Trouble With Roses

Decorating By Cakeasyoulikeit Updated 16 Oct 2004 , 7:47pm by Cakeasyoulikeit

Cakeasyoulikeit Posted 8 Oct 2004 , 1:43pm
post #1 of 12

I have never been able to get my roses to have smooth edges. The shape is fine, but the edges always look jagged. I have tried both royal and buttercream icing and different consistencies over several years. Any ideas what I am doing wrong?

11 replies
MrsMissey Posted 8 Oct 2004 , 2:07pm
post #2 of 12

I always seemed to have the same problem. I recently read where someone adds a little bit of piping gel to stiff buttercream and it does help smooth out the edges. Give it a try! icon_wink.gif

SquirrellyCakes Posted 8 Oct 2004 , 3:03pm
post #3 of 12

Hi there. It usually is a consistency issue, but sometimes your rose tip needs to be opened up a bit more too. Sometimes the tip opening is just too narrow. Also, I use the half butter, 1/2 shortening recipe for buttercream, but most people find that the all shortening recipe works best for making roses. And yes a lot of people do like the effect adding piping gel to their buttercream has on the roses.

Cakeasyoulikeit Posted 8 Oct 2004 , 4:33pm
post #4 of 12

Thanks. I'll give the piping gel a try! Do I add a little bit, or enough to change consistency?? The royal icing recipe I've used for years is all shortening.

SquirrellyCakes Posted 8 Oct 2004 , 5:14pm
post #5 of 12

Add about 1-2 tsp. per recipe - if your recipe uses 4 cups of icing sugar (powdered suagr).
Hugs, Squirrelly

Ladycake Posted 8 Oct 2004 , 9:39pm
post #6 of 12

As was stated all ready you may want to open your tip a bit more.. You may want to thin your recipe down a bit ... The other thing that comes to mind is you can take and put your fingers in to cornstarch and then smooth your edges...

Cakeasyoulikeit Posted 8 Oct 2004 , 10:37pm
post #7 of 12

I think my tip openings look "normal". Is it possible that normal isn't enough? also, I have had major problems using the 66-68 tips for leaves. I think the problem there is the tip opening, but my attempts to open it seem to have ruined the tip. I used a knife to pry the problem side. Is there a better way to "open"? Also one of my 16's seems to be too far closed. I've also seen mention of the "tip saver" device, but never seen it sold in a store. Anyone ever used one??

SquirrellyCakes Posted 8 Oct 2004 , 11:39pm
post #8 of 12

I have a tip saver and it is useful for some tips. Hubby purchased a new rose tip for me and it wasn't open enough, so it worked quite well for that. Sometimes it is worthwhile to ask an instructor or another cake decorator to take a look at your tips and to help you select them when you buy. I know that one of the stores I buy from, all of the ladies are decorators and they inspect the tips before they sell them to you.
I just want to add this, I said add about 1-2 tsp. piping gel per recipe. Just looking this up in my Wilton Decorating Tips book, now they say to use 1 tsp. of either the piping gel or the corn syrup per cup of icing. That is a lot more than most folks use, but it might be worth it.
Everyone has a different opinion on this one, but I find for the leaves, the corn syrup works best. The piping gel is probably better for the roses. Of course everyone has their own preferences.
I think that getting the leaves to come to a point is usually resolved by the way the leaf is pulled out and the addition of the corn syrup - or I hear gel, to the icing.
I had a good chuckle at Ladycakes' solution - which we all know is cheating, bad Ladycakes, haha! Seriously, though, it works and when the icing isn't cooperating, we all do it - we dip and pinch. I sometimes find I need to do it for the points on royal icing lilies. Seems to be an issue of humidity and royal icing having a mind of its own some days!
Hugs, Squirrelly Cakes

GrandmaSweetiePie Posted 9 Oct 2004 , 12:26am
post #9 of 12

Thanks for all the info on roses. I will try the piping gel. Try using tip 352 for leaves. It works great.

Grandma Sweetie Pie

ameena Posted 9 Oct 2004 , 2:32pm
post #10 of 12
Originally Posted by SquirrellyCakes

I think that getting the leaves to come to a point is usually resolved by the way the leaf is pulled out and the addition of the corn syrup - or I hear gel, to the icing.

I agree with SquirrellyCakes. When making leaves, the icing must be piped out really slow. I use piping gel in mine. It could be that your icing is not thin enough.

SquirrellyCakes Posted 10 Oct 2004 , 12:26am
post #11 of 12

I think with decorating we all have something or some area that presents a challenge. You can have difficulty with one thing for years, and then one day, when the conditions are right - well it works. The trick is to try to re-create that same situation again, haha!
Don't know if you are still taking courses or have access to someone or a shop where you can bring in your icing and your tips that are giving you issues and just show this person. Sometimes it is just a question of a slightly different angle or pull technique - or your icing consistency and then magically it works out. It is like somebody turned the switch and the lightbulb goes on suddenly. Then once you get it working for you, well heck, you could probably make the roses and leave out of mud, if you had to.
And please don't let it get you down. You may notice that some people stick a lot to certain techniques or borders or flowers or styles and there is a good reason for it. Most people do what they are good at.
If it is a real source of frustration for you, may I suggest you give fondant or gumpaste roses and leaves and other flowers a try - if you haven't yet. You can get an amazingly perfect rose or leave, first try. Sure, they can be improved on and there are little tricks, but I remember one lady on the Wilton site getting really frustrated with buttercream roses. I suggested she give the fondant ones a try, and they gave her such a wonderful burst of confidence.
And like Ladycakes said, you can smooth out those edges when you have to.
Hugs, Squirrelly

Cakeasyoulikeit Posted 16 Oct 2004 , 7:47pm
post #12 of 12

Thanks everyone. I took a non-wilton class about 13 years ago in another state, but we do have a Michael's near us. I make a lot of flowers other than roses and usually just major on those, but since I am trying to get into wedding cakes, I want to get this rose thing figured out. I love the 349 and 352 tips, but would like to be able to use the 66-69 leaves sometimes. I think my icing has probably been too thick and I wasn't moving slow enough. Food for thought! Thanks again!

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