Brush Embroidery – Cookie Box Tutorial

Brush Embroidery is one of my favorite decorating techniques. I used it here to decorate this cookie box. It would make a nice presentation for Mother’s Day.
The blue color I used here is delphinium blue from the Wilton Garden Tone 4-Piece Colors Set. You can also achieve this color by mixing royal blue with a touch of black.
For this box, you’ll need 4 rectangle cookies that measure 3×4″ for the sides and two square cookies that measure 3×3″ for the top and bottom. These cookies were made using my orange vanilla spice cookie recipe, which is available in my shop. I rolled the dough to a little less than 1/4″ thick, froze the sheets, then used a t-square ruler and a paring knife to cut the cookies.
I iced the cookies using flood consistency royal icing and a round tip 3 and let them dry overnight. There’s a video with full instructions on flooding with royal icing in my Tutorial Shop.
To make the brush embroidered flowers, use stiff consistency royal icing and a tip 2 to pipe the petals. Stiff consistency icing is the consistency that I refer to when the icing comes off of the mixer. You can learn more about this in the videos, How To Make Royal Icing and Cookie Decorating Basics, which are both available in the Tutorial Shop.
The color of the flowers is made using brown with a touch of green added to neutralize it. Sometimes when I try to make a beige color by using brown by itself, it ends up looking a little pink.
To see brush embroidery in action with full instructions, you can download my video on brush embroidery from the tutorial shop.
Use a damp square tip brush to bring the icing in toward the center of the flower.
Repeat the process on the inner petals, and pipe a flower center.
Add leaves using the same technique.
After about 6 hours of drying time, the box pieces should be safe to handle. Apply some stiff icing to the back of a rectangle on one of the 3″ sides. I used the same icing that I used for the brush embroidered flowers.
Gently press the cookie against the 3″ square cookie, which will be the bottom of the box. Keep your hand there or use something to prop it up while you move on to the next step.
Apply icing to the back of another rectangle and press it to the adjacent side of the bottom cookie.
Pipe some icing between the two sides and use the square tip brush to help push it into the space between the cookies. It’s important to make sure this side is stuck together really well because it will be difficult to reach into the box after the third side is applied to pipe more icing in between the cookies. This joint will be the anchor for the rest of the box.
On the third side, apply the icing to the bottom edge and side of the cookie and attach it to the box.
Put some pressure on these for about 30 seconds to make sure they’re really stuck.
Apply the icing to both sides and the bottom edge of the fourth cookie.
Press them together and hold it for about 30 seconds. Let the box dry for about an hour.
After the box has had some time to dry, pipe some icing on the outside of the joints.
Then, using stiff icing and a tip 5, pipe a bead border over the icing you just piped in the corners. There is a video with full instructions on piping a bead border available in my Tutorial Shop. Let the box dry for another 6 hours.
Now the box is ready to be filled.
I filled this one with mini cookies and royal icing roses. There is a video on piping royal icing roses and leaves available in my Tutorial Shop.

50 thoughts on “Brush Embroidery – Cookie Box Tutorial

  1. Hi I looked at the tutorial & looks great. When you my royal icing is the thickness at that point enough or do you need to do something?(remember novice. Here) I paint with oil paints so I think it should be fun. Thanks sandy

    • I know, I know!! Just keep practicing… you’ll get it! One of the biggest mistakes I see when people are just starting out with brush embroidery is that their icing is too soft. Let me know if you have any questions about how to improve!

  2. Hi Amber!

    Can I use Brush Embroidery on decorating cakes?
    You know, like White Cake covered with buttercream?

    • Hi Christine! I haven’t tried it myself, but I believe you can use this technique on buttercream that “crusts”. I do know that you can definitely use this technique it on a fondant covered cake, though.

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