I have a huge business opportunity coming up. I was approached by a major jewelry chain store to be a part of their wedding extravaganza event in April. I need to make a large dummy cake for inside the store and a smaller one for the window. I have never made one of these before and I guess my first and most important question is how fondant will hold up under hot lights in the store window. The cake will be on display for 3 weeks and I don't know how hot the lights will be but I was told that the cake would have to hold up under the hot lights. I am concerned that the fondant will melt. Is this something that I should be concerned about? Someone on another forum told me that gumpaste/fondant flowers will melt so it has me worried that the other fondant on my cake will melt. Any other tips on making a dummy cake will be greatly appreciated. I don't know the first things about it.
If you go ahead and make the dummies soon and give them time to dry, the hot lights shouldn't affect them too much. It's only when the fondant is fresh and soft that heat will melt it. After they dry, heat might soften them up a little, but shouldn't cause them to melt.
For a definitely unmeltable finish on a dummy cake, make royal icing and thin it down - paint on the dummies in a very thin coat. Put in the oven with just the pilot light on until it's dry then take a OO sandpaper square and lightly sand it down (out back on your porch), then lightly coat with royal and dry and sand - do this as many times as necessary to achieve the look you need. Won't melt but make sure you know where your flowers are going and poke holes in the areas before coating with royal. For the flowers, there's a spray you can spray your gumpaste flowers with that will protect them against high heat and humidity. It's sold on most large cake sites.