Thursday, 9 July 2009

Sugar Roses

I have been a poor blogger this week, apologies for that but life is quite hectic at the moment. I went on a lovely school outing yesterday. We spent the day on the farm of a local lady who breeds owls. Luckily the rain stayed away so we got our picnic and lots of fresh air.

The rest of the week has been taken up by making sugar roses for a Wedding cake I am making for the end of July so just for a change I thought I would try and give you simple instructions so that you could have a go. If you don't want to make them for a cake I'm sure it would work with art clay as well although you probably would have to make the petals thicker.

For these roses I have used bought sugar flower paste, although you can make it yourself quite easily. It is different from the stuff you cover cakes with as it sets very hard so you can keep it forever in a dry atmosphere, but it must not be eaten if it has wires in. Cake wires can be bought from any good kitchen shop (or the internet of course).

I've coloured the white paste with edible food colouring to match the bride's colour scheme.

You will also need:

some cornflower

sugar glue (flower paste dissolved in a small amount of gin) and small clean paintbrush

a clean board and small rolling pin

some fairly dense foam and a ball tool.

Rose petal cutters.

1. Decide on the size of rose you want to make and select the correct size cutter. Mould some paste into a cone shape, bend a length of wire over at one end, dip into the glue and push it into the wide end of the cone. Your will need one cone for each rose.

2. Dust your working board with a little cornflower and roll out a small amount of paste very thinly. You should be able to see your board through it. Please keep any spare paste in a sealed plastic bag, it dries out very quickly.

3, Cut out some petals with your cutter and place them on the foam.

4. Curl the edges by pressing the ball tool round the edge of each petal quite firmly. They should now look like real rose petals.

5. Brush glue round the pointed end of your petal and then roll it round the end of your cone so that the pointed end is at the bottom of your cone & the top of the cone itself disappears inside the petal.

6. Apply two petals for the next layer opposite each other, they will overlap at the bottom but should be more open at the top. Have a picture of a rose to look at.

7. The next layer has three petals. Glue up each side. Attach one side of the first petal leaving the other side open and then lay the next petal inside the last one so that they all overlap. The bottoms should be glued neatly tight against the cone and the top should be left loose. You will need to play around with the top of the petals until you are happy with them.

8. Add 3 petals in another layer in the same way.

9. Add 5 petals for the last layer and leave them to hang down so that they look like a very open rose.

It is handy to have some polystyrene handy to push the wired roses into to let them dry in a safe place. Beware though, once dry they will break if roughly handled.

Once you have as many flowers as you need they can either be arranged on a cake as they are. You will need to trim the wires as close to the flower as you can, or bind all the wires with floristry tape and then use more tape to wire them together as a spray with whatever else you might want to use.

I hope this doesn't all sound like gobbledygook, there are lots of good books which explain things much better than I can if you are really interested. The types of flowers and leaves you can make are endless. I have two inspirational books by a man called Alan Dunn. His flowers are so realistic but the instructions are excellent.


brenda said...

Hi Lisa, takes me back, havent done this for years, but your roses look wonderful so delicately coloured. Good luck with the cake.

B x

Lynne K said...

Beautiful roses, Lisa, you're so talented. You must need a lot of patience too! Don't forget to show us a photo of the finished cake. x

Sally H said...

Wow! These are stunning. You are so clever!

Littlebear said...

These are stunning - I have always wanted to try this but it looks so delicate I'm sure I would be all fingers and thumbs. Please show us a picture of the finished cake.
Clare x

Jill said...

oooh Lisa, these are amazing, talk about artistic, I could never do that!

Lynda said...

Wow Lisa your Roses are gorgeous. Will be lovely to see the finished article!
Lynda xxx

Michelle said...

Hi Lisa
Just to let you know I havn't forgotten about the tag, but have deleated the email with your address, could you send it again please. I'm off on a craft retreat tomorrow but will get it to you next week.

These are beautiful roses, I would love to have a go, my youngest son Liam (who has Down's Syndrome is getting married next year and I really fancy doing his cake. Might scrounge a few lessons!!
have a good weekend
x Michelle

Enfys said...

Hi Lisa, for one mad moment I acutally contemplated rushing out to buy all the stuff to make these, you make it look so easy. They are just beautiful. I love it when you post cakey things.
En x

Kim Dellow said...

Oh my word they look fabulous, the cake will be magnificent. Kim

Debbie Dolphin said...

beautiful roses lisa.These will look great with the grunge paperxx

Debbie Dolphin said...

Hi Again.
Thanks for that.I actually did that too but used a different punch,though not seen any tutorials.You will find it easy with doing cake icing.Ive had a go at cake icing.I helped my friend do ours and made loads and loads of roses!!looked lovely though she did a fab job

Kim Piggott said...

Wow Lisa you are so very clever!
These are absolutely stunning!
kim x

Enfys said...

Just hopped back to show my sister your fabulous roses - she is in awe too!
Have a great weekend
En x

craftimamma said...

These roses are gorgeous Lisa. You make it look so easy but I bet it's not.

Lesley Xx