A stencil is an especially useful and simple tool that can transform a basic cake into a holiday masterpiece. Though plenty of themed and generic stencils are sold commercially, be creative with Christmas cake designs. Make your own, and use them again and again.
Free Holiday Theme Cake Stencils
Download free PDF cake stencils and then cut them out to use for your holiday baking projects. Printing on heavy cardstock will produce sturdier stencils, and laminating them before using makes them easy to clean up, and they will last longer. However, the stencils will not be as durable as plastic ones, so be sure to save the files in a handy place for reprinting as necessary.
Stencils can be used in a variety of ways to decorate your Christmas cakes. Consider using one or more of these festive ideas with your stencils:
- Add ornaments to a large tree-shaped cake by tracing them with black, red, or other brightly colored royal icing. Flood the shape and then decorate using similar patterns and colors, like chevron stripes or polka dots.
- Use the cut outs with rolled fondant to create shapes instead of using cookie cutters. For example, place the holly and berries stencil on rolled fondant and cut around it using a fondant knife. Add additional decorations or design marks before placing on the cake.
- Carefully sprinkle powdered sugar, sprinkles, or colored sugar crystals over one of the shapes on top of a frosted or unfrosted cake for a quick and clean design.
- Make airbrushed designs by printing off multiple stencils and arranging them as desired on your cake, covering the rest of the cake with wax paper to keep the colors from mixing together.
- Carefully spread buttercream frosting over the stencil area and then lift to reveal your design. Scrape extra frosting off the stencil to reuse.
Purchase Christmas Stencils
If you don't feel up for making your own Christmas cake stencils, you can buy existing models at large grocery stores, craft stores, cake decorating stores or online. Although some stencils are specially marketed to cake decorators, any sturdy stencil can work for decoration. Keep in mind that holiday stencils may not always be available for order outside of the season, so keep an eye on offerings as the Christmas draws near.
- Global Sugar Art carries Designer Stencils for use on cake tops that include several holiday designs ranging from snowflakes to seasonal messages to holly. Prices range from around $10 to around $30, depending on the size of stencil.
- Country Kitchen SweetArt sells several stencils suitable for cake and cupcake decorating. All cost around $10 and range from trees to sayings. They also sell the Martha Stewart kit with four larger designs for eight inch cakes.
- Martellato USA sells a mistletoe stencil perfect for the sides of a cake for approximately $22.
- Amazon has a set from Technical Drawing Supplies, Ltd. It's a set of three 12 by 3 inch stencils; the two holiday designs feature bells and a ribbon garland. The other stencil included is of summer flowers.
A Great Tool for Holiday Cake Decorating
Christmas cake stencils are inexpensive tools to add to your decorating arsenal around the holidays. They lend a unique, professional look to cakes that is difficult to achieve with other equipment, and they're so simple to use that even kids can join in on the fun. Enjoy making your own designs and seeing the results in edible impressions.