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Bear Cakes - TipTuesday

Updated: Jul 17, 2020

In this week’s #TipTuesday, I’m going to encourage you to think about how versatile many techniques can be. If you master a skill or see a technique on a cake you like, you can easily translate it to other designs. It’s sometimes hard to search for a very specific design in a specific color.

I try to find ways to bring some education to our summer while keeping it fun. We’ve been studying climates and habitats and how environmental changes impact animals. We used a writing exercise comparing different bears. Jacob asked what bear we would all like to be. Because Fathers Day was around the corner, we decided to make bear cakes! Today, I’m sharing with you how you can use the exact same techniques to achieve 3 very different bears.

All three start with a ball pan. You can also use a 6” & 5” to sculpt. I like to set the ball pan into a 6" cake pan to steady it. It's much easier to remove from the oven.

I crumb coated all 3 with white buttercream then added a really thin layer of the colors of each bear. You’ll notice I made the panda a bit more oblong.

I find it really useful to print out a few photos. I chose both real photos and some cartoons because I wanted a mix of both. I do not recommend using photos of other cakes.

I use a skewer to kind of mark where the eyes and nose will go. These noses are rather large so I’ve inserted a skewer to the cake to hold the weight of the nose. I use those photos to help me shape the nose. I then add the nose tips. I use the photos to make any lines or indents. I add the tips of the nose and a little tongue for the Kodiak bear. I use those same techniques to shape the noses for the Polar & Panda bears.

Next, I look at the shape of the eye. The polar bear and the Kodiak bear both have oval shaped eyes. I shape those ovals and put them in place. I use little rolls of fondant to build up the outer eye. Use the vein tool not only to put them in place but also to make the fold.

I like this one on Amazon.

For the panda bear, I add those patches first. His eyes are round. Unlike the other 2, the pupils are a mix of brown and black. I marbled some fondant then shaped them.

For the ears, I first got the general shape. I used a ball tool to curve and shape and form that thickness on the edge of the ears.

Next, I break out some black charcoal petal dust. I use it to highlight the creases in the mouths, add some depth to the noses and mouths, and color the ears.

Look at these little faces!

The fur is both the easiest and hardest part. It's very forgiving but it will take its toll on your hands! For the fur, I use a grass tip. I start with the tight spaces around the nose and mouth and eyes and on the tips of the ears. I use very short piping because the hair here is short.

Then, simply fill in the rest of the hair. Lol it’s not simple. Some bears (or animals) have long fur and others have short. Use your photos . Some even have long and short hair. I started on the bottom and worked up so the “hair” naturally falls on top of itself.

While the Polar & Panda bears are all white, the Kodiak bear has variation in his coat. Do get that same look I piped both colors.

Y’all, this will hurt your hands lol. Luckily this guy wanted to help. This is my sweet Jacob. I thought he would quit after a minute but he kept going. He did say it hurt but he did the backside of all 3 bears.

Now, you can make all kinds of animals using these same techniques! I can't wait for you to share your creations.

*There are lots of ways to make bears, eyes, noses, etc. This is the way I do it. One mans never is another mans always.

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