Welcome to the Cake Decorators Q&A

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asked May 3rd 2012

Construction advice – Advise on how to make a wheelbarrow?

I'm about to make a 2 tier Gardener theme 70th Birthday cake for a friends Dad. It's going to have a cake topper on the top tier which I want to be a wheelbarrow containing the number 70. Can anyone advise me how I should make the wheelbarrow? I'd like to be able to do it well in advance and store it until it needs to go on the cake... Thanks in advance Michele x

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Sorry Michelle can't seem to get the link to work.  I'll try again.

http://www.cake-decorating.co.uk/ideas-designs/garden-cake-flower-beds/

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You could make a simple wheel barrow by using the coiling technique used in pottery. Just make lengths of thin sausages with gum paste and layer them on top of each other in the correct shape. Use a veining tool to meld the coils together and create wood grain effect. Make holes for the handles to add later. To make the under carriage, make two rectangular blocks and place so the nose of wheel barrow tips slightly forward. Use liquorice allsorts rounds for the wheels. Finish off by dusting with your choice of colour and add the number to stand inside the barrow at an angle. I did this for a neighbour's cake, added a few vegetables and flowers with quite pleasing results.

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Thanks Susan I have saved that page in the clients file and will have a go. It seems to be following the ideas I had in mind. Though I was going to mould the barrow part by hand but I guess using a match box makes sense.

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I was thinking that you could form the shape from the box, turn it upside down then mould flowerpaste around it to get the shape?

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I've tried hand moulding today as believe it or not we don't have a matchbox. It went ok though weight is a problem as it dries. Ideally I need to construct the barrow and the No: 70 (which is to sit inside the barrow) in one go and let dry. I'm supporting the no:s in the barrow with pasta but the weight of the whole thing has beaten me on this first attempt. Back to the drawing board for another go tomorrow. I'll try and find a suitable box as I think your idea will be finer and more lightweight.

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Thanks madewithlove... I had another go using Susans idea of moulding around a small box but just couldn't get the corners right without them breaking. My flower paste to fondant ratio probably wasn't right for that technique. Anyway I have resorted back to the other old school pottery technique and constructed the barrow slab method. I've manged to stick the handles and the wheel is made from black flower paste textured to look like a tyre. The no's will be added into the barrow when I put the whole thing to the cake later this week. Bottom tier is having a frieze of garden spades and forks around it so thats the challenge for this week. Michele x

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Sorted then Michele? good old pottery techniques, I can still remember bits from when I was a girl (in another time!!!!!), and still resort back when all else fails. Your cake is going to turn out just great. x

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Hi Michelle

I think you could work one out for yourself by looking at http://www.cardcarousel.co.uk/store/index.php?main_page=document_product_info&products_id=198

You could make from pastillage to be really strong or it may work from modelling paste ok.

 

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Hi Michelle,

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Thanks Guys... The cake was finished and delivered on Friday. Well recieved with lots of oohs and ahhs.... Which is always a good thing. I would upload a photo so you can see the finished result but can't see a way to add photos to these posts.

Michele x

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Hi Michele

Well done and congratulations on completing your cake. Out of interest, and for reference in the future for others, what technique did you use in the end to form your wheelbarrow? It really is a shame that we're not able to see the finished product (to admire and to take notes) but may be, as has been suggested by Paul Doffman, uploading pictures might be a consideration as this site begins to grow. Best wishes x

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Hi Madewithlove, I made paper templates of all the components of a simple wheel barrow then cut each piece for the top of the barrow from grey gumpaste rolled about 5mm thick. The tickness of the paste gave me enough depth to butt and stick each piece together. The wheel was made from a rolled and flattened ball of black gum paste. I textured this with a modelling tool so it looked as thought it had tyre tracks. It was attached to the base of the barrow by slicing a small section from the top/back of the tyre so there was something flat to glue to but the front of the wheel still protruded beyond the base of the barrow.  I added a small cube of grey gumpaste to the base of the barrow at the back so it would stand. The handles were made from good ol sausages.... cut,  reshaped and textured to look like handle grips. Complicated to explain in words without pictures... sorry if its not very clear. I'll see if I can get a picture of it uploaded onto Pauls facebook page.

Michele xx

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I'll look forward to seeing it. Although I don't face book, I do some times have a quick look just to see what's happening. Been lovely exchanging ideas with you. Bye now Michele, catch you another time.