Scale Miniature Icings and Meringues

  • 01 of 05

    Miniature Piped Icings and Meringues in Dollhouse Scale

    Tinted acrylic modeling paste medium used with a 20 gauge Luer Lock syringe tip for dollhouse cakes
    Tinted Liquitex modeling paste used with a straight 20 gauge tip for miniature icing. Photo © 2015 Lesley Shepherd

    While you can use a range of techniques to create dollhouse scale miniature icings from tube acrylic paints, or mixes of liquid and colored polymer clay, one of the easiest and most detailed techniques involves using dispensing needle tips on a syringe with a mix of acrylic paint and acrylic medium.

    Luer Lock dispensing needles, like the #20 version shown here on a disposable syringe,  can be used to pipe fine lines of slightly stiffened acrylic paint into detailed icing designs on dollhouse cakes made from a range of materials. The fine lines can be coiled around each other to form the base for nested meringues in miniature, which can then have one or two rows of piping added around the edge to make miniature meringue 'nests' in circular or heart shapes.

    Control of the medium and paint is relatively easy, and the needles and syringes can be rinsed clean after use and reused.

    Simple icing / frosting kits of both the basic light molding paste medium (tinted or white) along with syringes and dispensing needle tips suitable for dollhouse icing projects are available from Stewart Dollhouse Creations.

    Note: The syringes and tips are not recommended for applying polymer clay / liquid polymer clay mixes, as that is difficult to clean from the syringe. If you use enough of the polymer clay mix to warrant disposing of the syringes, or storing the material in the syringe between uses, it may be a technique that works for you, although you will need to get a very precise mix of liquid polymer and polymer clay in order to get the mixture to flow through the dispensing needle with the correct texture to hold its shape.  Polymer clay / liquid polymer clay mix for icings can be "piped" using a plastic bag and regular cake icing tips, which are easier to clean up than syringe tips, especially if you are using materials which don't dissolve in water.

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  • 02 of 05

    Mix and Tint Molding or Modeling Paste for Dollhouse "Icing"

    Light modeling paste acrylic medium tinted with watercolor paint.
    Light modeling paste (Sold as molding paste in another popular brand) shown with the amount of tube watercolor paint used to tint it to a deep pink. Photo © 2015 Lesley Shepherd

    The photo on this page shows Liquitex Light Modelling Paste being tinted with a tiny amount of carmine watercolor paint to make a deep pink 'frosting' that can be used with a dispensing needle and syringe to create the effect of miniature piped icings.  The upper half of the photo shows the amounts used to mix the color in the bottom of the photo.

    The common artist's brands of Light Molding Paste (Golden) (Buy Direct from Dick Blick)  or Light Modeling Paste (Liquitex) are very similar in their appearance and effect. The Liquitex version seems to be slightly glossier when dry than the Golden version and also darkens a bit more as it dries which can affect color. Both remain light and slightly flexible after drying.

    Either can be mixed directly with either tube watercolor paint or acrylic paint to create a range of colors for decorating dollhouse baking. Place a small amount of color on a tile or painting palette, and add light molding paste to the color, mixing it thoroughly and adding more paste or more color to adjust the tint to something slightly paler than you wish the final color to be.

    In addition to applying these pastes to miniature baking with a syringe, you can spread the colored pastes and create textured or swirled frostings.

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  • 03 of 05

    Using Shaped Tips To Create Special Dollhouse Frosting / Icing Effects

    Star shaped icing frosting tip from Stewart Dollhouse Creations
    Star shaped icing / frosting tip from Stewart Dollhouse Creations suggested for 1:24 scale decorations. Photo © 2015 Lesley Shepherd

    The mix of molding / modeling paste and paint can be piped through regular icing tubes using disposable plastic bags, as well as through special tips. The one shown here is a star dispensing tip designed for 1:24 scale star piping.  This particular tip is available in three sizes from Stewart Dollhouse Creations. As they are modified by hand, these tips are priced at $16 and must be carefully rinsed after use. this means they should be used only with materials which wash out with water. They are not disposable!  Although you can find small star icing tubes from baking suppliers to use with plastic piping bags, they are much larger and are not suitable for scales smaller than 1:6.  If you want a star tip to use with a polymer clay/polymer liquid blend, you can modify standard icing tips, or make one from stiff foil and use it with a plastic bag.

    The start tips on the Luer Lock needles are a trifle finicky to use, but work well if the molding paste mixture has no large air bubbles and is allowed to stiffen slightly before you fill the syringe and begin to pipe with the mixture. A bit of experimentation with your mix is required, as different amounts of color will make the mixture a range of consistencies.  The star shaped tips can be used to pipe small individual stars, or rows of 'striped' piping for tiny meringues. Practise is required!  The examples shown are first attempts with a new mixture.

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  • 04 of 05

    Creating Dollhouse Meringues with Shaving Foam and Acrylic Paint

    Making a foam for miniature meringues from shaving foam and acrylic paint
    Making a 'meringue' mixture from acrylic paint and shaving foam for dollhouse scale meringues and meringue nests. Photo © 2015 Lesley Shepherd

    Other materials can be used to make paint mixtures which will mimic softer meringues in dollhouse scale. Acrylic tube paint can be mixed with shaving foam to make a soft paint mix that pipes well from a glue syringe or applicator bottle.  Depending on the foam used (simple dense foams with few additives work best) the acrylic paint/ soap foam mix will harden with tiny bubbles left by the drying foam. The foam will eventually turn to 'dust' and the paint /foam mixture can crack realistically to give the effect of foamy baked meringues for meringue nests and miniature Pavlovas.

    As the type of foam used will affect the drying of the paint, this is an experimental technique with results that can differ widely depending on the amount and type of foam used.  Experiment with small amounts of  materials you have on hand to see if this technique will work for the type of meringue you want to produce. Patience is required as the paint /soap foam mix takes longer to dry than the paint alone (or may not dry completely) .

    An alternative is to use liquid polymer clay mixed with polymer clay. Some of the mixture is test cured to make sure it hardens, and if successful, the remaining liquid mix clay can be mixed to the consistency of cake batter with baking soda, piped through a pin hole in a plastic bag, then baked / cured to make polymer clay with a bubbled texture.

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  • 05 of 05

    Piping Acrylic Paint or Foam / Paint With a Glue Syringe

    Mix of shaving foam and acrylic paint used for dollhouse scale meringues.
    Mix of acrylic paint and shaving foam for dollhouse scale meringues shaped with a glue syringe tip. Photo © 2015 Lesley Shepherd

    The photo on this page shows a mixture of tube acrylic paint (liquid paint is not dense enough) and shaving foam (1 part foam to two parts paint) as it pipes through a standard disposable glue syringe. The mixture is fairly easy to clean out of the syringe with water after you have finished piping your shapes.  As they dry, piped shapes from a mixture of foam and paint will 'melt' slightly losing definition. You can pipe acrylic paint mixed with light molding medium using the same technique. The texture will be slightly different but can still be used for meringues.

    To make miniature "meringue" nests, start piping a circle from the center point, moving the syringe around the center to make a flat base for your nest.  Set the bases aside to dry slightly.  When the center's are beginning to harden, pipe one or two lines of your mixture around the edges of your next 'base'.  You can also make hearts or square meringue boxes using this method.

    If you are happy with a meringue look that does not have a bubbly texture or cracks from drying, you can try piping matte acrylic tube paint without the addition of foam to make miniature meringue nests. Dusted with faux "powdered sugar" made from white pastel, these will give a realistic effect without as much work.

    More ways to make miniature icings