Are there any good books that provide help with gumpaste flower wiring & arranging? I completely suck at it! My wire gauge is either too thick or too flimsy. I also find that I'm breaking a lot of flowers when I try to wire the flowers together. Any help would be greatly appreciated!!
Scott clark wooley has a great book - http://www.amazon.com/dp/1585673331/?tag=cakecentral-20
you definitely need the right gauge of wire. you are always going to break some - you should plan for that and make extras of some.
Wire gauge is important but so is your gumpaste mix. I know people have personal preferences but I use CK mix and Bakels pre-made. The CK is very brittle and the Bakels never dries, so by combining the two, you can control your work time. I used to use CK mix exclusively and I would break flowers all the time. I started adding Bakels to this mix and it makes the flowers much more resilient; they hardly ever break because they're never quite thoroughly dry.
If you make your own gumpaste, add a little less gum trag or CMC.
All of your stems should be taped and anything that is too flimsy to insert into foam on its own should be taped to a larger gauge wire first.
Consider using Oasis dry foam (for silk flowers). It's a dream to insert flowers into.
Also, take a flower arranging class at your local craft store... the techniques and ideas translate into your sugar arranging.