June 10, 2010

Rock and Roll Guitar Cake

Electric Pink Guitar Rock 'n Roll Cake

My little niece asked for a chocolate cake with a pink guitar standing up on it, and this is the design I made her, a 6" cake with matching, hot pink electric guitar-topped cupcakes.  Super girlie, very pink, and very rock and roll.

I made an inspiration board of Rock and Roll themed items that were very girly with lots of pink and black, some swirly hearts, and butterflies.  I also found some adorable, guitar cupcake toppers by Cakes by Steph that I tried to replicate.

Rock and Roll Pink Guitar Cake (closeup)

I used Adobe Photoshop to place and figure out the overall design I wanted to do for the sides of the cake.  Then, I printed my design on letter-sized paper and used it as a template for me to hand-paint the details around the actual cake.  

The cake was chocolate filled with chocolate mousse, crumb-coated in milk chocolate Ganache, and then covered in hot pink Marshmallow Fondant (MMF) - Visit my page for the recipe HERE: Marshmallow Fondant Recipes. The background of the cake was painted with pink and red gel colors mixed with almond extract.  Almond extract tries quickly and does not leave a sticky residue behind (you can use Vodka or lemon extract as well).  The black cutout decorations were all hand-cut out of fondant.

Up to this point, I have not had much practice with hand-piping aside from writing "Happy Birthday" or a few words across a  cake, so this was a learning challenge. The guitars for the cupcakes were made using Wilton Color Flow Mix since I read it dries harder than with using straight royal icing. The colors were all made the night before so the black could have a chance to mature and darken completely – the black was more of a murky gray the day I made it but turned perfectly black by the time I needed to use it.

I printed a template of some electric guitars I found online and taped parchment paper over the paper template. These little guys took me 3 hours to get done!  Talk about slow piping!  Hah-hah!  30 guitars took me 3 hours; not very efficient but it was a nice learning experience!

Royal Icing Hand-Piped Guitars
Outlined First then Filled (LEFT)
Filled without Outline (RIGHT)

I do admit, the 1st 2 hours of piping the guitars were spent just getting the right consistency of icing. I tried to outline the guitars 1st, then fill them in with a wetter icing, but it was so messy and looked awful (see the photo above of the guitar on the left).  I then thickened the icing with more powdered sugar and finally figured out a good enough consistency to pipe the guitars without an outline, and they turned out much smoother and nicer.

I first piped in all the pink and black on the guitars over one evening, then on the following evening, and after the guitars had tried completely through, I added in the white details.

Hand piped royal icing electric pink guitar cupcake toppers.

Rock and Roll Electric Pink Cupcakes with Toppers

TRICK: Precut Fondant and Keep Them Mailable for Days:

I learned a neat trick while at a California Cake Club meeting earlier in the year that you can make fondant cutouts days ahead and keep them soft and pliable if you wrap the fondant cutouts and store them in the freezer until you need them.  What a time-saver!  We all know, if you leave fondant cutouts out, they will dry stiff and hard.  Wonderful if you want hard cutouts or need them to stand up on a cake.  The neat thing is that the moisture in the freezer keeps the fondant soft and pliable. I was able to make these cutouts a few days ahead and when I pulled them out of the freezer, I was able to use them right away…they were perfectly soft and bendable like there were just made.  The photo above shows the black fondant cutouts sitting over parchment paper and inside a gallon-sized freezer zip-lock bag.

Rock and Roll Pink Guitar Cake (closeup)

All these cutout details were hand-cut (stars, #7, guitar, leaves).  Silver dragees were added in the middle of the stars and to make the name across the cake board.

The guitar standing on the top of the cake was hand-cut from marshmallow fondant mixed with Tylose (Tylose or Gum-tex makes fondant dry hard and fast).  I don’t like using toothpicks in cakes as a safety precaution (I've seen kids bite down on cake toppers even after warning them) so instead, used dry spaghetti as a skewer to stab into the cake and help hold the topper up.

The cake was a huge hit with the girls and they loved eating their cupcakes with pink guitars.

Rock Star Electric Guitar Cake and Cupcakes


  1. This is incredibly cute!! Thanks for the tips!!

  2. What an amazing cake! I love all the little guitars. Your niece has a very talented (and devoted) aunt.

  3. AnonymousJune 05, 2011

    Love the cake, you are an amazing cake decorator. Thanks for sharing your tips!!!

  4. Hi, I love your cakes. I am new to cake decorating and would like ro make a guitar like the one you have on top of this cake. What is the reason you chose fondant for the guitar on top of the cake vs color flow mix for the ones on cupcakes. Which method is easier? I am going to make just 1 and I'd like to use easier method as this will be my first time.


    1. Thanks Ha. I had only been making cakes for a year when I made this and was not very comfortable with making 3D things yet and thought Color Flow/Royal Icing toppers would be easier than cutting out each guitar out of fondant. I knew the fondant will be hard and stable to stand up on the cake vs doing it in Royal Icing. It was just a preference with no real reason behind it. I say, do what you're most comfortable with. If I were to recreate this today, I would make everything (cupcake toppers and cake topper) in Fondant - most because pipping is not my forte =D and I'm more confident with working with fondant.

  5. Angela, thank you so mush for your wonderful tutorials! I've learned a lot! You are very talented and generous. Wish you and your family all the best!