Mad About Hats Cake Challenge

Our Mad Hatter of Batter has called for a contest…and so, we will have one!! The Hatter wants to see how creative you can be with his favorite thing – a Hat.

The “Mad About Hats” Challenge* – The bottle said “Drink Me” and when Alice did, she shrank to only ten inches tall – challenging to be sure. But, YOUR challenge will be to decorate a Hatter’s Top Hat that’s only EIGHT (8) inches tall! All competitors in this challenge will have to decorate the same, very specific hat. How will you make YOURS stand out from the others? Well now, THAT’S the challenge!

  1. You  must decorate a Mad Hatter’s Hat. The hat must conform to these dimensions:
  2. Your hat can be a dummy, rice treats or real cake. However, you must show at least 2 progress pictures if you use real cake or rice treats, to reveal your sculpting ability to the judges.
  3. You cannot change the shape or dimensions of the basic hat in any way, except for the brim. You will be allowed to sculpt contours into an edible brim, or sand contours into a foam brim.
  4. All decorations on your hat must be edible, with the exception of floral wire. Inedible elements on the total display should be kept to a minimum.
  5. Hats may be decorated in any style. (Victorian, Steampunk, whimsy , etc.)
  6. All other aspects of your display must adhere to the regular Sugar Art Gallery display rules. Due to mandatory height restrictions, all entries will receive One (1) Century club Ticket as a “thank you” for your entry. Displays must be brought to the gallery during regularly scheduled set-up times, beginning on Wednesday, July 25th at 3:00pm and must remain in the Sugar Art gallery until the end of the show at 5:00pm on Sunday, July 29th.
  7. Judging will begin on Friday, July 27th, and winners will be announced on Saturday morning, in time for public viewing.
  8. There is no fee to enter this contest. However, all entries must be pre-registered, to ensure space. To register your entry, please use the Sugar Art Gallery registration form. There will be a section on the form for this purpose. No entry will be received after 5:00pm on Thursday, July 26th.
  9. There will be two (2) Divisions – Adult (18yrs and up) and Teen (13 – 17yrs)
  10. Judging criteria will be on 50 point system – 10 points each for:
    • Neatness and precision
    • Attention to detail
    • Degree of difficulty
    • Creativity and originality
    • Overall appearance

The same judging system will apply to both adult and teen divisions.

How to register your entry:

Registration is simple – Under the Events & Challenges menu, find the link for Sugar Art Gallery. You will have options to register by mail-in form or on line. The mail in form contains a section that looks like this:

Click Here to Register Online

Click Here to Download the Mail-In Form

Haga clic aquí para registrarse en línea

Mad About Hats Form

ICES Member?   Yes/No______    Registered Attendee?    Yes/ No______    Youth Entry?    Yes/No______     Age?____

Number of regular displays: ____ Total number of tiers or displays 6” or larger:____  Space (Inches) needed for displays: _____

Number of “Mad About Hats” Challenge Displays _______

A similar section will appear in the On-line form.  If you are entering the ‘Mad About Hats” Challenge in the Adult Division, simply mark the line in the area shown in blue. If you are entering the Teen Division, please mark the lines in the both areas, shown in blue and yellow (These colors will NOT appear on the actual form).

Fill out the remainder of the form, in the same way you would if you were bringing a sharing (non-judged) display to the Sugar Art Gallery and submit by the deadlines on the form.  Remember – All Sugar Art Gallery rules apply to your entry. Please make sure to read them.

Hat dummies for this competition are available by special arrangement, from Guildcraft Furniture Company, of York, PA.  Guildcraft will provide each dummy for a $5.00 handling charge and the cost of shipping to your location. Each shipping amount will be determined at the time of your order. The foam specialists at Guildcraft are prepared to make the dummies exactly to the dimensions specified in the contest rules, above. All you have to do is place your order. Here’s how….

  • You MUST call Guildcraft directly at 717-854-3888. Hours are Mon. – Fr. 9:00 am to 5:00 pm and

Sat. 10:00 am to 12:00 Noon, EST. Ask for Bob.

  • Please have a credit card ready, for shipping charges.
  • Let them know that you are a contestant in the “Ohio Cake Show” and ask for the ICES Hat Dummy
  • If your call goes to voicemail, please leave a message with your name and phone number and let them know you are calling about the dummy, as mentioned. They will get back to you for your order.

That’s it!!  A precisely cut dummy will arrive at your door….

Want to do your own display with the hat, but NOT enter the competition?  That’s fine too. You may request a hat dummy from Guildcraft, or make your own out of cake or rice treats, and register it as a regular sharing (non-judged) display in the cake gallery. Height and size restrictions will not apply to displays in the sharing show. But, they MUST adhere to all Sugar Art Gallery rules and regulations.

Click Here to Download this Information

For questions or further information, please email