How to make cake stencils

Written by sara tetreault
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Decorating cakes and cupcakes with your own special designs is fun when baking. By making your own cake stencils, you can come up with designs and ideas on the fly without having to purchase expensive stencils. You are also able to add a one of a kind, personalised touch to your baking.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Letter-size paper
  • Computer
  • Printer
  • Vellum or other thin, see-through paper
  • Masking tape
  • Cutting mat
  • Hobby knife

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  1. 1

    Place a 8 1/2 x 11 piece of paper (letter size) under your cake or cupcake tin to get a good idea of how big a stencil you will need for your cake or cupcakes. Using a pencil trace the outside of the pan so that you know what the size of the stencil will end up being.

  2. 2

    Draw a simple design inside of the pan outline that you have drawn. Keep the design simple, and if there are several elements to the design, make sure that they are not touching. If there are cutouts in the middle of the design, you may have to create a way to connect these areas to the outside border. If you have a pre-existing outline drawing and would like to use this as the design, make sure it fits into the outline.

  3. 3

    Use your computer to find an image that you think would make a good cake or cupcake decoration, if you would rather not draw the design. Make sure that it is a simple line drawing that does not any other parts besides the outer border of the shape. Size the design so that it will fit inside the circle template that you have created. Using a window or light box, trace the circle onto a piece of vellum.

  4. 4

    Place a sheet of vellum over the design and use small pieces of masking tape to secure both pieces of paper to the cutting mat. This will allow you to see the design through the vellum. The vellum will be the final stencil.

  5. 5

    Use the hobby knife to cut out the shape(s).

  6. 6

    Once all of the shapes (if there is more than one in the design) have been cut out, carefully remove the masking tape from the corners of the paper.

Tips and warnings

  • Make sure the hobby knife is very sharp so the edges of the stencil are smooth and so the paper does not rip.
  • If you are using the stencil with powdered sugar or cocoa, shake it off over the sink and save it for re-use.
  • Make sure the design will fit onto the cake before creating the stencil.
  • For cakes, try to stay about an inch from the circle outline and for cupcakes, leave a quarter inch margin.

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