How to Decorate a Pirate Ship Cookie with Prelly Cookies [Guest Post]

Written by Mike Tamplin • Apr 21, 2016

How to Decorate a Pirate Ship Cookie with Prelly Cookies [Guest Post]
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I have a very special guest visiting the blog today! April, of Prelly Cookies, is a friend whose work I've been following for a few years now. Her mad letter piping skills on cookies and cleverly cute designs would make any cookie decorator envious (and the fact she also lives in Hawaii doesn't help :-P). We connected virtually through social media, and she has been an inspiration ever since.

ship cookie cutter

One of April's inspiring cookie designs that I loved was her transforming my Thanksgiving Mayflower cookie idea into an awesome pirate ship.

The Mayflower ship idea originally started with a snowman cookie cutter as a base, but I created the ship design into a cookie cutter, which is now available in my shop.

I was in awe when I first laid eyes on April's pirate ship cookies and hoped she would share how she made them. Luckily for us, she agreed! Take it away, April!

A little less than a year and a half ago, I received a request to make cookies for a “Mermaid & Pirates” theme birthday party for a little girl turning 4. How fun! My client showed me that she wanted half of the cookies to match the mermaid birthday cake, but also wanted to have some pirate cookies for the little boys in attendance.

I definitely knew that I wanted to do some pirate ship cookies, but did not have a pirate ship cookie cutter. Luckily for me, Mike had just recently shared a tutorial on how to decorate Thanksgiving Mayflower cookies using a snowman cookie cutter. Genius! I definitely had a snowman cutter, and I loved that his design was unique in using the front of the ship, rather than the side profile. So instead of the Mayflower, I turned it into a pirate ship!

Today, I will be sharing how I made these pirate ship cookies. A majority of the pirate ship decorating process mirrors Mike’s Thanksgiving Mayflower tutorial:

Step 1

Draw the bottom of the ship’s hull. I roughly drew the ship’s hull directly on the cookie using a yellow food marker.

Outline and immediately flood the ship’s hull with light brown royal icing. Let your icing set for 10-15 minutes.

pirate ship cookies step1

Step 2

Using the shape of the cookie as your guide, outline and immediately flood the two rectangular sails with white royal icing. Let your sails dry for 10-15 minutes

pirate ship cookies step 2

Step 3

Pipe a line across the top of each sail with dark brown royal icing. Then, outline and flood the details of the ship’s hull edge. Let your icing dry for an hour (or longer if you have bleeding issues with darker icing colors) before moving onto the next step.

pirate ship cookies step 3

Step 4

Once the two large sails have dried, outline and immediately flood the top smaller sail with black royal icing**. Then, outline and immediately flood the bottom smaller sail with white royal icing. Let your smaller sails dry for 10-15 minutes.

pirate ship cookies step 4

Step 5

Pipe a line across the top of each small sail with dark brown royal icing, adding a center mass afterwards. Next, pipe lines for ropes with ivory royal icing.

pirate ship cookies step 5

Step 6

With white royal icing, pipe two small circles on the top half of the small black sail. These will be the eye sockets for the skull. Then, pipe a small flag on the very top of the center mass with red royal icing**. Next, on the black sail, pipe out a small skull around the two small circles and cross bones directly underneath.

pirate ship cookies step 6

Step 6

Finally, draw on the last details. Use a red food marker to draw on stripes** on the bottom small sail; and use a brown food marker to draw the wood plank detail lines on the ship’s hull.

**Change your flag, sail, and stripe colors to any color you wish.

pirate ship cookies step 7

Pirate Ship Cookie Video Tutorial

April was even generous enough to put together a video tutorial of the decorating steps above. You can check her out in action below. Thanks April!

To keep up with April's latest cookie designs, be sure to follow her on Facebook and on Instagram. Or better yet, order a few cookies from April through her website at

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