photo guidelines and tips
What does a topper cost?
A basic 2 figure cake topper is $2900 plus shipping. Additional figures on a topper are $1450. ea. A single figure sculpture is $1500. Small animals are $600. For larger animals ask for a quote.
What about extra props?
Here is a list of common items and their prices. If you don't see your item listed just ask.
Can you do vehicles?
Yes, though there are some restrictions. The average figure is 7.5" tall therefore a vehicle cannot be proportional to the figures or they would be too large for the cake. An alternative is to make a smaller caricature representation of the vehicle. The other option is to reduce the body size of the figures but the heads will remain the same size as a normal figure which averages 1" high.
Why can't the figures be smaller?
It is difficult to get the detail I want if I go too much smaller though I can go a bit smaller if necessary..
What kind of pictures do you need?
You may send pictures that you already have (and I do want some of those) but I will need photos taken especially for this project. Please look at the Photo Guidelines Page. It shows samples of good and bad pictures as well as tips for better picture taking. The Getting Started form also outlines the required photos.
What if I don't know what dress, etc. that I will wear?
If your wedding is a long way off and you haven't made those decisions yet there is no problem. The important thing is to get your spot reserved. Get pictures to me as you get them as long as I have them at least 3 months before the wedding?
Do you only make toppers or can you do a single figure?
I can do single figures for any occasion.
What if I want a figure of a person who is deceased or not available and I only have a couple of pictures?
The degree of likeness will depend on the quality of the pictures available. If you only have a front view I can still do it but I will be guessing as to the profile.
How long does it take to make a cake topper?
I allow myself about 3 weeks for a topper.
How many toppers do you take a year?
I am reducing the number of topper orders I take a year to only 4-6 ,so reserve yours as soon as possible.
Can you do cartoon characters?
I cannot do copyrighted characters though I can, for instance, put a superman costume on your figure. ( I don't think that violates copyright, but if someones knows otherwise please let me know)
What are the figures made of?
Polymer Clay. I use Premo and Kato Clay. It cures in the oven at 275 degrees.
Will the figures look exactly like us?
My goal is to get as close as I can to your likeness but I do not guarantee a certain degree of likeness. These are not intended to be portraits but representations. The bodies and props will be cartoonish in representation. Hair, eye and skin colors are not guaranteed to match perfectly. I come as close as I can with what I am provided in the pictures but all of those elements can differ substantially from picture to picture.
Are the figures fragile?
I wouldn't throw one against the wall but polymer clay is very strong once it is baked. Thin pieces will remain slightly flexible after baking.
How long do the figures last?
I have figures that I made about 18 years ago and they are still in perfect condition. The display dome will help to keep your sculpture as fresh as the day it graced your cake.
How soon should I reserve my topper?
I need at least 3 months advance notice to complete a sculpture but that usually isn't soon enough. Many people make reservations a year and more in advance.
How much does a topper weigh?
A typical 2 figure cake topper will be about one and a half pounds. More for larger or multifigured toppers.
What size is the base of the cake topper?
Bases vary in size but a typical topper has a base of 6.5" round. The cake's top layer will need to be large enough to accomodate the base. Larger, heavier sculptures may do better on a stand next to the cake.
What are my options for the base?
My bases are a dark brown walnut grain. They can be painted if you'd prefer a solid color. The top of the base can also represent other mediums like tile, brick, stones, etc. Check with me.
Do I need to do anything special to the cake?
A topper weighs much less than a layer of cake. To support the layers your decorator will put dowels in each layer to support the next layer. The same procedure will apply to the top layer that supports the topper. Have a cake plate put on the top layer to set the topper upon. Do not set it directly on the icing.
The price includes a glass dome?
Yes, for a typical topper the dome is 8"W x 10"H. If a larger topper requires a larger dome there will be a small additional charge.
Is there a reduction in price if I don't want a dome?
No. The dome is required as I use it as part of my shipping and packaging method to protect the sculpture.
Do you ship internationally?
Yes. You will be responsible for the actual shipping charges and any additional duties charged by your country. Shipping prices have increased significantly so any increase in shipping cost will be added to the final payment. Duty is paid by you at the time of delivery.
What types of payment methods do you use?
I take checks, credit cards. Final payment must be received before topper can be shipped.
What should I do if I decide I want you to make a topper for me?
Contact me first for availability. I will let you know if your date is available. Then download the forms on the Pricing and Ordering page. Send me the completed order form with a 50% deposit to reserve your space Then start getting your information together, fill out the information form and take the pictures.
Can I e-mail pictures?
Yes, though if the files are large split them up between several e-mails.
What if changes are made after I send the pictures and info sheet?
Changes are not a problem as long as I have not started the topper or the change can be fitted in to what I have completed.. Just e-mail me with the changes.
Can you take pictures of my topper while you are making it?
I really don't have time for that. I will take pictures of it once it is finished and post them on my site as soon as I get them ready. You will usually have the topper before I get them on my site since I ship next day delivery.
How do you ship?
I use Fed Ex next day delivery. Shipping prices have increased significantly so any increase in shipping cost will be added to the final payment.
What if something is broken when it arrives?
Contact me immediately. If it is simply a piece that gets knocked loose do to rough handling you can usually simply re glue it. If it suffers significant damage you may return it to me for repair.
Do you insure the toppers? yes, but FedEx puts a limit on one of a kind items of about $250 reguardless of the declared value.
Cake Topper Gallery 1 / Cake topper Gallery 2 / Polymer Clay Kid Figurines 1 / 2 / 3 / How a cake topper is made / Prices and cake topper info