How to Make a Seashell Cupcake Topper

Last summer, I had a lot of fun meeting up with Mindy of Mimi Marie Designs.  Writing this blog and getting to know other creative types around the country and world has been an amazing experience.  But when you find out that one of those people actually lives just a few miles away--that's just icing on the cake.  

I volunteered to make some cookies and sandcastle lollipops and cupcake toppers for Mindy's daughter's mermaid birthday party.  

(This beautiful photo of the cupcakes from Diana Carver Photography, who took all the gorgeous pictures at the party.)

I was looking at these pictures recently, and realized I'd never shared my tutorail for making these cute little edible cupcake toppers, perfect for any under-the-sea party.  So without further delay...

How to Make an Edible Shell Cupcake Topper

You'll need:

  • gumpaste
  • brown food coloring
  • pink food coloring
  • super pearl luster dust

The first step is to color your gumpaste.  I love using Satin Ice brand best, but if you can't find that easily, the Wilton brand will work and is available at major craft stores.  Use a bit of gel food coloring and start kneading the color in.  Twisting the gumpaste helps to give you the nice swirls and marbleization you see in the picture above.

I used a chocolate mold for this, because it's what I had on hand.  No need to get a mold specifically for use with gumpaste and fondant.  Dust the mold with super pearl luster dust.  This helps to release the molded gumpaste, and gives a beautiful shimmery look.  You could also use cornstarch, but it wouldn't have that beautiful shell shimmer.

Cut out circles of your marbleized gumpaste and press into the shell shaped cavities.

Turn out and let dry completely.

Once the shell is dry, color some gumpaste pink, and press a ball of the pink gumpaste in the bottom half of the shell.  Roll a ball of white gumpaste and dust in super pearl luster dust.  Set on top of the pink, fleshy part of the oyster.  Make the pearl pretty large, because you're going to prop the top shell on top of the pearl.  Use a little bit of vodka to glue the pieces together.   You're just trying to get the gumpaste a little wet, so the sugar will stick the different pieces together.  You could use water, but I typically use vodka because it evaporates more quickly. 

And there you have it!  Seriously simple, fast, edible cupcake toppers perfect for a mermaid party.  I added sparkling gumpaste letters spelling out the birthday girl's name to some of the seashell toppers, but the extras with just the pearl were just as cute!  A little bit of blue icing or any color of icing covered in brown sugar, and you have a fabulous ocean themed cupcake.