Saturday Spotlight: Top 10 Cookies

 

Well, judging from this hot list*, you folks have clearly had a more productive cookie week than me! After all these years of cookie decorating, you'd think I'd have the basics figured out. But dipping large dome-shaped cookies was my nemesis this week! The domes (for sugar bowl and teapot projects) looked perfectly smooth and evenly colored for the first eight hours or so, and then, slowly but surely, their colors started spotting and doing all sorts of weird things on me. I tried changing brands of coloring, hues, and icing thickness, and controlling humidity in different ways, but no amount of systematic testing helped me figure out the culprit. And, of course, I had never experienced anything like this with smaller domes, so there was no learning from past mistakes . . . I swear, my cookies can sense my anxiety, and they always seem to act up when I am least prepared to handle the unexpected.

But enough of my woes! We've got your gorgeous cookies to celebrate! Half of this week's spotlighted cookies are Practice Bakes Perfect Challenge #28 entries, meaning that they are others' attempts of popular Cookie Connection tutorials! And what impressive attempts they are! (BTW, where was that tutorial on dipping large domes when I needed it?! ) The others fall into the camp of original creations, each as stunning as the next! Enjoy!

#1: Rose Garden by Sweet Prodigy
#1 - Rose Garden by Sweet Prodigy

#2: Mermaid's Bath Time Cookie Set by myui
#2 - Mermaid's Bath Time Cookie Set by myui

#3: I Wish for Breakfast in Bed by Ryoko ~Cookie Ave. [Tutorial by @Aproned Artist]
#3 - I Wish for Breakfast in Bed by Ryoko ~Cookie Ave.

#4: Mixed Media Daisy by La Shay by Ferda Ozcan [Tutorial by Sugar Pearls Cakes & Bakes]
#4 - Mixed Media Daisy by La Shay by Ferda Ozcan

#5: 3-D Stenciled Basket Cookie by Adria [Tutorial by yours truly, @Julia M. Usher]
#5 - 3-D Stenciled Basket Cookies by Adria

#6: Landscape by Bice Beatriz Loffa
#6 - Landscape by Bice Beatriz Loffa

#7: Ready to Don the Gown by Cookies Fantastique by Carol
#7 - Ready to Don the Gown by Cookies Fantastique by Carol

#8: Summer Mug by Olivera Vlah [Tutorial by @Manu]
#8 - Summer Mug by Olivera Vlah

#9: Wood, Moss, and Lavender by E. Kiszowara MOJE PIERNIKI
#9 - Wood, Moss, and Lavender by E. Kiszowara MOJE PIERNIKI

#10: Stacy by Susan Hennes
#10 - Stacy by Susan Hennes

Stunning, was I not right?! Congrats again to this week's honorees.

Before I go, I should add: if you didn't have time to give Challenge #28 a go (it closes tomorrow), that's quite all right! We have a vast reservoir of tutorials on the blog just waiting to be tried at any time. If you review the comments from those who entered the challenge (here under each photo), I think you'll see what rich learning experiences they all had. And, if anyone wants to write that large dome-dipping tutorial, I'll be the first to jump on it - I promise!

Have a great weekend, everyone, and happy Memorial Day to all who celebrate it!

* As a reminder, a word about how the rankings are determined: The rankings are not at all subjective. In fact, they are determined essentially by you, our members, and the activity (number of views, likes, and comments) you've bestowed on each photo. The site uses a top-secret algorithm that weighs these various factors to determine which photos are trending most quickly (i.e., are the "hottest") over specified periods of time. As such, the hot list at the time of this announcement may look a little different a few hours or a day from now as more photos are added to the site.

So that no one has an unfair advantage in making it onto a hot list, the algorithm is secret even to site administrators. Only our platform developers know the code, which has been exhaustively tested by those developers and Cookie Connection staff.

All photos shown here are the courtesy (and copyright) of the designers listed.

To check out our other hot lists, at any time of day, visit our Hot Spot, also found in the site's main navigation line.

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I completely understand you how you feel, Julia. This was supposed to be for my Mother's Day post, but instead, I spent two full weeks "learning" all the ways how NOT to pipe a needlepoint cookie. With all that effort, I'm so happy to have this cookie up at the top of this week's list. Thank you and congrats to everyone whose amazing cookie art was also featured! 

Sweet Prodigy posted:

I completely understand you how you feel, Julia. This was supposed to be for my Mother's Day post, but instead, I spent two full weeks "learning" all the ways how NOT to pipe a needlepoint cookie. With all that effort, I'm so happy to have this cookie up at the top of this week's list. Thank you and congrats to everyone whose amazing cookie art was also featured! 

Well, it looks great, so the effort paid off! Just curious - did you pipe a grid first (in black?) or just pipe the dots side by side? It almost looks like you did the latter, which would be even more challenging/slow-going than the other way (to keep the dots from merging together). Now, off to see what yesterday's domes did overnight . . . fingers crossed. Brown seems to be the most stable color (knock on wood), so my pots and bowls may end up all brown, with smaller colored accents, but that would probably be just fine.

Julia M. Usher posted:
Sweet Prodigy posted:

I completely understand you how you feel, Julia. This was supposed to be for my Mother's Day post, but instead, I spent two full weeks "learning" all the ways how NOT to pipe a needlepoint cookie. With all that effort, I'm so happy to have this cookie up at the top of this week's list. Thank you and congrats to everyone whose amazing cookie art was also featured! 

Well, it looks great, so the effort paid off! Just curious - did you pipe a grid first (in black?) or just pipe the dots side by side? It almost looks like you did the latter, which would be even more challenging/slow-going than the other way (to keep the dots from merging together). Now, off to see what yesterday's domes did overnight . . . fingers crossed. Brown seems to be the most stable color (knock on wood), so my pots and bowls may end up all brown, with smaller colored accents, but that would probably be just fine.

This design is gridless. I had originally piped the grids in black, experimenting a whole bunch of ways to have the grid not detract from the rose pattern because it just didn't look right with all of those lines. Finally, I realized that the only way to make this work was to have no grid at all. I would love to elaborate on my techniques but my family says that I'm not allowed to give away that kind of information unless I'm being paid for it.  P.S. good luck with your bowls.

Sweet Prodigy posted:
Julia M. Usher posted:
Sweet Prodigy posted:

I completely understand you how you feel, Julia. This was supposed to be for my Mother's Day post, but instead, I spent two full weeks "learning" all the ways how NOT to pipe a needlepoint cookie. With all that effort, I'm so happy to have this cookie up at the top of this week's list. Thank you and congrats to everyone whose amazing cookie art was also featured! 

Well, it looks great, so the effort paid off! Just curious - did you pipe a grid first (in black?) or just pipe the dots side by side? It almost looks like you did the latter, which would be even more challenging/slow-going than the other way (to keep the dots from merging together). Now, off to see what yesterday's domes did overnight . . . fingers crossed. Brown seems to be the most stable color (knock on wood), so my pots and bowls may end up all brown, with smaller colored accents, but that would probably be just fine.

This design is gridless. I had originally piped the grids in black, experimenting a whole bunch of ways to have the grid not detract from the rose pattern because it just didn't look right with all of those lines. Finally, I realized that the only way to make this work was to have no grid at all. I would love to elaborate on my techniques but my family says that I'm not allowed to give away that kind of information unless I'm being paid for it.  P.S. good luck with your bowls.

Yes, it looked gridless. Impressive! I hope you find a way to be paid to reveal that technique, because we'd all love to see it!

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