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Specialized knowledge and experience
sets us apart.

For over 20 years, Chicago Culinary FX has been the industry leader in custom silicone mold design and manufacturing. Established in 2002 as the Chicago School of Mold Making, founder and CEO Michael Joy spent years teaching executive chefs and entrepreneurs how to safely and efficiently shape ingredients of all kinds. Since then, Joy maintains global recognition as a pioneer in culinary mold making through his thousands of collaborations with renowned chefs around the world. However, decades of experience across industries have evolved Chicago Culinary FX into the first-choice manufacturer for high-grade silicone and PETG molds for edibles, confections, culinary gourmet, culinary mass-production, fabrication, medical research, laboratory equipment, construction trades, resin castings, and everything in between. Our roots are grounded in sculpture art, enabling a distinct approach and artistic edge to our molds. These hand skills, paired with capabilities in 3D printing, laser engraving, CAD modeling, and HD thermoforming are what elevates the Chicago Culinary FX client experience. 

Chocolate Molds

Founder & CEO

Michael Joy

Author of Confectionery Art Casting: Silicone Mold Making for the Pastry Chef, Michael Joy, is both a master mold maker and sculptor. Graduating from the Art Institute of Chicago, his skills quickly evolved when he founded a sculptural fabrication studio where he undertook a wide variety of commercial projects ranging from creating the master model for the Oscar’s trophy to large scale monument restorations. Not only is Michael recognized for his commitment to superior craftsmanship, but also for his wide range of projects that have later been displayed globally.

Michael Joy

Director of Operations

Balin Pagadala

Balin started with Chicago Culinary FX (formerly The Chicago School of Mold Making) in 2013. He is one of the world’s premiere designers in the food shaping industry. With an extensive background in fabrication, illustration and food development, Balin blends his craftsmanship and artistry with his knowledge of molecular gastronomy. 

Mentored under CEO and Master Mold Maker Michael Joy, Balin currently leads the team at Chicago Culinary FX. Whether designing molds for high yield candy manufacturing or designing showpieces and plates for international culinary competitions, every project is thoroughly examined and thoughtfully designed to help the clients achieve their best results.

Balin Pagadala


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