Happy New Year, everyone! I sincerely hope that 2019 brings you much happiness and success in your cookie lives and beyond!

Here on Cookie Connection, we are certainly ringing in 2019 with a plethora of possibilities - at least as far as site art is concerned. Earlier this month, I repurposed past posts of @Aproned Artist and mine to come up with this month's banners and backdrops. Like last month, we'll see two sets of art this month, starting first with Aproned Artist's work, which was adapted from her dot mandala tutorial here. My art, which utilizes my recently released "Ring in the New Year" stencil sets, will rotate in around January 15. And that's not all . . . just yesterday, an eleventh-hour submission was received from @Kanch J. It's most glorious (as you can see here), but because our January 2019 artwork was already scheduled and ready to roll, Kanch J and I decided to defer her big reveal until January 2020! (Thank you, Kanch J, for both your submission and your flexibility! )

Now, without further ado, here's what you can expect to see on the site this month. First, the striking dot work from Aproned Artist . . . it reminds me so much of colorful bursts of fireworks that I couldn't resist using it this month!

January 2019 Banner 4


If you're not familiar with Aproned Artist (aka Samantha Yacovetta) by now, you should be! She's one of Cookie Connection's fabulous tutorialists (posting to our blog each month under the moniker, "Every Little Detail with Aproned Artist"). You can also learn more about Samantha in the live chat we conducted with her (as part of our Rising Star Series) about a year ago, or in her bio at the very end of this post. In due time (after I get through my large backlog of CookieCon 2018 instructor interviews), I also plan to do an in-depth Cookier Close-up interview with Samantha. Please stay tuned!

As for my stuff, I can't decide which of the first two banners to post (if you have a preference, let me know! ) . . .

January 2019 Banner BIG V1January 2019 Banner BIG V2

But, I'll definitely be posting this background . . .

January Site Background - MAY NEED TO CROP

As you can see, my background isn't "tiled" like Samantha's (meaning it doesn't consist of several small images repeated over and over). But that's perfectly okay! Either image type will work as a site background, just so long as there is cookie content in the upper left hand corner and to the far right hand side. I may need to crop the above image a bit so the upper left cookies are more squarely in that corner, but this image is 90-percent there as is.

While on the subject of photo requirements for site submissions . . . You too can have your cookies in the Cookie Connection headlines at the top of our site. It's really quite easy to do. All of the steps for creating banners and backdrops like Samantha's and mine are spelled out here and here. Also, don't forget: Site artists not only get their work featured prominently for a full month, but they also get profiled in a forum post (like this one) and in an in-depth Cookier Close-up interview. Right now, I am well stocked with site art through February 2019, but I am seeking art for every month thereafter (excluding January 2020!). Thanks in advance for considering a submission!

And, last but not least, I give you Samantha's bio . . . enjoy, and Happy New Year once again!

Samantha Yacovetta began cookie decorating in 2013. While working at a local bakery, Samantha became captivated by cookie art when a customer requested princess-themed cookies. Attracted initially to the precision of cookie decorating, Samantha soon found that the limitless design opportunities turned it into her artistic passion. Samantha began regularly stocking the bakery case with decorated cookies and for several years sold cookies through her own company, Aproned Artist, a cottage food operation. Having retired from the business life, Samantha now enjoys making cookies just for fun from her home in San Jose, California, USA. To learn more about Samantha, please check out her Cookie Connection portfolio, her Facebook page, and her past Every Little Detail tutorials here.

Photo credit: Samantha Yacovetta


I decided not to swap in my artwork mid-month. I'm simply enjoying Aproned Artist's banner and backdrop too much!   ~JMU


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Congrats Samantha @Aproned Artist! The background is mesmerizing, I feel like I am looking at the fireworks in the sky 🌌 Looking forward to your “Close-up”!

Julia @Julia M. Usher, I would pick the bottom banner but just because I read “Kiss Me...” and I connect it to Valentine’s Day. From Jan 15 (when your banner will be uploaded) we will start seeing a lot Valentines themes cookies, so this banner will be the perfect “bridge”.


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ANNA SWEET DESIGNswissophiepipEvelindecoraKanch Jmintlemonade (cookie crumbs)GinkgoWerkstattOlivera VlahBakerloo StationWindshere1Sweet ProdigySugarDotCookiesAproned Artist