Day 1 – Christmas Cake Decorating

Hurrah!  Today is the 1st December so it can mean only one thing – the start of The Pink Whisk 12 Days of Christmas.  If you weren’t here last year  then it’s one Christmas recipe each day for the first 12 days of December (then I collapse in a heap).

Kicking off today is Christmas Cake Decorating.

So you need some ideas?  Let me help you out!

Click on the links to take you to each project.

Not a fan of the whole marzipan and icing shebang?  Why not go for a luxury glazed fruit top?

Glazed Fruit Christmas Cake

Now for the rest of the ideas – all the following cakes start off marzipanned and covered with white sugarpaste you can see how here.

Santa, Rudolph and Cheeky Elf Cake

Christmas Baubles Cake

Stars and Sparkle Cake

Holly & Berries

Stars & Snowflakes

Hope that gives you some inspiration!  Until tomorrow,



Ruth Clemens, Baker Extraordinaire

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160 Responses to Day 1 – Christmas Cake Decorating

  1. Rachel Brown says:

    They’re all so pretty. As I’ve got 7 to decorate this year I can see myself doing several of these designs. Thanks Ruth!

  2. Chris Fliss says:

    Love the idea of glazed cake rather than the traditional icing and marzipan

  3. Victoria Stimpson says:

    The glazed fruit cake is beautiful Ruth! I have been looking at how to make an undecorated cake really special so thanks for this!

  4. Hayley Jones says:

    Gorgeous cakes so jealous I wish mine could look as good

  5. Melanie Monro says:

    Did the stars and holly ones last year so definitely gonna try the Santa and baubles ones this year.

  6. Lucy Birks says:

    I love the stars and sparkle cake idea, going to try that on one of my cakes this year for sure

  7. Kate Dyball says:

    I like the holly one. I think I will have a go at that. Xx

  8. Fran says:

    I’ve just marzipanned my christmas cakes, so am happy to receive some inspiration for the icing! Thank you :o) x

  9. suzette says:

    excellent ideas..all lok so elegant and pleasing…

  10. sue foster says:

    I’m loving your ideas – very tempted to get the icing sugar out and have a go!

  11. Mo Silverman says:

    Lovely ideas! Can’t wait for tomorrow’s post!

    • norah wilton says:

      Absolutely love the stars and sparkle cake, though will have to leave out the silver balls as Grandad’s teeth may not be able to cope!

  12. Gemma Samanta says:

    I’m going for the stars and snowflakes… Just need to get a snowflake cutter now x

  13. christina Bailey says:

    cant wait to try and do the reindeer and santa one!

  14. Lynne Lee-Diep says:

    Love the brilliant ideas! From non-icing ones, cute and cheerful and sleek sophistication!
    Certainly makes me want to unwrap and deco my cakes 😀 (Actually -I have more to bake as gifts!)

  15. Jen Snaith says:

    Really should find the time to make my cake! X

  16. Sue Tylcoat says:

    All that lovely fruit! It almost looks too good to eat!

  17. Caroline Praed says:

    Loving the Stars and Sparkle cake idea in particular. Must go get a couple of small star-shaped cutters…

  18. Lorna Dupre says:

    Those look amazing! Are you planning on doing any more Christmas cake decorating suggestions? I’ve followed your instructions to make and feed the cake, but I need to get out in the next couple of days and get my marzipan and icing for the next bit. Ooh the excitement!

  19. Patricia brennab says:

    These are amazing!

  20. Lianne Grantham says:

    What a fab competition and website.

  21. Michelle warren says:

    I love the Santa and Rudolph cake. It’s so cute and great design for the kids. X x

  22. Kath Minchin says:

    They’re all so pretty

  23. Jodie innes says:

    I like the Baubles one. This year I’m letting my nephews and niece come up with a design for their grandparents cake, so far we have had Hogwarts and an ice rink with people skating on it!

  24. Alice says:

    First ever Xmas cake made following your recipe. Im going to give the cheeky elf a go for my decoration! YY

  25. Ali.b. says:

    Off to check out the links I have some ready to roll icing but none of us like marzipan – can I put icing ondirectly to the cake??? Also once iced would it affect how long the cake will last ??? Thanks for any advice you can give xx

  26. Amanda marsh says:

    A friend and I have been decorating our Christmas cakes together for the last 25 years, we have a glass of sherry or two , were no experts far from it, but it’s a good excuse to have a get together and kicks off the Christmas celebrations! Will definitely keep the stars and sparkle idea for next year, just recently found your website and book , both excellent!
    Merry Christmas!

  27. Laura Birkin says:

    They are all great, my favourite is the starts and sparkle. x

  28. Kylie Fisher says:

    Such great inspiration to kick off the festive season, there is nothing better than sitting in the warm with the fire blazing with the ones you love whilst there is a glazed fruit cake baking in the oven.

  29. loucookes says:

    Love the sparkly christmas tree one, v pretty and unusual, and I’ll definitely be copying the fruit for the non icing crowd. Great job!

  30. Sheri says:

    What a fantastic Christmas present for the lucky winner, thanks

  31. Marie Belfort says:

    They all look so beautiful, but I love the stars and sparkle design, such a lovely colour scheme.

  32. Janet Burns says:

    Some great ideas to get stuck into, thanks!

  33. Sarah Lynch says:

    I love the stars and snowflakes cake….because I love a white themed Christmas.

  34. Very inspiring Ruth. Just wondering does anyone make their own marzipan these days? Is it possible to make it with any other ground nut?

  35. Claudine Kelly says:

    I’m going to try the stars and sparkle one this year! Hope it turns out as nice as yours! Can’t wait for the next 11 days!

  36. Maree says:

    The glazed fruit cake is the pink whiskers thankyoy

  37. Maree says:

    The glazed fruit cake is the pink whiskers thank you

  38. Leanne Farnell says:

    Commenting from the waiting area of Mombasa airport! Haven’t given Christmas a thought yet due to a late November holiday, but this is getting me in the mood 🙂 x

  39. Vanessa Belcher says:

    Beeline looking for an idea for a non marzipan cake, brilliant 🙂

  40. patsy says:

    Thanks for the ideas how I would love a hamper I am just starting on making 24,!!!!

  41. Julie Roe says:

    My 3 year old niece is pleading with me let her help with the Stars and Sparkle decoration.

  42. christine potter says:

    Your ideas are fab and will certainly try to do one of them!

  43. frances says:

    Love the stars and sparkle cake.It looks very achievable to produce as well. Thankyou.

  44. Susan Bowe says:

    Brilliant ideas. Which one should I try?

  45. Donna says:

    Inspirational, as always.

  46. Janet Williams says:

    Brilliant designs and so easy too.These have really given me something to think about.

  47. Holly says:

    How exciting, the christmas count down :-). The prize is already great!

  48. Beth says:

    Had my heart set on doing holly this year, but am feeling pretty swayed by the stars&sparkles/christmas baubles designs… I knew I should have made more than one cake…

  49. Lynne Pirie says:

    Have you any suggestions for what I should do if I can’t use marzipan? The cakes are made and my 3 year old is desperate to ice them but due to nut allergies we can’t put in the marzipan layer. Thanks for any advice

  50. Catherine says:

    I am ALL over the stars christmas tree one its beautiful thank you again for being mega awesome!! X

  51. Usha Singh says:

    Love the glazed fruit 🙂

  52. Dale says:

    The chippythatbakes quite likes the stars n sparkle one 😉


  53. Gemma says:

    All look great thanks Ruth. This is my first year making a christmas cake following your fab blog and I’m so excited to get decorating!

  54. wendy devlin says:

    I love the baubles cake… I might give that a go myself!

  55. Kathy Akroyd says:

    Brilliant ideas, you’ve inspired me. Loving the Stars & Sparkle cake, it looks so classy!

  56. Bex says:

    They all look so pretty! But I particularly love the “stars and sparkle” design 🙂 not sure I quite have the skills for any of these… Baby steps!

  57. magsb says:

    All looks so fab and tasty, I think its time time to have a go and not have avalanche icing.

  58. Sarah Sharp says:

    I just love seeing what designs you come up with! They are always amazing!! You definitely inspire me!

  59. Cristina says:

    love the ornamanets

  60. Em J Christina says:

    Hi Ruth,

    so inspired by your passion for baking and decorating! Your designs are crafted so perfectly, I love them! I usually do a Traditional Rich Christmas Cake and then Marzipan and either ice with fondant or royal icing. However this year, I have tried out my own recipe for a lighter Victorian Christmas cake, which is a little deviation from my family’s tradition, however I hope it will go down well! Finger’s crossed! Do you have any ideas/ advice for how to ice/ or what to ice a lighter Victorian Christmas cake with? My partner Tim very much enjoys the icing, my Dad really likes glazed glace fruits, but my sister is visiting from Sydney, Aus and wants everything to be really traditional and Christmassy – what do you suggest? Would love to hear your thoughts… thanks for your fab blogs and emails, always a delight to read 🙂

    • I have a friend who does half and half! Half the cake with the glazed fruits and half with the marzipan and icing all on the same cake – sounds like it would cover everyones preferences! x

  61. Laura Bull says:

    Love all of these ideas but my favourite has to be Santa, Rudolph and the cheeky elf! Thanks Ruth.

  62. Joe Brady says:

    wow, very fancy!

  63. Elke says:

    Some fantastic ideas! Thanks for the inspiration.

  64. Dawn Lee says:

    Day 1 x you gotta be in it to win it x

  65. Oh my goodness all good all lovely which to choose, maybe one of each! I think I’ll be busy.

  66. Julie Heagarty says:

    Fab ideas, the stars and sparkles looks really elegant.

  67. Claire Shurrock says:

    I have used your more boozy fruit and cake recipe and have made 3 cakes which are going to be gifts for the family. I have got all my equipment and icing to make the Christmas sparkle cake design…just need to finish feeding my cakes first. Can you suggest a website that I could get some nice navy cake ribbon for decorating and hiding any icing mistakes?

  68. Emma says:

    They are all so great, which one will I try?

  69. Kerrie Heath says:

    I love the holly and berries but they are all beautiful.

  70. jaynealicia says:

    The fruity cake looks rather yummy

  71. Sonya Garland says:

    I don’t like marzipan (the one naughty thing on earth I don’t like!) so can’t wait to try the fruit one!

  72. Sue Slade says:

    Too many ideas to choose from Ruth!!

  73. Georgina says:

    Love the stars and sparkle cake

  74. Diana Tucker says:

    We always have one plain, non-iced, non-glazed cake as it’s traditional to serve rich fruit cake with a small slice of cheese.

    And then for the guests who believe that’s horrible(!) we have another with marzipan and icing. Love the ideas you’ve given us! Thank you.

  75. Leigh Mitchell says:

    The stars and snowflakes cake is beautiful.

  76. Rachel says:

    Will definately do the stars and sparkle one,made my cake from your recipe this year,so it`s ready to decorate.I want the star cutter, but the website would not allow me to do so.

  77. Louise Laggan says:

    fabulous cakes. cannot wait to try these ideas out

  78. Rebecca says:

    Not making a cake this year as only just getting into my baking, will store these in my mind for next year I think

  79. I love your decorating ideas…

  80. Hannah Wigglesworth says:

    Thanks for these ideas, I’ve got 7 cakes currently maturing in the hall way. Remind me not to take Christmas cake requests next year, I quite like a tidy hall way, but a box full of cake in tupperware and enough brandy to sink a ship is enough for me! I bet I will have forgotten next year and start soaking fruit again in September when your email comes round again!

  81. Harriet Cannon says:

    I’ve just bought myself a star cutter so I can have a go at the Stars & Sparkles decoration – I remember it from last year, it looks so impressive, and I’ve always liked blue Christmas cakes as this is what we used to have as kids!

  82. Nicola says:

    These are so pretty! I love the stars and sparkles, and the snowflakes ones 🙂 and they’d work really well on an alternative cake too (I really don’t like fruit cake, so am planning a white chocolate and cranberry cake instead!)

  83. Rachel Hancock says:

    I don’t like fruit cake so may do this with a sponge cake instead!

  84. Elspeth Woods says:

    These look stunning, but I absolutely love royal icing. Any ideas other than the usual boring ‘snow effect’, which is all I ever seem to manage to come up with?!

  85. I’ve been following you for the Christmas Cake recipe and tips. My cake is now marzipaned to be iced later this week !

  86. Kathryn says:

    Love the stars and sparkles one!!

  87. Dawn Elliott says:

    I love the glazed fruit one, it looks so classy and understated.

  88. Helen says:

    How can there only be 3 weeks left until the big day?! I’ve no idea when I’ll fit in decorating mine – might be a glazed-fruit topping year!

  89. PaulS says:

    What great ideas, I will look at giving Santa and his crew a go.

  90. Abi says:

    That rudolf is so cute 🙂 x

  91. Jill Ridley says:

    Used the holly & berries idea last year, think I’ll give one of the other designs a try this year, not sure which one yet!

  92. Lindsey cummins says:

    Love these cake designs will definitely be trying one!

  93. Becky says:

    Some great ideas :o)

  94. Zoe Higgins says:

    Spent time at the weekend making penguins for my sisters cake, think I’ll go for the baubles on my own.

  95. Helen Russell says:

    I love the look of the baubles!

  96. TracieB says:

    They are all gorgeous, but the stars and sparkle is my fav 🙂 matches the colours on my tree! Can’t wait to get started at the weekend

  97. sarah says:

    Doubt my cake will look anything like yours.

  98. Helen Cosby says:

    The Christmas tree made up of stars is simply stunning

  99. Victoria Andrew says:

    I followed your ’12 days….’ Recipes last year, making them with my 2 boys. This year I think they were just as excited to check your website to see what we are going to cook this year as they were to open the 1st Advent Calender window!

  100. AY26 says:

    fantastic givaway!

  101. Sian says:

    I am definitely a lover of the Marzipan and Sugarpaste shebang, but the glazed fruit option looks delicious too. I’ll be trying that for one of the cakes I’m making for those who’s tooth is not as sweet as mine!

  102. Alice Hassett says:

    such great ideas for decorating

  103. Sam Jenkins says:

    The stars and sparkles cake looks lovely- my cakes currently being fed (your recipe using the jewelled fruit boozy fruit mix) and almost ready for icing!!

  104. Allie Taylor says:

    I love them all. Full stop. That’s all!!!

  105. Jennifer says:

    Love them all – i have made 5 christmas cakes this year in total – family and school / nursery gifts!! Love making them and they taste sooo yummy. thank you for some more lovely ideas to add to my collection x

  106. Mayan says:

    They all look so cute!!!

  107. Amy says:

    Wow, these are really lovely decorations I like the navy blue iced cake with the white star Xmas decoration – what type of star cutter did yours?
    Amy x

  108. Karen Mottram says:

    Excellent cake decks and…oh no…another website to look at, I was wondering where to find nice ribbons!

  109. Helen Rushby says:

    Wow, wow, wow!!

  110. Sez says:

    Star one is lovely!

  111. Faye says:

    The holly cake will be perfect for my Grandad, thanks! :o) x

  112. Florence Stringer says:

    Some lovely ideas for decorating, really like the holly berries and leaves, so pretty!

  113. Aly Makin says:

    The stars and sparkle is my favourite!

  114. Zara Royle says:

    Can’t wait to try these ideas when my cake comes out of the cupboard!

  115. Rebecca Drake says:

    Brilliant inspiration!

  116. Clare adkins says:

    Good luck!

  117. Helen Oliver says:

    So many designs to choose from, tho the glazed fruit gets my vote

  118. Karen Cole says:

    Still deciding how to decorate my Christmas cake!

  119. Claire Humphreys says:

    Beautiful Ruth, thank you for such great ideas!

  120. caroline says:

    Such good ideas Ruth. I love the stars and snowflakes and the bauble cake! x x

  121. Joanna says:

    my favourite is the stars and sparkle cake.

  122. Tania says:

    Great ideas! Last year’s cake had so many decorations on it (c/o 7 year old daughter!) it looked like a Cecil B deMille movie. This year’s will have finesse and finery!

  123. mel h says:

    Love the star Xmas Tree!

  124. Jill says:

    I LOVE the stars and sparkles cake. You make it look so easy 🙂

  125. Cenders says:


  126. Sarah Roy says:

    Must get my cake iced – maybe just one more feeding!

  127. Niamh Lewis says:

    I can’t choose which one to try!

  128. Heather Orford says:

    They all look amazing, the Holly and Berries is my favourite.

  129. Julia says:

    This is when I wish I wasn’t so heavy handed!

  130. Liz says:

    Been leaving comments on fb, clearly need to read instructions and follow them 🙁

  131. Jemma Cripps says:

    hopefully posting in the right place now as had posted via Facebook every day so glad I saw your Facebook message in time Ruth.

  132. Lyn B says:

    I love the idea of glazed fruit decoration, reminds me of the almonds toppings my mum always used to use as she did not like icing.

  133. Julie says:

    Ruth – these all look so amazing! That’s why I love your blog – you make it look easy, give clear insructions and I actually believe I can make these wonderful things!

  134. Lisa Armes says:

    I love the Holly and Berries and snowflakes! Very Chrsitmassy!

  135. Rachel F says:

    Been looking forward to this post since September! Thank you Ruth for all your help, really has been a joy to make the Christmas Cake, thanks for walking me through it!xx

  136. Debbie Morris says:

    I’m always looking for different ideas for decorating Christmas cakes, by the time Christmas comes I will have made 12 cakes and decorated each of them!
    I love Christmas!

  137. Sam Maher says:

    Another Christmas, another year I’ve left it too late to bake the dark cake my dad likes. Guess I’ll have to buy a plain one to play with.

  138. Aidrienne Branagan says:

    Just made my cake, though a little late. These ideas for decorating are great

  139. sue p says:

    These are so lovely x

  140. Claire says:

    These look amazing

  141. Sarah Blom says:

    Would just like to say ‘Thank You’ for all your wonderful recipes & tips…..a true baking/cooking inspiration 🙂

  142. Pingback: 12 Days of Christmas 2012 | Baking, Recipes and Tutorials - The Pink Whisk

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