Are you researching how you can get into cake decorating? Sometimes, it can be overwhelming to know who to learn from and what is available or out there. Knowing this, here is a summary of the basics in one place, so my students (or anyone else) can use them as a reference point. Featuring ways to learn how to get into cake decorating and achieve your homemade cakes or your decorating ideas…
It is a long post – consider pinning or bookmarking this page so you can come back to it. Note this download does have affiliate links where some examples are given. Share this page if you feel it would benefit someone else.
Learning guide – for a Beginner Decorator
- Step One – Focus On Your Goals Know Your Why
- Step Two – How To Learn About Cake Decorating
- Step Three – Understand Tutorials – Classes – Membership Sites – Free Stuff
- Step Four – Cake Decorating Supplies What You Need And Where To Buy Them
- Step Five – How To Get Started With Your Cake Business
- Step Six – Get Inspiration from other art forms
Are You A Bride Wanting To Make Your Own Wedding Cake?
Then see this post here, I did a review of a cake decorating course.
Follow me on Pinterest I have a board called Cake for the Bride. A collection of all the wedding cake ideas I love. There is a section called DIY Wedding Cakes – some ideas that are not too difficult to make.
Step One – Focusing on Your Goals in Cake Decorating
“Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” Francis of Assisi
As you begin your cake journey, you will find that having goals helps to get you started, keeps you focused and moves you forward to each new skill.
When I started, I was very young and all I could think of was making a wedding cake, but there was a lot to learn to get to that point. Having that goal, pushed me to keep learning, and that is exactly the reason you need to set some goals right from the beginning.
- So, what is your cake-goal – what do you want to be able to make and decorate at the end of your journey?
Next, you need to break your goals down into manageable steps.
- To get started with your goal what do you need to learn now?
- What do you already know? Are you known for your baking? If so that’s great! Ideally, you want to gain momentum, moving from one skill to the other.
I do recommend courses or tutorials that cover the foundation of your cake…Cake at Vic Falls
There can be no harm learning this from several different sources, often you can pick up on great tips and suggestions, new ways and ideas – so always learn with an open mind.
For example, let’s say your goal is to master the latest mirror cake trend. A video tutorial that starts with baking the cake or that shows how they put the icing on, will give you a clear idea how they got the cake to the point where it was ready to decorate. This allows you to recap on the things you know and adds to your knowledge base bit by bit.
In this learning process, keeping notes on all the things you come across, this will help you to do things quicker and save time.
Not a note-taker? Use Pinterest to search for that same idea and then pin it for a later time.
Whatever path you choose to learn cake decorating – start by doing what’s necessary.
Get The Basics Down First
- What you need to know about your recipes
- Have a few good recipes that bake your cakes perfectly every time, for you.
- Have go-to-recipes for the different icings or frostings, learn how to ice a cake.
- Know how to apply fondant or other glazes to a cake
- Learn to make simple decorations, that will make a cake pretty – quickly.
Each of the above classes have mini-goals that you could break down and work on perfecting. Cake decorating, as you will soon learn; is time-consuming. You can spend a lot of time on a cake. No… really you can!
Learn Cake Decorating with intent – get results.Cake at Vic Falls
- What is your ultimate cake-goal?
- Where do you want this to lead to?
- Start by learning the basics
- Learn with intent
If you just need to learn a few basic skills, you certainly won’t need to buy an online course or a complete cake decorating tool kit. But if this is a hobby you are dead set on pursuing, then you are going to need the right tools and skills to accomplish your goals. Let’s start with how to learn.
Step Two: How to learn about cake decorating
It’s time to discover how you learn best!
There are a number of ways to learn cake decorating, which is great because that means there are options.
Recently I found a free learning test (click where it says new users under Use The Online Questionnaire), that helped highlight my strong points and showed where my weaker points were. A great reference and guide. Once you know where you are strongest, you can make a better decision about how to learn and where to spend your money.
Does it matter?
Yes, I think so. You might learn better from books. Or if you are not social, then attending decorating classes would not be the best option for you. Self-consciousness and nervousness would prevent you from getting the most out of this learning environment, online classes would be better. And the opposite is true too. If you need to have someone show you, guide you step by step and cheer you on, then you really need to find a near-by class you can attend!
Step Three: Online cake decorating – Tutorials – Classes – Membership Sites – Free Stuff
Now you have an idea of:
- where you are going with your cake decorating
- have found out how you learn best
Getting Started Online With Your Cake Decorating
Online Cake decorating provides many options, so you can be confident you will find a good fit. Do you remember when you were at school and there were some teachers you loved and others not so much? You will find the same with online cake decorating instructors.
The good news is that many well-established instructors have free material that you can view, so you can see if you like them. There is nothing worse than a droning voice that drives you dilly or if the pace is so slow you are totally bored after a few minutes. Generally, though, the quality will be high if the material is paid for.
Where To Start Online?
This is where your goals will come into play. Do you need a full course, a particular tutorial or quick video?
Should I Get A Full Online Decorating Course?
If you want to get serious right from the start, a full-on course is probably the way to go.
Full courses have many lessons within the course, each building on the previous ones. As it is a course, there will be no gaps in your learning, which sometimes can happen with other learning methods.
After payment, email contact is usually made outlining how you can access the material. Some online courses even offer certificates. But to make cakes and run a cake business, this is not a requirement.
What Is A Single Cake Icing Tutorial?
Individual tutorials, lessons or classes are just that – it’s only the one lesson on a chosen topic.
Let’s say you want to learn how to make a rainbow layer cake from a scratch recipe. This is what will be covered in the lesson. It can be broken down into mini-lessons, but at the end of it, you have made a rainbow layered cake.
This lesson is 4 hours in length which means it’s thorough. And even includes tips on how to sell a cake like this and how to price it.
Is broken up into 8 sections starting from basics decorating skills and ending with the icing and sprinkles.
Includes a blueprint download
To gain access, you can buy the lesson for under fifteen pounds or become a member and watch as many similar single lesson tutorials as you like – recommended. Check out their free tutorials here.
Here’s another example of a single lesson. How to make simple fondant roses. A very practical lesson that will get your cakes looking great from the beginning. It does not require cutters or moulds.
Tutorials can be downloaded to your computer and phone or will remain on the website, and when you log in, you will have access (usually for life) to that bought product.
One thing to note about individual lessons or tutorials is that often the cost of one tutorial is the same or even more than a full months subscription, where you would be able to access the whole tutorial library.
Learn Cake Decorating Online For Free Today
Free lessons are easily found on YouTube – I am a fan of Zoe’s Fancy Cakes. While many of her tutorials are a bit advanced, she has a playlist on covering cake boards that is worth checking out.
This is a fantastic way to learn and it’s free! There is a need for caution though… YouTube has many versions of similar lessons. The danger? You spend a whole afternoon watching one after the other (can’t find the one you actually liked) then end up watching other stuff – and you still have a cake to decorate…
- Have a clear goal of what you need to learn.
- Decide how long you will search and watch.
- Use the knowledge straight away – or take notes.
Cake Decorating Membership Sites What You Need To Know
Are you considering joining a cake decorating membership site? While we are covering online learning, membership sites are a good one to look into. Many cake decorating instructors offer tutorials and have a membership option too.
How Does This Work?
To gain full access to their awesome tutorials or lessons, you pay a monthly fee.
It’s often less or the same as what you would pay for a single tutorial. Remember this, most cake websites have hundreds of lessons. Take advantage of the variety and range of skills offered. You can then learn at your own pace.
The forum sections are a wealth of information and help is never far. Some membership sites allow you to set up your own profile and share your photos. Showing work, either of your results achieved using their material or your own inspirations.
Before joining ensure it’s something you will benefit from. There should always be free content, videos, tutorials and downloadable content. So if you aren’t sure what would be a good fit, try a few sites and check out the freebies.
So Who Has Cake Decorating Membership Sites?
Highly recommended. At Yeners Way, Serdar takes a technique and makes it simple. He then goes further to make the simple, amazing!
- Free – videos and recipes to try out.
- 2 new tutorials are added each month.
- Each tutorial has reference images, blueprints, templates and stencils that are downloadable.
- You can purchase tutorials/courses as you go and have access to them forever.
- You can subscribe to :
- Monthly plan at $24.95
- Six-month plan at $124
- Annual plan at $224
- All the above give you 24/7 access to the library and downloadable materials (this is the part that makes the lessons easy.)
- Courses are purchased individually.
- Online Tool Calculators are available to make your life easier.
- You do not need to be a member to purchase a tutorial or course.
- While many of the lessons look advanced, his teaching step-by-step makes it possible to achieve similar results.
- Start with the simpler cake courses.
Are You Looking For A Cake Decorating Class To Attend?
If this is the best way for you to learn, how can you find a cake decorating class near you? One way I found helpful, was to type into google – cake decorating classes in – and then your town and the country.
Learn From Cake Decorating Books
Books are golden! I remember being given my first cake book when I was eleven. The Merehurst Cake Book. I still have this book – it’s my companion for all my cake projects. I’m surprised how timeless it is!
There is a huge choice out there, from numerous cake artist. Remember to keep focused. Your goals will help you narrow things down a bit.
EBooks and PDF downloads are the new books and are worth looking into if you learn best with books. Download them on to your phone and you are good to go.
This website has over 140 different cake books. Search “cake decorating” and find something to get started with. Use the coupon pop out to get a discount. You are also able to preview quite a bit of the content – some books I’ve checked out had as many as 20 pages to view!
It’s a good idea to have a cake book that has recipes that have been perfected and that work for anyone. Have a look at this one, it’s a good example of a cake decorating guide or the book Merehurst Cake Book mentioned earlier has got recipes I use all the time. Particularly the fruit cake recipe.
Your goals are going to help narrow things down a bit here. So don’t get overwhelmed with choices.
Cake Decorating Magazines – Keep Up With Trends
Keeping up is important in the caking world. What is trending today, may change tomorrow. When I did my first classes, royal icing was at the heart of most decorations. It’s a whole new ballgame today!
Trends Change How Do You Keep Current?
One way is to get a subscription to a cake magazine or pick one up from the magazine stand regularly.
What Will You Find There…
- See what’s new
- New tutorials or how-to tips
- Learn about other cake decorators
- Read success stories
- Cake competitions running
- Awards won
- About advertisers new products and reviews
Step Four: Tools Of The Trade
As with any job, there are tools of the trade. In fact, many of the latest cake trends with sharp edges and corners are not possible without the proper cake decorating tools.
You know what skills you are building, so get what you need as you go.
Tip – Kits tend to be cheaper than buying each individual item.
Where can you get these supplies?
Cake Decorating Supplies – What You Need And Where To Get Them
It’s possible that you have some equipment on hand like mixing bowls and spoons etc. But obviously, if you are going to get into buttercream – you will need nozzles and piping bags.
- Try checking out local shops where you live
- Online decorating kits – The Cake Decorating Co. has an excellent selection. If they are a good fit for where you live (they are based in England), then keep an eye on their New Products.
Have a tool list for various skills and techniques that you need.Cake at Vic Falls
By now you have:
- some goals
- a learning plan
- and have an idea of where to get tools for various skills.
As you progress and achieve results, you may decide its time to make this a full-time career.
So What Do You Need To Know?
How to legally start a cake business
How to niche your cakes
How to price your cakes
How to sell your cakesStart A Cake Decorating Business Today
How To Set Up A Cake Website?
If a website sounds like something you want to get into – admittedly it’s not for everyone – then here are a few ways you can niche your cake website.
- Blog about your learning journey – so this would be documenting all the cake decorating you do. The courses you used, the tools that you got, the recipes you love, what worked for you and what didn’t. This is a very popular niche idea and as you improve you become an authority or expert in your chosen field.
- Another way is to combine cake with something else. I have used Travel and Cake there’s Cake & Lace, you could do Cake & Coffee etc. With the additional dimension, you give yourself a unique take on cake.
- Should you choose to use the same platform I use, I would be happy to help you get started with your website.
- If you would like to learn more about what we use for this cake niche website check out our Website Resources Page.
Step Six: Be Open To Inspiration From Other Art Forms
Be observant other crafts, art mediums and of all the things around you.
When something strikes you as beautiful, unique or you get excited by the thought of how you could turn this into a cake decoration – note it down. Or better yet, get working on it straight away. This is how you find yourself a niche in this industry.
Find what you love, and make it yours.
So, for now, this is my essential guide to cake decorating list for beginners see that this could be more than a hobby and cake decorators to see that they can do more with their skills. I will be updating and adding to it regularly, so bookmark this page. Wishing you all the best in your cake decorating journey! Please leave a comment I’d love to hear from you.