Wednesday, January 4, 2012

frosting that froze me in my tracks

memphis debuts on the cake

when a child asks for frosting in the form of humans and animals for their birthday, don't run for the hills. instead get sculpey, and get those fingers warmed up.

my daughter turning 6, asked for her beloved border collie, memphis, who died just a month prior and herself throwing a frisbee in frosting on their cake. argh! nothing scares me like mucking up a cake just before a party, i mean come on.

ok, so it might be a little easier being an artist and an art teacher with amassed amounts of resources, but I really believe anyone can do this.

before sculpey was baked
cake toppers: so i went to dick blick, the closest art store in boston, and got sculpey premo. I believe, go the extra mile with durability with the premo. I got the regular 1lb flesh colored stuff and the 2oz. glow in the dark and red sparkly accent pieces for fun. my big regret was not getting the sculpey softener. I am not sure how it would have helped, but that mutha was tough.

anyway, i had help as not to have felt defeated by the toughness of this clay.
I mean how can anyone work with this stuff?

some shorts:
  • 1lb block was enough to make my daughter (4.5" tall person) and her beloved sidekick 
  • knead chunks of the clay like bread dough 
  • cut away from the the mass amount instead of trying to get small pieces together
  • tools: rolling pin, tooth picks, sharp paring knife
  • think pyramid, not tall cylinders
  • think chunky shapes instead of tall willowy for sturdiness
  • balance your shapes
  • follow bake directions for thickness
  • if anything breaks, use hot glue or super glue after it cools (that happened to my daughter's legs, much to the chagrin of my daughter) 
  • use acrylic paint and be flirty with your layering of colors 
  • I was super happy how the acrylic paint took to the sculpey
  • once the foundation and shape of your pieces is set, work with texture
  • go the extra distance with details, but don't go overboard
  • use a photo, it will really be helpful

glow-in-the-dark heart candle holders
    extras: my daughter and I even rolled out    
    the sculpey glow-in-the-dark and the red
    sparkly stuff with rollers and used cookie
    cutters; hearts and flowery shapes. used a
    pencil to push holes through the
    glow-in-the-dark hearts for future
    candle holders on the cake.

in the end, it was super cute. my daughter has them forever, especially as a memory of our pup she has known her whole life. I highly recommend this project even if you think you can't;
trust me, it will surprise you.


  1. Sierra, I stumbled onto your blog (via Kendraspondence) and will always hold warm memories of being Memphis' nanny, your plant-waterer, washing-machine buster, and admirer of the home you created and the remarkable people inhabiting it. Love to you all and to Memphis, r.i.p. Amy

  2. This is pretty amazing Sierra!

  3. Amy! How are you? You were one of the best Memphis nannies we ever had; seriously.