Cake Decorating: Beginners Luck

Tonight I stepped outside my sewing comfort zone and did something new: I decorated my daughter’s 1st birthday cake! With fondant! This may seem like a no-brainer to those of you who are cake-decorating whizzes, but if you only knew some of my past confection-decorating stories, you would cheer for me right now.

The great thing about sewing is that it’s given me the confidence to try all kinds of creative things that used to be intimidating. “Crafty” things, or anything creative beyond writing or music used to scare me.

But now I’m expanding. I swear, sewing has made me smarter. It’s made me think in new ways, learn my fractions, practice math and exercise my mental faculties by designing. Sewing is not for the weak of mind!

Along with confidence, sewing has shown me that if you want an item with specific characteristics, sometimes you have to just make it. That’s what happened with this cake. I didn’t want anything too fancy, just a sweet little white and pink princess cake for my baby girl. When I couldn’t find what I was looking for (and the lady I wanted to hire to make the cake was busy), I decided, why spend $20 on a cake with Abby’s name on it from Stater Brothers, when I could make and decorate it myself? Why not?!

That’s the attitude that got me sewing. And while I don’t expect to become enamored with cake-decorating any time soon, I sure am glad to have experience with fondant, because birthday cakes will be a lot more fun in this family from here on out.

Little side note: it took me twice as long to make this cake as it did for me to give birth to Abby. (!) But don’t worry, she was a quick one. 🙂

Cake Decorating 101: The really, really simple way to decorate a cake with fondant

Cake decorating steps, left to right:
1. Get out your icing for the first layer (your cake should be fully cooled first)
2. Ice your cake, making it as smooth as possible
3. Separate a small ball of fondant from the rest. Add one or two drops of food coloring, knead until coloring is evenly dispersed.
4. Dust your rolling surface with powdered sugar
5. Roll out your fondant
6. Measure your cake top to make sure your fondant will cover the sides
7. Using the rolling pin, lift the fondant and lay it over the bottom layer of your cake. Smooth along top and sides; remove extra fondant.
8. Add second layer of cake
9. Roll out the remaining fondant and lay it over the top layer of cake. Smooth; remove extra.
10. Make small pearls of fondant by rolling small pieces in your hands. Add to the bottom edge of both layers.
11. Sponge water on top layer of cake; sprinkle edible cake sparkles on top.
12. TADA! You’re done. All you need now are some cake toppers. 


  1. says

    Posted at 1:something a.m. …. hmmm … and you looked gorgeous at church this morning. Calm, confident, happy. I am so impressed! and love the cake, it’s dreamy!
    -your mother