Hello fellow cakers,
I have been asked to create a half size replica of an electric guitar. The recipients wish to keep eat after the event therefore they don't want it to be made of cake.
I know that cake dummies can be covered with fondant icing, so I was thinking that a polystyrene sheet could be used. When I looked into it, there are all sorts of grades of polystyrene and I don't know which I should be looking for!
Then I wondered if a foam sheet would be better.
What would be the easiest to shape? I think the depth is going to be the most challenging as the polystyrene sheets only seem to come in either 10mm or 25mm deep (or more)
Also, should I used buttercream icing under the fondant to eliminate the bumps and help the fondant stick, or is there something else I could use, bearing in mind this is just going to be a model and not for eating.
Thank you for any advice!!
Sarah-Lou (Hugs & Kisses Celebration Cakes)
Desperate for some help.......please?!!! Anyone?
Find some polystyrene blocks of appropriate size in the same grade/type as the usual cake dummies - maybe a 16" cake dummy will work?
No need for buttercream under the fondant, just rub the polystyrene over with some crisco, or spray with canola/olive oil, and then fondant as usual.
Thank you Magic Mouthfuls!
The guitar is actually very shallow as it is an electric one, so I won't need anything as deep as a cake dummy.
I just don't know what grade of polystyrene/styrofoam/foam to buy that would be easy to carve - I have visions of pieces breaking off that I didn't want to come off, but if it's too tightly packed it may not carve well either.
Do you have any experience of carving polystyrene? Perhaps I should put a post on that instead?!
Thanks for the tip regarding crisco - I'm in the UK and I don't think we have crisco, so can I use just lard/butter/baking butter/margarine?
Try carving with a warm serrated knife. One day i had to cut a dummy and my bread knife was in the dishwasher just after a wash. it cut without a problem because the knife was still warm. HTH
You could try foam core boards. You can use as many as you need to get the desired height, just glue them together. They're pretty easy to carve the shape you want.
Otherwise, here in the US, the craft stores have those thin boards of styrofoam and heat guns that you can use to cut them. Check the fake flower aisle in your local craft stores, not sure what you have there. Hopefully, someone in the UK will jump in.
Thank you suzied - good tip, I'm sure that will come in handy.
Jinkies - fake flower aisle gives me an idea: those green oasis things for floral displays (perhaps that's what you meant anyway) - I wonder if I can get a large one of those - the guitar will measure 50cm from end to end.
I wanted to know if anyone had experience of carving styrofoam or polystyrene sheets or whatever, into a shape and establish which would be the easiest. At least the guitar is a fairly straightforward shape but I can still envisage it being tricky round the edges as there are lots of curves.
Any more tips? I would be so grateful!
If you dont have crisco, then use a vegetable based product, (not diary, not meat) - even rubbing olive oil or vegetable oil with a cotton wool ball onto the foam would work nicely. I use canola oil spray myself ... so quick!
Thanks Magic Mouthfuls. The use of buttercream was not just so the fondant would stick, but also to smooth the surface beforehand - I guess baking butter or similar would do the trick? What do you think?
To smooth the surface, I would use melted candy melts, especially if it's something they want to keep.
I guess it depends on how long the customer wants to keep the cake for. If they want to put it in their china cabinet on display for years to come, then an animal product will just become rancid and gross after a few months. If the foam edges are too rough, I would just roll out the fondant thicker - or in those few patches, cover and smooth with a small patch of fondant before covering the whole cake.
Not sure what guitar shape you are going for (ie classical acoustic vs fender stratocastor) but would a couple of rounds cut in half horizontally (for thinness) and then cut 1 round like a moon crescent and joined together work???? In Australia, cake dummies come in 3" and 4" high, so cutting in half horizontally should give you the height you are after.
Alternatively, I would google 'foam' suppliers in your area and then go visit them and see what 'product' you think will work. Art supplies stores might also have something. We have a store here called 'Clarke Rubber' that has truly unusual foam and rubber in large sizes. Otherwise, core flute board (like what real estate agents used for small signs) would cut easily with a stanley knife.
Thanks Jinkies - why would candy melts make a difference? Also I have never worked with them before - what do I do?!!!
Any further suggestion on the material I should use to carve the shape?
Great stuff Magic Mouthfuls!
Is a specialised Gibson Les Paul 120 th anniversary limited edition electric guitar so I think carving a sheet is the way forward as it is so shallow (half size replica)
So is baking fat ok? It's vegetarian so should be.
i will search the local shops tomorrow but the guitar need to be ready in 10days and I have other work on too so not much time to look unfortunately!
I use the candy melts to cover rkt toppers to smooth them before fondant. You just melt them in the microwave and rub it over the guitar with your hands for a smooth finish. It just kinda fills in the little holes and gaps. It dries very quickly and gives you a smooth surface for the fondant.
Or, like Magic Mouthfuls said, depending on the material you find, you may just be able to use a thicker layer of fondant.