First Wedding Cake!!help!~!~!~!~

Decorating By alicialee Updated 11 Aug 2008 , 4:51pm by cakemommy

alicialee Posted 9 Aug 2008 , 10:55pm
post #1 of 14

okay so i have to make my first wedding cake for august 16, 3 of the 4 tiers are cake dummies, 15 12 9 6... 5 inches high.... i started to decorate the dummies today... and AHHHHH it wasnt working for me!!!! the fondant was literally falling off the dummies!!!!! the tops of the fondant was staying on but the sides were just ripping off!!! how do i fix this???? im pretty much lost on this and have no clue what to do... and for some reason i can seem to smooth the fondant on the dummies... i dunno if im outta my groove or what!

someone please help me!!! this is my first wedding cake, first time working with dummies, and im running out of time!!!!

i guess for a last resort i can just cover them in buttercream right????

13 replies
kakeladi Posted 10 Aug 2008 , 12:08am
post #2 of 14

You have to smooth out the top edge of the styro dummies. Depending on which type of styro you have it can be easy or hardicon_smile.gif
Place the styro on a hard surface (table) on it's edge; press down as you roll it along. It should compress the cells of styro and round out the edge.
If you have the other kind you are going to have to cut it off at an angle.
Next, it sounds to me like you might be rolling your fondant too thin. Make it a bit thicker. A cake board (round) is just the right thickness - put it next to the fondant and make them the same.

KoryAK Posted 10 Aug 2008 , 12:31am
post #3 of 14

Are you attaching the fondant to the stypo with anything? If not, thats why its falling off, its not sticking. Spritz it with water first.

CBMom Posted 10 Aug 2008 , 1:38am
post #4 of 14

I used a little bit of sandpaper and took off the "sharp" edge of the dummies.

Made icing out of shortening, icing sugar and water (no butter), and "crumb coated" the dummies.

Had a great surface to work with on the 14, 12, 10, 8, 6 rounds.
Hammered bamboo skewers right through the bottom 2 tiers into the cake board. Then skewered the additional tiers into the bottom tiers. The thing never moved.

Used the Wilton pre-made fondant and mixed equal parts tinted gum paste. Only used shortening to roll it all out.

Worked like a charm... no rips, no tears - and a very happy first time wedding cake maker!! LOL!

Good luck!


aztomcat Posted 10 Aug 2008 , 5:45am
post #5 of 14

I treat the dummy like a real cake. I wrapped it in press and seal saran wrap to give it a smooth texture then crumb coat of butter cream, topped with fondant. No problem at all with this process.

alicialee Posted 10 Aug 2008 , 3:09pm
post #6 of 14

if i "crumb coat" the dummy with buttercream, do i need to shave off the edges... tried pressing the edges in, i guess i have the "hard" kind of dummies.. because it didnt work! and im affraid that if i take a knife to it, the ends will break off in pieces! then my dummies will be ruined, and i dont have enough time to order more.

if i decide to do the cake in just bc... will the bc stick to the styrofoam? im afraid once it crusts it might just fall off! oh and i spritze the whole thing in water before i tried covering them in fondant.

any tips on smoothing out the fondant once its one?? ive worked with fondant many times before, but this is my first time doing a 5" tall cake... for some reason after i smooth half of the dummy, im ending up with excess fondant on the other half! ahhhh

cakeladyem Posted 10 Aug 2008 , 4:44pm
post #7 of 14

You don't have to smooth your edges if you are just frosting in buttercream, it just depends on how sharp you want your edges to look. But if you mean crumb coat before the fondant, you still need to smooth the edges or it may tear the fondant. My cake dummies are the hard kind as well. I like to use a power sander to round the top edges. It works pretty quickly. Just do it in a place you don't mind some dust from the foam flying around.
If you frost the dummies in buttercream it won't fall off once it crusts, it will be fine. Frosting them can be a little tricky just because there is no weight to hold the dummy down, but you just have to find a way that works for you. I skewer the dummy to the cake board to help it hold still and use non-slip padding underneath to hold it still on the counter.
I haven't ever applied fondant just spritzing water, but I would think it would hold fine. Water+fondant=sticky sticky, so even once the water dried out some, it will have created a "glue" to hold it on.
For smoothing the fondant, start at the top and work down. when you get a section with too much fondant and its going to bunch up and make pleats, you have to stretch it out. Hold one hand against the side of the cake on the fondant and gently pull the fondant skirt below with the other hand. As it stretches you'll be able to smooth it without the extra fondant bunching up. I hope that makes sense. good luck on your cake!

alicialee Posted 11 Aug 2008 , 2:42pm
post #8 of 14

thanks everyone for the help! i finally have them covered... not my best, but it wil have to do! im getting ready to add the decorations tonight.. got a couple questions before i start that:

i ordered white dragees from GSA and tossed them with pear dust... now how can i attached them to the cake??? will just a dab of bc hold?

ive made 15 pink bows to attached to the cake.. they are pretty big and they will be attached to the side of the cake, im afraid they are too heavy and will not stick... is there any other way to attach them besides using buttercream...

also this is my first time traveling out of my town with a cake... i have to go 1 hour away... any tips???

oh and one last thing... im making sheet cakes also for this wedding... see said 100 people.. so im making 2 11x15x4... exactly how many will that serve and what serving sizes should i do???

thank you all so much for your help... i dont knw what i would do with you guys!!!

Carson Posted 11 Aug 2008 , 3:11pm
post #9 of 14

I would put skrewers through the bows to hold them on the dummy, with a little bc. I am pretty sure Royal icing is suppose to work better for "glue" to hold things onto a cake. I don't usually make a batch of royal so I usually end up just using bc. Also, if you are attaching fondant to fondant water works wonders, depending on the weight of the piece.

Hopefully you have a van so you can have the cake on the floor on a non-sip mat. Of course its not fool proof either, but generally works best. Drive carefully and use your air conditioner if its hot in the car. That's all I got...

liapsim Posted 11 Aug 2008 , 3:12pm
post #10 of 14

The sheet cakes that size, cut in the traditional, way, should serve 60 people PER cake. So that should be 120 people (about 2 in each) can teach you how to cut them.

Buttercream is too soft to hold up the bows. Try Royal dries hard.

Start your car earlier, turn on the air, and let the car cool before you put your cakes in. I sometimes use cardboard boxes to put the cakes in (go to a storage/uhaul place to get ANY SIZE) to kind of brace them from sliding or anything. Make sure you take things to "fix" your cake like extra royal icing (if you end up using it) extra bows, etc...just in case things if you are unsure.

As for the dragees, sorry can't help you there, haven't work with those before...good luck!

cakemommy Posted 11 Aug 2008 , 3:17pm
post #11 of 14

The next time you are working with cake dummies and fondant, use an emory board to round your edges. Pressing down on the counter didn't work for me either. That just frustrated me. Using an emory board was lickety split and easy!!!!!

Royal icing is your best bet for the dragees. Once that stuff dries, you'll have to chisel them off.

Good luck with your decorating this evening. I can't wait to see the final cake!


alicialee Posted 11 Aug 2008 , 3:59pm
post #12 of 14

when im making the bows, should i maybe stick toothpicks in the back of the bows before they harden?? then stick the toothpicks into the dummies?? im sure that will hold!

oh and is there anything i can do to "re-moisten" dry fondant?? i didnt get one of my baggies sealed all the way icon_cry.gif and the fondant is just a little dry... and i REALLY dont wanna make a new batch.... maybe add a little crisco while im kneading it??? never tried it.. but will that work??

oh and about the servings for the sheet cakes... does anyone usually make more servings than what the customer tells you?? i would hope that she wouldnt be mad at ME if she didnt have enough cake at her wedding... she told me 100...

and im also a little mad at her! (this is the part where i need to vent) I wasnt going to do anyting special on the sheet cakes... just slap on some buttercream and go!..... but THEN the customer decides to tell me that she is going to have these sheet cakes on a display table at the reception..... WHY would she do that.... then the guests will know that most of the actual wedding cake isnt "real" and now i need to put a little extra effort into the sheet cakes because people will know that i made them... and they will see them!!

i told her (very nicely) that normally people dont display sheet cakes at her wedding... but she didnt want to have it any other way...

so know what??? should i charge her for the extra labor i will be putting into these sheet cakes??? or just slap some bc on them and go????

Thanks again guys for answering my questions... im not usually this lost... but this is a big thing for me (its gonna get my name out there) AND IM NERVOUS!!!!


CBMom Posted 11 Aug 2008 , 4:25pm
post #13 of 14

Yep, just add more shortening - and take out your "Ican't believeshewantstodisplaysheetcakes" frustration on kneading the fondant icon_evil.gif

Adding extra decoration work that was not part of your original agreement would certainly increase your price.

...or take this one as a learning experience, and add that "display decor" on sheet cakes costs extra in your contracts

You're doing great! Good luck with everything! Don't forget to take pictures for us!

cakemommy Posted 11 Aug 2008 , 4:51pm
post #14 of 14

In order to get your fondant "moving" again you'll need to heat it in the microwave for just a few seconds to warm it and then you can knead in a little shortening to get the elasticity back.

That's a bummer that she wants to display the sheet cakes. That's more work for you but you need to tell her that you will have to charge extra for the extra decor. I mean, your wedding cake AND sheet cakes now are going to be on display. That's more advertisement for you. Put a basic scallop/drape on the sides of the sheet cake and maybe take a cake comb over the icing on top to add a basic decor. No need to decorate each individual serving size of the sheet cake, unless you want to. Of course if she's willing to pay and you have the time.......!!!!!

Just let her know that you are going to have to charge extra for the extra display, simple as that!

I can't wait to see your cakes! Breathe and don't stress!!!!!! You'll do just fine. Have faith!!!!!



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