Tutorial: How to make a purse cake


purse cake
My version on how to make a purse cake is finally here! I have a few tips that I want to share before we get started. My purse cake is rather high. So it might be a little difficult to move it around once it’s placed on the cake board. If you should need to move your cake for a longer distance. I would recommend you to cut more of the cake before you begin with the crumb coat.

Also the size of the cake and cake board is optional. You can of course scale down the size if you want to make a smaller (purse) cake. If you decide to cut more of the cake. Say that you cut the round cake in two halves, you should be able to cover the cake with the white fondant in one go. So you would not need to cover the sides one at a time.

I used a gum paste brooch as decoration on my cake, but you could also decorate it with a gum paste bow instead if you like. That would look beautiful too. I hope that you can use this tutorial.

So let’s get started!

This is what I use:
9″ cake, 3″ high with the top levelled (I used a dark chocolate mudcake)
Buttercream or chocolate ganache (I used Italian Meringue Buttercream)
Small piece of cardboard, for the bottom of the cake
Parchment paper
Angled spatula
Serrated knife
Fondant covered cake board 12″
Rolled fondant icing (About 2 1/2 lb – 1,5 kg) 7 oz coloured in the same colour as the gum paste brooch.
Large & small rolling pin
Tylo powder (CMC, Gum Tex)
Tylo glue
Small sharp knife
Gel paste food colour (I used Avocado from AmeriColor)
Gold lustre dust (I used Golden Sands from Edable Art, a UK brand)
Small amount of clear alcohol or lemon extract
lustre dust (matching the gel paste food colour) (I used Iced Pine from Edable Art, a UK brand)
Large cosmetic powder brush
2 brushes, 1 for painting and 1 for the Tylo glue
Cornstarch dusting bag
Cake smoothers
Ribbon or strip cutter
Large round piping tip
Piping gel
Ruler + pencil
Large spatula
Gum paste brooch
Optional: Small gum paste flowers for extra decoration.

Step 1:
Take a piece of rolled fondant. Large egg size and knead it with 1 tsp of Tylo powder.
Tylo powder CMC

Step 2:
Roll out the fondant to a 5mm thickness. Take a ribbon cutter or a strip cutter (alternative use a knife) and cut a 9″ long and 1″ wide strip.
Fondant strip cutter

Step 3:
Use the cake pan that you baked the cake in to shape the handle for the purse cake. Let it dry for 1 day.
Gum paste handle for purse cake

Step 4:
Roll out the rest of the “Tylo” fondant and use a large round piping tip to cut out 2 small circles. Flatten them slightly with your finger and set a side to dry a little before painting them with the gold lustre dust mixed with few drops of clear alcohol/lemon extract. When they are dry, brush them with a little bit of gold lustre dust. Set aside.

Step 5:
Take your levelled round cake and cut off about 2″ of the “bottom”. Add a thin coat of buttercream and place the small piece of cardboard at the bottom.
Chocolate mud cake
Purse cake

Step 6:
Place the cake on a piece of parchment paper and crumb coat the whole cake with buttercream. Then place the cake in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes for the buttercream to set.
Crumb coat
Crumb coat

Step 7:
Smooth the buttercream with the angled spatula that have been dipped in hot water. Place it in the refrigerator for about 8-10 minutes.
Crumb coat

Step 8:
Roll out some white fondant on a lightly dusted surface to about 4mm thickness. It should be large enough to cover one side of the purse cake. Apply the fondant and smooth it with a cake smoother.

Carefully trim off any excess fondant using a sharp knife or scalpel. Repeat for the other side of the cake.
Note: If the buttercream is getting a little soft. Place the cake in the refrigerator for a few minutes. Before you cover the other side of the purse cake with the rolled fondant.
Cover purse cake

Step 9:
With a ruler and a pencil. Draw a long strip on some parchment paper, Make sure that it is in the same width as the cake and that it can go all around the cake. Roll out the coloured fondant to a long strip (about 4mm thickness).

Then cut out a long strip by using the parchment paper strip as a template. Roll up the fondant and cover the middle of the cake. Trim off any excess and smooth with cake smoothers.
Note: As you can see on the photos. I did not brush the fondant strip with lustre dust, As I was thinking of (I simply forgot all about it). But it is much more easy to add lustre dust before you apply the fondant to the cake. Just brush the lustre dust on the fondant with a large powder brush before you roll the fondant
Rolled fondant icing
Purse cake

Step 10:
Next cut a smaller strip of fondant, 9″ long and 1 1/2″ wide. Brush it with lustre dust and glue it on with a little Tylo glue. I would recommend that you let the cake “dry” for 1 day before you carefully place it on the cake board.
Purse cake

Step 11:
Place the cake on the cake board

Use a little piping gel on the cake board where you want to place the cake. Then with a little help from a large spatula lift the purse cake onto the cake board on top of the piping gel.

Step 12:
Take the handle and carefully glue it on with a little Tylo glue. Then glue on the two small golden rivets on each side of the handle.
Purse cake handle
Purse cake handle

Step 13:
Finish the purse cake with the gum paste brooch. Glue it on the strip with a little Tylo glue.
Tip: Let the Tylo glue dry until it is tacky to the touch, before attaching the brooch. This will help the brooch to stay in place and NOT slide off. You can also place a little piece of Styrofoam underneath as support while it dries.
Brooch on purse cake

If you like you can glue on some small gum paste flowers as a little extra decoration!

Happy Caking!



  1. Hi, let me start off by saying i love your cake, its simple and great for beginners like myself to try their hand at. But i had a question about the fondant. Ive notice a lot of different types of purse designs and im wondering if the fondant is just 100% fondant or do you use a mix of fondant and gum paste?

  2. Hi Louise, you have made this so easy. This is the first time on your site and I am already loving it. I will use your instructions to create a cake for my friends birthday this week. FYI I am a complete beginner, but I think I can do it from these simple method you have put together. Thanks again.



  4. Hi Louise!
    First of all i would like to say that your cake is absolutely wonderful!I love baking and decorating cakes but i’ve got one problem…the city in which i live is very hot and humid.Every time i make fondant it starts melting and becomes very sticky…any suggestions???I will be eagerly awaiting your reply!Thanks a bunch!;)

  5. Hi Louise, I know it all depends in material etc… but how much could you charge for a creation like this? it looks so neat and beautiful. Awesome Job!!!!

  6. This is an awesome, simplified purse cake. Great for all those cake beginners out there.. We have this being featured on our Best Cake Blog….coming up next week sometime (full credit and link to you of course!) awesome!

  7. Hi
    This looks great! Do you think it would be possible to bake it in two tins and layer together so that it has a ‘filling’ or would that make it too wide/ difficult to buttercream and cover?
    I’d like to give it a go, but I’m a sucker for sandwiching ^_^

    • I don’t think that it would do anything to the shape/design if you sandwiched two cakes. I think it would only make it more sturdy.

  8. Thanks Louise!! Such a beautiful cake and the tutorial is incredibly detailed and helpful. Just made this cake for my mom on her birthday and she adored it. Thanks for helping to put a smile on her face 🙂

  9. Hi Louise! thank you so much for this tutorial, I recently made this cake for a customer and they loved it! I’m anna from Saudi Arabia and you can check a photo my purse cake in my fb page…Fourangels.

    • Are you planning on baking the purse cake for 40 people? If so, I think that I would place the purse cake on a larger round or square cake covered in fondant of course and let this cake be the main cake to serve. You can place the purse cake on a couple of dowels so that it will stay in place on the larger cake.

    • Are you planning on baking the purse cake for 40 people? If so, I think that I would place the purse cake on a larger round or square cake covered in fondant of course and let this cake be the main cake to serve. You can place the purse cake on a couple of dowels so that it will stay in place on the larger cake.

  10. Fantastic!!    I LOVE this cake.  However, how do you serve it?  Do you lay it on its side (clasp side up) and cut, or what?

    • I think that I would either lay it down (claps up) and cut it on the cake board or transfer it to the kitchen where I would cut it into portions.

  11. Just stunning Louise!! You know it’s your amazing creativity and your tutorials like this one that make me just love your site.  I just received a “One Lovely Blog Award” and I’ve nominated you for the same one. You can see it here on my post: http://www.thebutterdish.net/2011/08/a-lovely-blog-award-and-7-facts-about-me/
    Thanks for sharing Louise!

  12. I started looking online for cake ideas for my daughter’s 21st on August 16th a couple ofweeks ago. When I found this I thought it would be just perfect and now that your tutorial is also online I’m definitely going to give it a go. Thanks Louise!

  13. Thank you, Louise!   I agree that you have a wonderful knack for describing your techniques.  Can’t wait to try this.  : )

  14. Terrific step-by-step instructions – as always!  Thanks so much for this!  You’ve made it seem “do-able” for me! 🙂

  15. Louise, how do you store the cake? Doesn’t the buttercream need refrigerating, and shouldn’t the fondant not be refrigerated?

    • I would store the cake in a cool room if possible or the refrigerator. Only that can/will cause the fondant to start sweating. However when I make a cake it is to be eaten within the 24 hours 🙂 In most cake decorating books from the UK most books say that the cake can be stored for 1 week or more and that’s not in the fridge or a A/C room.

  16. I just found your site and I LOVE it!! You are very creative I truly LOVE everything!! Thanks for sharing!! I LOVE this cake too cute!!

  17. That was a really awesome explanation. And the cake looked totally pristine by the end. Working with fondant is not easy, at least not for me so to get it to perform the way you did is really impressive. We’ve trying our luck with fondant cakes but it really takes a great deal of practice to make perfect. Check out our blog to see our latest attempt. http://reshnaandsunehrasamazingcakes.blogspot.com/

    Sunehra and Reshna

  18. Excellent as always! I can’t wait to try making this since you’ve made it much less intimidating! Simple and elegant. Thank you!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here