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Cookie Contest #1: Vintage Vacation

We’ve got a lot to celebrate here at Cookie Connection: the launch of our new community site, the overwhelmingly positive support received so far from sponsors and cookiers (thank you, all), and the fact that we launched in time to take a summer break!  Secluded lakeside cabin, here I come!


But before I pack my bags and hit the road, I wanted to leave you with some summer fun and excitement too. And what could be more exciting than a friendly cookie challenge, with the possibility of prizes for doing something you love? Not much, right?!


So without further ado, please join me in thanking Fancy Flours for their support of this, our inaugural, cookie decorating contest! (If you’re not familiar with their wonderful decorating supply website, it’s a must-see, as is their catalog.) Not only will owner Nancy Lee Quist assist me in determining the finalists, but she has also generously donated the delicious grand prize:

  • A $100 gift certificate toward products purchased from Fancy Flours - again, take a gander at their awesome catalog!
  • The winning photo featured in an upcoming Fancy Flours catalog and/or on

Note: Finalists will also be featured on Cookie Connection and in my Facebook and Pinterest channels.


Ready to get going? Let's start with the contest inspiration board; then read on for deets. 



What to Enter

  • A photo of a cookie or cookie set (up to 10 cookies in the set) that you made, which draws inspiration from our Vintage Vacation board, above. (Why this theme, you ask? Clearly, I’ve got vacation on the brain. But, more importantly, I dig anything retro.) To see the board on its own, click here. Or to see the individual photos even larger (and the sources of these photos; none are mine), visit this contest’s inspiration board on Pinterest
  • Your entry should also demonstrate the use of at least one of these decorating techniques: (1) Marbling aka pull-through; (2) rubber-stamping; or (3) stenciling.
  • You may submit as many entries as you’d like, but please do not submit multiple versions or views of the same cookie(s).
  • Note: By entering, you agree to provide Fancy Flours with a hi-res image of your entry should you be selected as a finalist or determined the winner. (That said, please retain a 300 dpi version of your entry.)

How to Enter

  • First, you must be a Cookie Connection member in order to submit your entry to the site, and to comment and interact in other areas of the site, such as the forums, blogs, and chats. (Membership is free; just jump to the home page and click on "Join Community" on the left-hand side to sign up.)
  • Once your entry is complete, submit a low res (72 dpi, web-optimized) version of the image to this site by uploading it into the Clips area and adding it to the “Contest #1-Vintage Vacation” clip set. (To add a photo to a set, simply select the category from the list that will reveal to the right after the photo is uploaded.)
  • After uploading the photo, please indicate what techniques you used in the entry by writing them in the first comment area below the photo. You can also include other notes for the judges, such as a brief (100 words or less) explanation of your interpretation of the theme.
  • Note: You may add your entry to multiple clip sets (i.e., “Summer Cookies” would be logical too), but if the entry is not placed in the “Contest #1-Vintage Vacation” set, it will not be officially entered and will not be judged.
  • Entries can be submitted any time between now and contest close on July 5, 5 pm CDT, which should give you plenty of time to get creative!

What to Expect

  • To determine the finalists, Nancy and I will evaluate entries on three dimensions, all equally weighted: (1) interpretation of theme; (2) number of indicated techniques used (i.e., by “indicated,” I mean: marbling, rubber-stamping, and/or stenciling); and (3) mastery of techniques used.
  • Note: Extra points will be given to sets that accomplish all of the above. But simply making more cookies will not necessarily win you any brownie points.
  • Finalists will be announced on this site and in my social media channels on July 12
  • The winner will be determined by a popular vote, which will run from July 12 to July 19. The details of this vote (platform, link, etc.) will be shared on July 12 when finalists are announced.

How to Help


If you share the link to this contest in your social media channels (which I would love, BTW), please let  people know that they need to join the site to enter – but joining is free!  Thanks!


Last, But Not Least


Remember, winning is just a small part of what our Cookie Connection contests are all about. Please don’t let self doubts deter you from entering. Just by participating, you will hone skills and flex your right brain, both of which are good to do from time to time!  What’s more, our Cookie Connection community, and the many others who browse it, will get to know you and your work even better.


Have fun! I look forward to seeing what you all create. Any questions? Please leave them in the comments area below, or email me at


P.S. To those who have participated in my quarterly Pinterest contests in the past, this contest will replace the one that was originally scheduled for this month.


Images (2)
  • Vintage Vacation Inspiration Board: Photos Courtesy of Pinterest Pinners
  • Thanks to Our Contest and Site Sponsor: The Incomparable Fancy Flours!

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Comments (16)

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Hi Julia,

Just to clarify the theme—is it exclusively "Americana" Vintage Vacation (Florida, California, etc)?? Or can we draw inspiration from the imagery provided but design a set to represent a nostalgic summer holiday in another country, say Canada or southern France, perhaps?


Originally Posted by The Cookie Faerie:

Hi Julia,

Just to clarify the theme—is it exclusively "Americana" Vintage Vacation (Florida, California, etc)?? Or can we draw inspiration from the imagery provided but design a set to represent a nostalgic summer holiday in another country, say Canada or southern France, perhaps?


Hi! Good question! The board is just intended to be broadly inspirational, simply a jumping off point for you to brainstorm and create. So if it evokes "nostalgia" to you or "summer holiday" in some other part of the world, that's perfectly fine and good. Others may draw more inspiration from colors and patterns, and less literal things in the images, and that is fine too. In your entry where you explain the techniques used (first comment under the photo you submit), you can also feel free to elaborate on how you interpreted the theme if you think that will help clarify your point of view to Nancy and me, who will be determining the finalists. Does  this answer your question?

I can't wait to see what everyone comes up with! I don't have the skill level to compete (participate, sure...compete, no), but this has got me thinking about the whole retro vacation theme. I see some interesting cookies coming out of this!

I can't wait to start this project! But I need help: I dont know what Marbling aka pull through means! It is simply marbling with wet on wet technique and a toothpick or something else?

Last edited by Julia M. Usher

Mariana, yes, marbling or pull-through is laying icings wet on wet and then creating swirly or marbled patterns by drawing a toothpick or some other tool through them. I have a video on this site that goes into the technique in detail: http://cookieconnection.juliau...ip/lesson-9-marbling


I hope this explanation helps. Can't wait to see what you and others create!

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