Simple Tips on Decorating a Nautical Birthday Cake!

All ready to set sail for your little one’s nautical-themed birthday party? Oops, wait! There’s the slight matter of the sailor-themed cake you’ve vowed to make yourself. Worried that you may not get that cake ready in time…and in true seaworthy style? Well, we’re here to bail you out with this super-quick and easy decorating approach. In just 5 simple steps, you’ll have a delightful birthday cake for your sailor-celebrant to show off!


Materials you will need:

1 round cake (about an 18” inch diameter cake) covered in plain white fondant or frosted with white marshmallow or buttercream icing.
1 anchor shape, cut from blue or aqua craft board
2 yards red satin ribbon
2 yards blue satin ribbon
6 pcs. ‘nautical medallions’ made from kraft paper and colored construction paper or felt
Assorted candies (peppermint bonbons, M&Ms, jelly beans, sixlets, gumballs) in red, yellow, and blue or aqua

Hints: Aside from an anchor cutout, you could have one in the shape of a boat or a ship’s steering wheel. And instead of the medallions, you could buy pre-made nautical symbols from a craft or toy store.

Now to assemble and decorate the cake!

Step 1: Position the anchor cutout on top of the cake.

Center the anchor of the nautical sailor themed birthday cake

Step 2: Use the assorted candies like peppermint wheels to create colorful patterns on the top of the cake, fun details on the anchor, and a festive border around the cake’s base. Also, be sure to line the bottom edge with colorful candy coated chocolates.


Step 3: Cut a length each of the red ribbon and the blue ribbon. Wrap these around the bottom edge of the cake, creating a 2-toned band.

Add blue and red ribbons to the nautical birthday cake

Step 4: Attach the ‘nautical medallions’ at even intervals on top of this ribbon band, using a dab of icing to hold each one in place. For this project, we applied 4 medallions around the cake

Decorate with colored-candies to the sailor themed cake

Step 5: Create a themed cake table to show off the finished cake! A tablecloth in red, white, and blue stripes sets a snappy look. Then, add a model of a sailing boat, a miniature treasure chest filled with gold-wrapped chocolate coins, and a backdrop of red and blue balloons. You can also add a bunting of ‘nautical flags.’

The birthday boy will be so excited to share such a party-perfect cake with his ‘mateys.’ But you’ll be even more thrilled at having pulled it off with no actual decorating skills needed! (We won’t tell if you won’t!)

Present the finished birthday cake on a dessert table with a nautical ship backdrop and treasure chest of treats for kids.


  1. So pretty! I’ve been meaning to get into cake decorating, but somehow I never find the time. Yours turned out great, and is perfect for summer birthday parties. Thank you for sharing. Pinned to The Really Crafty Link Party Pinterest board!

  2. What an inspiring cake this is. Melanie, this is perfect for the summertime. Love the anchor and the decorations on the table. Pinning!

  3. Such a clever effect #TheRealCraftyLinkParty

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