being reasonable and then when I told her the price (and my mother who just about had a coronary..."I didn't pay that much for my wedding cake!" - Yes, mom, but that was over 40 years ago, besides it practically IS a wedding cake with all the work it took!) I felt guilty...but I didn't budge on the price, then the scrolls started dropping off and I thought...karma! LOL! I don't think I'll be volunteering for one this big again anytime soon! I didn't mind the rolled fondant though, that was easier than I thought it would be.

Squirrelly, the entire cake is covered with fondant and the stripes and scrolls are fondant too. The thing is so heavy I can hardly lift it. I'm sure it will not arrive in one piece after she picks it up.

TC thanks for the compliment - I'm a terrific copycat. If I have a picture I can usually duplicate it, but I'm not too great coming up with ideas of my own! icon_smile.gif

I'm just beat...after this one, I did a sheet cake and tried using a commercial whipped icing. It spread and smoothed like a dream, but I sure didn't like piping with it. Tommorow, I'll do my last grad cake with the commercial on the base and use buttercream for the piping. Then I'm taking a cake making break until July 9 for a 25th anniversary....sigh....

Thanks again everyone!

galaglow Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 5:01am
post #8 of 18

Oh, I forgot - Squirrelly, the scrolls were attached with melted white candy melts.

SarahJane Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 5:01am
post #9 of 18

I love it, I think it looks great. I live in Hawaii and I have tons of problems because of the high humidity here. I tried to make marshmallow fondant a month or so ago, and it was a nightmare. But I would definetly keep the price as is, it looks beautiful icon_smile.gif

KayDay Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 1:50pm
post #10 of 18

yep that just confirms it...thats why I wanted to know roughly the price. You arent getting ENOUGH for your labor, so no way I would drop it a cent.

SquirrellyCakes Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 2:34pm
post #11 of 18

Well kiddo, it was fabulous! I am not sure why you used the candy melts, likely the instructions or because people make up the fancy bows and use it for that? Anyway, I know a lot of people just dampen with water and that was why I asked. Water is only good for flat items being attached to fondant. For things like the scrolls, I would use either the Royal glue or Royal icing and I think I would have also attached the bottoms of them to the cake board to be on the safe side.
When the humidity is high, try adding a few teaspoonsful of Gum-tex mix to your fondant, I use about 3 tsp. for 10 ounces. Or invest in some tylose, it is really good in the humidity.
Regarding price, heavens I can relate! I make my cakes mostly from scratch and use butter and cream and milk in the icing too. Fondant is not cheap here, by any means, it is cheaper in bulk but you don't always want to have a huge pail around. We cannot get the same fondants in Canada and if we order from the U.S., by the time you convert the dollar, add the shipping and handling and Custom's fees, well, it is an arm and a leg. I have made fondant from scratch and there is very little savings, in fact it almost costs the same. People are always shocked when they see our costs. It cost me between $100 and $160. to make most 2 tiered wedding cakes. You have to add on your labour but I find, for a lot of things, you cannot go by the standard cost times three.
Gosh with a pound of butter costing about $4.39- $4.79 a pound anmd sour cream at about the same for a container, well it certainly adds up.
Stick to your guns regarding prices. All these folks have to do is take a trip down to a good bakery and they will find out they are going to be paying $60 for some of the regular 9 inch cakes. And no bakery is going to make up a cake like you just did.
Much of the time we are doing custom work. If people want run-of-the-mill, white icing with a shell border and 3 roses, they can get that at any grocery store and let them.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes

KayDay Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 2:36pm
post #12 of 18

Well said squirelly!

stephanie214 Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 2:51pm
post #13 of 18

Until I read your message, I thought that was the way it was suppose to look. Very pretty and time consuming. Stick to your guns for your prices.

PolishMommy Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 3:12pm
post #14 of 18

The cake is beautiful!!! If all the scrolls were perfectly the same, it wouldn't look interesting at all!

galaglow Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 3:30pm
post #15 of 18

The instructions did call for the candy melts to attach the scrolls, and it worked pretty good - the part that was attached to the candy is firmly affixed to the cake LOL! Just the heavy part of the scroll dropped off! I used water to attached the stripes and that was fine. I did 'candy glue' the bases to the board too.

The instructions also said to add the gum-tex to the fondant which I did, but it obviously was still too moist in the air - you should see the fog here today! It was so muggy last night. I took a shower and went for late supper with a friend to get away from my house and all the cake 'stuff'! I've never heard of tylose - where can I buy it here in Canada?

I suspected the same cost-wise about buying fondant vs. making it - and I figured if I could save a step, so much the better.

Now, I'm off to try the Royal Glue - how fast does it dry?

Thanks again everyone! I knew I could count on the CC gang to help me out. icon_biggrin.gif

SquirrellyCakes Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 3:49pm
post #16 of 18

Isn't this humidity fun?
I think you have to order the tylose on-line from I haven't found it in Canada, unless McCalls in Toronto has it on-line. may have it, try emailing them to ask, I haven;t seen it in their on-line store, but then I haven't looked too carefully recently. It seems to work well for folks in areas of high humidity.
The royal glue dries almost immediately.
I think the weight of the scrolly things is an issue too, I am wondering if putting them seam side down would help. Also attaching the inside curl with the royal glue so it doesn't spring loose.
Most fondant decorations need 72 hours or a week to dry. BUt that darn humidity can really cause issues.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes

galaglow Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 6:05pm
post #17 of 18

Hi Squirrelly, yes the weight of the scrolls is the main issue I think...neither the royal glue or royal icing would hold them I just stuck them to the cake and the cake board with royal icing. It doesn't look horrible, but I'm annoyed because I'm a perfectionist! icon_razz.gif I'm probably more upset about it than the lady ordering it. I already called her and explained what happened. Thanks again for your help icon_smile.gif

SquirrellyCakes Posted 29 Jun 2005 , 6:20pm
post #18 of 18

You know Galaglow, that cake looks so darn good, even if the scrollys fall off, it looks like it is supposed to be like that! Really well done!
Hugs Squirrelly

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