Preheat oven to 160°C (Gas mark 2/325°F).
Line 2 large baking trays with baking paper.
Place the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl, then whisk together until pale and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract and whisk again to combine.
Sieve in the flour, then whisk again until the mixture comes together in a crumbly dough. Pull the dough together with your hands into a ball.
Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to around 1cm thick. Using a small round cookie cutter, cut circles from the dough, then carefully transfer them to the baking trays.
Bake for around 15 minutes until golden.
Once cooked, leave the shortbread rounds to cool on the baking trays for a few minutes then transfer to a cooling rack to finish cooling.
Once the cookies are completely cool, add the spider decorations:
Break the chocolate into a microwave safe bowl and heat at 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until just melted and smooth.
Spoon the melted chocolate into a disposable piping bag.
Snip the bottom from the piping bag and pipe on chocolate ‘legs’ for each spider. Top with a giant button for the spider’s body.
Use the leftover melted chocolate to stick two edible candy eyes to each spider.
Leave the chocolate to set before serving (pop cookies in the fridge to set the chocolate if in a hurry).
Once the chocolate has completely set, store your spider cookies in an airtight container, layered with baking paper to separate them, until ready to serve.