Put the sugar and margarine in a large mixing bowl. Cream together until fluffy.
Add the eggs, and vanilla extract. Beat again, just until well combined.
Add the flour and baking powder and fold through.
Add the milk and gently mix - this helps loosen the batter slightly.
Line a 12-hole cupcake tray with cupcake cases and spoon the batter into the cases evenly. Don't forget to level off the tops so the cupcakes rise evenly.
Bake for approximately 20 minutes until golden on top and springy in the centre.
Leave to cool until firm enough to handle, then remove from the tin and stand on a wire rack to cool completely.
Make the snowmen
Divide the white sugar paste into 12 pieces. Then take one piece and divide it into three, each smaller than the last, as pictured. Roll each piece into a ball, these will be the three segments of your snowman. Push a skewer into them to hold them together, then trim the skewer so that there's an inch or so of stick remaining.
To make the hats, divide the black sugar paste into 12 pieces. Pinch 1/3 off a piece, roll into a ball and flatten to make a disc - this is the brim of the cut. Form the rest of the piece into a cylinder. Repeat with all of the black fondant.
For the carrot noses, divide the orange sugar paste into 12 and gently roll each piece between your finger and thumb to form a little cone.
Now you can dress your snowmen. Press the hat pieces (a black disc, then a black cylinder) to each snowman's head. You can use a dab of water to help the pieces stick, if needed.
Now attach the orange noses.
For the arms, break off thin slivers of cinnamon bark and push into the sides of the snowman's body.
Use your black writing icing to add the eyes, mouth, and buttons down each snowman's front.
Finally, for the scarves, tie a piece of strawberry lace around each snowman's neck.
Leave your showman to set a little while you make the frosting.
Make the frosting
Put the icing sugar, milk and butter in a large bowl. Beat until pale and fluffy.
Add a tiny dot of purple food colouring - just the end of a toothpick's worth. Whisk again and the magic of colour theory should turn your frosting ivory white.
Transfer your frosting to a piping bag fitted with a closed star nozzle and pipe generous swirls onto your cooled cupcakes.
Carefully sit a snowman on top of each cake and you're done!