Bettys Cake Decorating Guide

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  Home :: techniques & tips :: Beginners Guide to Cake Toppers

Beginners Guide to Cake Toppers

Beautifully decorated cakes can serve as the centrepiece of a celebration and can be enhanced with the use of a cake topper. Cake toppers can be both edible and non-edible and give something extra to the special occasion cake. This guide will explain the wonderful range of cake toppers on the market so you’ll be able to compliment your cake with the perfect topper.

Edible cake toppers

These come in a variety of confectionaries, sprinkles and sugar diamonds. When choosing your topper it is best to consider the type of cake you want to decorate.  Sprinkles compliment smaller cakes (such as cupcakes) whilst sugar diamonds will ooze glamour when added to both large and small cakes for a wedding or engagement party.

Sugar diamonds

These usually come in packs of 16 and add a touch of sparkle to cakes, cupcakes and cookies. Each diamond measured 1cm in diameter and can be attached to sugarpaste and other types of icing with edible glue. Diamonds are perfect for wedding and engagement cakes as well as creating winter and Christmas cakes as they add a lovely bit of sparkle.


There are many different types of confectionary on the market, which make a perfect addition to cupcakes. Love hearts add some retro kitsch to your cupcakes and are perfect when used on vintage themed wedding cupcakes, anniversary or Valentine’s Day cupcakes.  Mini marshmallows, fudge pieces or chocolate beans will give your cupcakes an extra yummy treat.


These come in a variety of designs, shapes and sizes. Again, when considering the topping think about how it will enhance your overall cake design. Snowflake cupcake sprinkles will be a perfect addition to winter themed cupcakes, whereas blue dragees are great when used on a boys birthday cake or christening cupcakes.

Non-edible cake toppers

As the name suggests, these cake toppers are used for decoration purposes only and come in a variety of forms such as crystal gem sprays, stars on wires, feathers, pearls and butterflies. They can be reused or used as a one-off on a celebration cake.

Crystal gem sprays

These come in a range of designs and can really give the wow factor to a milestone birthday, anniversary or wedding cake. Clear crystal gem sprays will add a touch of chic to a wedding cake; whist diamante butterfly sprays can look great on birthday cakes.


Feathers add a touch of glitz and glamour to your cake and look fantastic on Hollywood themed wedding cakes or a Moulin Rouge themed birthday cake. Their versatility means they can add a little bit of pizazz to your cake design. 


Where would any child’s birthday cake be without candles? Candles come in a range of novelty characters and numbers to top a birthday cake perfectly.

Handmade sugar flowers

These can be pre-brought or made from sugarpaste or flower paste. Flower sugar sprays look very effective on wedding cakes and can be matched to the bridal bouquet. Single sugar flowers such as daisies or roses added to the sides of a special occasion or on the top of a cup cake transform cakes into something special and elegant.

Beads and pearl trims

Beads/pearl trims can look beautiful draped around a cake and often are supplied in meter lengths so you can cut it to the desired size. It can be wrapped round wedding or celebration cakes to add a modern finish.


These fall into the edible and non-edible category. Figurine couples are traditionally used to top wedding cakes and can be made of edible pastes such as marzipan or modelling paste or be made out wood or plastic. Animal models are often popular on children’s birthday cakes.