Easy 5-Petal Gumpaste Flower

I just discovered a very simple yet quite lovely gumpaste flower to do.  It’s perfect to fill the space between big flowers on a cake/cupcake.  Hope you enjoy these easy steps, and please don’t forget to share your work with me.

Equipment and Material for One Flower

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  • white gumpaste
  • 5-petal cutter
  • 10cm wire
  • ball tool
  • pointed ball tool
  • rolling pin
  • foam board

How-to

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1. Roll the white gumpaste to about 1-2 mm thickness, leaving a small stub of 5 mm in the middle.

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2. Cut the rolled gumpaste with the 5-petal cutter by positioning the stub in the middle.

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3. Gently roll the edge and the middle of each petal with the ball tool to form a slight curve.

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4. Bend one end of the wire into a small hook.

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5. Put the wire through the middle of the flower until the hook is inside the stub.

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6.  Use you fingers to roll the stub into cone shape along the wire.

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7. Use the pointed ball tool to make a small hole in the middle of the flower.

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8. Roll the white gumpaste into a tiny ball and put it in the hole.

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There you have a finished 5-petal flower.  Very easy and pretty lovely as well!

Hydrangea How-to

Just like how you arrange real flowers, you need some little flowers to fill in the gap.  I find Hydrangeas are very versatile as their range of colours and shape go along well with lots of bigger flowers.  Even better, they are pretty on their own, too.  

I love to prepare my Hydrangeas in a bunch of two or three so that the stem will help them not to be blinded by bigger, taller flowers like roses.  Enjoy!

1. Make a small round gum paste (about 3 mm. in diameter) in the colour you want.  In this case I chose light pink.  Cut wire no. 28 into about 10 cm. long.

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2. Dip the tip of the wire into egg white or edible glue and insert the wire into the centre of the gum paste ball.

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3. Use your forefinger and thumb to roll out the bottom of the ball down along the wire.  Try to make the bottom part as thin as possible.

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4. Use a cutter tool to mark a small cross on the top of the wired gum paste.

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5. Roll out the pink gum paste until about 1-2 mm thin.  Use a hydrangea cutter to cut out the shape and vein it by the hydrangea veining silicone.

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6. Use a small brush to paint the back of the stem with a little bit of egg white.  Then insert the wire into the centre of the veined hydrangea and bring the flower all the way to the stem.  Let dry upside down for at least 1 hour.  

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7. Use floral tape to secure a few flowers together to create ready-to-use bunch.

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7. Use edible green dust to add some life-like effect to the flowers.

 

 

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Gum Paste Figurine Moulds…Threat or Opportunity?

In decorating my cakes, I’ve gotten quite a lot of compliments on the gum paste figurines that I made.  Customers usually sent back kind words about how they love the decoration.  Some even sent me the photos of their celebration, with my cake and all the people smiling around it.  That just totally made me feel so proud and energised.  It’s the reason I want to get better…to keep improving.  I would feel doubly elated when the compliments came from those who really knew first hand how difficult it actually was to master the skills.  It requires some knowledge about the materials and tools, and it takes a LOT of practice.  Even though I’ve done it for years, I’m still farrrrrr from perfecting it.  I’m always inspired by other cake decorators’ work and try to use what I saw in their work to improve mine.

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Lately I felt a bit threatened when I saw that now there were figurine moulds available in the market for sugar work!  I was literally stunned for one minute with all negative thoughts popping up in my head.  I was worried that now everyone would be able to do the figurines, and mine wouldn’t be appreciated anymore.  The skills that I’ve acquired, the long hours I spent in learning and creating what I can today would just go to waste.  Anyone can make the figurines.  It’ll become just a standard decoration from now on.  Boo…hoo…

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Fortunately, I’ve gained all my senses back one minute later.  Hang on!  Is it really a threat with such moulds available in the market?  Well, it would certainly make it much easier for other cake decorators to make human figurines.  Will they be able to vary its appearance?  Yes, some skilled decorators will and some won’t.  And what’s so bad about it?  It’s not like all cake decorators would jump at the mould and start making all the same style of figurines for their customers, would they?  There are so many other factors involved here.  Let’s not dwell on the negative points then!

On the positive side, from now on I can make the figurines in much less time than before.  Instead of sculpting each body part from scratch and taking hours to make one finished figurine, now I can make the basic structure in less than 10 minutes then spend the extra time on customising it according to what customers want.  Now my figurines would be able to wear more elaborated clothes and accessories.  I’ll have more time to play with the details.  I’ll even have more time to accept more orders!

Coming to this, I then press the order button for the moulds!  Haha…

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So, what’s the take away from this story?

An opportunity can be disguised as a threat.  Just don’t panic.  Look at it carefully and see how you can turn it around in your favour.  I’m sure some threats will still be threats even after you look at them from all angles.  The fact that you have taken a good look at those threats already prepare you on how to handle them!  So, in conclusion, just make positivity out of all threats!  Cheers!!

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P.S. I haven’t tried the mould.  Will do some review once I try it.  😀

Coral Charm Peony How-to

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I just saw a similar gum paste peony from Pinterest and wanted to try making one myself. I came up with this easy how-to, which did not result in a very natural-looking flower but a satisfactory version, considering the time and effort. Hope you have fun making an edible flower, like I do.

Materials:

 

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Light green gum paste
Light coral gum paste or any color that you want for your petals
18 pieces of wire
Non-edible ready-made yellow stamen
Drop cookie cutter
Rolling pin
Rolling board
Foam board
Pliers
Ball tools
Roller cutter
Floral tape

Instructions:

1. Bend an end of a wire into a hook. Repeat with 3 wires in total.

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2. Make a droplet from green gum paste to cover the hook. Make a straight line on the droplet.

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3. Roll out the orange gum paste into a thin sheet and cut 15 petals.
4. Insert a wire into the center of each petal.

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5. Sharpen the edge of the petals with a big ball tool and create ruffles with a small ball tool. Let all parts dry at least 1 hour or overnight.

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6. Put together the 3 green stamen with floral tape, then put the yellow stamen on the outside.

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7. Adding the petals one by one, securing with floral tape, to create a natural looking peony.

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Sugar Malai to Celebrate Thai New Year 2014

I just feel this Thai New Year is an auspicious time to start a new step in life – to call myself as a cake decorator.  I’ve never seriously viewed myself as one before.  Cake decoration was just a part of my job as the co-owner of a small cupcake shop in Bangkok. However, the more I’ve done it, the more I fell in love with it.  It has become the most fun part of my job and my days.  So, I think I’m ready to present myself as one and will definitely keep developing myself in this sweet, happy path.  This blog will be a place where I can share my work, my creation, my passion – my sugar-high life.  Maybe all of you out there are better judges whether I deserve this title!

Songkran Day is the Thai traditional New Year which starts on April 13 of every year and lasts for 3 days, which is also called the “Water Festival”.  In the Thai tradition, elders and parents will be visited and respected by their children and grandchildren.  The young pour scented water over their elder’s hands, they in return, wish them good health, happiness and prosperity.  In the afternoon, Thai Buddhists sprinkle scented water on Buddha images.  After that, they sprinkle perfumed water on, or throw clean, cold water over each other.”

I happened to have quite a few hours free this Songkran and wanted to create something inspired by the festival.  A few things came to mind when thinking of Songkran, one of which is Malai (Thai-styled garland).  So, I decided to start with just that…

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It was my first time making a sugar garland and I didn’t want to be too ambitious with lots of details and complicated design.  So, my garland was just a simple one made from gardenias.  I made each flower separately and arrange them in a way similar to how the real malai was made.

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Another unique part of malai is the string of crown flowers, ending with a rose.  It’s quite easy to find a how-to VDO on how to make a fondant rose but none on crown flowers.  I just had to improvise here and this is the result…quite satisfactory!

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The roses got quite some compliments as well!  😀  Now that the malai was done, I just realized I had nothing to go with it!  So, I decided to make something that was easy enough without planning.

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And…here’s the total look…white cake filled with strawberry preserve and frosted with white chocolate buttercream…and of course, decorated with my malai.  The background was inspired by water and the edges were inspired by Thai traditional lace dress and pearl necklace.

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Hope you all have a happy and sweet new year…no matter where you are in the world!