gift or present cakes, how to do the lids

gift present cakes, how to do the lids

by inspiredbymichelle on February 8, 2011

in birthday cake ideas,tiffany present gift box cakes,tutorials

Gift cake or a present cake and how to make the lids three different ways.

Lately I have been asked how I do the lids on my cakes. I actually have three different methods depending on the finish of the  cake I am making. The cake gallery above has two photos of each of the three ways as a reference.

1. This method I can use if the cake is to a budget (this is the quickest and easiest) and the lid and the box are all in the one colour.

The examples are the tiffany blue cake with the white bow and the pink spot cake with the cocktail glass.

With this method the cake is covered exactly the same as you would do a square or round cake then measure down from the top edge the depth of the lid you want then deeply mark the lid edge. I actually use a ruler that is  the depth I usually use so I line that up with the top edge then mark along the bottom edge – very quick and easy. If you are taking the ribbon down the side of the gift cake then also mark this where it goes over the lid. This method also means you only have one thickness of fondant on the top of the cake.

2. This method means you can easily have a contrasting colour for the lid or it can be the same.

The examples are the square red and white present cake and the black and gold cake.

Firstly you cover the entire cake with fondant and the best way is to leave this to dry for one day. Then roll out the lid fondant. You will need to wet the cake where the lid is to go so the fondant will stick and you need to wet the entire lid surface – leave no spots as these may become air pockets. You can mark the lid edge the same way as the first method so this will be your guide. Then cover the top in fondant and instead of just marking the lid edge you will cut away the fondant excess. You will need to take into account that you have the thickness of the lid fondant so your cutting mark will be that thickness lower than you measured for the lid wetting area. I hope this makes sense!!!

3. This is the open topped gift cake or present cake. This is the method I use when the gifts are to be filled presents – often things that are special to the birthday person or kitchen utensils for a kitchen tea cake. The lid in this cake is a piece of polystyrene foam that I cut to about 1″ thickness then glue on to it’s own matching cake board. I then ganache this then cover it with fondant as if it is a cake and add the bow etc. The cake itself is covered as usual then the gifts are placed on top before icing the lid in place. It can be a bit fiddly placing everything so there are no gaps and this is when having a tissue paper effect in fondant comes in handy.

Well I hope this how to do lids on cakes make sense and as I write this I think maybe I need to make a video the next time I do a cake with method two!!!

Bye for now, Michelle

Inspired by Michelle Cake Designs

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Marj Jenkins February 8, 2011 at 12:18 pm

Thanks so much for all your great tutorial posts and for sharing your expertise! I look forward to reading your blog posts and looking at the pictures of your GORGEOUS cakes every time I get an update email!


Courtney February 16, 2011 at 8:02 pm

I lOVE your cakes, you are so talented! I also noticed your candles…where do you get those? What are they called? Thanks!!!


inspiredbymichelle February 16, 2011 at 9:19 pm

Hi Courtney, I call the candles “bullet” candles and I buy them from Cake Decorating Central in Castle Hill Sydney Australia – they do have an online shop if that helps.


Kerry July 2, 2011 at 8:49 am

Hi Michelle, your cakes are truely amazing! I am wanting to do a cake with a lid as in your second method (my first attempt) but am slightly confused as to how to do this? Do you cut the fondant to size before you place it on the cake? And if you mark the cake as a guide how do you see this once you’ve put fondant on the top? Sorry for my confusion!! Thanks!


inspiredbymichelle July 3, 2011 at 8:00 pm

Hi Kerry, do not apologise I just read my explanation and I can see why it is confusing!!!
Know you do not cut the lid fondant to size first but do not have it too big as the eight will stretch the fondant. Marking the cake as a guide first means you have some idea of proportions rather than second guessing once the icing is on but you are right you will not be able to see this once the lid fondant is on – it is easily done just the once with no problems at all.
Sorry for confusing you!!
Bye for now, Michelle


Celeste August 17, 2011 at 8:59 pm

I love your cakes, absolutely flawless. Would you be making a video tutorial of making your cake lids on a round cake, anytime soon? I would most appreciate a visual. Thank you!


Whitney Corn April 13, 2012 at 10:58 pm

I just adore the Tiffany & Co. box at the top with the kitchen utensils! My best friend is getting married and her bridal shower is Tiffany’s themed so this couldnt be more perfect! I am planning on doing the cake and could use a little more explanation if possible. Is there any way you could do a video tutorial? Also are the utensils gum paste or real? Thank you for posting the picture, I look forward to hearing from you! Whitney


inspiredbymichelle April 14, 2012 at 1:45 am

Hi Whitney, everything but the wires on the whisk is in fondant. I’m sorry but my schedule doe not allow to make a video for you. Bye for now, Michelle


Kay September 8, 2013 at 10:50 pm

Thank you Michelle! I know how to make a gift box but this is the first one with an open lid. Thanks for taking the time out to share that information with us.


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