Hey Besties! Let’s set the record straight…you didn’t really think ALL those cookie decorators had amazing handwriting, did you?! Well, I did years ago! Come to find out that almost all cookie decorators are using a projector to create their amazing designs and writing! And don’t get me wrong, while a projector helps immensely, there is still a learning curve to using one. Which is why I’m breaking down ALL the details of how to set up and use the best projector for cookie decorating! We’re covering ALL the things, so you are up and running in no time, creating beautiful baked art! Buckle up, we’ve got a lot to cover! Let’s do this!
Ready To Up Your Cookie Game?
I’m always an advocate for only investing in what you need to start cookie decorating. As I explained in THIS post, there is hardly anything you need to buy to get started. Once you know you love decorating, you can consider a plethora of different tools and products to elevate your cookies. Depending on your style, goals and techniques, there are many different ways to achieve stunning cookies, cakes and all the other baked art. But inevitably, you will get to a point where a projector will take your designs to the next level. And that’s what we’re covering today!
Before having a projector, we shied away from complex designs and writing because I was not blessed with amazing handwriting. A projector for cookie decorating seemed like an investment and I held off until my cookie goals surpassed my abilities without one! Let me tell you…once you bite the bullet and get one, you’ll kick yourself for not doing it sooner. Is it an investment in your cookie decorating hobby or business? Absolutely. But honestly, it’s a minimal one that pays for itself over and over again. And really does allow you to take all your designs to the next level pretty easily.
I interview home bakers regularly and when I ask them the products or tools they could never live without, a projector is always on the list, along with a dehydrator. The term “game changer” is thrown around lightly these days, but a projector for cookie decorating definitely falls into the game changing category.
Best Projector for Cookie Decorating
I swear if I see one more cookier ask, “What’s the best and cheapest projector?” Here’s the deal…everyone wants the best bang for their buck on everything, right? No one wants to spend any more money than they need to on anything. Buy only you can decide what your priorities are and what your budget is. But you aren’t going to get the best projector on a tight budget, so you need to be comfortable with that and potentially upgrading again later. If you are on a super tight budget, the tissue paper method and royal icing transfers, are likely your best techniques to master to avoid spending any additional money while still elevating your cookies.
If you have a small budget to invest in a projector, there is a toy, marketed to kids, called a Smart Sketcher, that some cookiers start out with. It definitely has some limitations and can be hard to find in stores, but is something cookiers have used as an entry level projector.
Honestly, in all my years, I’ve found it best to invest in what you know is going to meet your needs for the longer-term, if you can afford it. Otherwise, you just end up spending more money having to upgrade and replace over time. I’d personally rather buy what I know will last and meet my needs one time. And if you’re a bakery business owner, this should be a no-brainer; it pays for itself over and over again.
Cookie Decorating Projector Criteria
When I was researching and shopping for the best projector, I knew I had a few criteria it had to meet. First, I wanted it to be completely wireless. Confession: I have a very short fuse when it comes to technology. I do not want to have to figure out which certain cables or wires I need if I don’t have to. Secondly, it needed to be super user-friendly. See my last confession…if it’s not easy to use, I’m gonna lose it. Third, it needed to be good quality and meet my needs for years to come. Per the last paragraph, I did not want to have to upgrade in another year.
After all the research and comparison, THIS is the projector that came out on top, and I still love and recommend to this day. It’s the most popular projector among cookie decorators for good reason! The Kodak Luma 150 checks all the boxes and we use it with every order we make.
There is commonly some confusion with the lower-level model and understanding the differences between them. The biggest difference is that Kodak Luma 75 is not wireless. If that is something that is not important to you, it may be a good option. Just don’t ask me what cables you need to make it work! 😂
Going back to the Kodak Luma 150, the one opportunity that could be improved with this model is the battery life. It has approximately 2 hours of battery life when fully charged. So, if you’re a cookier that uses it frequently, like us, you’ll want to charge it after every use. If it does die while you’re using it, you can plug it in and resume using. As your bestie, I’m always completely honest with you and want you to know this is the one and only comment I hear cookiers share.
How To Set Up Your Projector
When our projector first arrived, I stared at that box for a solid week before mustering up the courage to set it up. In my experience with other electronics, I knew there was a high probability this was going to end with insane levels of frustration and colorful words. But let me tell you, setting up the Kodak Luma 150 was probably the easiest piece of technology I had ever worked with! There are seriously only a few steps to get up and projecting. And it’s all perfectly spelled out in the instructions.
Turn on your projector and hit the main button to confirm you want to use it wirelessly. It provides the Wi-Fi name and password. Yes, the projector has its own Wi-Fi. You then go into your device settings and connect to the projector’s Wi-Fi. Once connected, you simply go to your device’s setting to mirror your image. Once you turn on mirroring, the projector is now projecting whatever is on your device. That’s it…it’s as easy as that. Now, I connect with Apple devices (iPhone or iPad) when I’m using, so can only speak from that personal experience. However, I know Android and Samsung users use this projector as well and I’m assuming it is a similar setup.
I’m taking this opportunity to clear up a common misconception about using a projector! A projector does not have storage…it does not SAVE images. You do not upload images onto it. It simply projects whatever you have on the screen of the device it’s connected to.
That’s really all there is to it as far as set up! Those are the couple steps you’ll do every time you use your projector. Of course, you can always adjust the focus, if needed, but once that is set, you’re good. Now let’s talk about mounts!
Best Projector Mount
As soon as you’ve decided you’re purchase a projector, the next question is what mount to get! And the good news is that you’ve got options! And before I recommend what works great, let me tell you what to avoid! My first phone/projector mount was one of those gooseneck mounts that you can clamp to the edge of a table. DO NOT waste your time with this kind of mount. They are a royal PITA and your projected image will continually keep moving as the mount keeps sagging. There are much better options, so please avoid that headache.
After my above experience with the limp mount, I decided once again, to buy what I knew would last for years to come. Enter the Arkon mount. If you want a mount that will meet ALL your needs, is sturdy as a rock and is versatile for all kinds of uses, that is the one you want. That said, it isn’t cheap, so is yet another investment into your setup. We use ours every day and use it not only for our projector but for filming videos. In my opinion, it’s worth every penny and it’s no surprise, it’s the most popular mount among cookiers.
- The Remarkable Creator Pro by Arkon Mounts is a content creator essential, and ensures unwavering stability, eradicating wobble and sag for flawless creative outcomes; Serving as more than a mere phone holder, it secures your device
All that said, after spending over $200 for a projector, you may not want to pay almost another $100 for a mount! I hear you, Bestie! Enter THIS baby. We commonly need multiple mounts if we’re projecting while filming. So, we got this one and for under $20, it’s amazing! We use it almost daily and it works just as well as it did on day 1. At that price point, it’s hard to pass up.
Once again, you’ve got decisions to make! But the great news is that you have two solid options! The Arkon will never let you down and it versatile enough to work for all your mounting needs. But THIS one works well too! You may want to consider your decorating space since they are completely different setups. And consider if you need a mount for more than just your projector, like us.
How To Set Up Your Mount
Alright, you’ve got the best projector for cookie decorating and you’ve got a mount! Let’s review a few different ways you can configure these so you can decide what works best for you! Let’s cover the Arkon mount options first. There are 2 different ways to attach your projector to this mount. The first being the screw in the back of the projector. It screws in like a dream! But then the most common question is…how do I flip my image? See, when you screw it in, the projector is now showing your image upside down. The easiest fix around this is screenshotting whatever you’re projecting and flipping the image upside down on your device. The image will then project right-side up for you to decorate.
Your next option is to configure your Arkon mount so that the projector is facing the correct direction. If you can do this, your image will project the correct way without you having to flip the image on your device. Here is a photo of how to configure the mount:
Your other option is to use the clamps on the mount to attach your projector. It is a tight fit, but it does fit. If you put the projector in the right way, it will project images right-side up as well. Here is a photo:
Now let’s show the other mount! Similar to the Arkon, we screw the projector onto the mount. Once again, it will be projecting upside down, so you’ll need to flip your image on your device.
Or, you can use the clamps to mount the projector so the images show the right way:
Once again, I’m giving you options, besties! I hope this helps you determine the best setup configuration for you! You’ll come to find out that the mount is equally as important to the projector. If the mount doesn’t meet your needs, the projector will be worthless to you! Now let’s take a quick moment to touch on where to find content to project!
Where To Find The Best Images to project?
Alright, you’re all set up and projecting! Now, the most common questions is…where do you find the best images or wording to project? Honestly, most cookies are simply using Google to find whatever image they are looking to project for their designs. Simply take a screenshot of whatever you want to project. You can also use royal icing transfer sheets to project designs. You can fit your design to your cookie by making it larger or smaller on your device.
For lettering, which is one of the most common uses for a projector, Dafont.com and Canva are the two we use most often. If you’re going to use Dafont, use the actual website, not the app. Simply enter whatever wording you want and see how it looks across thousands of fonts. Screenshot what you like and project! If you’re looking for some great cookie fonts, THIS post includes some very popular ones and exactly what they look like on cookies, as examples.
I do love the ease of using Canva to put together words in a layout for the cookie. You can easily use the free version of Canva and their fonts to create the full layout of your design. Or, you can take screenshots of Dafont words, upload those to Canva and arrange your layout there as well. Options is the name of the game here, Besties! There is an endless number of images, words and content you can project to create awesome designs!
I mean, would designs like this be possible without a projector? Not for me! I’m SO grateful we have tools like this to make awesome cookie decorating designs possible!
Did This Help?
I think we covered ALL the things related to using a projector for cookie decorating! I hope this was helpful for you, besties! That is ALWAYS my goal, making this entire decorating journey easier for you! And then we can celebrate your success and wins together!
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