Fancy hats

Fancy hats

Bake and Decorate
Laura Edwards

Become a milliner and design your own hats in cake and icing. I have created a smart black-and-white hat fit for a race meeting or any wedding, a top hat, a cap, a trilby and summer boaters. Take these as a starting point and create your own range of exquisite headgear!


Quantity Ingredient
1 x 20cm Victoria sponge, baked in 2 sandwich tins
700g white sugarpaste
1 pot black food colour paste
1 pot violet food colour paste
5 7.5 cm thin round cake boards
2 10 cm thin round cake boards
icing sugar, to dust
1 set round metal cutters, (10 cm, 7.5 cm, 5 cm and 4 cm)
8 tablespoons apricot jam, warmed and sieved
60g white royal icing

To decorate (use a selection):

Quantity Ingredient
tiny silk flowers


  1. Colour 100 g of sugarpaste for the top hat, using the black and violet food pastes and seal in a polythene bag. Cut 1 of the 7.5 cm cake boards down to 5 cm diameter.
  2. Dust all the cake boards with a little icing sugar and sprinkle with water. Make the rims of the hats: on a work top lightly dusted with icing sugar, and with a dusted rolling pin, roll out some of the white sugarpaste to 3 mm thick. Using the round cutters, cut out 2 x 10 cm rounds, 3 x 7.5 cm rounds and 1 x 5 cm round. Place these on their appropriate boards. Roll out a little of the coloured sugarpaste to the same thickness, cut out 1 x 7.5 cm round and place on the remaining cake board. Spread a little jam into the centre of each board.
  3. Now take the cutters to the Victoria sponge. These circles of cake will form the hat crowns. Using more of the jam, sandwich together 2 x 5 cm rounds for the top hat, 3 x 5 cm rounds for the race meeting hat and 2 x 4 cm rounds for the cap. Cut the top layer of the cap at an angle, with a sharp knife, so the crown slopes backwards. Cut out 4 more 5 cm rounds for the remaining cakes. Brush each with jam.
  4. Next, dusting the work surface and rolling pin with a little icing sugar, roll out the remaining white sugarpaste and use it to cover each cake crown (except for the top hat). Cover the top hat with the coloured sugarpaste. Smooth with your hands and, when you are pleased with the shapes, put the cakes on their boards, placing the cap towards the rear of the smallest cake board to make a peak. Run a finger down the centre of the trilby to indent. Leave to dry overnight.
  5. To decorate the hats, use royal icing to attach the ribbons, netting, dragees, feathers, braid and silk flowers, as you wish.
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