I have spent hours looking over threads about book cakes. I'm getting ready to make my first one in about 2 weeks for my brother in law's graduation. I cut and pasted the tips into a word document and then organized them in a way they would make sense to me. Again, these are tips from other CC members. All I have done is compiled them in one place in a way that makes sense to me, but I thought maybe it would help save someone else some time as well. If there are errors or something isn't correct, please don't shoot the messenger! If you have questions, I can't give credit or contact to any one person, because like I said, I cut and pasted portions from a ton of different posts. To all of the OP who gave tips, THANK YOU so very much. I can't wait to make this cake!!!
Easiest Way (using color leahs)
The top cake will be on a board, so the fondant just has to wrap around the bottom edge, not cover the entire cake. Everything is white for now. Decide where the pages will be (three sides) and use the side of a long spatula, held horizontal to press in marks that look like pages. Use edible paint on the cover and spine any color you want and letter on the title with edible pen.
Can make cake with a separate piece of fondant for bottom, top, binder, and pages.
Or, with separate pieces for bottom (1/4 inch strips), top AND binder, and pages. Add a ton of tylose to fondant to get it to set. Let fondant set up a little before you put it on cake. You'll need to start with a rectangle cake square with side trimmed off or true rectangle. Level. Place on cake board-glued down with a smear of icing. Torte and fill, then crumb coat and smooth. I made a slight indentation with my finger running down the left side of the cake so it would give it a grooved look - like a binding on a book.
From here, some do pages first, and some go into cover/binding. It seemed as though the majority covered top/binding and then did the pages.
First, you'll have to measure the cake starting at the bottom of the binder to the top edge of the binder and then adding about a 1/4 of an inch to that measurement. Go no more than 1/4 inch over the top edge of the cake or cover will droop. I propped the corners up with viva for a while so they would not droop. Measure the cake then from side to side also adding about 1/4 of an inch. After that I rolled out a piece of fondant a little larger than the top of the book plus add the height of the spin of the book. So if your cake is 11X15X2 then your fondant should be about 13 1/2 X 15 ½. You can take a pair of scissors and trim around the edges if they stretch too much. Cut fondant. Lay the fondant down starting at the spine of the book and smooth so it is just barely wrapping under cake board. I used a putty knife to tuck the fondant under the spine of the book.
Stack now, if youre stacking.
Pages three measurements of width and length of white fondant, or cut one long piece to wrap around all 3 edges.
3 different pieces for pages - I rolled out white fondant. Then I measure the height/width and length of the top, bottom and side, giving you 3 measurements. I cut out each piece to the size of my measurements for the top, bottom, and side pages. I allow about a 1/4 of an inch longer for the pages. You should have 1 longer page and 2 smaller pages. Score with pizza cutter, ruler, or large knife. Take a pizza cutting wheel and make the pages by rolling the wheel on the fondant with just enough pressure to see, but not too much to cut through. Do that for all 3 pages. Brush a little water on the back of the fondant. Place the pages on the top, making sure it has 1/4 overhang, Then do the same for the bottom pages. After those are done, place the long page on. There should be over hang at the top and bottom where they meet the long paper. Pinch the 2 corners together to make a squared edge look of the pages and/or take a tiny scissors and make small snips in it to look like actual pages. If you wish, you could make a small slit in the bottom part of the page and put in a real piece of satin ribbon. I also made some post-its and book marks to stick out of the pages for an added touch. Paint with vanilla extract to give dimension, or paint with luster dust.
Using clay gun and a thin slit attachment (or cut by hand) , cut (3 ) 1/4 to 1/2 inch pieces of fondant of the same color you used for book cover to lay around the bottom of the book to look like the bottom cover. Pinch the edges to square them up. Tuck in carefully with the putty knife or use water on top of strip to "glue it to the back cover and gently butt it up to the "pages" all around the bottom of cake. The bottom "cover" is just strips (1/4 inch wide) applied along the bottom white part of the pages.
The bottom is false - roll thin "snake" of fondant and lay it around the bottom edge. It only looks like the fondant is under the cake.
Bible Book The ones I have done are leather bound look and I roll out a piece of chocolate fondant on a cutting board to give it the leather look - big enough to cover the top and the spine of the book and tuck this under to make it neat on the spine edge. I have the fondant overlaping a little at the front and let the corners curl downwards to look like a well used book. Use chocolate fondant for covers. If you want a suede leather look, dust the cover with cocoa powder before you do the Luster Dust painting. Cut a few strips for the binding edge and paint them with gold or copper or bronze Luster Dust and alcohol or extract using a fine tipped brush. Using the same paint, paint on the binding and/or the cover, HOLY BIBLE. Dry dust the pages with bronze.
Dry brush it (old, duller look). Dip your brush in the dust, tap off as much as you can, then *lightly* brush it on the pages. Use a large brush or sprinkle it on and just use your clean fingers to kind of "rub it in.
If you want a new look (new, very gold), paint with dust and alcohol - use a clear alcohol like vodka or the like it will evaporate and dry quickly. Then paint pages.
Here is a link to a video on how to mix and paint with Luster Dust. Hope it helps. http://www.kitchengifts.com
Click on decorating with Luster Dust to launch the video.
For the cap:
Small hat - Mini ball pan, cupcake,
small pan filled with RKT, making sure to press very hard. Cover with fondant.
Bigger hat- Wonder mold or 6 ball pan,
Larger pan filled with RKT, making sure to press very hard. Cover with fondant.
Top of hat - Square cookie, cardboard/square cake board, square graham cracker and marshmallow,
Melt chocolate, cut square, and freeze.
thin -- half a layer
normal -- 1 layer
big -- 2 layers
dictionary -- 3 or 4 even (for those unabridged monsters)
paperback? 1 layer 9x13 cut in half or smaller
textbook? 1 to 2 layers full 9x13