How to make an ‘Elf on the Shelf’ cake topper

Elf1

My household is obsessed with The Elf on the Shelf this time of year so I had to turn the little guy into a cake topper. I took some photos along the way!

This is what I used:
work surface
parchment-covered foam block
Lemon Meringue doll
small ball tool
stick tool
1.5” circle cutter
toothpick
corn starch
rolling pin
X-Acto knife
lollipop stick or skewer
water pen
fondant in red, white, nude, black, blue, brown
gum paste
extra-fine tip edible marker in black, brown and red
small brush
orange and pink luster dust
Any large piping tip
fondant smoother

elf2.jpgI have several homemade face molds from my daughter’s dolls. I thought this Lemon Meringue one was around the right size and shape. To create the mold, dust the doll’s face with cornstarch and press it firmly into a ball of gumpaste. Let it harden overnight.

elf3.jpgOnce your mold has hardened, press a flesh tone ball of fondant/gumpaste mix into the mold.

elf4.jpgTease out the bulbous shapes of the cheeks, nose and chin with a small ball tool.

elf5.jpgIndent the mouth with a toothpick.

elf6.jpgTo make the torso, start with a ball of red fondant/gumpaste mix that is a bit larger than the head.

elf7.jpgUse a fondant smoother and your hands to achieve the proper shape.

elf8.jpgThen for legs, form a smaller ball and cut it into equal halves.

elf9.jpgRoll them until you have the legs shaped as shown.

elf10.jpgFlatten the top of each leg so it will sit flush under the torso.

elf11.jpgBend the legs over the parchment-covered foam piece. Then attach the torso to the legs with water or the edible glue of your choice.

elf12.jpgForm a small red ball of fondant/gumpaste mix and divide it equally to make the elf’s skinny arms.

elf13.jpgMake each half into a round ball.

elf14.jpgThen roll them out as shown into the arm shapes.

elf15.jpgAttach a white, pointy elf hand to the bottom of each.

elf16.jpgAttach them with a dab of water. (I occasionally place the head on the body to see how it is “shaping up.”)

elf17.jpgTo make the white collar, cut fondant with a 1.5 inch circle cutter.

elf18.jpgHand cut the points of the collar with the X-acto knife.

elf19.jpgAttach the collar to the body with a dab of water or the edible glue of your choice.

elf20.jpgMoving on to make the face details, I used a Wilton #230 tip to cut eye details because it has a nice oval shape.

elf21.jpgRoll the white ovals out to make them a touch larger and attach them with water.

elf22.jpgThen cut out slightly smaller blue ovals, and then slightly smaller black ovals for the eyes.

elf23.jpgAttach them as shown.

elf24.jpgUse an extra-fine tip edible marker to draw the black lines at the tops of each eye. Then draw in the lashes with black and the brows with brown. Finally, draw his little pink lower lip.

elf25.jpgHis cheeks are an orange/pink tone so mix the two colors and gently apply with a soft brush.

elf26.jpgMold the ears by hand and then attach them and give them an indent with this stick tool.

elf28.jpgYou only have to add the front and side hair because the hat covers the rest. I cut mine into three small pieces and attached them with water. Give some added texture to the hair with a toothpick.

elf29.jpgTo shape the hat, start with a red ball of fondant/gumpaste mix. Use your hands and fondant smoother to keep rolling it into a cylinder. Hollow out the base of the hat with your thumbs a little so it sits nicely on his head.

elf30.jpgAttach the hat with a little water and (2) half toothpicks for extra stability.

elf31.jpg

Finally, roll out and cut a wide white band of fondant for the hat trim and attach it. Allow the head to dry for a while up against your back splash or somewhere. This will help the hat keep it’s upward shape.

Elf1

In my cake topper design, I made a small, white pillow (Rice Krispy Treats covered in fondant) for the elf to sit on. I attached the torso to the pillow with a thin wooden skewer and left an inch of the skewer sticking up from the neck. The next day, after the head had time to harden, I secured it to the body by pressing it down onto the exposed skewer.

This cake would make a big impression at a Christmas party. It would also be perfect for any birthday boy or girl that loves the Elf on the Shelf!

Happy Caking!
Renée

Renée
Reneé caught the cake decorating bug seven years ago when she made her son's first birthday cake. Since then, she's created hundreds of custom cakes and cupcakes. Her work has been featured on various baking and party blogs. In her free time, you'll find her planning the next baking project or sharing her knowledge on CakeJournal.
Renée
Renée
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Comments

  1. judy says

    I’d love to learn how to make my own molds. Do you have any tutorials? You Elf is perfect !! Merry Christmas

  2. says

    One question i fgorgot to ask you! What cake do you have underneath it? And is that just white fondant arround it? Thanks in advance for answering! And this i forgot too…..thank you for sharing your idea! Bye. :-)

    • Renee says

      Marja, the topper is sitting atop a 6” round vanilla sour cream cake with vanilla pudding. It is iced with vanilla buttercream :)

  3. says

    Hi, i love your elf on a cake! It looks wonderfull! And your subscriptions are so clear That i without trouble can understand how you made it! It is sooooooo amazingly beautifull! A great idea to make be4 the Christmas! I really, really love it! You did a great job! Well done! Byebye. :-)

    • Renee says

      Thanks for the nice compliments Marja. And when I answered your question about the cake details above, I meant to say “with vanilla pudding inside.” Don’t want to confuse you :) xo

    • Renee says

      Thanks Rima. It’s certainly not my original idea. Cake decorators have been sharing their methods for mold making for years. I think i first saw the idea on Cake Central when I became interested in cake decorating years ago. But, it does give me a nice head start for figure modeling many times. Luckily my daughter has a large doll collection :)

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