My Easy Way To Transfer Patterns On Buttercream -

Decorating By kas2105 Updated 3 Apr 2016 , 6:12pm by SimplyIcedCC

kas2105 Posted 31 Mar 2016 , 6:20pm
post #1 of 16

I've learned so many things from people who post their ideas here that I figured it was time for me to give back. I've been doing this for at least 25 years, ever since my kids were little and I had to make birthday cakes for all their friends. Back then, before we had the internet to find pictures, I used coloring books to find patterns for Ninja turtles, super heroes, princesses or whatever and traced them on a piece of paper with a sharpie so it shows through to the other side, then pipe over the lines on the back of the paper with silicone caulk that I put into a parchment cone. Once the silicone is dry, I just lay the paper with the caulk side down on the crusted icing and smooth over it with my hand and it transfers the pattern just like a cookie cutter would. I still do it to make sure that whatever writing I have to do fits and looks nice on cakes. It's cheap, it's quick and it's easy. I figure that if the caulk is safe for use in fish tanks, it's safe enough to be on a cake for five seconds. I've tried every other pattern transfer method and the silicone on paper is the easiest and most sure way to transfer a pattern exactly the way it's supposed to be.

15 replies
costumeczar Posted 31 Mar 2016 , 7:40pm
post #2 of 16

You can do the same thing with a hot glue gun, too. I love glue guns :)

dooley08 Posted 31 Mar 2016 , 8:31pm
post #3 of 16

What is silicone caulk?  It may seem like a dumb question but I have never heard of this. How thick is it that you are able to trace a picture and then transfer it to a cake?  Have you ever tired the glue gun as mentioned above? You have my curosity up and I want to try this method.  Thank you for sharing.

kakeladi Posted 31 Mar 2016 , 10:36pm
post #4 of 16

I would not suggest using either of those elements as they are not food safe.   The same thing can be done using royal icing OR even piping gel which are both edible and safe.   Of course let them dry so they get hard.  The gel could be used right away or allowed to dry hard.

kakeladi Posted 31 Mar 2016 , 10:36pm
post #5 of 16

I would not suggest using either of those elements as they are not food safe.   The same thing can be done using royal icing OR even piping gel which are both edible and safe.   Of course let them dry so they get hard.  The gel could be used right away or allowed to dry hard.

dooley08 Posted 31 Mar 2016 , 11:16pm
post #6 of 16

Thanks kakeladi.  I knew I had never heard of using either of those metholds before. I will try your suggestions.

kas2105 Posted 31 Mar 2016 , 11:59pm
post #7 of 16

There are tons of brands of silicone sealer/caulk that are rated food safe. Usually if it says it's safe for fish tanks or use in kitchens, it's food safe, but if you're unsure you can google whatever brand it is to be sure before you use it. Many come in small tubes that only cost a couple dollars. Royal icing eventually cracks off the paper and piping gel gets sticky in humidity or when it's used on buttercream. Silicone patterns last forever.

rollingstone Posted 1 Apr 2016 , 2:22pm
post #8 of 16

This is an awesome idea. I have a question though, how do you get the caulk into the parchment cone?

dooley08 Posted 1 Apr 2016 , 3:24pm
post #9 of 16

If using the cauling method is it dried and then pressed into the buttercream as an indenture.  I have never done any of the suggested methods.  I was curious about the caulk method myself.  Any particular brands being used?

kas2105 Posted 1 Apr 2016 , 5:26pm
post #10 of 16

I've never tried using a glue gun for this. I have no control over how the glue comes out and I know I'd end up with a bunch of blobs instead of lines, lol.

I've bought this silicone online -

I've also bought the cartridges that are used in a caulk gun from Menards or Lowes, but I don't remember what brands they were. And in a pinch, I've bought Loctite Silicone Sealant that comes in a small tube from the grocery store or Walmart. That one doesn't specifically say food safe, but it does say it's safe for sealing aquariums and if it won't kill a fish who will be exposed to it constantly, once it's cured it won't hurt to put it on icing for the few seconds it takes to imprint the design on a cake.

To get it into the parchment cone, I just put the parchment into a glass or mug and squeeze some in. Sometimes I have to wipe off the outside of the tube, but usually I just try to get it in the middle of the parchment cone, fold the top down and push it down to the end. Try not to get the stuff on your hands, it's hard to get off. And do it in a ventilated area because the fumes are strong until the stuff dries. It dries pretty quickly. I try to do it at least the night before I need it so it dries overnight, but I've done it a couple hours before and it was dried by the time I needed to use it.

kas2105 Posted 1 Apr 2016 , 5:37pm
post #11 of 16

Okay, ignore the link in that last post! For some reason it says I can't edit it. I did NOT use lubricant, I used their sealant. It looked the same as the stuff I used and I didn't notice that it was lubricant instead of sealer until after I posted. I don't see the sealer on their webpage now, though. But there are lots of different brands of silicone sealer or caulk that say food safe.

krye1025 Posted 2 Apr 2016 , 2:16pm
post #12 of 16

I do the same thing but with a thin line of buttercream (usually a #2 tip) in the same color as the frosting of the cake. there is no wait time and it just leaves the thin outline in frosting. It works like a paint by number from there filling in all the sections with the different colors. The colors cover the outline and you usually cant see it if a little isn't covered since it is in the same color as the outside of the cake. And a bonus its the same effect cut with the same cake ingredients. 

-K8memphis Posted 2 Apr 2016 , 3:05pm
post #13 of 16

kas, i think you are brilliant and thank you for posting this great idea 


810whitechoc Posted 3 Apr 2016 , 1:14am
post #14 of 16

Love this post! It's exactly what Cake Central is all about for me, people sharing ideas and a little bit of their cake journey with the rest of us. Thanks Kas.

kas2105 Posted 3 Apr 2016 , 4:56am
post #15 of 16

Aw, thanks. I am far from brilliant, I just like to try to find ways to do things the easy way because I'm lazy, lol. I've tried all the other ways and just made a mess when I tried piping gel, couldn't find the lines when I tried the pin hole poking method, and if I don't have something to follow my writing ends up crooked or not fitting in the space I've left for it. This was the easiest way I could think of to do it. It's saved me tons of time and frustration over the years so I wanted to help other people do the same.

SimplyIcedCC Posted 3 Apr 2016 , 6:12pm
post #16 of 16

Thanks for this :D I am not artsy nor can I write good, so this will help out a lot!  While I mainly do cupcakes and other mini treats, this will come in handy when I do get asked about cakes, or for my family :)

Quote by @%username% on %date%