This last weekend my friend and I took a Basic Gum Paste class at Blake's Decorette Shop. The class is taught by Mary and she did a great job of instructing us. Our class was filled with everyone making cakes for upcoming birthdays or weddings. Except Debbie and I, we were there just to learn a new skill. The class is 4 hours and you learn to make small flowers, a Stephanotis, a leaf and a rose. Mary packs a lot into the class without it feeling over whelming.
We were all given a blob of gum paste and told to knead it until it became soft and pliable. Next, we took our wires and made little hooks. The hooks would keep the gum paste on the wire more securelyWith our gum paste we made candy corn looking shapes and pushed them onto the wire. This would be the rose bud.
To make flowers we took a small amount of gum paste, it's amazing how little you actually need, and rolled it really thin. You want to be able to see your board underneath. Thank goodness Debbie brought some Christmas box lids because I forgot my Silpat at home. The Christmas box lids worked but we had to use shortening on the box lid in order for the gum paste not to stick to it.
Just like making cookies, you roll out the gum paste and cut. Some people in the class had trouble rolling out the gum paste. I thought this step was easy because it was just like rolling pie dough out for a crust.
Once the flowers are cut out, we pulled away the gum paste and added it back to our original piece. Just like making cookies. We covered the flowers we weren't working with because gum paste dries out. Using the ball tool we thinned out the edges and then curled up the petals.
My first gum paste flower! I did it!!
Poke a little hole in the middle, add a stamen and you have a flower ready to add to a cake or cupcake. We didn't colour the gum paste because this was an introductory class.
The beginnings of a rose. We cut a few petals and added them to our rose bud. I didn't think mine was looking very good but my class mates said it looked really good :) Not bad for a first attempt.
While we waited for the first layer of rose pedals to dry and adhere to the bud we made a Stephanotis. I didn't have time to take pictures of the steps.
More rose petals added and I think it's looking like a real flower.
Time to make the leaves, the Calyx for the rose and the bottom of the Stephanotis flower.
The leaf was easy. Roll out gum paste, cut, place in a mold, squish and done.
Finished Stephanotis. I need to practice on this flower.
Finished rose with all the petals added. I was surprised how well it turned out. With some practice and some color I could make a beautiful bouquet of flowers :)
At the beginning of the class I wasn't sure if I would like working with gum paste. I've never been a sculpture. After class I changed my mind. Mary was a great instructor and working with gum paste is very forgiving. I'm looking forward to taking the advanced class and learning how to colour the flowers. Will I ever make figures out of gum paste? Probably not. I've never been good at making faces in any medium. I will however be making flowers and adding them to my cupcakes to give them the WOW factor.