Well, first of all - WOW!!!!! You guys are amazing! I'm inspired by how many of you took my inspiration challenge and ran with it! What a fabulous debut for the Practice Bakes Perfect challenge and it's all thanks to you!
As promised, with every challenge, the Cookie Connection contributors are shining a spotlight on some of the cookies that caught their eye. But this isn't a ranking, guys, because there were many more gorgeous cookies than we could call out - so be sure to check out all of the submissions!
But before the spotlight . . . we have a WINNER! We numbered the cookies from 1 to 46 in the order in which they were submitted, and Julia used that little online number picker, and TA DA! The number generated was number one! So Tami of Tami Rena's Cookies is the lucky winner of our prize this month - a custom-embroidered apron all the way from Italy!
Congratulations,Tami! Email Julia your address, and she will send you your prize.
On now to our cookie picks - and talk about a challenge. So many eye-catching and interesting submissions. Have a look at a few that stood out for us (listed in no particular order)!
Macrame Owl and Shag Rug by Fernwood Cookie
"NO WAY!!" That owl is not macrame, people; it's a cookie! This one was a definite favorite, as it so wonderfully captured the theme. We really appreciated that it used so many inventive techniques, and it was executed perfectly - the owl cookie being eaten would be the only way to prove it wasn't yarn!
The shag rug was great too. I'm looking forward to making my own sprinkles soon just to try it! Seems like it would be fun to eat, too.
The Early Years by Gigi's Fresh Baked
Wow! Double wow! This entry also blew us away with its complete embrace of the era, and its incredible trompe l'oeil effect on the cookie vase! Let's talk about the vase for a minute - one, it's a cookie; two, great pattern, colors, and textures; and three, it is filled with more awesome cookie flowers and leaves. AND not only that, but, hello, cookie painting on cookie stand! I think it is safe to say that Lisa gave us her all on this entry, and it shows. Outstanding!
Retro Flowers by hez
This early entry was appreciated for capturing the essence of the board with great elegance. The colors are perfect, and the use of the teardrop shape for both the cookie array and each design is very nice. The combination of flat and raised wet-on-wet elements is lovely as well.
Parenting - Roots and Wings by Rocking Horse Sugar Decor
This entry tugged at our heartstrings with its sweet sentiment. The design is nicely whimsical, with cool abstract flowers. The airbrushing highlights, but doesn't distract. Wonderful colors as well!
Crewel Flowers Plaque by Bakerloo Station
Another entry with great technique - this time the crewel embroidery. The look is very nicely captured here, and the sentiment is a wonderful one as well.
Mom's Dress, Repurposed by Dana's Daydreaming Cookies
Dana tells us this is her very first cookie! Wow - what a great first project! Wonderful color, professional technique, and a great design. The subtle 3-D effect of the frame is nice as well. Really very, very good for a first design - we predict great things in cookie for Dana!
Mason Jar Bouquet by La Vie en Cookies
The sweet colors of this cookie are very appealing. The delicate handcut shape is lovely and highlights the flowers, and the way the stems appear to float in the water is a wonderful effect. And I for one am a great fan of cookies tied up with string - a very nice finishing touch here.
Sunflower Seed Flowers by Liesbet
These sweet cookies perfectly epitomize the crafty homespun ethos of the 70s. The color of the sunflower candies, their shape, everything! Great little retro designs.
Make a Wish Dandelions by Manchester Ovens
These cookies are evocative of the sunny meadow feel of the inspiration board, with dandelions that look like you could just blow them into the wind. Gorgeous colors in the background and a lovely free and loose feel to the design had us coming back to this set.
Bobbin of Memory by El rincÓn de glass
The sewing element was introduced on the board with an embroidered sewing machine image, and this cookie in particular really took that idea to the next level. The wonderful 3-D elements of the needle and thread are great, and then that painting detail taken from my little baby shirt brought it all home. Like many of the entries, this one shows great photo styling as well.
What a creative and talented bunch you all are! Congrats to all who participated for stretching yourselves and giving of your time to share your art with us. In just a few days, you can look for the next challenge. This one is going to be a little different, but I hope you will like it. I know we have great prizes for it! Tune in soon and thank you all again!
All photos shown here are the courtesy (and copyright) of the designers listed.
Rebecca Weld came to cookie decorating from gingerbread house making. As a "real" architect, busy business owner, and mom of two small kids, Rebecca discovered that gingerbread houses had a way of getting out of hand, and that cookie baking offered her a more manageable artistic outlet. Always eager to be a part of the cookie conversation, Rebecca maintains an active Facebook page as The Cookie Architect, as well as Pinterest and Instagram presences. She makes cookies to inspire herself and others, to feed those needs that art fills in all artists: expression, sharing, stretching yourself.
Photo credit: Rebecca Weld
Note: Practice Bakes Perfect is a monthly Cookie Connection blog feature written by Rebecca Weld that poses inspiration or challenges to get you to stretch as a cookie artist - for practice, for prizes, and for fun! Its content expresses the views of the author and not necessarily those of this site, its owners, its administrators, or its employees. Catch up on all of Rebecca's past Cookie Connection posts here.