S's party has a Tangled/Rapunzel theme and I was helping with some other aspects of the party planning. Obviously, I wanted to make some cookies as well. I decided to go for it. The most detailed, most colorful cookie I've attempted. I baked a gingerbread girl shaped cookie... just one. Talk about rolling the dice. No room for error. No pressure. Really, none at all. I guess worst case, only The Boy and I would have known that I was attempting something I didn't deliver if it didn't go well.
In surfing Pinterest posts of Tangled parties I ran across tons of adorable party ideas. When it came to sitting down to decorate cookies at nearly 10pm the night before the party, I hadn't a real clue of how I was going to decorate a cookie in a likeness of Rapunzel. So back to Pinterest and I ran across a pin that brought me to this Tangled Inspired Birthday Party. Aha! A lovely Rapunzel image on the invitation that I thought I had a fair chance of turning into a cookie. I did decide to use one of my circles to practice the shape of the face and hair. Then I went to town on the real deal:
It's not perfect, but this is officially the most detailed cookie I've made thus far.
Again with the formula of a few feature cookies and a bunch of more simply decorated smaller cookies. I really went for fast with these: dots, stripes and hearts. I've also decided that I need to always have a bank of basic shapes (circles, squares, etc.) in the freezer so when I have extra icing after doing a main project I can make more cookies within a day to coordinate or just as practice. Or simply to eat. After decorating the batch of Valentine's cookies I wanted to do more, but all I had remaining that were baked and undecorated were cookies for upcoming birthdays, so I had none to spare.
This weekend we celebrated birthdays with two girls: S who turned 4 (post on her cookies coming soon) and my niece N who turned 6 this week and is staying with us for the weekend. I love the idea of having the first initial and the number with simple, decorative designs, alongside a small number of feature cookies (subtext: a bunch of fast cookies and just a few that take longer). So Ns and 6s it is. I opted for a few butterfly cookies to go with them.
I'm still trying to decide how long one can keep royal icing around before you have to make a new batch. I had a bunch leftover from Valentine's cookies that were decorated eight days prior. I added a bit of water and stirred up the three colors I wanted to use. Then I decided this was more trouble than it would have been to just make new icing. Note to self: don't save colored icing for a week again. The consistency wasn't awesome, though I'm happy with the results.
For much of 2013 I surfed around Pinterest looking at amazing Royal Icing cookies. I wanted to learn how to make some in time for The Girl's first birthday. I LOVED these for her farm themed party. Well, that didn't happen. I kept pinning adorable cookies. I kept surfing through cookie blogs. I found the recipes I wanted to try. I found the supply list for the necessary supplies.
The First Cookies
In October 2013 I pulled the trigger. I used some birthday money and placed the order for supplies to get started. I decided on two colors with the help of The Boy and I went to work. My biggest initial challenge was the icing consistency, but I was generally happy with the result. I decided that I love wet-on-wet designs, both because I'm a little impatient and there's no need to wait for a layer to dry and because, even with some imperfections, marbling is fast and easy and it has a big impact. It reminded me of my days years ago making marbled paper. I wonder if I have any of that around here anymore. Hm.
The REAL First Cookies
So my sister pointed out that I had actually made a set of cookies long before that October 2013 batch. Back in September 2010 (when most of us hadn't even heard of Pinterest yet!), I hosted my sister's bridal shower. It was a travel theme and I made some decorated sugar cookies with their names and Eiffel Towers as party favors. There was a lot I didn't know about the art of cookie decorating back then.