Seashells and Starfish with Timbo!
February 03, 2017

Seashells and Starfish with Timbo!

Timbo Sullivan is a world-renowned cake artist based in Columbus, Ohio. He has appeared on television shows like the Food Network's Duff Till Dawn and Outrageous Wedding Cakes, and the Game Show Network's Skin Wars: Fresh Paint.

Cakes by Timbo

Timbo is recognized for his complex sculpting, intricate detail work, and a hyper-realistic special-effects style. Today he's demonstrating how to make these incredibly convincing seashells and starfish completely by hand- no molds needed!

Shells and Starfish by Timbo Sullivan

Everyone is either always asking me how I make my seashells, or not asking me because they're assuming I just use molds....I don't! I'm going to show you all the quick and easy way I make some of my seashells and starfish.

My starfish are probably the most popular in all of my classes. You could very easily use a star cutter for this but, then you can't brag that you didn't use any molds or cutters. 

Starfish using Sugar Shapers
I start with a fondant ball and then slightly flatten it. I SOFTLY pull and pinch to make legs (don't pull them too long yet). Use your pointed Sugar Shaper to press in between each "leg" and then softly pull and pinch again, making the legs longer.

Starfish Using Sugar Shapers
Next I line each leg from the center out, and finish by using 3 or 4 toothpicks to add a sponge texture to the starfish.

Now, let's make some seashells!

Seashells with Sugar Shapers
For the first one, I'll repeat the same 2 steps from the starfish but this time I'll flatten it a little more. Using my pointed Sugar Shaper, I start at the center-top of the fondant disc, press in slightly, and then drag downward towards the center-bottom. Repeat that step on both sides as many times as you like. You can also cut the very bottom off to get rid of any imperfections. 

Seashells with Sugar Shapers
The next seashell we'll make is one of the easiest. You roll a fondant ball, roll it sideways in your hand or on your workspace, only on one side so that the other side stays pretty thick and rounded. After you have a carrot shaped piece, simply roll the smaller end up to the larger end (you may need to add a little water).

You can keep your shell like that, or you can softly pinch a pull along the top to add spikes. I normally pinch and pull in a circular motion so that the spikes don't LOOK pinched.

Seashells with Sugar Shapers
The next seashell is even easier. Simply roll your fondant ball out so that it's slightly thinner on both sides. Fold one thin end to the other thin end (add water) and then twist the middle while holding the top. You can use your orange Sugar Shaper to hollow out the shell's cavity.

Seashells with Sugar Shapers
You'll do a similar twisting motion for the next piece, but you won't roll the fondant balls as long. Once you have a football shape, you'll line the center with your tri-tip Sugar Shaper (the red one), and then twist the tops.

Seashells with Sugar Shapers
You can even make a few using marbled fondant. When adding color, I normally airbrush or drybrush the outsides using a darker color of the fondant color I used (ie: Navy over Blue, Red over Orange, Orange over Yellow). You can also add a pearl sheen to each one or a select few!

Seashells and Starfish Using Sugar Shapers

Hope you all find this useful, and if you do, SEND ME PICS!!!!!



We hope you're as excited as we are about Timbo's Starfish and Seashells! If you want to see more of Timbo's work and hear about his upcoming classes, follow him on Facebook and Instagram.