10 Holiday Tips & Tricks | Day Two

Today is Day Two of our 10 Holiday Tips & Tricks series… and we have something really yummy (and easy!) to share with you today — Christmas Tree Cupcakes!

If you’re in need of something yummy and festive for a holiday goodie exchange, or a holiday party, or simply to give to friends/neighbors… these cupcakes are perfect! You can make a few dozen in no time at all & have plenty to share!

I made a layout about these cupcakes a few years back, and I have been asked to bring them to our annual goodie exchange every year since! Here’s a look…

To start — let’s gather our ingredients:

  • 24-36 cupcakes, cooled
    (go ahead & use a boxed mix! Just add an extra egg, use sour cream instead of oil, and milk instead of water… and no one will know you didn’t make them homemade!) 😉
  • 1-1/2 cups (3 cubes) of room-temperature butter
  • 3-to-4 cups of powdered sugar (exact amount to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1M frosting tip & frosting bag
    (I prefer the disposable Wilton bags because #easycleanup)
  • Green gel icing color
  • preferred decor
    (for the following photos I used rainbow nonpareils, but any sprinkle will do! In the previous photo/layout, I used holiday-colored nonpareils and gold stars)
  • Extracts, if desired
    (peppermint is a fun one to use with the green color!)

Start with the butter in the mixer & beat the heck out of it — seriously — approximately 10 minutes! Once it is white & super fluffy, you’re good to slowly add in the powdered sugar.

As you add the sugar, taste it occasionally as you go; typically, I use about 3-1/2 cups of sugar.

After the sugar is all incorporated, add the tablespoon of vanilla. Now it’s time to add coloring or extracts. Add a teaspoon at a time until you reach the desired color/flavor.

To decorate… trim the tip off of the frosting bag, drop in the 1M tip & then fill it up with your delicious buttercream. To make the tree shape — start on the outside of your cupcake & make 3 circles- going smaller as you get to the top. Finally, add your sprinkles… and voila! Christmas tree cupcakes!

*FOOTNOTE* my favorite thing to do with the left over buttercream (besides squirt it straight into my mouth!) is to put it between graham crackers & then into the freezer. My kids call them Freezer cookies! 🙂


AmieAbout the Author  Amie is a craft-loving dental hygienist who lives in Washington state. She loves her husband, her two kids (ages 8 & 5), and her English Bulldog… as well as coffee, baking cupcakes, daffodils, glitter & sprinkles, reading a good book, and lip gloss — not necessarily in that order.

10 Holiday Tips & Tricks | Day One

Exciting news today! We’re deviating from our normal monthly blog schedule for the month of December… in order to bring you a fun series of 10 Holiday Tips & Tricks! This series will run every Mon/Wed/Fri throughout the month of December, leading up to (and ending just before) Christmas weekend. That means you can expect ten (10) different posts this month full of fun and inspirational ideas that are sure to make your holiday season simpler… craftier… cuter… and/or yummier!

Today is Day One of our series… and we have a really fun (and easy!) project to share with you — hybrid gift tags!

How to make these beauties? It’s so easy!

First, I always create the entire tag in Photoshop (PS) or Photoshop Elements (PSE) before printing and assembling. For the tags you see here, I used Dunia Designs’ December Documented product line (papers | elements | journal cards).

Here are a few details about my overall process…

  • First, I find a digital tag that I like and use it as the foundation for everything else. In other words — I just find any tag shape in any kit, and use it as a clipping mask for the rest of the items found in the main kit I choose for my project.
  • Next, I add the elements and papers I want to use from the kit I’ve chosen… and I clip them to the tag shape (CTRL-G in PSE; CTRL-ALT-G in PS).
  • This next part is a personal preference thing… but I like to build out all my tags together on one 8.5 x 11 canvas. This means that I layer them and make them look the way they’ll look once they’re assembled later… but in digital format, on my computer screen, so I can see a preview. Sometimes I even add digital stitching as a place holder for the real deal later on (again, to see what it will look like). This is a look at the digital version of my tags, which I created fully in PSE…

Once I have the tags the way I like them, that is when I pull the layers apart and create a print sheet, as shown in the next image (notice the the digital stitching isn’t included as a part of the print sheet)…

 

Once I have my print sheet ready… I save it, print it, cut each embellishment out, and assemble (using my original digital/layered mock-up as a guide).

Also, once they’re assembled… I always real-stitch all of my hybrid Christmas tags. I just think they’re cuter that way! 🙂

And that’s it! That’s all there is to it. The fun thing about this is that you can create a file to use over and over again, and simply swap in new names/etc. in the text areas (to use the same tag for different people/gifts). It can be different every time you print it!

 


Kate About the Author  Kate is on the hybrid team here at The Digital Press. She lives on the Utah/Colorado border with her husband, 5 kids, 10 chickens, and a dog named Gracie. She’s a city-born girl who found she’s really a country girl at heart. She can be found outside, barefoot, and probably in her garden.