Cheap Cakers Post Here!

Decorating By Texas_Rose Updated 26 Oct 2010 , 3:04am by chelleb1974

Texas_Rose Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 5:41pm
post #1 of 94

There are so many lovely things that I've seen for working with fondant and so many of them are so expensive that I'll probably never get them. I'm a hobby baker so I can't justify huge expenses for equipment and I only have one birthday a year icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

So what inexpensive things have you found that work as fondant tools? Here are mine:

Piece of vinyl for a rolling mat
Pattern tracing wheel
Fiskars 18mm rotary cutter
hollow plastic lollipop sticks (for making flower center impressions and dots)
Herb Mincer (it cost $5 at Target and I've gotten a lot of use out of it)
slant-tip tweezers
pastry wheel
bench scraper
Placemat and clear plastic stamps for impression mats
Chocolate molds for fondant designs

93 replies
SUELA Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 5:50pm
post #2 of 94

What do you use the herb mincer for?

Karenreg Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 6:02pm
post #3 of 94

I too make cakes just as a hobby .But I've ended up spending soo much on equipments icon_sad.gif

I wish I could use alternate equipments like u Texas_Rose .tx for sharing ur tips thumbs_up.gif

Texas_Rose Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 6:09pm
post #4 of 94
Originally Posted by SUELA

What do you use the herb mincer for?

It will cut a bunch of narrow, even strips at once. You can use several strips stuck together to make a ribbon with lines down the middle, or use single strips for narrow stripes or even tiny bows for mini cakes.

Here are a couple of things I've used it for:

__Jamie__ Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 6:15pm
post #5 of 94
Originally Posted by SUELA

What do you use the herb mincer for?

I just used mine to make a pattern on my stripes for this cake:

mgwebb68 Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 6:16pm
post #6 of 94

Texas_Rose I use a lot of the same things you do, but I'm just a hobby baker and I just can't bring myself to spending a lot of money on some of the things. I was looking for a nice smaller cutting board to use with gum paste and small amounts of fondant. I wasn't willing to pay the price so I picked up what I thought was 1 "chopping mat" for $5, when I got it home it was actually 4 and I use them almost everytime I bake for one thing or another.

I also had an "ah ha" moment. I was shopping at Target one day and I walked down the isle where they have the cream hair remover. It happened to catch my eye because it had a little squigy thingy attached to it, in the middle of the store out loud I said "AH HA, that's what I need" (I'm pretty sure that the people around me thought I was nuts). I now use that on my chocolate molds to smooth them out and clean up the edges, it works much better than trying to use a spatula or knife.

Still need to get a piece of vinyl for my counter top.

Texas_Rose Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 6:17pm
post #7 of 94
Originally Posted by __Jamie__

Originally Posted by SUELA

What do you use the herb mincer for?

I just used mine to make a pattern on my stripes for this cake:

I was pleased to see that someone else had the same idea that I did. Hey, the one Target has now has a blue handle and a metal plate over the wheels instead of a green handle and plastic plate...I'm really silly but I keep hoping mine will break so I can get that one instead.

You know what else is cheap and good?

Scrapbook punches...the little dollar ones are perfect for making stars and tiny flowers. They make nice crisp edges. I use a regular metal hole punch too, to make round centers for flowers.

__Jamie__ Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 6:24pm
post #8 of 94

And Martha Stewart those, especially when I have a Michael's coupon. Ok, old tubes that beads come in, for making circles is another thing I hang on to.

Texas_Rose Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 6:26pm
post #9 of 94

I have Martha's snowflake punch and it's great!

PinkZiab Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 6:35pm
post #10 of 94

Even as a pastry chef and professional cake designer, I use a lot of tools that are not meant to be cake tools. I tell people all the time to not limit themselves. A lot of tools and equipment (especially those sold by Wilton) were created and specifically marketed as money makers and geared to the casual decorator anyway. A lot of professional toolboxes look more like they came from the hardware store than from the cake decorating store!

christinapp Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 6:36pm
post #11 of 94

I use the plastic net bag that onions come in, as presses for the center of my daisy,(just press on top of daisy center)
I use a baby sock that I bought in the dollar store, as a duster for my corn starch (just fill and tie the top),
I use plastic doilies/runners as impression mats,
I use silk/plastic flower parts as veiners

RetiredNavyChief Posted 7 Jul 2009 , 8:42pm
post #12 of 94

a garlic press for hair, or stringy things. I have also used buttons for imprints.

Rylan Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 2:22am
post #13 of 94

I use a pastry wheel from Target and 99 cent store.
Trays for deviled eggs to dry gumpaste petals.
$20 dollar pasta machine from Ross.
Clear boxes from Walmart to store cutters/tools.

OhMyGanache Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 2:34am
post #14 of 94

My favorite modeling tools are metal knitting needles. I cut them down so they're about the length of a pencil so they're easier to work with. They don't snag or stick to gumpaste or fondant at all.

jimandmollie Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 2:38am
post #15 of 94

I use the clear plastic egg cartons that the expensive eggs come in when I attempt to make flowers! icon_lol.gif

I also swear by the plastic quilters cutting mat that I have that I flip over and use to roll fondant.

umgrzfn Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 4:20am
post #16 of 94

Ok, here's a few things I use....
knee high for my tips and small things to put in the dish washer (yes ladies and gents, it was brand new!! icon_biggrin.gif ) I use a disposable cutting mat to roll out fondant (doesn't stick), Stamps to emboss (like the ones you would use to scrapbook-CLEANED,CLOROXED,CLEANED,CLOROXED...YOU GET THE IDEA!!!!), I use my cricut tools such as the small spatula and the scraper (they work AWESOME cause they are small), I have so many stencils and such for scrapbooking that come in VERY handy for cakes, and one other thing that I can think of really wasn't made for cake decorating, but I like to use it that way....."it" would be my daughter!!!! icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_razz.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif She comes in quite handy when I need an extra hand, a "quick...get it out of the oven" moment. That's all I can think of at the moment!! thumbs_up.gif

CanadianCakin Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 4:45am
post #17 of 94

One thing I use for forming gum paste and fondant is crumbled up the pulled out tin foil to get a wave like in ribbons. I also made flower former set by cuttin paper towel rolls in half lengthwise!

Thanks for this thread I have picked up a few good ideas!

in2cakes2 Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 4:45am
post #18 of 94

I use my DH fairly new Matco portable tool cart as my favorite work station (yes cleaned, scrubed, bleached, toothbrushed, and toothpicked) and my DD plastic barbie accessories ie. barretts, rose bouquets... for impressions on fondant and such. And my new "how did I ever do without" tool a clear yard of vinyl from the fabric dept. at Hobby Lobby.

Loucinda Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 12:14pm
post #19 of 94

I use the corn husks (for tamales) as flower veiners.

Small pizza cutter for cutting fondant.

snocilla Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 12:33pm
post #20 of 94

I used Pampered Chef pan scrapers for smoothing small chocolate molds. I think you can get a pack of 3 for under $5. Also, if you need to cut dowel rods, my Wilton instructor gave us the tip of getting some dog nail clippers from the pet store. Mine cost $10, but cut wooden dowel rods perfectly and even sharpens them without all the hassel.

Allidsk8 Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 1:09pm
post #21 of 94

I love all of the ideas! I'm not that creative yet. Although, I have a set of plastic cutting boards that I got at Ikea for 2.99 that I roll out everything on!

traceyjade Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 1:28pm
post #22 of 94

I have used zippers for impressions and to make the zipper pull. As well as my daughters klutz book that has plastic impression mats in them. The ones they make to put paper on and color over with a crayon to make patterns. Also the wooden cuticle pushers I use for flowers. I have more but can't think of them yet ; )

traceyjade Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 1:31pm
post #23 of 94

I have used zippers for impressions and to make the zipper pull. As well as my daughters klutz book that has plastic impression mats in them. The ones they make to put paper on and color over with a crayon to make patterns. Also the wooden cuticle pushers I use for flowers. I have more but can't think of them yet ; ) Also I use fimo tools and even clay modeling books are good for ideas for fondant. They have great fimo molds as well!

cncgirl00 Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 1:54pm
post #24 of 94

Here are some of the things I use.

1. Any of the plastic cutters and tools(the fun factory is awesome!) from the play dough kits I use to cut fondant shapes.

2. A plastic putty knife and tiny sponge like paint roller (the roller that Melvira suggests)from the hardware store for smoothing icing.

MayWest Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 2:10pm
post #25 of 94

PVC pipes (many sizes) for rolling fondant.
Brand new toothbrushes to make impressions on daisy centers.
Textured wallpaper to make impressions on bows and other decorations.

Peridot Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 2:14pm
post #26 of 94

What great ideas!

I too have my yard or two of plastic vinyl from the fabric store.
I use styrofoam egg cartons for flower formers.
Decorating tips to make circles and the small end of the round tips to make flower centers.
I could not live without my little thin palette knife (got it at Michael's in the Art Dept), I use that for everything.
And I picked up some great little Plaid brand stencils that were on sale at my local paint store.

Day2Day_Cakes Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 2:32pm
post #27 of 94

I bought some eggs(2 1/2 dz) and on top was this plastic thing to protect them. But if you look at it, it looks like eye balls. So I am playing with that for Halloween. Put gum paste or fondant in there and mold eyes. The unique things we have to make our cakes..hehehehe

BeeBoos-8599_ Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 3:07pm
post #28 of 94

I buy alot of my molds, cutters tools in the clay and soap isle of Hobby Lobby. Much cheaper. Also I use my daughters play dough extruder for ropes, hair etc (and yes I wash it first).

ttehan4 Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 3:31pm
post #29 of 94

I have a list of cheap goodies and cheap buys too!

I got a kids plastic baking mat at the dollar tree and I use it when working with all my gumpaste and small fondant pieces. Nothing sticks.. they are awesome and only a buck.

I always stock up at Crafts 2000 on the discount satin ribbon bin, you can get 15.00 rolls of ribbon for 2.00.

I always use Joann fabrics 50% off coupon for disposible decorating bags ,Wilton extracts, or merange powder.

In the doll house section at the craft store you can get mats that are used for flooring and wallpaper in a doll house. great impression mats.

The polymer caly flower kits come with cutters and vieners. Way cheaper.

I use the scrapbook stencils too.

Instead of the expensive cake stencils, just use the regular stencils from craft store.

I print out lettering and different figures on my computer and cover fondant with wax paper then the computer print out and cut out designs and letters.

I use chalk instead of petal dust on flowers that dont touch the cake.

I know Ive got weird stuff in my cake cabinets that I just cant think of right now. I will have to go look.

MyDiwa Posted 8 Jul 2009 , 3:51pm
post #30 of 94

I've picked up some great tips! My only contribution is that I use impression mats for clay to use on fondant because they are sooooooooooooo much cheaper.

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