A Canadian Sweet-Tooth vs. a Fun Funky Cupcake Balloon

As I was working on last week's cookie designs I thought..."I can't wait to blog about this!"  I feel like a real blogger :)

So...I got a cookie order back in early September for a birthday party this past weekend.  The customer had sent me a link to a picture of a party balloon called the "Fun Funky Cupcake Balloon" and asked if I could replicate it onto a cookie.   I must admit that I was somewhat nervous to click on the link.  Replicating any design onto a cookie can be quite a challenge...color matching, getting the shape just right, making regular-sized details really small to fit onto a cookie, etc.   Not to mention that the customer has something to directly compare your cookie to...and expectations run very high.  I clicked on the link and saw the balloon and my first reaction was "Oh...no problem!  I can totally do that!!" 
 A few weeks went by and every once in awhile I would take another look the balloon and try to make a game-plan for these cookies.  I knew that a lot of colors would be involved and there would need to be a series of steps to complete them properly.  The thing is...you can only plan so much...and when the time came to actually make them I was feeling the pressure.  In my "game-plan" I planned for each cookie to require about 13 steps.  Well.... 27 steps later PER COOKIE...I was really pleased with the end result.  It was a lot of color mixing, a lot of details, but truly...a lot of fun.  I couldn't replicate the balloon exactly because some details just don't translate well to a small cookie and they would make it look really crowded.  I think the general idea of the fun and funky balloon really shined through.

Now...onto a separate order from last week.  About mid-week I got an email from an old grade-school friend (St. Val's!!) who was throwing a surprise 30th birthday party for her husband in three days.    As for cookie designs, Rachael left it pretty much wide open other than wanting some 3's and 0's.  She gave me the following details:  Ryan is...a. Canadian  b. a dentist   c. obsessed with their golden retriever.  No time to game-plan on this order...it was straight to production.   The cookie designs just kind of got created one by one...I hand-cut alot of them without any sort of template...which is awesome because the design isn't limited to the shape of a cookie cutter.  One thing I did NOT plan for was that a lot of the cookies that I decided to make were really large and I had only made a double batch of dough and there wasn't time to make any more...soooo....when all of the cookies were baked I literally had three extra to mess up on.  3!  Usually I set myself up with AT LEAST 12 extras...especially if it's a new design that I've never done before.  Talk about pressure.

So the cookies are cooling on the racks and Rob goes into the kitchen and he's giving them really funny looks.  I could just tell that he's trying to put the puzzle together and thinking "WHAT ARE THESE SHAPES??" He knows that I'm stressed about this order a little bit so I can tell that he's afraid to say anything.  But finally he says...."Katie....I think you need to make more dough and re-cut these hockey sticks because that is NOT what a hockey stick looks like."  So I say... "Thanks, Rob...but they're toothbrushes, ok?"  He saw the maple leaves and thought I was making Canadian hockey cookies...he was truly concerned and that was nice :)

Back to the cookies...the decorating went really smoothly...THANK GOD!  I darkened the red, green, and blue so they were a little bit more masculine and less primary.  I decorated the 3's and 0's with some masculine designs, the beer bottles were somewhat tedious but I thought they came out OK, the teeth came out awesome...simple and straightforward, the toothbrush bristles were cool-looking, and the plain red maple leaves kind of anchored the collection by being simple and bold. Oh..and I thought the "I <3 my Golden Retriever" bumper stickers came out really good.  They were actually my favorite of the whole group!

So the moral of this blog is....that cookies can be ordered in totally different ways.  The customer may have a specific design in mind...or they may leave it totally up to me!  There may be plenty of time to think about it...or maybe just a couple of hours.  However the orders may come in, I thank you for trusting me to make them for you.  I'm having so much fun!!!!