Please allow me to vent and if you have any suggestions, believe me, I am all ears!!!
This weekend I have a lot of work to do around the house, so I have a wedding cake next weekend and thought tonight, after working 10 hours at my regular job, I would start making the 100+ flowers for the wedding cake. Good plan, right? WRONG!
First of all, the bride wants Chicago Cub blue flowers on a pure white cake. So, I figure I need to do this in royal icing, so it hopefully won't bleed all over. Next, the only flower in nature that is close to that shade of blue is a morning glory and that isn't really all that close, but close enough I figure. So I looked up some instructions on how to do a morning glory, got my lily formers, cut up little squares of aluminum foil and started mixing up the royal icing. Well, my mixer did not like mixing that frosting up at all. Three times I had to stop it and clean the sides and beater off or it sounded like the mixer (KitchenAid) would blow up.
The frosting was stiff, but I figured I would need it to be so I started on my first morning glory. The white cup for the center looked good then you add the blue "ruffle" over the top of the white, brush the two together and make five white lines to make it look like the flower. My first six looked awful. I thought I would take a little break and start again. The frosting was hard as heck and it was killing my hand but I got three more out. I show my husband and he laughs and asks me "What are those supposed to be?" It is now 8:30 P.M. and I am on the verge of tears, so I decide forget the morning glories, I will just do roses. Because of the shade of blue, I can't run out of frosting or I will never be able to get an exact match, so I salvage what I can and start on the roses.
Well, I got fifteen roses done and then could no longer close my right hand! I knew there was no way I could do this tonight, so I had to toss everything. I am sooooo frustrated that I decide - forget it, I will just buy frosting flowers on line. I am sure I have seen them for sale somewhere. Surprise, surprise - no one has morning glories. No one has roses in the quantity I need that can ship in less than a week, either.
So now, I have washed everything, pitched all the frosting and I guess I have no choice but to work on the roses again tomorrow.
Now for the advice part - 1. Does anyone know where I can buy already made roses or morning glories in northern Illinois or online that can ship in less than a week that are reasonably priced (because I obviously didn't charge for buying flowers when I priced the cake). or 2. What am I doing wrong? Do you have a better royal icing recipe (I am using Wilton's)? Do you have better, easier instructions for morning glories? Is there any way to thin royal icing once you have started using it?
I swear I don't know why I ever say I will do a wedding cake! Everytime I try, I end up in tears and stressed out to the max!
Thanks for listening to me vent and I look forward to any responses/help you can provide for my issues.
Try fondant flowers...get fondant...color it blue (or buy it precolored) and get a flower former/plunger or cutter from you cake decorating store and start making some. I'm sure you can find a tutorial on CC. Seriously...you will KILL your hand if you try to do all those flowers in royal icing and you can probably make all your flowers in just a couple of nights. Then you can just add them to the cake with a bit of frosting and put a white dot in the middle. That is completely what I'd do now that I have worked with fondant. It's quicker and easier. Sorry you had such a frustrating evening...maybe it will lead you to something better!
bummer! I hate it when I have a night like that!!!
your RI is definately too stiff (I did that too in my Wilton class). thin it just a little with water. (you have to be careful, you don't want it too soft cause it won't hold it's shape) I use Wilton's RI recipe and the Wilton instructions for morning glories. they will need about 3 days to dry. any less and they will break when you take the foil off.
I have no idea about where to order them, sorry.
Some advice for royal though is make sure you keep it covered with a damp rag at all times. Any time you set your bag down, the tip needs to be resting in a damp rag.
Really though, I agree with sunnybono. Why kill yourself over it? I understand that there's a time to make beautiful flowers that can only be found in nature, and some sugar artists might be purists and only make realistic flowers...but why couldn't you make any flower any color you want? Fondant would be easy and you could do daisies, roses, fantasy flowers...
Thanks all! I re-read my post this morning and Wow! you must think I am crazy!
I think I will try the fondant. I have shyed away from fondant because it looks so hard to work with, but if it easier than this stuff (royal icing), it is worth it.
Thanks again for the tips and for "listening" to a crazy woman vent!
How close are you to Rockford, IL? You mentioned Northern Illinois.
There is a cake shop that has tons of flowers you can buy - I do not know if they ship but you might be able to there depending on how close you are.
It is called Sweet Pan Shop
Just use that color and do some 4 or 5 petal royal icing flowers. Who says they have to be "real". I made a few hundred 4 petal royal icing flowers the other day. Just sat in front of the tv and piped them all. I used Antonia's royal icing recipe and thined it with a TINY bit of water. Worked great. I actually have to stick the flowers on the cake in a bit so I can deliver the cake later today.
I havent read the entire thread yet, but if you go to cakedeco.com (pfeil and holing) they have lucks royal icing roses in all kinds of colors (you can dust the white ones or airbrush them if you have to) Shipping is VERY VERY Fast...I have ordered from them on a monday and got my order by thursday (they are in NY) Call them, they are very nice. The flowers are like 25 bucks for big box, depending on the size.
Good luck! (they do have blue roses, btw, but I am not sure they are the same blue)
Also, wholesalesugarflowers.com has quick shipping and they might have morning glories...
Would this work for you?
If you call them first thing tomorrow, I bet you can get them by friday!
Wow - thanks for all the additional information. I am a newbie to this site and didn't know how to get back to my post until today! (duh!) Those morning glories are just beautiful - the color wouldn't have worked - but they are incredible. I bookmarked that site for any future flower needs!
I have to admit, I continued with my fear of fondant and did all the flowers the next day in royal icing. It turned out fine, but I realy appreciate all of your help and advice. Some day I am going to overcome my fondant phobia.
It does sound like your RI was way too stiff. I've made that mistake before. I do loads of RI flowers and can work pretty quickly when the consistancy is right. But RI roses will kill your hand by a dozen petals if it's too stiff.
No need to throw the icing away tho'! Cover it up and rewhip with a little water added next time. No reason to waste the ingredients.
I probably would have done dark blue apple blossoms with white roses.
Glad it all worked out for you! But I think it would of been ok to if you would have had to buy the flowers ,you could of bought different types of flowers ?They didnt need to be all the same flower? You just wanted them to be the Cubs blue right ?
So I googled blue flowers (images) and found some of these....
I say go with gumpaste.
They look super easy. I bet you could buy Wilton's daisy flower cutters (at Michaels) and follow the instructions for the gerbera daisy thread (posted today with great instructions for curling). If you follow the gerbera daisy instructions, only do 1 large one per flower and no small ones (hey, you could even make blue gerbera daisies!! no one would know).
You'll need a veiner. Michaels has this really cute new gumpaste tool set (multicolored handles and even some metal tips--i bought it and it's great). Also pick up a leaf cutter and you can imprint those to look real with a veiner and toss in a container full of saran wrap. This will curl them naturally.
Or blue roses. Those are really easy too.
Here are some how-to links for a variety of flowers....
Wow! Thanks again for all the good information. This week's wedding cake has real flowers, so I don't have to worry about that part of the cake anyway!
Oh yes - Cubs blue. I had to do a Cubs groom cake too. It killed me because I am a die hard White Sox fan - but you have to do what the customer orders. I considered putting the Sox symbol in black in the back of the cake, but thought better of it! Didn't want to tick them off!
Thanks again everyone!