Make Your Own Cupcake Canopy

Posted by Anne Yorks on Thursday, September 16, 2010

I think it more than just a coincidence that my daughter's birthday falls during National Cupcake Week. Acutally, I didn't know NCW existed until I saw a tweet about it yesterday. But, now that I know, i'm in...I'm ALL in.

So in honor of this weeklong national holiday, I would like to share with you how to make a cupcake canopy for a little girl's room. I made this project for my little girl's 3rd birthday present. She LOVES it. We have already spent hours in the 'cupcake house' reading, doing puzzles, playing Hi Ho Cherrio, and staying safe from monsters.

I first got this idea from an article published in Family Fun magazine the summer of 2009. I really liked this idea, so I ripped out the pages and stuffed them in my nightstand. When I was brainstorming ideas for birthday presents, I remembered this project. 

Since my little girl's room is themed Sugar and Spice, I decided I couldn't do a princess canopy...but rather I wanted to create a giant cupcake canopy, complete with sprinkles, a polka dot cupcake 'wrapper', and a cherry on top!

These are the materials I used for the project. I spent about $40 and it took me three nights to make the canopy. I spent a morning rearranging my daughter's room and hanging the project. Toph was a major help throughout the entire process!

This is what you'll need:

1 33" hula hoop

20 yards of 1/8" wide ribbon

4 lengths of tulle 54"w x 3 yards long

Packing Tape

3 yards of felt, 70" wide

10 Jumbo Pipe Cleaners (aka chenille stems) in pink, purple, and yellow

12 8 1/2" x 1" sheets of felt in pink, cream and purple

small round bowl for tracing felt circles

foam ball

red spray paint

pink thread and needle


glue gun and sticks (I used 3)


First I laid out the ribbons and tied them onto the hula hoop. 

Each ribbon was 66 inches long. I folded it in half and looped the ends through it. 

I did this six times, spaced them out evenly and tied a loopy knot at the end.

Next I cut the cupcake cover out of pink felt. I really wanted the top to look like ruffled icing, so I cut two layers.

The first layer matched closely the size of the hula hoop.

The second icing layer was about 10 inches larger than the radius of the hula hoop. I made the line wiggly to look more like icing. I just eyeballed it...no need to be exact. I cut inside the line, so that the marker wouldn't be visible when I was finished.

Next I traced out felt circles. These would later be sewed onto the tulle to create a polka dot cupcake cup.

I used cream, pink and purple. It matched the pink felt top.

Once the felt was cut, I moved onto cutting the tulle. It took more than the length of the living room floor. I cut four pieces to create a fuller looking canopy. The Family Fun magazine only suggested two, but it didn't seem enough to me.

I don't have a good picture of the next step, but it is critical to the success of the project. I folded each piece of tulle in half (longwise) and then in half again. I placed 4 pieces of packing tape on each folded piece of tulle. Then I cut a single hole through the four layers. The packing tape serves as reinforcement so that the tulle doesn't tear. I aligned the tape so that it would match up when I cut the hole. I did this to each section of tulle and then slipped it over the loopy ribbon know on the hula hoop.

I cut a 'centered' hole in the pink felt layers and slipped those over the knot too. 

Next came the sprinkles. I used this jumpo pipe cleaners, but you could also use pom poms, painted hair rollers or anything else that is sprinkle like. I cut each pipe into four sprinkles. 

Then I scattered them on the icing layers.

I dotted a small amount of glue on each end of the sprinkles. 

Then I pressed it down on the felt. Be careful to press in the middle of the sprinkle - this will keep your fingers safe from the hot glue. 

Once all the sprinkles were glued down, I moved onto the polka dots. I put about 9 dots on each of the four panels. I stitched them in place with a few central stitches. I didn't glue them because I was afraid of melting the tulle. I also did want to see the glue through the tulle. I contemplated stitching around the entire circle, but I didn't have the time and I think it looked fine as is. 

The very last step was spraying the cherry and popping in on the top. Toph did this outside. : )

We rearranged my little girl's bedroom and hung the cupcake away from the baseboard heater. I figured that was safest.

Here it is...the Cupcake Canopy.

We put a pink beanbag chair for cozy seating. But often, we take the chair out and put a blanket down. We enjoy the extra room when doing games or puzzles. It's roomy enough for two or three of us. 

It's just a cute little hang out.

We love reading bedtime stories in the new cupcake house, too! Here we are reading one of our favorite books, No Matter What. It's a book for kids about God's love - that he loves us no matter what! That's how I feel about my daughter. She is the light of my life. 

Overall, this was a fun and EASY project to make! I can tell it's going to be a great addition to our playtime. If you make a cupcake canopy, email me pictures! I'd love to see your creativity too!

More birthday fun to come - PINK, PINK, PINK! I can't wait to show you the pink themed birthday party and the cute pink birthday cake cookies I made for the favors!

Until then, have a sweet cupcake week!!