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Saturday Spotlight: Practice Bakes Perfect Challenge #2 Recap

In this challenge, we asked you guys to cookie a theme onto a terribly random set of cookie shapes: a gnome, a pear, a skull, a rectangle, and a fleur de lis. I thought for sure you'd either be bored or stumped. Boy, was I wrong. Each and every one of you who participated was a rock star!!! Wow!! Seriously, you should feel free to skip the highlight reel and just go look at the whole shebang!


Wait . . . still here? Oh, that's right, we promised there would be prizes and spotlights . . . And so the winner of our drawing is:


Welcome to the Zoo by Kelcy Helga Mae Workman

Random Draw Winner - Welcome to the Zoo


Kelcy will get some gorgeous ribbons from Ribbon by Design and cookie cutters from American Tradition Cookie Cutters. Also, a set of three cutters that I had made in some funky circle designs!  


But let's also take a moment to admire how well she used her shapes in these designs. That perspective on the hippo fits perfectly in the skull cutter, and that silly giraffe is only slightly more adorable than the penguin! Love it!  


Kelcy - just message me and Julia with your address, if we don't message you first, and we'll make sure these prizes get to you from the both of us.


And now to the spotlight, just some of the cookies that appealed to our panel. We could have easily done this three times over and still had cookies that deserved a special mention, but here goes!


The Painted Elephants of India by Litterelly Delicious Cakery

What a delight! Look at these great colors! We especially loved the details for the elephant on the pear - the water coming out of the trunk. The whole thing fits the shape perfectly. And that eye is gazing right at us. The rectangle cookie with the great cracked background and paisley piece was also much admired. I personally am going to give a shout-out to the elephant face on the gnome - love that you found a perspective to fit the face on there, and also love the piped details. So lovely!


Litterely Delicious Cakery - The Painted Elephants of Indea 

Under the Sea by Killer Zebras

Under the sea was a great recurring theme in this challenge, and this one got rave reviews - first of all for the colors! They were so bright and cheery, and reminded one panelist of the cartoons she used to watch as a kid. They evoke fun! The submarine in the pear was a popular design - though with so many in this set, it was hard to choose! And I'll do the obligatory shout-out for the gnome - the diving mermaid is perfection, and those bubbles to fill the space are graphic genius! 


Killer Zebra- ocean theme  

Vegetables! by BAKR GAL

What! No gnome? Well, nevertheless, we were wowed by these vegetables from BAKR GAL. The choice of subject matter is great - showing the beauty in the mundane. The combination of royal icing and painting added great depth and realism. Wonderfully done!! For extra credit, please post a gnome, maybe corn? 


  BakRGal - Vegetables


Hidden in the Garden by Fernwood Cookie 

I was not alone in admiring this creative and beautiful set from Fernwood Cookie. Let's start with the fleur de lis nose on that crazy carved stone face cookie. Wow! There must be five different techniques on the cookie, but it looks cohesive and almost understated - very natural. The perspective on the snail to fit it on the gnome is masterful, and we loved the little hidden details on each cookie. The colors, the shading. The little hedgehog of adorableness . . . Really love this set!


Fernwood Cookie- Hidden in the Garden


Travel to Key West by If You Give A Nerd a Cookie

Gnome on the gnome cookie. Genius! Especially when it works with the whole theme. And in addition to that - an alligator on a gnome shape, and an accurate rendition of a road sign or two. And then, kabam! A great big fancy Key West postcard cookie. We loved that the subject was very specific, yet still worked well with all the shapes - and each cookie is well done in its own right.


If You Give a Nerd A Cookie- Travel to Key West


Koi Pond by Sugar Pearls Cakes & Bakes

Ahhhhh! So dreamy. The entire panel would like to sit by this koi pond for hours, sipping tea and chatting cookies. This set has such great soft colors and varied textures. The painted piping really makes the elements pop. The lily pad in the leaf of the pear was a great touch. And the little fondant lotus flower on the gnome is the perfect detail to fill out that cookie!


Sugar Pearl Cakes and Bakes - Koi Pond 

New York City Icons by Wendy M

"Crazy original." One panelist in particular was impressed by the leap from subject matter to cookie on this set. The two-gnome bridge is pretty darn awesome, and that rectangle now seems like it was made for a metro card - I would not have guessed that when I made the cutter! The little hydrant is great, and the whole set is a wonderful use of design, and nicely executed. 


Wendy M- New York City Icons


Sailboat Scene by El rincÓn de glass

This set was so well executed and composed - we loved how the rectangle became the frame that unites these shapes together into one scene. It's a piece of beautiful art that seems to tell a story - wonderful! Also, the technique used to paint on the cookie feels like canvas or a mural - very textural - and had more than a few of us intrigued by her technique. We were amazed and in love!




Lobster Boil by The Cookie Monger

Everyone loved that by shifting the scale of the shapes around, The Cookie Monger achieved a very natural-feeling set that worked out perfectly as a theme. Also, we all would like to go to your lobster boil, stat! And, okay, I think we can all accept that anyone making a lobster cookiefrom now on should follow the lead here and use the gnome cutter!


The Cookie Monger - Lobster Boil  

Funny Bunnies by T Cupp Cookies

Cookie designs don't fit on these shapes? Well then, just give them a good squish, we're sure you can make it work! I get a goodchuckle even just looking at these bunnies while I type this, and the panel agreed! All of their expressions are great, but the guy on the pear is worried about his other ear. So funny! 


T Cupp Cookies - Funny Bunnies


You know what I want? All of the gnome cookies in one place! If you read this note, and you participated, please come post a photo that shows off your set, or just the gnome in it, on my Facebook page - I'll make an album!!


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.



Images (11)
  • Random Draw Winner - Welcome to the Zoo: Cookies and Photo by Kelcy Helga Mae Workman
  • The Painted Elephants of India: Cookies and Photo by Litterelly Delicious Cakery
  • Under the Sea: Cookies and Photo by Killer Zebras
  • Vegetables!: Cookies and Photo by BAKR GAL
  • Hidden in the Garden: Cookies and Photo by Fernwood Cookie
  • Travel to Key West: Cookies and Photo by If You Give A Nerd A Cookie
  • Koi Pond: Cookies and Photo by Sugar Pearls Cakes & Bakes
  • New York City Icons: Cookies and Photo by Wendy M
  • Sailboat Scene: Cookies and Photo by El rincón de glass
  • Lobster Boil: Cookies and Photo by The Cookie Monger
  • Funny Bunnies: Cookies and Photo by T Cupp Cookies

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Comments (12)

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I just loved all the sets in this challenge - I made a list of the things that stood out for me, and there was something in every single set! It really was a great challenge and the entries were all amazing

Congratulations everyone! The cookies in this challenge were amazing! It was so much fun for me to participate in this challenge and check back often to see everyone's awesome entries! Congratulations Kelcy! I'm happy you could join us in this challenge! Enjoy your prizes!

Loved this challenge so much! It truly pushed me beyond the point of which I felt comfortable! So many fantastic entries too! I was shocked with all the creative ways these cookies were used. Cannot wait to do another challenge!

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