Some women have an obsession with footwear, however that does not describe me as I have only a few pairs of shoes with which I am quite happy. But when it comes to cake pedestals/stands it is a whole different matter because that is when all my common sense goes right out the window. Why? Because I adore cake stands and for me, depending on the coloring, shape, height, etc., they can add subtle differences to the mood of my various projects. (In DIY add See: Gumpaste Mermaidens which shows an example of using two different cake pedestals for the same project).
Having confessed to my pedestal passion it shouldn’t surprise you that in my opinion one can never have too many “tasteful” cake pedestals. That being said I have two “big” problems with cake stands. The first is they take up quite a bit of storage space of which I don’t have a lot. This is due to their height and the fact that they are not easily stacked onto one another (because of their pedestals). The second reason is most of the stands available out there are usually too large for my uses as they are typically 10” plus in diameter. I generally prefer diminutive ones ranging between 6” to 9” as I like to create smaller cake projects.
Here Is a Solution
An answer came to me when I found some Sophie Conran ceramic pieces at Home Goods/TJ Maxx and later at Macy’s department store. I was so excited when I realized that I could make these pieces into ‘interchangeable’ pedestals. I was not interested in a solution that would permanently glue the pieces together because I would just be back exactly where I was before with the storage and size dilemma. What I needed was something to adhere the pieces together short-term and have them be able to be disassembled easily.
When I had my floral business back in the 80’s I regularly used a floral clay (which comes in a “tape” form and is referred to as “stickum” in the floral trade) to adhere Oasis anchors, floral pin frogs, plastic dishes, etc. when they were required in my floral creations. So, I thought this might be the solution. If my plan worked I could easily remove this pliable putty after I was finished using the pieces. Fortunately, I still had two rolls of it in the garage: one roll of Floralife Sure-Stick and one roll of Vogue Stickum both of which still seemed to be in good condition.
I was curious if my idea would work, so I looked at the packaging for advice. On the Floralife Sure-Stick roll there is no mention of how to deal with removal after use, but luckily for me the Vogue Stickum roll clearly addressed what needed to be done. It stated that “Traces Of Adhesive May Be Easily Removed With White Gasoline Or Naptha”.
Having found a substance I could take off after combining my pieces meant I was ready to go. So, I placed it on various cake pedestal combinations and fortunately I really couldn’t find any residual floral clay left behind after removing it, so there was no need to clean off any remains. So before you go running out to buy the Coleman camp fuel (Naptha), I would suggest testing your “stickum” out first because you may not need to use a petroleum product to expunge the putty.
Floral Clay Tips & Tricks
Update (4/2016) Since writing this article I have used my “stickum” (aka floral clay) trick to hold my ceramic pieces together on several different occasions now. Originally I was a little uncertain about how much residual floral clay might be left behind on the ceramic pieces after disassembly, but I’m happy to report little if any remains and it can be easily removed with just a fingernail or a blunt plastic tool such as a bone folding tool which will insure that you don’t mar your plate’s ceramic glaze.
Floral clay can be used on wood, glass, ceramics, metals, candles, figurines, and to even fix a leak in an aquarium.
It must be applied onto a clean (dust-free) dry surface.
It does not harden and can be reused again on items such as floral (pin) frogs.
It is waterproof.
It is best stored in a cool dry place. I keep mine in a closed container so that any dust will not be able to stick onto the outer edges of the tape.
To use cut of a small strip and form a ring then press it onto one of the two surfaces, then press together the two pieces using a slight twisting motion as this will anchor them in place (i.e. attach them firmly). I find a little usually goes a long way on most projects.
Since I don’t want to worry about cleaning them, I use an old pair of scissors/shears as the clay tape could possibly leave a little residue on the blades of a good pair of scissors.
I am ecstatic because for about $58.00 (not including sales tax) I now have seven different sized cake pedestals ranging from 6 ½” to 12” that take up a lot less room in my closet. Not to mention there is no reason why I cannot also use my two bases with other complimentary colored plates I may find in the future. The only downside I can see is it would be a little bit of extra work if I had to clean off any possible traces of floral clay (which has yet to be the case). Regardless, I hope you agree this is a pretty creative way of expanding your repertoire of pedestals on which you pose pieces of your gumpasting projects.