If you are a cookie cutter lover, chances are you've toyed around with the idea of making your own cutters. It's not actually as hard as it might seem at first. And it's really fun because you can design cutters in shapes that you might not otherwise find and have your very own custom design cookies!
Below is a beginner's guide to cookie cutter making.
Start off with a trip to the hardware store. You're going to need a few things that can only be found there. Ask the clerk for aluminum or copper flashing. Copper is better, but they may not carry it. Tell the clerk what you're going to use it for and ask if it's safe for food use. Flashing is nothing more than a flat sheet of metal. You'll want to buy a roll, or at least enough to make your first one or two cookie cutters. You can always go back for more.
Next, you'll need a pair of tin snips. These are scissors designed to cut metal. Don't try to use household scissors as they won't do the job right and you'll end up ruining your scissors. You'll also need a good knife to score the cutter. If you have a paring knife at home, that will work fine.
Your last two purchases from the hardware store will be a glue and some clips. The glue should be food safe (meaning non-toxic) like an epoxy. If you are at all unsure if it's food safe, don't use it. You can always do some research and call a few companies or visit their web sites to find out which glues are food safe. It may take a little work, but it will be worth the effort.
The clips can be just those orange and black clamps you see at hardware stores. They cost just a few cents each, so pick up several. You'll need these to hold the glue until it sets.
The only thing you'll really need from home is a ruler and pencil.
Photo Credit: How to make a cookie cutter by Rocío Cuenca, on Flickr
Once you get all your supplies home, decide which shapes you'd like to make. You might start simple with a dog or a pumpkin. Next, draw or download a piece of artwork that has bold outlines of your desired shape. Don't worry about details as you won't use any of them. The outline is all you need.
Lay the flashing down on a table and start cutting strips the width of your ruler. You'll want to mark the length of the ruler along the flashing with a pencil mark, and then use the snips to cut the straight line. You'll only be able to make a cutter the length of the aluminum sheet. So if you're using a roll, you're in luck. Shorter sheets of aluminum will require smaller cookie cutters.
An easy way to measure how much flashing you will need is with a pipe cleaner. Use the pipe cleaner to copy the shape of your desired design, then straighten it out and and 1" (for overlap) for the amount of flashing to cut.
Next, take a cut strip, being very careful not to cut yourself on the edges, and bend it gently around the shape on the paper.
You may want to use your clamps to keep edges or corners in place. You can also score any corners in the design with your knife so they stay bent. You can bend the aluminum around glasses or any other objects at home to get rounded edges.
Glue the ends in place. Overlap the metal and then put on a drop of glue.
Clamp the edges so the glue can set.
When you're done, wash your cutter and use!