Fondant is a versatile and integral part of cake and candy-making. However, as an ingredient that requires a large commitment of time and resources to make, non-professionals often prefer to use a dry fondant mix.
Before buying a bag of dry fondant mix, consider what type of fondant you need. If you are making petit fours, coffee cake or any confection requiring a poured fondant--that is, a thinner fondant that you can pour over a product as a covering or use as a filling--you will need that type of mix. A rolled fondant will use less liquid for a comparable amount of mix and will require more work to use, but you can sculpt it into myriad shapes for use as decoration and as a covering.
A dry fondant mix is convenient and simple to use. The mix comes in powdered form which you simply mix with liquid ingredients with no stove time required. As with all delicate sugar confections, you must be careful not to add too much liquid to the mix. However, a mix is much more forgiving than true fondant, and is easily adjustable for flavor and color.
People use fondant both as decoration and as a filling for certain foods. Fondant is versatile enough to be tailored to most color and flavor requirements. For instance, adding some food coloring to the liquid ingredients, or kneading the food coloring into the near-complete doughy mix, can lend a more festive air to the confection, or you can use the colors to create specific objects in fondant form.