Dec 21


{Video} How to Marble or Swirl Royal Icing

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I finally dipped my toe into video blogging; here’s a how-to on marbling, swirling , or feathering royal icing on cookies:

Click here if you can’t see the video.


If you’d like to see more images and information on marbling, click here.


If you’d like to try making these, here’s what you’ll need…


What you’ll need to make marbled decorated cookies:


And it’s about time I made my first video tutorial for the University of Cookie!

I was honored and pleased as punch (yes, I did say pleased as punch), to be invited by Bridget to be a “professor” there.  If you haven’t seen U of C, It’s full of all kinds of super cookie decorating tips from other U of C professors; I recommend you check them out here!

For those of you prefer images to my video, here’s a step-by-step of how cookies are marbled:







Now that I’ve dipped my toes into the video blogging world, I’ll be doing videos here and there.  Please leave me a comment below letting me know:

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  1. Emily G
    December 23, 2010 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    How do your cookies hold their shape while baking? My cutouts look great then they spread out ANC loose some of their cut factor.

    • marian
      December 23, 2010 at 9:58 am | Permalink

      Thanks so much for your comments!

      Emily, there are a few things which help; I’ll do a {video?} post on it soon and go into detail. For now, the basics are in my Sugar Cookie Recipe (within the recipe and in the notes):

      Hope that helps!

  2. infinitsky
    December 24, 2010 at 11:50 pm | Permalink

    Marian, thank you for taking the time to make this amazing video. Get ready since you are going to be getting many video tutorial requests. I read through all the other 53 comments before me and it seems one mostly requested video is “Kopykake”. I do not have one and am not planning to buy one(I am just a hobby baker), but I am so interested to see a video on working with Kopykake, from getting the images ready to decorating cookies.
    By the way, you are a beautiful woman, and so easy to look and listen to on a video tutorial.
    Hope you have a wonderful holiday and a wonderful New Year full of decorated cookies to amaze and inspire us.

    • marian
      December 28, 2010 at 2:34 am | Permalink

      Aw, thank you Rachel! All the best to you as well!

      Thank you all for your support, well wishes and ideas! I’ll base my next videos on suggestions made here.

  3. Tatyana
    December 25, 2010 at 1:13 am | Permalink

    This post and video are so helpful. Thank you so much!
    I would love to see everything you do with cookies in videos, especially how to make royal icing.
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  4. December 27, 2010 at 12:04 am | Permalink

    Having the one consistency for lining and filling is SUCH a great way to do that. I always feel like doing one for outlining and one for filling is such a pain in the butt and one of the reasons I don’t decorate very often. I will HAVE to try this!! Thanks!

  5. Maria-Greece
    December 27, 2010 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

    Dear Mariαn,
    helped me a lot with this course – video!

  6. Mimi
    December 27, 2010 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    Bravo Marian!! You are the best! J’adore !
    I have a question: Your prefer use royal icing or rolled fondant on cookies? thank you

    • marian
      December 28, 2010 at 2:31 am | Permalink

      Mimi I definitely prefer royal icing; it’s more fun for me to decorate and I like the look better. I think rolled fondant might be a bit faster though.

  7. December 28, 2010 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

    Great Video, I made some for Christmas not really having much to go on, they turned out pretty good, but I think with your tips I can make them even better. You can check out my humble offerings at

    Thanks for the great inspiration!

  8. December 29, 2010 at 12:21 am | Permalink

    I love the video! It is so helpful to see it and be able to have a better understanding. Thanks!

  9. December 29, 2010 at 11:17 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for another great tutorial. I love your ornament cookies (note to self: find ornament cookie cutters for next year). One of these days I will actually give it a try and decorate some cookies with royal icing.

  10. December 30, 2010 at 6:47 am | Permalink

    Dear Marian, It has always been a great pleasure reading your blog and seeing your amazing work. I want to wish you and your family, A Happy New Year! May God Bless you with good health, peace, happiness success and prosperity.
    Best Wishes,

    PS i would love to share with you my Christmas dessert table!

  11. December 31, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

    @ Anna {Sugarized}:

    I can’t wait to try royal icing too. I’m a new reader and Chocolate blogger at I’d love to try royal icing with Chocolate!

    Thanks so much. Lovely looking blog!@ Anna {Sugarized}:

  12. January 3, 2011 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    Great video, can’t wait to see more video tutorials. I’ve never tried the shaking technique for smoothing the icing out. Also do you only use on consistency of icing for both piping and flooding all the time?

  13. marian
    January 3, 2011 at 7:58 am | Permalink


    @ Lauren @ Crave. Indulge. Satisfy.: Yes, I do. I used to make a thicker icing for outling, but one consistency really does work, and it’s much faster than preparing two icing consistencies.

  14. Patricia
    January 4, 2011 at 9:54 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for sharing your video tutorial. I always want to know how do you do your “perfect” swiss dots. Mine always end up forming ‘peak’ on the top. maybe you can do a video on that? or how to use kopycake?

  15. January 5, 2011 at 12:52 am | Permalink

    wow, amazing. seriously beautiful.

  16. January 5, 2011 at 9:40 pm | Permalink

    Your cookies are absolutely beautiful!

  17. January 6, 2011 at 8:11 pm | Permalink

    Just beautiful!

  18. January 7, 2011 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Wow, Amazing blog, i just stumbled upon it and i am really taken a back… lovely photography.. amazing tutorial… looking forward to more posts… just gorgeous

    Happy 2011

    La Roquette

  19. Beckie
    January 10, 2011 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    Everything you do is just awesome! Can you tell me where you got your ornament cookie cutters?

  20. marian
    January 10, 2011 at 8:35 am | Permalink

    Some of them came in this set:

    I have so many cutters I’m not 100% sure where I found the rest of my ornaments; I sometimes pick them up a local craft fairs, garage sales, you name it; I’m always on the look-out for them.

    This site is great for cutters too though:

  21. Rosemary
    January 15, 2011 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    Hi! Thank you very much for this video. It’s really impressive and beautiful! I will try to do it 🙂

  22. Beckie
    January 15, 2011 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    @ marian:

  23. Erin
    January 23, 2011 at 6:37 am | Permalink

    Thank you so much for the video! Your site is so inspirational and it really helped to see a live demonstration!

  24. marian
    January 23, 2011 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    Thanks everyone for visiting and leaving me comments and feedback! I appreciate every single one of them!

  25. Mary-Clare
    February 1, 2011 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

    Hi Marian

    I live in Boston, MA. I love to make gingerbread houses and have been, on a non professional, just for the family and friends level, for about 15 years. I am from Australia originally and they have the most exquisite royal icing floral work imaginable. You prolly have seen some no doubt.

    I am so very interested in cake arts. Can you recommend a school here in Boston that teaches what you do and also teaches wedding style decorations?

    Thank you…. your work is so inspirational! I love your gingerbread houses… they are simply charming.

  26. February 10, 2011 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

    You were an inspiration in my cookie decorating this week!

  27. February 11, 2011 at 7:27 am | Permalink

    Your marbling video just blew my mind!! I’m bookmarking this for when I make Valentines Day cookies. I’m so excited, thank you for putting this online!!

  28. Bree Nichols
    February 22, 2011 at 12:19 am | Permalink

    Love your cookies, just beautiful! Can you do a video on food coloring? There are so many new options out there, and I can never get my colors to vary in vibrant shades. They always just end up getting lighter and darker, but still “blah”! I’d love to know about: mixing to get the right color, gels vs. powders, how to use dusting glitters, etc… Your colors are amazingly vibrant, and I always have difficulty getting pastels and jewel tones.

  29. jane
    February 28, 2011 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

    amazing! so helpful…hadn’t looked at the video…such a great help!

  30. Jan Feldmann
    March 17, 2011 at 1:51 am | Permalink

    Thank you so much for your generosity in sharing your knowledge and expertise. It was very informative! Thanks again!!!

  31. June 8, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    Just wanted to say thank you for the tutorial. Inspired some friends and me to try out hand at marbling. I’ve blogged our efforts here:, but we’ve got a way to go before we’re as good as you! Thank you!

    • marian
      June 8, 2011 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

      Super cute Becky! You ladies are lucky to have a group of friends who do activities together such as this. So inspiring!
      You all did a great job on them – some real creativity! If you need help with consistency, there is a video with the 10 second rule you may have seen (which helped me when I first began decorating.. the rule that is lol. Try the thicker consistency). Or, try practicing by doing the outlines first, let them set for 15 minutes while you do outlines of other cookies, and then fill them in.
      Either way, I’m so glad your lovely group tried cookie decorating! It’s definitely become a stress-reliever, and a fun, creative outlet for me, and I’m so glad to see that it was (hopefully) the same for you!

  32. June 8, 2011 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

    @ marian:
    Thank you for the advice on the ten second rule. I look forward to trying again. I’ve got your Christmas cookie ideas to aim for, so that gives me a few months… Thank you again!

  33. Lorena Cáceres (Chile)
    June 30, 2011 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    Great Tutorial!! Beautiful!!! thanks for the tips, my cookies will look wonderful, Going strait away to practice this technique!!
    Thanks again!

  34. Sara
    December 12, 2011 at 12:25 am | Permalink

    Ahh! I will have to make more gingerbread cookies now just so I can try this out! Thank you!

  35. Heidy Rubinstein
    December 17, 2011 at 5:36 am | Permalink

    Love your videos and tutorials!!!
    Thanks for teaching us.

  36. Montana
    January 9, 2012 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

    Wow. I’m 12 and I loveeeee to cook! And I’ve been searching how to this for like a long time! Thanks so much canttt waiittt to try it! Thanks so much!

  37. Nasreen
    February 12, 2012 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    Firstly, I love your tutorial, really helpful and your work is excellent.

    I have started making biscuits, it’s a Mauritian recipe, basically a two shortbreads jammed together then iced on top and sides with pink icing. Please can you help me with how I can ice the sides neatly without leaving any biscuit showing. I am also doing heart shaped ones which is more trickier in getting the icing coated all the way round.

  38. marian
    February 12, 2012 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

Show Pingbacks & Trackbacks

  1. […] {You can find a more detailed explanation about marbling here and a video here} […]

  2. […] celebration – 6 dozen in total! I decorated half of them, and found inspiration here, here and here. I had a great time creating all my mini […]

  3. By Valentine's Day Sugar Cookies - Quick Feet, Good Eats on February 22, 2011 at 10:27 am

    […] and I learned how to marble the icing here. Definitely check out this blog for some neat decorating […]

  4. […] Made the icing a little too runny this time though. I also marbled some cookies based on this awesome video. I forgot to take pictures though and boxed them up to give away before I could remember! D: […]

  5. […] while still wet. You can also create a marble effect with wet icing – here’s a great video tutorial from Sweetopia which shows you […]

  6. By My Little Cookie Decorator — Dream A Lil Dream on August 16, 2011 at 7:49 pm

    […] also joined in on the decorating. I was experimenting with the swirling technique on the circle to the right. Mrs. Sayuri decorated the center diamond cookie all by herself, and it […]

  7. […] With this thicker icing I can outline and fill in right away; you just have to shake the cookie a bit to help the icing settle.  You can see how I do it in this video on marbling royal icing HERE. […]

  8. By How to Decorate Mardi Gras Mask Cookies | Sweetopia on November 1, 2011 at 5:24 pm

    […] technique:  Pipe dots onto your wet icing and drag a toothpick through the dots.  For a video click HERE, for a how-to post click […]

  9. […] Marbled Ornament Cookies- Sweetopia […]

  10. By Gorgeous Christmas Cookies {Pictures} | Sippy Cup Mom! on December 21, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    […] via Melissa on […]

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    […] Firefly confections  |  2. Sweetopia 3. Sweet cupcakes and treats  |  4. Shugary Sweet […]

  12. […] to direct you to two videos.   There is  one by Chatelaine and there is another by Marian of Sweetopia.  The Sweetopia link also includes step-by-step photos.  Sweetopia also has basic tips on […]

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