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Saturday Spotlight: Practice Bakes Perfect Challenge #10 Recap

Practice Bake Perfect Challenge #10 is officially one for the books. I could not have been more impressed with the depth and overall quality of the entries we received. It is no small feat of planning and execution to produce a dozen (or many dozen, in some cases!) cookies that fit together to form a larger, more complex picture, but you all most certainly rose to the occasion. Well done, you.

I know you are all dying to see the highlighted submissions, but first, let's talk about the fantastic prize for this challenge AND the lucky winner! The prize for Challenge #10 has been graciously donated by none other than Cookie Connection founder Julia M. Usher, herself, and consists of:  

  • One pound CK Products pastel pink sanding sugar
  • Two four-ounce packs SugarVeil Extra Dark Chocolate Confectionery Icing
  • One set (of 20) Simply Baked paper baking cups
  • One candy cane cookie cutter (manufacturer unknown)
  • One Truly Mad Plastics mini plaque cutter
  • Foose Cookie Cutters mini chick and mini rooster cutters
  • One Cristin's Cookies fancy dress cutter
  • One musical notes rubber stamp


And it's all bundled up in one Cookie Connection canvas tote bag! Phew! That's a lot of loot, and it all goes to . . . mintlemonade (aka cookie crumbs)

Not only was mintlemonade the winner of our randomly drawn prize, but she also entered one of our favorite arrays, Scallop-Patterned Cookies.

Scallop-Patterned Cookies

Now, on to our other spotlighted artists, in no particular order . . .

Cookie Mosaic by
Blue-Eyed Bakery 
Cookie MosaicBlue-Eyed Bakery not only submitted this incredible mosaic, but she did three others as well! I love how so many tiny, simple cookie pieces come together to create such a gorgeous pattern. Plus, I am in awe of the patience it must have taken to assemble this array. No doubt, tweezers (and maybe reading glasses) were involved! Inspired by these mosaics, The Cookie Architect tried her hand at one too.

Cherry Pie Cookies by KellyMadeThat
Cherry Pie CookiesIt's hard to know where to begin with this array. It looks so darn real. I had to look really closely before I saw that this single "pie" was created from lots of individual cherry and lattice cookie pieces. Impeccably executed! Had I not seen this in the challenge clips, I may have entirely missed that this is an array of individual cookies. Extra applause for that dripping cherry juice!

Raindrops on Birches by Fernwood Cookie
Raindrops on Birches
One of our judges put it perfectly: "She has really captured the beauty of a storm! I love how she used teardrop-shaped cutters to represent the sky/raindrops and how they darken in color as they are closer to the action of the storm. The birch trees in the foreground are so powerful, yet I am still drawn to look at what's behind them. She truly does a magnificent job at leading our eyes around the entire set. I feel like I am looking at the backdrop for a play!"

Dandelion Wishes (Close-up) by The Biscuit Counter
dandelion wish close-up
I love all of the beautiful and realistic details of this array, especially the veining of the leaves and the floating seeds that say, "Make a wish." The sense of motion created by this array is just perfect. 

Sudoku Puzzle by donaharrisburg
%0ASudoku Puzzle
I am a BIG proponent of playing with one's food, and this array by donaharrisburg is one big license to play! This was a great spin on the challenge, and well done in the details, right down to the marbled game board.

A Folding Fan with Lace by RH. BAKE
I was floored by the exquisitely piped details of this set. And the individual pieces, little works of art in their own right, are magically transformed into a whole other creation by their artful arrangement. This is a masterfully executed array.

Succulents Framed by RebeccArchitect
Succulents Framed
I love how the pieces of this array come together to form a planter for a fantastical collection of sugar cookie and wafer paper succulents. (Leave it to The Cookie Architect, aka RebeccArchitect, to create some near-perfect corners!) The combination of color and texture in this set is gorgeous, and it all comes together just brilliantly. 

Another Puzzling Cookie by The Anxious Baker
Another Puzzling Cookie
I have looked at this array, and studied it, and looked at it some more. And for the life of me, I CANNOT figure out how The Anxious Baker pulled this one off. Those perfect corners, clean edges, and incredibly tight fit of the pieces blow my mind. As someone who can't even do one of these real puzzles, I bow down to this cookified version.  

Crochet by HENS1

CrochetCookies for Coachella, perhaps?! I could totally glue (with royal icing, of course) this set to the front of a sun dress and wear it to a summer music festival, where I would proceed to munch through it all weekend while swaying to the music.

Cookie Bouquet by Blue-Eyed Bakery 

Cookie Bouquet
The first of FIVE entries by Blue-Eyed Bakery, including her four mosaics (one featured above), this pretty floral array ticks all the boxes. I could easily see it as a birthday array, a teacher appreciation array, a bridal shower array . . . The versatility is fabulous.

And there we have it - a beautiful array of arrays! Thanks to everyone who participated in the challenge. I never dreamed you all would bring it with such gusto! Stay tuned for Challenge #11 . . . Ho, ho, ho (hint, hint)! [EDITOR'S NOTE: Challenge #11 is scheduled to post on July 1, give or take.]

Christine Donnelly began her professional baking career at 16, when she was hired on the spot at her local bakery to work the counter and decorate cakes. After detours to college and law school, she worked as a trial lawyer in Chicago for many years, ultimately leaving that career to become a stay-at-home mother to her two children. In her “retirement,” she continued to bake at home, at last finding her preferred artistic medium in decorated cookies. In February 2013, Bakerloo Station was born with a presence on both Facebook and Instagram. Christine makes cookies to balance her left brain, to inspire and share creative ideas, and to feed those needs that only art can satisfy. 

Photo credit: Christine Donnelly

NotePractice Bakes Perfect is a bimonthly Cookie Connection blog feature written by Christine Donnelly 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 Christine's past Cookie Connection posts here.



Images (12)
  • Prize Loot: Prize Donated by Julia M Usher
  • Scallop-Patterned Cookies: By mintlemonade (aka cookie crumbs)
  • Cookie Mosaic: By Blue-Eyed Bakery
  • Cherry Pie Cookies: By KellyMadeThat
  • Raindrops on Birches: By Fernwood Cookie
  • Dandelion Wishes (Close-up): By The Biscuit Counter
  • Sudoku Puzzle: By donaharrisburg
  • A Folding Fan with Lace: By RH. BAKE
  • Succulents Framed: By RebeccArchitect (aka The Cookie Architect)
  • Another Puzzling Cookie: By The Anxious Baker
  • Crochet: By HENS1
  • Cookie Bouquet: By Blue-Eyed Bakery

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Comments (17)

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Congratulations mint! and to all others!  I am soooo surprised that I have been featured.  My heart fluttered when I saw my puzzle.  Tearing up!  Thank you thank you thank you!  Julia, thanks for a great place to be a member of and to see and be with all these wonderful artsy ladies and gentlemen.  Christine, thank you for your kind words and hosting the challenges!   Thanks!!!!!!

Originally Posted by mintlemonade(cookie crumbs):

I'm overjoyed!! I didn't dream this could happen to me. Thank you Christine for hosting the challenge! And I love "mini" cutters!

Oh, good, because I don't! They are ones I was given in some goodie bag and have never used!

Originally Posted by donaharrisburg:

Congratulations mint! and to all others!  I am soooo surprised that I have been featured.  My heart fluttered when I saw my puzzle.  Tearing up!  Thank you thank you thank you!  Julia, thanks for a great place to be a member of and to see and be with all these wonderful artsy ladies and gentlemen.  Christine, thank you for your kind words and hosting the challenges!   Thanks!!!!!!

Awesome job! Sprinkling confetti all over you! 

Congratulations Mintlemonade! Your Scallop patterned cookies are so original and high-quality finished like as always. I love it!

And thank you so much Christine for hosting this shrilling Challenge. It was an absolutely fun challenge. All of entries were so gorgeous and inspiring for me.

I'm greatly honored that my set was included in these fabulous creations.

Thank you so much!

Thanks to everyone who participated!  I agree with Lucy that all of the entries for Challenge #10 were very impressive.  It was really hard to choose just 10 to spotlight!  Well done!

Thank you very much, Christine!!!!! I'm just so honored...I had to see your post twice to be sure that it was my cookie included. It was very challenging for me but great experience, learned a lot. Thank you very much again. Looking forward to the next challenge.

Wow I'm so honoured to be placed among all of these talented bakers. Thank you so much for this challenge Christine. It has been inspiring seeing everybody's work. I can't wait for the next one! Ho ho ho...what could it be?!

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