What Do You Think The Best Method Would Be?

Decorating By kitty122000 Updated 26 Jun 2009 , 4:13pm by kitty122000

kitty122000 Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 5:25pm
post #1 of 24

I'm pretty new to this and I'm having a lot of fun experimenting with new mediums. Last week I used gumpaste fo rthe first time and I feel I did pretty well with it. In a month my dad has a birthday and I wanted to attempt a "road of life" cake for him. So I've compiled a HUGE list of things I'd like to make into small figures to put on this cake but I'm not sure what the best medium so to speak would be to make these. here's a list of some of the things I'd like to make:
a bicycle, a snare drum, street signs with different names, a boat, a semi and a bunch of other things. what do you think the best thing do use to make these would be? I'm so new to this I'm not even sure I know all of my options. I know gumpaste would be good for some things, but I'm sure what my other options are. help please? I have a month until this will be needed but I'd like to practice and make sure things look great for this cake!

23 replies
snocilla Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 5:40pm
post #2 of 24

Fondant or gumpaste would work good for any of those items. I tend to use a fondant and gumpaste blend (50/50).

kitty122000 Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 5:47pm
post #3 of 24

if I did a 50/50 fondant and gumpaste in green for street signs what would I use to write in white on them?how far in advance can these be done?

snocilla Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 5:54pm
post #4 of 24

I haven't actually done it before, but I would think royal icing or buttercream would be fine. If you want to do it in advance, I would use royal icing. Like I said, I've never actually done it, but that's how I would do it. I would think you can do it at least a week or so in advance.

GL79 Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 7:18pm
post #5 of 24

I'm new to this too, so I know how you feel. How about getting some pictures of your dad, when he was a baby, teenager, married, some alone and some with family etc..., take them to a cake supply store and have them printed on rice paper. You can do black & white or in color but I think black and white will look better. Look in the gallery, I think I just saw a stacked cake with black & white photos on it. Then add a few of the items you mentioned. Good luck and have fun.

Tracye Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 7:49pm
post #6 of 24

I mix tylose into my fondant to make figures of people and items like that. Here's an example of a cake topper I made with that mixture. It's workable like fondant, but dries hard and lasts forever.

For writing white on green, I would mix white petal dust with a couple drops of alcohol (clear alcohol: vodka, rum, gin, lemon extract, clear vanilla) and paint it on with a brush. I've done it many times, and it works great.

For road signs, chocolate transfers would be really nice. These and the figures/items can be made well in advance, so you're not rushing at the last minute.

kitty122000 Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 10:18pm
post #7 of 24

Tracye that cake topper is awesome! I live in a super small town and will have to buy online unless wilton makes it icon_rolleyes.gif I ordered satin ice gum paste and fondant online earlier today (2lbs of each) Can you tell me a little more about chocolate transfers? is it just candy melts? I'm pretty sure walmart carries candy melts, but I've never worked with them. can you use wilton icing colors to change the color of the candy melts? what size tip would I want for writing on street signs? Sorry! I know I have a million questions!!! Thanks so much for your help!!

Tracye Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 10:40pm
post #8 of 24


I know what you mean. I live in a small town, too. The closest cities that sell cake supplies (Houston, Austin, San Antonio) are all 2 hours away. So I order in online.

Yes, choc transfers can be made with candy melts. You CAN NOT use icing color (or regular food color) to color candy melts. You have to use "candy color." I know Hobby Lobby sells it; not sure about Wal-Mart. Never seen it there.

Usually I just snip off the corner of my disposable piping bag to do it. Just make sure you cut off the tiniest piece you can, so your line is super small.

To do the transfer:
1. In a word-processing program (I use Microsoft Publisher, but I think Word will work) type what you want to say, like, "Speed Limit 60" or whatever. Also make your shape (triangle for Yield, octagon for Stop, etc...) Then flip the sign and wording in the program so that IT PRINTS BACKWARDS. Very important that it's reversed when it's printed out.

2. Tape it to a flat surface (I use a cake circle or cutting board). Lay a piece of parchment paper over the sign and tape it down, too. Make sure your printout and the parchment won't move around. Also, make sure you're piping over the backwards printout. If you can read it the right way, it will come out piped backwards.

3. Pipe over the words with melted white chocolate or white candy melts. Also pipe the sign's outline.

4. Then fill in the sign with green chocolate (candy melts) making sure to cover ALL the chocolate you've already piped. Be sure to cover the entire thing. After you've finished, and while it's wet, tap it lightly to make the back smooth out and to get rid of any bubbles.

5. Once it's dry, carefully peel away the parchment. It should release quite easily. You'll have a finished, clean-looking sign, but only if you've printed it out and piped it backwards. I know I'm beating that horse to death, but I did it wrong once and got quite frustrated!

Hope this helps you. Good luck!

kitty122000 Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 10:59pm
post #9 of 24

thank you SO much! you are awesome!! I'm going to print these instructions out! do you buy candy melts already colored? or is it cheaper to buy the candy coloring and color it yourself?

kitty122000 Posted 24 Jun 2009 , 1:12am
post #10 of 24

my local Joann's has candy melts that are pre-colored! so excited! so what is the best way to go about melting them and getting them into a piping bag? what size tip?

Deb_ Posted 24 Jun 2009 , 1:37am
post #11 of 24

Jasmine you really don't need a tip, just cut off a tiny corner of the disposable piping bag.

You can make your figures now and store them in a cardboard box once they've hardened. Don't store them in an airtight container, as it will cause them to soften.

If you want your figures to be shiny, you can paint them with a 50/50 mixture of light corn syrup and vodka(or pure lemon extract). Paint them once they're dry and hard.

Aine2 has some really helpful youtube videos of modeling different figures you can look her up here on the memberlist tab and in her profile she has the links to her videos. They really helped me a lot.

Tracye............that is a gorgeous cake topper great job!

djs328 Posted 24 Jun 2009 , 1:52am
post #12 of 24

On coloring the candy melts, if you are already buying stuff online, Americolor makes a product (can't remember the name...) that you can add to the melts which makes it possible to dye the melted wafers with the gel colors you would use for icing. You can also add paramount crystals to the melted chocolate and then add colors. Works great! Did it today to make a gray color. icon_smile.gif Info about coloring chocolates here:
www DOT streichs DOT com/cgi-bin/streichs/ingredients.html
(replace DOT with .)

djs328 Posted 24 Jun 2009 , 2:04am
post #13 of 24

Oh - you can order the paramount crystals from Amazon, too...around $5 for a big bag. Might be good to have if you can't get many colors locally. icon_smile.gif

Tracye Posted 24 Jun 2009 , 5:47am
post #14 of 24

Thanks, Dkelly! And for the "shiny" recipe. I always wondered how that worked. I left a very detailed cake topper that I made in one of Lorraine's classes in an airtight plastic cake dome, and it flopped. I was devastated. All that work in the trash. Cardboard boxes from here on out!

Kitty, DEFINITELY look up Aine2!!! I bought four of her online tutorials (she e-mailed them to me within a day, if I remember; VERY reasonably priced) and they show step-by-step how to model figures. She puts a lot of pictures and explains things really well. She also has LOTS of free videos on Youtube.

Her blog is here:


I had the opportunity to attend two of her classes last October, and had a blast and learned a ton!

mom2owen1 Posted 24 Jun 2009 , 7:19pm
post #15 of 24

You could also use edible markers for the writing. The ones I have are called FoodWriter.

kitty122000 Posted 24 Jun 2009 , 10:33pm
post #16 of 24

do Food Writers come in white?

mom2owen1 Posted 24 Jun 2009 , 11:09pm
post #17 of 24
Originally Posted by kitty122000

do Food Writers come in white?

I have only seen primary colors and neon colors. you could check the wilton website though.

kitty122000 Posted 25 Jun 2009 , 2:49am
post #18 of 24

I bought some white candy melts and the candy colors. I guess my next question is do I have to have a decorating bag or can I use a ziploc? can I melt them in the microwave in a ziploc?

Tracye Posted 25 Jun 2009 , 5:17pm
post #19 of 24

The only time I tried using a ziploc bag, it broke. You could fold parchment into a small cone, I've done that before. It just takes some finagling to get it folded correctly and then filled.

kitty122000 Posted 25 Jun 2009 , 6:03pm
post #20 of 24

I gave it a try with a ziploc last night, it turned out ok, it was good practice. I played around a little and made two street signs and an eiffel tower. my street signs have a few bubbles so I'll keep practicing and this might work out perfect!

cakebaker1957 Posted 25 Jun 2009 , 7:42pm
post #21 of 24
Originally Posted by kitty122000

if I did a 50/50 fondant and gumpaste in green for street signs what would I use to write in white on them?how far in advance can these be done?

they make edible markers i use them a lot dont know about white though

Tracye Posted 26 Jun 2009 , 2:33am
post #22 of 24

Kitty, those look great! Especially that Eiffel tower!

cakebaker1957 Posted 26 Jun 2009 , 12:24pm
post #23 of 24
Originally Posted by kitty122000

I gave it a try with a ziploc last night, it turned out ok, it was good practice. I played around a little and made two street signs and an eiffel tower. my street signs have a few bubbles so I'll keep practicing and this might work out perfect!

How in the world did you do the tower?? it looks great

kitty122000 Posted 26 Jun 2009 , 4:13pm
post #24 of 24

It was pretty easy, I printed out clip art from MSword in the size that I wanted it and put it under parchment paper. I traced two of them, I was pretty sloppy with it, it didnt seem to matter. the outline and then criss cross back and forth until it was the thickness that I wanted. I let the pieces settle then propped one up and put the top and the bottom edges together. then I filled in the corner with the same criss cross as the sides. let it set up and then put a little more at the top, in the middle and around the bottom archs. Maybe I got lucky that it stood up lol! hope that makes since let me know if it doesnt!

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