Thursday, March 13, 2014

This is a FAKE cake!

By Rebecca Blasdel
When you see stars on the red carpet, you have to wonder how they look so amazing. They must be getting some sort of help, maybe with a syringe maybe just some nicely contoured makeup, but I'm going to let you in on a secret, almost everything is faked.

Not just lips and breasts, but much of our work as Food Stylists is pretend too. A lot of it is real when it has to be physically eaten, but right now we are working on phony wedding cakes for two of the biggest prop houses in Hollywood. These are not just any  fake wedding cakes you can get at a bakery in LA, these have to be made to last.

Because these cakes are going to be used for countless movie and TV weddings for years to come they need to:
  • look fresh and fabulous for a long time on set. 
  • come back in one piece still looking fabulous
  • be rented over and over again but still look gorgeous, no sagging allowed!

 In Hollywood, everyone needs to look marvelous all the time and so does the food. Some of the materials and tools we used to test the first cake were:

Perma Ice, Fondant, Clay rolled out to look like fondant, Spackle, regular royal icing, fake royal icing, fake flowers, ribbons, bows, and all kinds of inedible decorations. There can be no rodents or insects around our cakes, they need to hit their mark and look pretty.

A new trend at weddings is that some couples actually prefer to buy or rent fake cakes for their weddings and only make the top layer or two edible. It saves time, money, potential accidents, and makes for a beautiful cake cutting ceremony. Which is why we are also in the business of making fake wedding cakes for movie studios.

But back to making fake things look real in Hollywood.
We started with styrofoam rounds and filed them down. Then we layered on the spackle. This worked well at first, but eventually it began to crack a little so we moved on to clay. Huge crack, moving on. Time for Perma Ice.

Much like applying make up to an aging actress we smoothed, sanded, contoured, and pinned until we perfected our final product.
To quote Betty Davis, "Old age is no place for sissies," and neither is the food styling business.
Finally we turned to Perma Ice which is sticky, difficult to apply, and expensive, but somehow did the trick!

Next we needed to figure out a way to make the tiers movable from place to place. We made them so that each piece could be assembled and carried separately in a box, taken out, placed on top of each other and Voila! Fake wedding cakes that don't fall apart, and cannot be snacked on by rats (with fur, not the agent/ manager variety.)

In closing we would like to present the most beautiful FAKE HOLLYWOOD CAKE made by us, food stylists who start projects without a clue and somehow bring them to the silver screen with such elegance and grace that no one ever thinks twice about what is going on behind the scenes with the most sought after Food Stylist in Hollywood.