I would like to build my portfolio before putting up a website and promoting my cakes into a business. I have read several other threads about people being cautious when building a portfolio based on cake dummies because recreating the same look with the real thing may leave some clients unhappy. With this being said, I don't know enough people in the area we have just moved to (not near any friends or family) to be making the sort of cakes I would like to.
I saw that people had mentioned there is something you can cover the cake dummies with to give it more of a realistic look (like buttercream under the fondant).
Does anyone have idea on how to make the cake dummies look realistic?
I suggest you just work on getting your real cake to be good looking, where as one would not think it was a dummy. I know it's expensive and takes a lot of time to practice on real cake, but you kind of have to if you want nice looking real products that will woo a potential customer.
Exactly. It's not a case of making cake dummies look realistic, but making your real cakes look like dummies! Practice makes perfect... you may just have to start making cakes and donating them to fire stations, nursing homes etc etc.
I have read several other threads about people being cautious when building a portfolio based on cake dummies because recreating the same look with the real thing may leave some clients unhappy.
I think the only time clients would be unhappy is if the display was pristine but they got a cake that was bulging, lopsided, or oozing filling. If you have the skills to produce a pristine cake without similar imperfections, then the dummy would represent the true quality of the edible version.
I had thought about donating them to different charities or fire/police stations around the area, but I'm not licensed to bake out of my kitchen and don't know if this would become a problem.
We just moved to the area and rented a house to make sure we like the area before buying. Early to mid next year we'll buy a house and I plan on getting the kitchen inspected and licensed right away. For now it seems like the inspection is a lot of money to get a piece of paper only to make donation cakes. That's why I was thinking of playing it safe with cake dummies.
Although I feel like I'm improving on my sharp corners each cake I make, I would worry a client would expect sharp pristine edges like using a dummy would give. Would the fondant soften that enough when covered?
I agree that you should work on your cake skills so your dummies and real cakes are indistinguishable, however, i do have a tip for making dummies, not so much to make them look "more real" but to make the fondant application easier.
I lightly sand the edges of the dummy so it doesn't tear the fondant when I apply it.
Another option you might try is using Pan Di Spagna instead of dummies. You can leave out the vanilla and over-bake it so you end up with a dry biscuit like cake. You can level it like cake and buttercream it to practice your cake skills. But it will last months if kept out of the heat and direct sun, it may also be a bit cheaper than cake batter to make for practicing.
I wouldn't eat it though if its unflavored and over-baked.