I made these 3D human figures cupcakes a 21st birthday. The cupcakes were ordered by the birthday girl’s mother. They were ordered together with another cake that was supposed to be the main birthday cake.
The entire order centered around the birthday girl’s wishes. I could sense how much the mother wanted the event to be special for her beloved daughter.
3D Human Figures Cupcakes
This set of cupcakes were very symbolic. It was a lovely message from the entire family to the birthday girl and the toppers represent all her family members including her 3 pets.
Getting the toppers done was quite a challenge for me. But I went ahead and accepted this order because I had just completed Craftsy’s Cake Topper Techniques (Figure Modelling) class and was quite keen to try out my newly acquired skill.
Figure modelling lessons
And I must say, that class really did help me with my figure modelling (only the human figures by the way. The class does not cover animals modelling so the dog toppers I have on this page were not covered in the class). I would definitely recommend this class to anyone who is looking into mastering the art of modelling human figures.
There is so much to learn, particularly on how to make proportionate human toppers for cakes and how to construct a strong structure for these sugar models so that they remain stable on the cake. I have written all about the classes you can enroll into to learn how to make human figures on a separate post here for those who are interested to find out more about making human figurines.
So back to the cupcakes. There were a total of 12 cupcakes in this set out of which 5 had 3D human figure toppers and 3 had 3D dog toppers. Each one of the human toppers represented the birthday girl’s family members – the mother, father, grandmother and her 2 sisters. The birthday girl’s figurine was on her birthday cake, so she is not represented here. And the dog toppers were off course the family pet dogs.
The remaining 4 cupcakes were decorated with a special message to the birthday girl from all the family members.
I placed the cupcakes on a cake board that was customized specifically to hold 12 cupcakes. I made this myself by rolling a thick piece of fondant onto a cake drum and then cut out 12 holes (big enough to fit the cupcakes) using my round cutters before placing one cupcake into each hole. In cutting the holes, I made sure they were positioned consistently apart on the cake board.
Let’s look at the main supplies I used to make these cupcakes:
How to Make 3D Human Figures Cupcakes
Main supplies for 3D human figures cupcakes:
- Cupcakes – I made a total of 12 cupcakes using my chocolate cupcakes recipe.
- Gum paste – I used Satin Ice gum paste
- Fondant – All the fondant work on these cupcakes were from Satin Ice.
- CMC powder – I added this to fondant in very small quantities to help it set firmer and harder, especially when making 3D structures or designs on cakes. I used this for the 3D dogs.
- Floral wire – All the human figurines had structures made of wires. And I used 24 gauge floral wire to do it.
- Pizza cutter and sugar craft knife– these were my cutting tools for the project.
- Fondant modelling tools – these were very useful tools. I used them to help with the figurine modelling work.
- Pearl sugar dragees
- FMM Tappit letter cutters in block letters.
- Scalloped cutter set – I used this to cut out the fondant circles for the cupcakes covering.
- Round cutter set
- Cake drum – To place the cupcakes
- Lollipop sticks
- Shortening and fondant glue
3D Human Figures Cupcakes
Assembling the 3D human figures cupcakes:
Making the human figurines
- I started with the human toppers. I learned how to create the internal structures for my human figurines with floral wire in the Craftsy video I mentioned above. Once the structures were up, I mixed my gum paste to the required colors and started making the figurines.
- In making these figurines, I formed the body, legs, hands and the head separately and then attached them all together. Only after that did I add the clothes on, so this in a way felt quite like playing dressing! And I find this to be an effective technique is creating human figure toppers for cakes. The figurines were all wired. I made sure there was excess wire underneath, long enough to poke into the cupcakes. I used lollipop sticks to insert the wires into before poking into the cupcakes, to hold the figurines in place.
The dog toppers
- I made the dog toppers in fondant. I formed all 3 by hand with the help of my shaping tools. There were no wires or support structures for these. To hold them securely on the cupcakes, I used fondant glue.
Baking the cupcakes
- As for the cupcakes, I baked them using my chocolate cake recipe. Each cupcake was coated with buttercream before being covered in fondant. For the cover, I used my round scalloped cutter to cut out the red and brown circles.
Lettering and deco on the cupcakes
- As for the lettering on the cake, I used my FMM Tappit letter cutters and cut out the birthday wishes in white gum paste. I attached these lettering to the cupcakes with shortening.
- The silver pearl beads were originally white sugar dragees. I bought these from a local cake decorating supplies shop and colored them silver by putting them in a plastic bag together with some edible silver dust and a few drops of lemon extract. I then shook the bag until the pearl beads were all well coated with the silver dust. And then I poured them onto a shallow plate and let them dry. Once dried, I picked them up with a tweezer and attached them to the cupcakes with glue.
- The yellow rosses on one of the cupcakes are simple rolled roses. I formed these by hand, by simply rolling a thin pieces of yellow fondant. I also formed the leaves by hand. And I used my sugar craft knife to mark a line in the center to make the leaves look more like leaves.
- Finally, I cut the 2 red hearts with my heart shaped plunger cutter and attached the cupcake with shortening.
And that’s that. My 3D human figures cupcakes.
Happy Decorating 🙂