The question of how to make fondant cake decorations come up very often among beginner cake decorators. You can use fondant cake decorations to make borders, cover an entire cake or just embellish simple cake designs.
There are many kinds of fondant cake decorations. Similarly, there are also many techniques and tools that can be employed to make fondant cake decorations. The beautiful thing about fondant cake decorations is that they can be used on any kind of cake.
From making plaques for placing a message on a buttercream covered cake, to making toppers for cute cupcakes; they are versatile and adaptable.
Truth is that fondant cake decorations really add a level of sophistication to a finished cake.
I can hear someone say “yeah that’s all true, but how can I make those awesome fondant cake decoration? How can I turn my cakes to amazing works of arts that would rival some of the ones I see in bakery storefronts?
What you need are the right tools and some practice of basic techniques. In this article we would tell you the right tools to have and also share some of the basic techniques that would get you started.
Note these tips would only help to unlock your creativity. It behooves you to go ahead and experiment, practice and develop your own unique styles and designs.
How To Make Fondant Cake Decorations – Tools and Ingredients Needed
There are many more tools that are available for making fondant decorations but the list above is what we consider the basic. In all honesty, many of us started with less than all that’s on that list. But the beauty of it is that you can always improvise. As you watch an instructor (real time or by video) demonstrate some of fondant cake decorations you’ll see that some of the utensils in your kitchen can actually serve the purpose of some of the tools used.
So essentially we would advise that you take a class or two before you go out to buy tools. In a situation where you cannot attend a class, YouTube videos can come to the rescue. That is essentially why we add a good number of videos to our posts.
The basic ingredients needed are as follows:-
How To Make Fondant Decorations – Most Common Application of Fondant Decorations
The most basic use of fondant decoration among beginner cake decorators is to make fondant cut out cakes.
This is basically a cake that’s covered in fondant and then adorned with simple fondant borders and cutouts. These cut outs come in different shapes and forms. We share some of them with you here:-
These serve many purposes but there were two most useful purposes it served for us as beginners. (I) to cover some of the flaws at the bottom of the cake (between the cake and the cake board) and (ii) help tie in multiple tiered cakes.
Fondant borders come in different sizes and shapes and can be created by free hand, with some tools or molds.
One of the most popular fondant borders that you can create free hand is the rope border. It is quite easy to make this fondant decoration, all you to do is follow these simple steps:-
(i) Cut out two equal balls of fondant. Knead them well until soft and pliable, you might need to add a little bit of CMC or tylose to your fondant to make it stretchier.
(ii) Now roll each fondant ball into lengthwise until you get the length and thickness that you desire.
(Ii) Finally, lay the two ropes side by side and starting at one end, lay one rope over the other and twist the two ropes together.
You can either make this with the same color of fondant or different colors. If you want a more colorful border, you can make three or four colors.
The video below shows you an innovative way that you can use fondant ropes apart from using them for borders.
These can be made with your regular fondant tools or even some utensils in your kitchen.
There’s so much you can do with fondant strips to turn them into super amazing cake borders. The regular step for making a simple strip for your cake border would be as follows:-
(i) Roll out your fondant to about an 1/8 of an inch or less if you so desire.
(ii) Cut out the length of strip that would go round your cake.
(iii) You can either eyeball the length and width of the strip but it is best as a beginner to use a fondant cutter as pictured below.
(iv) Some fondant cutters have zig zag edges that would transfer some designs to the edge of the strip while others are straight.
After cutting out the strips, you can use a piping tip to puncture holes in them or use an embosser tool to emboss some designs on it. Like we said in the earlier, there’s so much you can do with or to a fondant strip. Watch the video below for more inspiration.
Fondant Borders With Molds
These are the fun fondant decorations that can be made with silicone molds. There are so many silicone molds for making fondant borders. And you’ll never be stumped for a cake border if you choose to work with them.
The principles for making fondant cake decorations with molds is the same. The steps are easy as ABC and they are as follows:-
(i) Dust the mold with cornstarch and then tap it lightly on your work surface to remove excess cornstarch. Another method is to grease the mold with vegetable shortening; this is not highly advocated by some cake decorators but works for people in very dry regions.
Another advantage of using vegetable shortening is that it gives the end product a glossy look. Note however that vegetable shortening is not advised if you live in a region with high humidity.
(ii) Ensure that you fill every crevice in the mold properly with fondant and level it out. Remove every excess fondant.
(iii) Gently peel off the mold from the fondant.
(iv) You can paint the finished product if you used white fondant. These fondant cake decorations can also be dusted with edible petal dust for some effect.
We would attach a video to show you a simple demonstration of these steps.
Some of the fondant borders that you can make with molds include the following:-
Even in this category, there are different sizes and designs that you can get. You have the single strand pearls, the double, the pearl bubbles and many more. The great thing about this design is that you can embellish it whichever way you want.
It is also very useful in other aspects of cake decoration; it doesn’t work for cake borders alone.
We have already shown you how to make fondant ropes free hand. But if you don’t have the time or inclination, you can use a mold. The advantage of using a mold is that you get the exact shape and size of ropes that you want.
There are myriads of designs in this category. In addition, there’s so much you can do with one mold. You can taint it different colors for different projects, you can resize or double the size (use two; one on the other).
You can make ruffle borders without molds and there are many variations in which you can make them. But in these days of convenience, there are many silicone molds that you can use to produce more designs in less time.
We can go on and on about the different border designs but let’s stop here. You can search out many more interesting designs online.
Decorative Fondant Ornaments/Cutouts
You can make some decorative fondant ornaments or just roll out fondant and cut out shapes. Either way, artfully placed, any of these would make a great difference to your cake.
Sugar flowers are one of the most popular fondant decorations that are used for cupcakes and cake. As a beginner, you may not be inclined to go all out to buy sugar flower making tools
There are some tricks and hacks that can be employed to make fondant decorations such as roses and some other simple flowers without tools. Watch this video to see some cools tricks:-
You can use cookie cutters to cut out shapes and place on your cake. Some cake decorators have even used alphabet and number cutters to create beautiful designs on cakes.
All that is required with fondant cutters is loads of creativity and imagination.
As in the case of silicone molds for fondant borders, there are also myriads of fondant cutters available both online and offline. We would just show you a few of these cutters and what you can do with them.
Just follow these simple steps to use any of the cutters:-
(i) Dust your work surface lightly with cornstarch (this is where the dusting pouch comes in handy).
(ii) Roll out your fondant to the desired thickness. Some shapes need to be thin while others don’t have to be too thin.
(iii) Cut out the shapes and allow to dry.
Create fun and whimsical designs on cakes with these cutters. They can also be used as teaching aids in classrooms or at parties (any moment can be a learning moment). Which kid wouldn’t be attentive if the shapes they are learning about are also edible? Lol.
Cutters That Create Effects
These cutters are made basically to look like clouds but they can also come in handy for other effects. Like we said earlier, you are only limited by your imagination.
Looking for how to make fondant decorations for your gingerbread house cake? Look no further! These cookie cutters have all the shapes and animals that you need for a realistic gingerbread cake.
How To Make Fondant Cake Decorations – Expert Tips
(i) Some shapes need fluidity so you don’t lay them flat to dry. You can ruffle some foil or parchment paper and lay the shapes on it.
(ii) If your fondant cake decoration would not be lying flat on the cake, then you need to add some CMC or tylose to the fondant. This would help the fondant dry faster and also have more structure.
(iii) Place fondant cake decorations that will lie flat on the cake as soon as you cover the cake. This would help the decoration to adhere to the cake without the need for edible glue.
(iv) When attaching fondant decorations to fondant covered cakes, do not dab with too much edible glue. If you are using water, just dip the tip of a fine cake decorating brush into the water and shake it out. Then brush the fondant decoration and place on the cake.
(v) If you add too much edible glue, the fondant decoration would be slippery on the cake. The color of the fondant can also smear on the cake as it slips away from position.
(vi) When making fondant cake decoration, always put the piece you are not working with under a plastic wrap. This is to prevent the fondant from drying out.
(vii) Store Fondant cake decorations in a cool dry and dark place. Click here for more information on how to store fondant cake decorations.
How To Make Fondant Cake Decorations – Conclusion
One final word we would leave with you here is this; never be afraid of experimenting. Some of the designs we celebrate today are results of some cake decorators’ blunders. Others are results of deliberate research and experimentation. You can also stumble upon a fondant decoration that would set a trend.
No two cake decorators are the same; learn to bring your uniqueness to play as you foray into making fondant cake decorations.