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There are various kits you can buy to help you make your own cookie cutters. Here's an easy way that uses materials you probably have in your home already.
- Draw straight lines onto the bottom of an aluminum lasagna pan going lengthwise, using a ruler and permanent marker to be sure the edges are straight. Make the lines at least 1" apart and fill up as much of the bottom of the pan as possible.
- Using your heavy duty scissors, cut the sides off the aluminum pan and then cut out your strips that you drew onto the bottom of the pan. Be careful, cutting aluminum can give you cuts and nicks in your fingers. Wearing gloves is a good idea.
- Set aside your 1" aluminum strips and start designing on your paper. Keep in mind that you only have as much length as your strips to work with. To help you gauge the size of your designs, draw out your design on paper and then use string to measure the outline. Hold the string up to the strip and see if the strip is long enough. Also, since you're working with metal, give 1"-2" allowance for curves and so you can properly close your cookie cutters when you're finished shaping them.
- Take one of your 1" aluminum strips and start molding it around your design. To help make curves, use pens or cups. To make 90 degree edges, use table edges or your ruler. Use anything around the house, just be creative!
- To close your cookie cutter, overlap the ends of the aluminum strips and staple together more than once (three times is a charm!).
- Use a metal file to grind down any nicks and burrs on the edges that will hurt you. Wash and dry your cutter thoroughly before cutting out your cookie dough.
- For sturdier cookie cutters, go to a hardware store and buy some 1" copper or aluminum ribbon. These will last forever, but to seal the ends together, you will need 2-sided tape and some clamps to hold the ends together as it sets. Wash these metal strips in soap and water before taping together, as they may have oil on them that would interfere with the tape bonding.
- To help fold the ribbon into the design, first draw out the design on paper. Then, trace the pattern onto wood and cut out the piece of wood. Mold the ribbon around the wood. Alternatively, you can cut out the design on 3-5 pieces of cardboard and tape them together instead of using wood.
- Don't have too many long skinny parts or tight curves, as these won't translate well to a cookie. Remember you are making cookie cutters and details will be lost when you bake the cookie dough because it expands in the oven.
- If you want to reuse the cookie cutters or store them away, don't pile anything on top of them that could deform the shape.
- Washing your cutters by hand will help them last longer.
- Cutting aluminum metal will give you small cuts or nicks on your fingers, even if you're careful.
- Not recommended for small children.
- The permanent marker will smudge a bit because it doesn't adhere to aluminum too well, but it will be easy to clean off once your cookie cutters are finished.
- Once finished, the cookie cutters will be a bit fragile. Be careful when cutting the cookies, as the cutter may deform somewhat.
Things You'll Need
- Large Disposable Aluminum Lasagna or Roasting Pan (Rectangular is best)
- Heavy Duty Scissors
- Permanent Marker
- Paper (to draw your designs on)
- Newspaper or Cardboard to cover the work surface
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