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Thursday, 21 February 2013

DIY - A Super Cute Baby Announcement

Just to set the record straight, No I am not expecting! But a couple of my close friends are. And all these ultra cute chats we've been having about tiny feet and little baby hands reminded me of a cake I once made for a friend's baby shower, and the chocolate chip cookie jars I made for party favours (the mother's favourite cookies).

I am thinking that the DIY cookie jar is a super cute way to announce expecting a baby.

You know how when you are expecting, you can't wait to tell the world and share the joy with everyone. Well if you have to wait for the first trimester to pass, then you have all the time in the world to make that announcement super cute. Instead of just rushing to the phone and calling every one in your contacts list, why not send them a jar of cookies with an announcement card? It just makes that moment extra special.

Since you are at it, why not actually invite your friends over for an afternoon tea, make this super easy cake, some extra cookies? Then, once your friends are over, hand out the cookie jars and serve your delightful bakes with tea....
Sounds difficult? Don't worry it is all much easier than you think! Read on...

Please excuse the quality of the pictures in this post, they are very very old, but I am using them here for demonstration...

The Cookie Jar
There are many cute jars that you can go for. In the picture above, I had gone for very simple see-through jars that you can find in any supermarket. To customise the jars for the occasion, choose baby themed decorations and glue them on (with a silicon gun). Teddy bears are an excellent choice and there are many styles that you can choose from. Mini decorations like baby bottles, rattles, or even cute bubble baby figurines are all good options.

Go to party shops and check out the baby shower section, you will find many inspirations. 

Then choose some ribbons to go with the selected theme. If your jar is tall, place the ribbons towards the bottom to tie it with the topper. If your jar is short, you can make a bowtie and stick it on one side close to the topper. There is really a million things that you can do, just take the idea and run with it :)
Bake your favourite cookies (chocolate chip recipe below), or make some cute little macarons, find the macarons recipe here. Fill those jars and seal then finish with an announcement card.

One very cute DIY announcement card is a little baby bib with your message. 

You can either buy plain bibs and get your message printed on them - the shops that print customised messages on t-shirts will take care of that for you - or you can buy bibs that already have a message.

The Cake
This is a very easy pretty cake that you can carry out yourself. All you need to do is:

  •  Bake 2 layers of your favourite cake, the Victoria Sandwich cake on this link works perfectly, so will this layered chocolate fudge cake
  • Make your favourite icing, you can go for this delicious Vanilla Buttercream recipe or this Ganache recipe if you are a chocolate lover. 
  • Use the icing as a filling and stack the cake layers, then ice both layers with the same icing.
  • Cover the cake with fondant (tinted in your desired colour). Follow this link for step by step tutorial on how to cover a cake with fondant.
  • Using fondant, cut out a narrow rectangular block. Pull one end of the block upwards and keep the opposite end steady on the work surface. Then pinch the sides of the top part of the bootie, and cut two slits in the centre to give it that bootie look. Make 2 holes on each side of the pinched top and insert a ribbon for laces.
  • Roll some fondant, and using cookie cutters, cut out the letters to spell BABY.
  • Place the booties and letters on top of your covered cake.
  • Roll out some fondant into a thick ribbon and stick that ribbon along the bottom of the cake. Cut out some tiny fondant disks and use them for making polka dots effect.
  • to make the bowtie, roll another thick ribbon of fondant and cut it in half. Fold each half into half a bowtie and stick both on the cake. Then cut out a small square of fondant and push the sides to the centre and stick this piece at the centre of the bowtie halves. Cover with polka dots.
  • That's all!

They are delicious, very easy to make and everyone loves them! 
Chocolate Chip Cookies 
You Need
Makes about 60 cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1 ½ cups brown sugar
½ tsp baking soda
2 eggs
The seeds of 1 vanilla pod
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
375g chocolate chip cookies

Preheat your oven to 375 F. Line cookie baking sheets with baking paper and set aside.

Beat the butter with an electric mixer on medium-high speed for 1 minute then add the brown sugar and baking soda. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in the eggs and vanilla seeds until combined. Add all the flour and beat to combine then stir in the chocolate pieces. 

Scoop out the dough with a tbsp and drop it onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake in the preheated oven for 8-10 minutes, or until edges are slightly browned. Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool.

There are a million things we can do creatively to add extra special to our occasions. I was inspired to write this post by my two expecting friends and hope that you enjoyed it and the recipe. These are your moments so make sure to make them extra special.
You know I love to hear from you, so do leave me a comment before you go...

Have a Delicious Day !