I just love flowers! They are so much fun to make and you can also make flowers that don’t really exist in nature. I made this hydrangea ball for a cake I’m finishing today, and the color can’t exactly be found on real life hydrangeas, but it is the color I envisioned for this particular cake, and as I said, the point of making the flowers yourself is that you can choose whatever colors you like! 😉 So I made beige hydrangeas with dark green centers, and hopefully it will look good on the cake! Fingers crossed! 🙂
Since I don’t want to use wires, I made a ball out of marzipan (you can also use fondant) and attached the flowers, made out of sugarpaste, on there before they had dried. The last row was a little tricky, but apart from that, it was much easier than I had thought! Since I’ve never actually worked with gumpaste, I don’t know if it will work. Since the flowers are made and attached gradually, maybe they will dry too much before the next flower is attached. Depending on how fast you work, it might take 5-10 minutes before you attach the next flower and the petals still have to be bendable. I used sugarpaste and it worked very well.
So to the tutorial!
- Sugarpaste for the flowers (or gumpaste if you think it will work) in color of your choice. I colored mine with red, green and yellow gel colors (red+green=brown)
- Sugarpaste for the centers (I used 50/50 black and green to color mine)
- Hydrangea cutters in three sizes + veiner (I have cutters with veiners in them)
- Marzipan or fondant in a color similar to that of the flowers
- Thin foam pad
- Ball tool
- Exacto knife
- Edible glue
- Powder colors
- Soft brush
1.. Shape the marzipan/sugarpaste to the shape you want your ball to be. Keep in mind that the flowers stick out a bit so you want to make it a little smaller than you want the result to be. If you want the ball to be between the layers of a tiered cake, you can use the cake pans as a guide when shaping.
2.. Roll out sugarpaste as thinly as you can and cut out and vein a flower in any size. Move it to the thin foam pad and carefully thin the edges using the ball tool (there is a great tutorial for cutting, veining and thinning hydrangeas on petalsweet’s website if you want a picture tutorial for this part).
3.. Brush some edible glue in the center on the back side of the flower and attach it in the center of your fondant/marzipan ball.
4.. Repeat step 2 and 3 until you have covered the entire ball. Vary the size flower you make and look at the gaps you have to fill and find the size that works best. Make sure you attach the flowers quite closely to each other so you don’t see too much of the marzipan/fondant underneath. Also make sure that you can see all the petals on each flowers. As you can see by the pictures, I always lift the petals so that a petal isn’t covered by another one.
5.. Leave to dry over night.
6.. Paint the edges of each flower to give more life to the flowers. Use a soft brush and have very little color on the brush. Remember to brush the backsides too if you can see them.
7.. Make the center by rolling a small ball of sugarpaste, make a cross on it using the exacto knife and attach it using edible glue. Repeat for all the flowers.
I found it was easiest to attach the centers by carefully inserting the tip of the exacto knife into the side of the center. If you use your hands then it’s very easy to mess up the shape of it.
And that is it for the tutorial! Be sure to check back later today to see how it looks on a cake!
Thanks for looking, and good luck!