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Welcome to the Cake Decorators Q&A

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asked November 8th 2012

realistic human figures edible or clay

would love to make realistic human figure’s for my cake’s anyone know if it has to be clay or can it be edible and how do you get it onto the wire to form the body as much info would be fab x

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would love to make realistic human figure’s for my cake’s anyone know if it has to be clay or can it be edible and how do you get it onto the wire to form the body as much info would be fab x

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Hi annabel,

Just a word of caution, never use wires in anything that is going to be edible. If you make flowers for instance, you insert a posy pick into the cake to take the stems.

Paul uses dried spaghetti to support his fondant figures as that is edible and much safer. I hope this helps.

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Hi Annabel

Some gum paste figures have to be supported with wires or dowels, it depends on what you’re making. If using dowels or lollipop sticks it is imperative to let the recipient of the cake know that the cake has supports so that guests do not inadvertently consume dangerous items. Decorations which are wired should be supported inside post picks to avoid any metals leaching into the cake.
If you want to learn about true image modelling with clay it may help you to view a few online sculpting sites. Clay behaves very differently to fondant and gum paste and I can not advice on it’s use. If you’re happy to use sugar mediums, the techniques taught by Paul are the basis from which to progress to more specialist levels. Paul runs courses on model making. An alternative to sugar or clay is Artista modelling paste which is quick drying medium made from rice and potato flour. There is information on this in the blog section. Artista is non toxic but not edible. Models made from it must not come into contact with the cake and should be mounted on a separate card before being placed on the cake. Sorry answer is so long, I’ve tried to include as much info as possible and hope some of it is of help.

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I have used Artista and really like how it dries and the models are very light. They also last longer than fondant. I did put part of a model near the fondant and the fondant became soft. You can buy acrylic discs to put models on but I have been using CD discs and covering them with card to match the theme of the model. I also did not use anything to hold them together as the pieces stick to each other on contact. Hope this is of use.