Thursday, June 28, 2012

Rick Rack Flowers and Apricot White Chocolate Chunk Cookies

There's something about rick rack that just shouts playful and cute to me! Does it have the same effect on you, or am I just talking to myself on this one? These flowers have been on my 'to make' list for some time now. I first saw one in a cutesy little downtown shop where we live, it was attached to the front of an apron waistband, I thought to myself they'd make really cute hair clips.  

After attempting to make the flower myself and having no luck, I was happy to come across this easy to follow tutorial  http://thecraftingchicks.com/2011/03/rick-rack-rosettes.html 


I made mine a little differently, here's how


I went ahead and purchased the medium sized rick rack recommended. 


Under $7 bucks not 


   So the baker in me wants to start by telling you to "preheat" your glue guns. I know from experience if I don't remember to do this first I'll get distracted waiting for it to heat up, make a neat little pile on the edge of my kitchen counter somewhere and leave it there, oh for say.... more than a day or two. It's the kids fault really, they always find me? 


I measured two pieces of rick rack and cut them at 20 inches long,  placed them under the foot on my sewing machine and twisted the two pieces together. I then clipped the bottom of the rick rack with an alligator clip so it wouldn't come undone as I was sewing. I sewed along one side.


 I began rolling adding smalls dots of hot glue along the way
when you come to the tail end, tuck and glue it to the bottom of your flower to secure it in place. 


 I wanted mine to resemble flowers more than rosettes 
so using my fingers I opened and pressed back almost every layer.




This is how I make the base of my clips



 I sandwich a piece of ribbon between an alligator clip



apply glue to the top side only and press.Glue inside the little dilly of the clip(where my thumb is,
 can't think of what that part is called) follow it around with a dot of glue on the bottom side, cut your ribbon.
There's a picture of what the bottom side of the clip should look like when you scroll down which is more helpful.



I used craft felt, cut a leaf and a circle
  


sandwich the felt circle in the clip



apply more glue, place your flower over and press.

                                            Don't mind the white thread I was being lazy;)






I clipped them to a Crape Myrtle in our backyard, but
the sun was shining directly on the tree where I was trying to take pictures and the colors weren't showing true. So I ran to the kitchen to find what I could use to block the sun, perfect, a cookie sheet should do the job. I'm sure I looked perfectly normal with a cookie sheet held high above my head in one hand, camera in the other, standing on my trampoline taking pictures of my tree. I heard my neighbor come out into his backyard, he began chuckling, I'm not sure if it was at me, but I couldn't help but think of how ridiculous I must've looked. Yep, that ought to clear up any suspicions of your neighbors thinking you're a wacko;)

Even so, I think it was worth it

I love how they turned out!






Apricot White Chocolate Chunk Cookies
This is a cookie recipe I collected from online back in 2007, it's adapted from The Neighborhood Bakeshop by Jill Van Cleave. It takes me back to the summer I had my first baby, when Shane was just a few months old and his daddy worked a lot. Between naps, breast feeding and all the new mommy worries we stayed home, well,  a lot too during the first few months. I can still picture him in his swing there in the kitchen, rocking back and forth sleeping for hours at a time, in his little onesie with bare feet. I gained a mean sweet tooth that summer, (along with a few other things I'd like not to mention;). That and I could already picture our first Christmas as a family together and I wanted my cookie tray to be fabulous! 
So I started testing recipes, it sort of became my mission that summer to start a collection of recipes I could make for our family and for my own someday dream bakeshop. It's when I taught myself to bake, I say taught because the first zucchini bread I made was nothing but pitiful! Baking didn't come exactly natural to me, I think it has to do with the fact that when it comes to following directions, I'm terrible. Something in me always wants to guess the last 5 steps? My goof up was that I grated only the skin portion of the zucchinis off and tossed the rest? Who does that, I know? I won't go into why I thought I should do that it's just embarrassing. So it baked up a whole 3 inches high, at most, and sat on top of the microwave for about a week. I remember being so proud of it too because it tasted like zuchhnni bread, a little, it just didn't look like it at all! My hubby was so sweet about it, he would saw through it, piece by piece day by day, microwave and slather it in butter and tell me it was good:) Looking back I'd like to imagine he had a Rules and Secrets For New Husbands Handbook stashed somewhere, inside it would state under rule 
#10
 If in doubt of her food and hurting her feelings, nuke it, cover in condiments, smile and say it's good.

Back to the cookie, creamy white chocolate compliments the sweet and tangy apricots nicely, it's a moist cake-like cookie. When I'm in the mood to switch it up, this is one that I go to.  





Ingredients
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup dried apricots, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (3/4 cup is what the original recipe calls for but I prefer 1/2 cup of fresh or dried apricots)
4 ounces white chocolate, cut into 1/2-inch chunks or 1/2 cup white chocolate chips


Directions
Preheat the oven to 350
Cream the butter and brown sugar in medium sized bowl
Beat in egg and vanilla
Add flour, baking soda, kosher salt in small bowl
Add dry ingredients to wet and mix until combined
Add white chocolate and apricots, mix until evenly dispersed 
Drop tablespoons of batter onto ungreased cookie sheet
Bake 10 minutes or until edges are lightly browned
Let the cookies sit on the sheet 2 minutes before transferring to wire rack to cool




The recipe says it yields 26 but I usually get about 20 of what I consider as small cookies. 
I doubled the recipe, put to good use some fresh apricots I had in one batch and dried in the other, I only had white chocolate chips, so that's what I used. I like to chill this dough for about 30 minutes or so before baking but you can bake them right away if you can't wait, they're still yummy. 


If you're feeling brave, add a cup or so of oatmeal, a few pinches of cinnamon, and let me know how they turn out. I bet they'd make great bars.:) 





25 comments:

  1. I agree, you ARE amazing.... our own personal, and more talented, "martha stewart"... <3

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  2. I can't wait to try the flowers! My girls will love these. Thanks for the tutorial!

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  3. My heart is smiling, thank you ladies for the sweet comments!

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  4. yay I just found you from Pinterest..and have bought a big bag of rick rack from the thrift store just so I could make these flowers for my granddaughter that will be born in October...so glad to have run across your blog....now your tutorial is on my Pinterest board...handmade flowers..

    Mona

    p.s. it would make leaving a comment much easier of you turned off that word copying thingy....

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  5. Your flowers look SO perfect! Haha and yes - been there, done that with the camera in the back yard.

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    1. Thank you Ann! Ha,I'm glad you can relate!

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  6. Mona I'm thrilled that you're making them for your new granddaughter! Handmade gifts are so special that way! Thanks for pinning my flowers to Pinterst, I'll have to check out your board!

    Thank you for your tip on the word copying thingy, I've just Googled it and I'm now trying to figure out how to disable it:)

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  7. this has to be the very best tutorial i have seen. keep up the good work

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  8. Hi! I just loved your rick rack flowers and have shared them on Friday Finds today. Thanks!

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  9. I love the flowers!! They are so pretty. I am your newest follower from Friday Finds. :)

    Kathy @ http://lifeonlakeshoredrive.blogspot.com

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  10. Thanks Laurel for sharing them on Friday Finds! I love old milk cans and what you did to yours on your post!

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  11. Thanks Kathy! I may try to link up to Friday Finds too!

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  12. Preciosas flores!, Me gusta tu blog.
    Un beso.
    Patricia (España)
    www.frogfactoryblog.com

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  13. Love the flowers! and cookies looks delicious :o)

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  14. Hi Jesselle!
    Love the flowers.
    Well done.
    Kiss from Portugal
    Maria
    http://mimosdemae.blogspot.pt

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  15. Those flowers are adorable. Can't wait to make some for my girls!!

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  16. Thank you for the tutorial!! I really love those flowers, I am going to make them tonight for my little girl...if I have enough materials!! Kind regards, Maria (From Holland) I just started my blog in English today (http://colourful-happiness.blogspot.nl)
    Keep up the good ideas!!

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  17. Fantastic! I love those clips and can't wait to make some myself! Thank you so much for the tutorial. :)

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  18. Love it!! Oh, and I just laughed when I read what you had to do to take a good pic of your flowers... good job =)

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  19. Darling, darling flowers! Sharing on Fox Hollow Cottage fb page :)

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  20. Your ricrac flower tutorial is being featured at PatternPile.com today :)

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  21. Hi, Jesselle!

    I would like to link to your tutorial in a blog post later this week.
    http://ohforsweetnesssake.blogspot.com/2012/06/rick-rack-flowers-and-apricot-white.html. Is that OK?

    My blog address is: http://pasqueflowerponderings.blogspot.com.
    I made a pink rick rack flower hair clip for my granddaughter using your tutorial.

    LeAnn

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  22. una belleza!!!!, muy bonitas las hebillas.

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