This post will show you how to make the type of flowers I made for the Teapot birthday cake. I call them fantasy flowers because you can decide how you want them to look and be really creative with them. There are no specific flowers included and they look fab!
Before you start you will need:
Small rolling pin
Small palette knife
Flower cutters – various shapes and sizes
Plastic sheet or stay fresh mat
Sugarpaste with gum tragacanth/CMC added or flower paste
Edible lustre dust in whatever colours you choose
Edible glue & brush
When making a number of flowers I always set up a production line so that I can be as efficient as possible. Clear your workspace and set it up so that you have your plastic sheet/mat to one side ready for cut out flowers and your foam mat to the other side. Leave some space in the centre of your workspace for rolling out your sugarpaste. Have your cutters and tools to hand.
I also suggest that before making your flowers you do a quick sketch of what styles, colours and sizes you want to do. This way you have a clear plan of what you are trying to achieve. You may change your mind and do things slightly differently when it comes to making them but it is much easier to deviate from a plan than having no plan at all.
5 Petal Flowers
- Begin by rolling out some of your coloured sugarpaste. I started with a flower cutter app 6cm in diameter so I rolled out a piece app 30 x 30cm. You should be able to cut around 12 flowers out of this piece. Place half under the mat/plastic sheet and half onto your foam pad.Of course this number is not essential and if you feel confident making fewer then do so
- Use your ball tool to shape the petals and give them some movement
- Run the ball tool around the edge of the petal – this should be a gentle gliding motion around the petal rather than pushing the ball tool into the paste
- You can be firm about this so long as you are using either flower paste or sugarpaste with CMC added. My personal preference is sugarpaste/CMC. Flower paste is generally expensive and my experience is that I have to work very fast before it tightens up too much. However there are many on the market and you may find that you prefer flower/petal paste
- Place flowers into a former to set
Once you have made the number of flowers you want in one style/colour you can go on to another cutter and colour.
- These are made using carnation cutters and you will need 2 sizes. Make your larger flowers first
- Roll out your chosen colour of sugarpaste and cut 5 of the smaller size and 5 of the larger ones
- Put the smaller ones under your plastic sheet and the larger ones on your foam pad ready for shaping
- Using a cocktail stick frill the edges of the petals by rolling the stick over the sugarpaste. As with previous flowers you will need to make these flowers with flower paste or my method. If you use sugarpaste (fondant) alone for this there is a good chance that it will get stuck in the cutter and that the cocktail stick will get stuck
- As you roll the stick back and forward the tiny cuts made will cause a frill around the edge of the petals
- Place these in a suitable sized former. They should be slightly cupped but not too tight
- Next cut out and shape the same number of smaller flowers and place these in a former
- Once all the flowers are set roll out some very small balls of sugarpaste (app 5mm diameter) and put a dab of glue in the centre of each of the large flowers
- Drop the balls into the centre of the flowers. This is best done by dropping the balls as they will naturally come to rest in the centre. If you pick them up and try to place them, there is a good chance you will squash them.
- Put another dab of glue on top of the balls and place the small flowers on them pushing down gently to secure them.
You now have a 2 layer frilly flower
Creating flower centres
As with all fantasy flower making there are lots of options for the centres. I usually do a combination to add variety.
- Start by setting out your finished flowers or a section of them if you are making a large number. I set them out on the work top so that when it comes to pressing centre in they are on a flat surface (rather than in the former) and they will not crack
- Alternatively you can create the flower centres while the sugarpaste is still fairly soft and while it is still in the former
- Either roll out a few small sections of sugarpaste in a few different shades and then put them all side by side and underneath your plastic sheet. If you want to use different lustrous colours, roll out one piece as shown below and colour small sections
- Place a dab of glue in the centre of app 10 of your larger flowers/blossoms
- Use smaller cutters including plunger cutters to cut out small flower centres and place in the centre of the larger flowers/blossoms
This is the simplest way to create a centre for your flower
- Take a small piece of sugarpaste in a colour other than the finished flower and roll it into a ball
- The size of the ball will depend on the size of the flower it is going into
- Put a dab of glue into several of the flowers and drop the balls into the centres. When doing this it is best to drop the ball rather than trying to place it directly
Creating a textured centre
- Roll out a ball of sugarpaste as shown above.
- Choose a suitably sized embosser (they come in sets of sizes). Keep in mind that the embosser should fit all around the ball. If the embosser chosen is too large it will not make contact to emboss the pattern and if too small it will not emboss the pattern all over the ball
- Dab some glue into the centre of your flower and then, using the embosser push down gently on the ball to both emboss the pattern on and secure it in place
Creating lustrous versions of your flowers
When making these flowers I usually make some in plain coloured sugarpaste and some with a lustrous finish. If you choose to do this, do your plain flowers first and then work on your lustrous ones. If you have a pristine white wedding cake (part done or ready for delivery) you should use lustre dust somewhere else or move your cake. If you have used lustre dust you will know that it gets everywhere.
- Roll out your chosen shade of colour and cut out 10 flowers as above (you can decide on which type of flower cutter you use and it is good to choose a variety)
- Again put half on your foam pad and half under a plastic sheet
- Using your ball tool shape the edges of the petals as before
- Using the narrow end of your veining tool, create lines in each petal as shown to create some texture. This texture looks great when you brush the lustre dust onto your flowers
- Transfer your shaped and textured flowers onto a piece of kitchen towel. This will contain most of the mess made and stop the flower moving around while you brush it
- Take a small soft brush with a squared end as shown and dip into your pot of lustre dust. You can experiment with which shade of dust you use with your chosen flower colour
- Using a circular motion brush the colour into the flower and into the dips made by the texturing
- You will notice when you do this that the feathering and shape you created with your ball tool disappears a little and the flower becomes quite flat
- Put some shape back into your flower by placing it in a former and then using your veining tool or small palette knife to tease the edges of the petals and re shape them
- You can put the same centres as above in these flowers using lustrous colours instead of plain colours
- If you want lustrous ball centres/textured balls these are best painted with lustre dust rather than brushing it. This is because you will squash the ball as you dust.
- To make a painting solution for lustre dust you need to add dipping solution/rejeuvenator spirit to make a liquid. Keep in mind that if you add lots of solution your colour will be diluted and with less the colour will be richer. As you use your painting mix it it will thicken and you will need to add more solution/spirit.
When I make fantasy flowers I mix & match colours, shapes, sizes effects and textures to get a good variety.