**Image: Birthday cake that I made for my good friend two years ago (ombre petal cake)
It's extremely easy and no different from any other buttercream recipe, however it is a lot easier if you have a stand mixer (KitchenAid)
+ 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
+ 2 cups of icing sugar
+ 1 tsp vanilla extract OR any other flavour you would like to add
(I like to use vanilla beans-- and I swear by this website for ordering beans/extracts)
+ 2 tsp milk/cream
+ Place the butter in a stand mixer fitted with an paddle attachment and beat at medium-high speed for about 8 minutes-- yes! 8 minutes. The butter will get very fluffy and lighten over this time. If you are doing with with a hand-held mixer, your arm might hurt a bit after, but it's still totally sufficient.
+ Add the icing sugar. If there are a lot of clumps in it, sift it first with either a sifter or by tapping it through a mesh strainer into the bowl. Beat for another 2-3 minutes.
+ Add your flavour of choice + milk + any colouring you want the icing to have. Beat for another minute or so (or until colour is uniform throughout)
Tip: If you need more icing, use about 2 cups of butter and 4 cups of icing sugar. This recipe is enough to frost just over a dozen sugar cookies. You would need to double it for a cake or cupcakes.