Oct 12


{Video} How to Decorate Kokeshi Doll Cookies

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At first glance these Kokeshi doll cookies may look difficult to make, but with a few tips they really are simple to ice. Time-wise they took a little longer than the average cookie I decorate, hence the fast-forwarding in the video below, but the Kopykake projector made it easy for a drawing-challenged person like me.

In my FAQ section, where I first posted these cookies, I shared a basic how-to on making them, and today I’ll go into more detail with a video on the first Kokeshi. I’ll be making 4 more videos to cover each of the dolls.

Thank you so much to author of the Kokeshi Kimono Book, Annelore Parot, for the cookie design! Her work is simply adorable, and besides publishing several kokeshi-themed books and journals, she even has a site dedicated to her Kokeshi dolls. I changed the color palette and patterns a bit, because the tiny print patterns were a bit difficult for me to achieve on a small cookie. If you’re interested in trying these, one thing which could work, would be to print the patterns out on edible ink paper link – that way you’d have an exact match!


How to Decorate Kokeshi Doll Cookies {Video}


Recipes & Making the Cookie Shapes

Use a recipe of your choice as your cookie base (I used my sugar cookie recipe) and cut out the custom shapes with a paring knife. I used Annelore’s images from her book and enlarged them with a Kopykake projector to get the size I wanted, drew an outline and cut out the templates. Once the cookies are baked and cooled, plane down any rough edges with a microplane rasp zester and dust off with a pastry brush.

To decorate, you’ll need royal icing and the items listed below.


Items for Decorating

food gel coloring


piping bag ties

piping bags

PME piping tips (#’s 1.5 and 2)


Kopykake projector *

food coloring markers

paint brush only used for cookie decorating dusts

pink petal dust

gold pearl dust

*The Kopykake projector has been invaluable to me – I can easily create sugar art without being able to draw images freehand. If you don’t own one, you can find alternatives in the question section of this post.


You can find basics on how to outline and flood cookies etc. in the tutorial section above or on my YouTube channel.


Please leave me feedback here and let me know if you’d like audio explanations in the video, or if you’d like a personal introduction and/or ending, explaining a little more, or do you like jumping right into the how-to.

Happy decorating!



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  1. October 13, 2014 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    Good morning and Happy Thanksgiving, Marian 🙂

    I absolutely adore this cookie AND video!
    I love how you share every little detail with your readers – it’s really helpful for all the cookie decorators out there!

    Wishing you a lovely holiday today. I am at work! hahaa…

    Much love,
    niner 🙂


    • marian
      October 14, 2014 at 11:15 am | Permalink

      Thanks Niner! Wishing you a lovely day at work too. 😉

  2. Tami R
    October 13, 2014 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    Those are sooo cute! Such a lot of work for that fan, but so worth it!

    • marian
      October 14, 2014 at 11:16 am | Permalink

      Thanks, Tami! It did take a little while, but the piping isn’t hard to do. 🙂

  3. October 13, 2014 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    That was NUTS! The cookie decorating video was completely mesmerizing. And now I have an insatiable desire to flood something. Anything! No blank cookies around so it looks like it’s going to be the cat. ~ karen

    • marian
      October 14, 2014 at 11:17 am | Permalink

      Karen, you are so funny! You never fail to make me laugh! (If you ever do it, I would like to see a picture of your flooded cat).

  4. Maria Theresia
    October 13, 2014 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

    wow…. you just blow me away!!! You make it look so easey! I love the Kokeshi Doll Cookies. Looking forward to the next session!
    All I can say you teach me so many things and you have nerves of iron…
    Hope you had some time to enjoy the Thanksgiving weekend.
    Thank you for sharing all your talents.

    • marian
      October 14, 2014 at 11:19 am | Permalink

      Ha ha, I don’t know about those nerves of iron Maria Theresia, but thanks!

  5. Marguerite
    October 13, 2014 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

    Maria is right: you do make it look so easy!
    I am soo far from your experience and expertise, but your work has inspired me and continues to do so. I tried my hand at some of your autumn cookies (pumpkin, acorn, turkey and leaves) for Thanksgiving and got rave reviews from my family. So thank you for sharing your wonderful creations and techniques, and please don’t stop! 🙂

    • marian
      October 14, 2014 at 11:19 am | Permalink

      Yay! Marguerite, I’m so glad you tried some autumn cookies and they were a success!

      Thanks so much for visiting me – I appreciate your comment. xo

  6. Paula B
    October 15, 2014 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

    Amazing…I smiled the whole time watching it! Beautiful!!! Thanks for sharing!

  7. October 15, 2014 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

    Absolutely beautiful! Loved the design of the dolls and especially watching you in fast-forward. If only all decorating could happen so quickly. 😉

  8. Kathryn
    November 5, 2014 at 5:22 pm | Permalink

    Awesome looking cookies, thanks for sharing how to make them! I use your icing recipe all the time; it’s fail-safe and my go-to formula for decorating cookies. I have a quick question about the doll templates. Did you use stiff craft paper/cardboard/plastic to make cut-outs of the shapes? I’m just wondering what material you used that could hold up to being repeatedly laid over the cookie dough while cutting out the outline with a paring knife? Thanks for sharing!

    • marian
      November 24, 2014 at 10:07 am | Permalink

      Hi Kathryn,
      I use regular paper or stiff craft paper – whatever I have on hand. The regular paper definitely is harder to work with and the cookie grease soaks into it quickly, but it does in a pinch.

  9. November 19, 2014 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

    This came at exactly the right time! I have a customer who is doing a Kokeshi doll themed baby shower on the weekend! Using your photos and tutorial together with her colours for the party 🙂 they are just waiting for their faces!

    • marian
      November 24, 2014 at 10:08 am | Permalink

      How awesome is that! Would love to see a pic if you’d like to share a link to one on line!

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