Cute suit cookies

I was asked to make a set of cookies for a young man headed to Indiana to serve as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I was so happy that suits were included in the request. I love making these little suits. They’re also good for weddings and prom/dance request sets. Here’s how to make them!

I started with a Wilton present cookie cutter  like the one you can get here:  https://www.amazon.com/Wilton-Cupcake-Present-Cookie-Cutter/dp/B008OAVP8O  I got the idea for making a suit with this cutter from the awesome Lilaloa.

I traced around it, and drew my design for reference. You could use a regular rectangle cutter, but I like how this shape includes the shape for the tie and collar. True story: I have never used my present cutter for present cookies. Only suits. 🙂

Then, use your drawing as a guide to make the line for where the suit and shirt will meet. (I did this example cookie freehand, but I wanted all the others to match exactly, so I used my kopykake for the rest of the suit cookies.) Don’t worry about drawing all the detail lines on your cookie right now, they’d just get flooded over. They are for later.

Start with flooding the suit half of the cookie.

 

Allow the icing to dry briefly; I gave it maybe 2 minutes in front of a fan. If you are working on multiple cookies, go through and do all the suit icing. Then by the time you finish, you should be able to go back to the first cookie and it will be ready for the shirt icing. Working assembly-line style decreases wait time and increases efficiency.

Now add your shirt icing.

Unfortunately I forgot to take pictures of all the steps as I went –– it was 3am 🙂 – but step 2 consists of just flooding that empty space with white.

Allow the cookie to dry a little longer this time. If you are working assembly-line style with a dozen or more cookies, the first cookie will be dry enough by the time you finish filling in the last cookie with white. (You can always take a break to look at cute cookies on Instagram while you wait for your icing to dry if needed. 🙂 )

Now, using piping icing (toothpaste-consistency) in the same color as the suit, outline the space between the suit and shirt, pipe the suit collar, and add the line where the suit would button up.

I wanted to allow my base white a little more time to dry before adding the tie, and I also didn’t want to feel like I was squishing my white collar in between the suit and tie, so I added the white collar next. With piping consistency icing, add the little “Vs” for a collar:

Now you can add your tie. A note about consistency: because you don’t want your tie to go bleeding across the white shirt, you will want to use a thicker consistency icing for the tie, rather than a flood consistency. Also, I have found that small spaces done with thinner icing tend to pit more as they dry, leaving those dreaded little holes in your otherwise beautiful icing. So making your icing a little thicker should prevent tears of frustration. 🙂

I piped the knot of the tie first, then gave it just a minute to dry before piping the rest of the tie. That way I had a little definition between the 2 sections, which was a small detail that I liked (though since we will be outlining the knot, you can simplify by skipping that part if you want to save time).

Allow the tie to dry for a few minutes (again, assembly-line style will be your friend), then finish by outlining the tie knot with piping consistency icing, and you are done! You have a cute suit cookie ready to be admired (and eaten!) by family and friends. 🙂

Image Transfer Techniques

Sometimes you’re happy just inventing designs on your cookies as you go. But other times, you’re making something specific, maybe many of them, and you want them to look the same. Or you are doing character cookies, and it would be really nice if they looked like the characters people expected to see, not free-handed approximations.

Enter image transfer techniques! I just finished these wedding cookie favors, for which I used my favorite technique: image projection. I own a Kopykake, which is a projector for cakes and cookies. You insert your image into two little clips, turn it on, and voila! Your image is projected onto your cake or cookie.

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There were 250 of them, and as they were wedding favors, it kind of mattered that they match. There’s no way my bows would have all looked the same if I had tried to freehand them. (The bride found these cookies on Sweetsugarbelle’s page and fell in love with them.)

First, using a ruler and a food decorator pen, I traced the lines for the white “ribbon” onto the naked cookie (I used the Kopykake to project where the lines went so they would all be in the same place, and the same width, on each cookie). I then iced the blue, let it dry a little, then filled in the white. I was working in large batches, so I would do the blue on about 50 cookies, then go back to do the white, so the first cookies were pretty dry when I got back to them.

I then let the cookies dry overnight, and the next day, I put my cookie under my handy-dandy Kopycake, and this is what I had:

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I filled in one side of the bow, then the other, and after the bow had dried for 10 minutes or so, I could go back and add the little dot in the middle.

For as many cookies as I was doing, the Kopykake was invaluable. It is somewhat outdated now; the latest-greatest thing in image projection for cakes and cookies is the Pico projector. I don’t own one, since I’m so happy with my Kopykake, but I do know that the Picos are liked for their small size (the Kopykake is quite bulky). If you don’t have a projector and you are considering buying one, the Kopykake and the Pico are the two products to research.

But what if you don’t have a projector, and don’t do enough decorating to justify sinking a few hundred dollars in to one? Never fear, there are other techniques! The next technique I want to talk about is the one I used on these guys, who were some of the very first royal icing cookies I ever did:

Angry birds 2013

Since I was so new to cookie decorating when I did these, I didn’t own any fancy cookie decorating tools. For these cookies, I used the push-pin method.

I started with an image of the bird or piggie I was working on (you can draw or print an image) in the size I wanted it to be for the cookie. Then, using a pin, I poked little holes through the paper onto the cookie where the outline of my character was, kind of like a dot-to-dot picture. Once I filled in the base (green for piggies, red/white or yellow/white for birds), and the base was dried, I carefully placed my paper over the cookie, making sure my paper was aligned with my icing base. Then, I used the pin to again poke tiny holes through the paper, this time into the icing, for where the details should go.

Two things to note here: you must have a completely dry base for this to work, and you are poking guides, not the whole picture. If you look carefully at my pig snouts, you’ll see that the nostrils are all in the same location, but not all the same shape. That is because I just poked one hole right in the middle of the nostril, not a circle of dots outlining the shape of the nostril. The result is not-quite-identical, but for this purpose, I was okay with that.

The next method I want to talk about, I don’t have a name for. I will call it the paper cut-out method. Technical sounding, right?

For these cookies, I started with my image, which I created by tracing around my cookie cutter onto a piece of paper, then drawing in where I wanted the lines to go on the fleur de lis. Then, I cut out the center shape (the blue). I placed my blue shape on the cookie, using the shape of the cookie as my guide, and traced around it with a food marker. Then I was able to pipe the blue and white using the marker lines as my guide.

Fleur de lis

I have run across another technique which I have not tried, but which looks great, which I would call the tissue paper method. Cookies with Character has a great post about it, which you can find here.

So there you have it, a variety of techniques for transferring images to your cookies!