Welcome to my Sweets Blog!

Welcome to my Sweets Blog!
I've been looking for a way to share my sweet creations with everyone, and I think I have found it--here is my sweets blog! As I experiment with delicious desserts & sweet treats, I will post pictures, recipes, and how-to tips & tricks. Hope you enjoy reading about my sweets as much I enjoy eating them!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Owl Birthday Cake and Cupcakes with Sugar Cookie Toppers

Look whoo it is! Another adorable owl!

These desserts were made for a little girl's first birthday party. The design came from the party invitation!

Here's a link to 1st Wishes, where you can buy the adorable Look Whoo's Turning 1 party supplies.

The cake is Vanilla Butter Cake with Chocolate Buttercream filling, and both Vanilla & Chocolate Buttercream Frosting.

It's hard to see the size of the cake in the photo- this is a half sheet cake.

She is almost too cute to eat! (Almost.)

The cupcakes are Vanilla Butter Cake with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting (tinted pink) and are topped with a Sugar Cookie decorated with Royal Icing.

Yum! So many sweets!

I wanted the graphic on the cookie to be as close as possible to the invitation, so I tried my hand at Royal Icing Transfers. This involves piping out decorative elements onto parchment paper, letting it dry, and then sticking it to the cookie with a thin layer of more icing!

There are two main benefits of this method (that I can think of anyway).

First, it gives an opportunity to mess up on the decoration without ruining the actual cookie! I always always always make more cookies than I need, to allow for some mistakes, but this is even more foolproof. If you don't like the way you pipe something onto the parchment paper, just move to a different section  of the paper and try it again!  

Second, since parchment paper is slightly transparent, you can trace the designs! I printed out sheets of paper with several of the owls on it (I fit nine on a regular letter sized paper), taped it to the back of the parchment paper, and placed it on the work surface. 

It was my first try at Royal Icing Transfers so I didn't take step by step pictures. Here's a picture during taken while they were drying. 

Some Hints & Tips 
  • The transfers have to dry completely before you even think about removing them from the parchment paper. Give it a full day! 
  • You can affix transfers onto plain, un-iced cookies, or onto cookies already outlined and filled with a layer of royal icing as the 'background' (which is what I did on this project).
  • Like a good little blogger, I did my research and read on a few other blogs that the transfers have a tendency to break, and to always make at least twice as many as you need...thankfully I didn't have that issue. But it can't hurt to be safe! So I will pass along the same wisdom.
  • Make sure your parchment is as flat as possible. Some of my transfers were uneven on the bottom because the parchment paper curled a bit.
  • Other than that, the piping & decorating process is basically the same as if it were on an actual cookie. Work in sections, outlining & filling, and then waiting for each layer to set, or use wet-on-wet technique.  
  • I usually prefer to draw on small details while  holding the cookie in my left hand and the piping bag in my right. So I stopped detailing on the transfer about halfway through the detailing process. You could easily do the whole thing on the parchment.

Once they are completely dry, use more icing to affix them to the cookies!

Spread or dot the back of the Royal Icing Transfer with even more royal icing!

Then stick it on the cookie. It will stay put with a thin layer or a few dots of icing.

I added another step here. Remember I said some of my transfers were uneven and not flat from the parchment curling? I didn't want the space to show, so I piped an outline around the transfer using the background color.

Here's a one without the extra outline (left) and one with it (right). Do you think it needed it?

Now that I feel more confident in making Royal Icing Transfers, next time I will take pictures for more step-by-step info! 


  1. these look really awesome!

  2. This is awesome! Do you think it would work on a cake as well? And do you have the recipe for the royal icing you used? I have tried a couple recipes and they haven't come out right!

  3. You can certainly place decorated cookies on a cake, however I have heard that placing royal icing directly on the buttercream tends to "dissolve" the royal icing over time (royal icing and grease don't do well together), which is why I put the cookie on the cupcake and not just the royal icing transfer.

    The recipe for the royal icing can be found here:
    (I just added a new Recipes tab at the top of the page!)

    Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Thank you! My daughter's first birthday is this weekend, and I can't wait to make the transfers. What a life saver since fondant and I don't get along lol.

  5. That's wonderful! I agree, I'm not very skilled with fondant yet either, and I don't love the taste...but I love me some royal icing!!


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