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opinions wanted: hand - made figures or plastic toys?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I'm a newbie and wanted some opinions:
I just started experimenting with cake decorating around last August. I decided I wanted to go for "100% edible," meaning I wanted to attempt NOT using toys or other non-edible items on everything I made. I just thought that would be cool. My son didn't like fondant too much, and neither did I, so I then decided I would try and make all figures out of modeling chocolate. I made angry birds figures for my newphew's 8th bday in October, Scooby Doo figures in November for his brother's 4th bday, and then snowmen for my sons and all their cousins in December (pics of all posted on my profile). Almost all of this was made using modeling chocolate. I was so proud of myself! Then, when I visited said nephews during Christmas, I found almost all of the angry birds and scooby doo figures in their fridge uneaten! I'm still in shock.

Now, it's mid-January, and most of them did not eat their snowmen. They were all delighted to find all of my creations, but none of them wanted to actually eat them! I guess I should be flattered because they loved them TOO much to eat. I get lost of compliments and words of encouragement.... However, why go through all the trouble of making sure they're edible if no one is going to eat them?

I asked my son what he wanted me to do for his bday cake in March and he wants Captain America. He wants a Capt. Amer. figure on it. I asked if he wanted me to make it out of chocolate or if he wanted it to be a plastic toy. He chose plastic toy.

I made a preliminary decision in the beginning that "100% edible" would be some sort of badge of honor. I guess I felt like I'd be cheating and taking the easy way out if I bought plastic toys to put on a cake instead of taking the time to make them myself. Does anyone else feel this way? Is it silly? What are the opinions of all of you who actually do this for a living? I don't think I can express just how much in shock I am, still, to have found all of those chocolate figures uneaten. They weren't thrown away. The kids want to keep them. If they were plastic toys, they would've been in a pile with the rest of their toys. So they do love them and want to keep them forever. I am definitely flattered that they love them that much, but I might as well have made them out of clay! Right? I don't know anymore icon_confused.gif

Any and all opinions would be appreciated icon_smile.gif
post #2 of 11
Plastic, as the child can keep it forever (we hope ha ha) and can enjoy playing with it.
post #3 of 11
I'm very new to this myself. I only started decorating in June of last year. The only cakes I've done have been for family members. Since I'm always looking for something new to try, I would go with hand made figures. As a matter of fact, I'm making some fairies right now to go on a cake for my great-niece. Even though they are not perfect, I loves the challenge of trying something new.
post #4 of 11
Hi,

All of my figures except 1 (Dora) in my pics all EDIBLE!! I absolutely love doing figures and making them edible. i understand what your talking about bc I have a couple of my customers who have keep the figures in the fridge and refuse to throw them away. The pic in my photos of the S.Street cake is all edible and that customer told me in nov, when we spoke about her daughters upcoming bday, that she has Zoe and another figure in her fridge and looks at it everyday. LMBO...at first, i was like you then i said, Ok, its ok bc she paid for them and said she absolutely loves them, so, I guess im ok with it.

Some ppl cant part with things right away, its just that way sometimes. So, with all that said, Be VERY PROUD of yr work and that they just dont want to throw the memories away icon_smile.gif
I can do ALL things Through Christ who strengthens ME!!!
CAKE IS MY LIFE!!!!
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I can do ALL things Through Christ who strengthens ME!!!
CAKE IS MY LIFE!!!!
Reply
post #5 of 11
Hi,

All of my figures except 1 (Dora) in my pics all EDIBLE!! I absolutely love doing figures and making them edible. i understand what your talking about bc I have a couple of my customers who have keep the figures in the fridge and refuse to throw them away. The pic in my photos of the S.Street cake is all edible and that customer told me in nov, when we spoke about her daughters upcoming bday, that she has Zoe and another figure in her fridge and looks at it everyday. LMBO...at first, i was like you then i said, Ok, its ok bc she paid for them and said she absolutely loves them, so, I guess im ok with it.

Some ppl cant part with things right away, its just that way sometimes. So, with all that said, Be VERY PROUD of yr work and that they just dont want to throw the memories away icon_smile.gif
I can do ALL things Through Christ who strengthens ME!!!
CAKE IS MY LIFE!!!!
Reply
I can do ALL things Through Christ who strengthens ME!!!
CAKE IS MY LIFE!!!!
Reply
post #6 of 11
Hi,

All of my figures except 1 (Dora) in my pics all EDIBLE!! I absolutely love doing figures and making them edible. i understand what your talking about bc I have a couple of my customers who have keep the figures in the fridge and refuse to throw them away. The pic in my photos of the S.Street cake is all edible and that customer told me in nov, when we spoke about her daughters upcoming bday, that she has Zoe and another figure in her fridge and looks at it everyday. LMBO...at first, i was like you then i said, Ok, its ok bc she paid for them and said she absolutely loves them, so, I guess im ok with it.

Some ppl cant part with things right away, its just that way sometimes. So, with all that said, Be VERY PROUD of yr work and that they just dont want to throw the memories away icon_smile.gif
I can do ALL things Through Christ who strengthens ME!!!
CAKE IS MY LIFE!!!!
Reply
I can do ALL things Through Christ who strengthens ME!!!
CAKE IS MY LIFE!!!!
Reply
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thank you for the responses!

I have to say, I do enjoy making the figures and working with modeling chocolate and fondant. Since I'm still new to everything, it is a good experience to go through the process because I learn something new every time I make something. I gues my questions arose from my current situation: that right now, I'm only making things for family for free. I guess, in the future, if someone were to ask me for an edible figure, it's not any of my concern what they're going to do with it afterwards icon_rolleyes.gif

I forgot to mention that the chocolate Christmas reindeer I made for my son's pre-K teachers did the same thing. They did not eat the figures - they're keeping them! So it's not just the kids icon_smile.gif I really can only be flattered by that icon_biggrin.gif

Thank you again for the opinions everyone!
post #8 of 11
If it's anything licensed I always buy the toys or the Deco-Pak decorations from the cake decorating shop nearby. For anything else (generic), depending on what it is, I will make them from whatever I have. My favorite medium to use is marzipan. It is so delicious and everyone loves it.
post #9 of 11
If you want to stay with the edible medium but allow the person to keep the decorations, you can use gumpaste or a 50/50 mix of fondant/gumpaste. Gumpaste will last forever once dry.

My neice kept the shoe and plaque from her Sweet 16 cake. I thought she might so made them both out of gumpaste.
I have Flying Monkeys and I'm not afraid to use them. - Elphaba.
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I have Flying Monkeys and I'm not afraid to use them. - Elphaba.
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post #10 of 11
Sorry for the multiple post, my computer is whacko right now, lol
I can do ALL things Through Christ who strengthens ME!!!
CAKE IS MY LIFE!!!!
Reply
I can do ALL things Through Christ who strengthens ME!!!
CAKE IS MY LIFE!!!!
Reply
post #11 of 11
I am also new to cake decorating. But have never used a toy on any of my cakes. It is fun to make figures and shows how much work went into your cake. If you threw a toy on the top would you be as proud of your cake if it was hand made. I would not be. I made a cake for my childs school with edible crayons, ruler, glue, chalk board, etc. none of decorations were ate just admired. But all of the kids were like wow we can eat those. (pic in profile with a 2 on top) Personaly I am going to stick to hand made vs toys icon_smile.gif
Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming. What do we do? We swim, swim, swim.
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Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming. What do we do? We swim, swim, swim.
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