How to Decorate Styrofoam Cake Dummies

Are you a cake decorator looking to improve your skills and expand your repertoire? If so, learning how to decorate styrofoam cake dummies is an essential skill. Styrofoam cake dummies serve as valuable tools for practicing and showcasing designs before applying them to real cakes. In this article, we will discuss the purpose of styrofoam cake dummies in cake decorating and the importance of knowing how to decorate them effectively.

When it comes to selecting the right styrofoam cake dummy, there are various sizes and shapes available to choose from. Understanding how to pick the appropriate dummy for your project is crucial in achieving the desired results. We will delve into the different options and offer guidance on how to make an informed choice.

Before diving into the decorating process, it’s essential to prepare the surface of the styrofoam cake dummy properly. This involves sanding, smoothing, and priming the surface to ensure a flawless base for decorating. Our article will provide detailed steps on how to prepare the dummy effectively, setting the stage for a successful decoration process.

Choosing the Right Styrofoam Cake Dummy

When it comes to cake decorating, styrofoam cake dummies are essential tools for creating stunning mock-ups. These dummies come in a variety of sizes and shapes, allowing decorators to practice and showcase their designs without the need for real cake. Choosing the right styrofoam cake dummy is crucial for the success of your project, so it’s important to understand the options available and how to select the appropriate one.

Size and shape are two key factors to consider when choosing a styrofoam cake dummy. Dummies are available in round, square, rectangular, and even custom shapes to suit specific design needs. The size of the dummy should also correspond to the size of the actual cake you plan to make, as it will serve as an accurate representation of your final creation.

In addition to considering the overall dimensions of the dummy, it’s also important to think about its height. Taller dummies are ideal for multi-tiered cake designs, while shorter ones may be better suited for single-tier or sculpted cakes.

It’s also important to consider storage space if you are planning on reusing dummies for future projects. Once you have determined the appropriate size and shape for your project, you can confidently move forward with decorating your styrofoam cake dummy.

Size and ShapeConsiderations
RoundIdeal for traditional tiered cakes
RectangularSuitable for sheet cakes or sculpted designs
Tall vs ShortConsider height based on desired design and storage capabilities

By understanding how to choose the right styrofoam cake dummy based on size and shape, decorators can ensure that they have selected the best option for their specific project. This foundational step sets the stage for successful decorating techniques that will ultimately result in a stunning finished display piece or practice model.

Preparing the Surface

When it comes to decorating styrofoam cake dummies, one of the most important steps is properly preparing the surface. Whether you plan to cover the dummy with fondant, buttercream, or royal icing, taking the time to prepare the surface will ensure a smooth and professional-looking finish. Here are the necessary steps to prepare your styrofoam cake dummy for decorating:

1. Sanding: Start by gently sanding the surface of the styrofoam cake dummy with fine-grit sandpaper. This will help to smooth out any rough spots and create a uniform texture for better adherence of your covering material.

2. Smoothing: After sanding, use a foam brush or soft cloth to remove any excess dust from the surface of the dummy. Then, apply a thin layer of spackle or lightweight joint compound to fill in any visible seams or indentations on the dummy’s surface. Once applied, allow it to dry completely before moving on to the next step.

3. Priming: To ensure that your covering material adheres properly to the styrofoam cake dummy, it’s important to prime it with a suitable primer. Use a brush or roller to apply a thin coat of primer evenly over the entire surface of the dummy and allow it to dry completely before proceeding with decorating.

By following these steps for preparing the surface of your styrofoam cake dummy, you can achieve a flawless finish that will serve as a perfect canvas for your decorating endeavors.

Remember that proper preparation is key when working with styrofoam cake dummies, so take your time and be thorough in this crucial step before moving on to covering and adding details – ensuring that you end up with a stunning finished product.

Covering the Dummy

Covering the styrofoam cake dummy is an essential step in turning it into a realistic-looking cake for decorative purposes. There are several methods to cover the dummy, including using fondant, buttercream, or royal icing. Each method has its own unique benefits and challenges, so it’s important to choose the one that best suits your project.

When covering a styrofoam cake dummy with fondant, it’s crucial to start with a smooth and even surface. Roll out the fondant to an even thickness and carefully drape it over the dummy, smoothing out any air bubbles or creases as you go. Use a sharp knife to trim away any excess fondant and finish by adding additional decorations or details as desired.

Alternatively, covering the styrofoam cake dummy with buttercream involves a different approach. Using a piping bag and the desired tip, spread an even layer of buttercream over the entire surface of the dummy. Smooth out any imperfections with a spatula or bench scraper, and then proceed to add additional decorations or details.

For those who prefer to cover their styrofoam cake dummy with royal icing, it’s important to achieve the right consistency before applying it to the surface. Using a piping bag fitted with a small round tip, carefully pipe royal icing onto the dummy in smooth, consistent lines or designs. Allow the icing to set completely before adding any further decorations.

No matter which method you choose for covering your styrofoam cake dummy, remember that practice makes perfect. Experiment with different techniques and take your time mastering each one until you find what works best for your specific project. And don’t be afraid to get creative – decorating styrofoam cake dummies is an art form that allows for endless possibilities.

Adding Details

Covering the styrofoam cake dummy is important, but adding intricate details is what truly brings it to life. There are several techniques that can be used to add these details, such as piping, painting, or using edible decorations.

One popular method is piping with royal icing or buttercream to create delicate designs and textures on the surface of the dummy. This can be done using a variety of piping tips to achieve different effects, such as lace, flowers, or intricate patterns.

How to Decorate a Sponge Cake With Whipped Cream

Another way to add detail to styrofoam cake dummies is by painting them. This technique allows for more artistic freedom and customization, as you can use different colors and techniques to achieve the desired look. Whether you’re creating a realistic wood grain effect or a whimsical watercolor design, painting provides endless opportunities for creativity.

Using edible decorations is also a great way to add detail to styrofoam cake dummies. Items such as fondant or gum paste flowers, sugar pearls, edible glitter, and even small sculpted figures can be used to adorn the dummy and bring your design to life in a three-dimensional way.

Adding intricate details takes some time and skill, but the results are well worth the effort. No matter which technique you choose – whether it’s piping, painting, or using edible decorations – the key is patience and practice. By mastering these skills, you’ll be able to create stunning decorated styrofoam cake dummies that will impress everyone who sees them.

Piping with Royal Icing or ButtercreamUse various piping tips for different effects like lace, flowers or patterns.
PaintingCreate artistic designs with different colors and techniques.
Edible DecorationsAdd items like fondant/gum paste flowers or sugar pearls for a three-dimensional look.

Avoiding Common Mistakes

When decorating styrofoam cake dummies, it’s important to be aware of potential pitfalls that could affect the final result. Knowing how to avoid common mistakes can save time and frustration, and ensure that your decorated dummy looks professional and polished.

Choosing the Right Tools and Materials

One common mistake when decorating styrofoam cake dummies is using the wrong tools or materials. For example, using a water-based paint on a styrofoam dummy can cause it to dissolve or become misshapen.

To avoid this, it’s important to use materials that are specifically designed for use with styrofoam, such as foam-safe paints and adhesives. Additionally, investing in high-quality decorating tools, such as fine-tipped brushes and precision piping tips, can make a significant difference in the finished product.

Properly Preparing the Surface

Another potential pitfall in decorating styrofoam cake dummies is not properly preparing the surface before applying decorations. Failing to sand and smooth the surface can result in an uneven finish, while skipping the priming step can lead to poor adhesion of coverings such as fondant or royal icing. Taking the time to thoroughly prepare the surface of the dummy will ensure that your decorations adhere smoothly and seamlessly.

Applying Too Much Pressure

One common mistake when adding details to a styrofoam cake dummy is applying too much pressure when piping or painting. Unlike real cake, styrofoam is fragile and can easily be damaged if excessive force is used. To avoid this issue, practice on a separate surface before decorating the dummy and use a light touch when adding intricate details. This will help prevent any accidental damage to the styrofoam surface.

By being mindful of these potential pitfalls and following these tips for overcoming them, you can successfully decorate your styrofoam cake dummies with professional-looking results.

Displaying the Finished Dummy

Using It as a Centerpiece

After putting in all the effort to decorate your styrofoam cake dummy, you’ll want to show it off. One great way to display your finished dummy is by using it as a centerpiece.

Whether you’re hosting a party, wedding, or any other special occasion, a beautifully decorated styrofoam cake dummy can be the perfect eye-catching piece for your event. Place it on a decorative stand or platter in the middle of your table to add an elegant touch to the overall decor.

In a Showcase

Another fantastic way to display your decorated styrofoam cake dummy is by placing it in a showcase. This option works well for professional bakers and cake decorators who want to showcase their skills and creations. By placing your dummy in a glass showcase at your bakery or workshop, you can not only impress potential clients with your talent but also give them ideas for their own customized cakes.

Using It for Photography

For those who want to take photographs of their decorated styrofoam cake dummies, light up an area with adequate lighting so that pictures come out clear and detailed, showcasing all the hard work put into decorating the dummy. If possible, place the dummy against an aesthetically pleasing background or use props such as flowers or ribbons to enhance the visual appeal of the photograph.

By incorporating these ideas and suggestions into the display of your decorated styrofoam cake dummy, you can ensure that all the hard work you put into decorating it does not go unnoticed.


In conclusion, decorating styrofoam cake dummies can be a fun and rewarding aspect of cake design. We have discussed the importance of knowing how to decorate these dummies, from choosing the right size and shape to preparing the surface and covering it with various materials such as fondant, buttercream, or royal icing. We also explored techniques for adding intricate details and provided tips for avoiding common mistakes.

Overall, mastering the art of decorating styrofoam cake dummies opens up a world of possibilities for cake decorators. It allows for experimentation with different designs, colors, and textures without the constraints of a real cake. Additionally, it provides an opportunity to showcase skills and creativity in creating stunning cake displays.

We encourage readers to try their hand at decorating styrofoam cake dummies for their own projects. Whether you are a professional baker looking to showcase your skills or a hobbyist wanting to explore new techniques, mastering the art of decorating styrofoam cake dummies can elevate your cake designs to new heights. So go ahead and give it a try – you might be surprised at what you can create.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Reuse Styrofoam Cake Dummies?

Styrofoam cake dummies can definitely be reused, as long as they are not damaged or covered in any toxic materials. After using them, they can simply be cleaned and stored properly for future use.

How Do You Put Icing on Styrofoam?

When putting icing on styrofoam, it’s important to use a non-toxic and food-safe type of icing. This could include royal icing or fondant, which can be easily applied to the styrofoam surface just like you would on a real cake.

Does Buttercream Stick to Styrofoam?

Buttercream generally does not stick well to styrofoam since buttercream relies on the moisture and texture of an actual cake to adhere properly. When used on styrofoam, the buttercream will likely slide off or not stick at all.

Send this to a friend