I am new to this website so I hope I am posting in the right area. I am making a cake for a baby shower where we are using the theme of baby in a washtub. We have a picture of the mother-to-be in a galvanized metal tub. My daughter, the hostess, wants the cake to mimic the picture. What medium would I use for the sides of the cake so that it would be rigid enough to go above the sides of the cake some? I also want to roll the rim and make the ridges along the tubs sides. I would appreciate any guidance. I have only used buttercream in the past and fondant once. I am lying awake at night worrying about this. The shower is November 15th. HELP! Thank you!
if you are going for a metal slats look, I would definitely make the sides of your washtub out of Gumpate or a 50/50 Gumpaste Fondant mix. If you make them in advance, I'd say about a week, they will dry hard enough to stand on their own forming an edge over the cake once attached. I would also mix a bit of black food color into this to give it a grey metal appearace.
Here is a link to a cake by another CC member that make a wash tub in the "slat" style.
If you are looking for something more curved and rounded I would carve your cake with an indent in the center for the water and form the lip of the tub with your intial fondant covering like in this picutre:
Again coloring it to look like metal.
I hope you get some ideas from my opinions...I have lost sleep over cakes in the past too. And my greatest comfort it searching these forums and pictures posted by other CC members. If you find a pic you like, I suggest contacting that user and asking them exactly how they did it. Everyone on here is so nice ad eager to help!
This one is really cute too!
On my Ratatouille cake I just used fondant, but I do think 50/50 fondant/gumpaste would have given me better results. If you can size it properly I like celiashea's idea of doing a shape in advance that you can just insert the cake into, although that might be tricky to get a perfect size match. I've never seen it done that way, well except on Ace of Cakes when they made a gumpaste piano shell and slipped it over the cake.
Do a search on "beer bucket" in the gallery here, you will see lots of examples of a faux galvanized tub. I think fondant gives it a slicker sheen than buttercream, unless you can get the bc reallly smooth. If you do bc, you can paint on it after it crusts but you must (of course then) use a crusting buttercream. Just get yourself some silver luster dust and high alcohol extract (lemon extract, Everclear even better) and paint on that shine. Start with grey fondant or bc for best results.
The best way to fondant wrap a cake like this, by the way, is to freeze the cake and then turn the solid cake on its side and roll-wrap the fondant around it like a...well...wrap! I tried the draping method and actually eventually my fondant fell off . If you roll the fondant onto it, you'd just overlap by an inch or so in the back and seal the seam with gum glue.
You have plenty of time, experimenting is fun!! If you use fondant, please don't use Wilton unless you plan to make sure nobody eats it, that stuff is nasty! If you are making a 50/50 shell like celiashea suggests, then I am sure you will take the shell off before cutting in which case, Wilton would work well for you actually. (You can also add tylose powder to your fondant for the same firmer effect.)