mbt4955 Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 12:14pm
post #1 of

After rain for 48 hours and 100% humidity, I walked past the gumpaste flowers for the wedding in seven days and saw part of a gerbera daisy lying on the table. The daisies had all softened up, some of the layers had separated, a couple had actually broken and they were all starting to droop the wrong way. They had all been completed for over a week. My full roses were starting to soften up as well.

After I stopped screaming icon_mad.gif, I hung them all upside down on the drying rack and cranked the a/c down. 15 hours later and they are still soft. Is there anything I can do? I would hate to have to start over and would probably have to take at least one more day off work to bake ... not to mention that my carpal tunnel has been screaming at me and these might be the last gumpaste flowers I am ever able to make. icon_cry.gif

I think that I have read in here somewhere that you can put them in a cold oven with the light on and they will harden up. That might be if they have never gotten to that point to begin with. The fact that they were completely hard and then got soft again really has me worried. I made them with the Wilton gumpaste powder. I have roses and dogwood from my daughter's wedding three years ago (made with the Wilton powder gp) that have had no special treatment and are still fine.

I'm off to get eggs and buttermilk so that I can get the chocolate cakes done this morning. Any advice you can give will be greatly appreciated.


Thank you SO much!

Martha

23 replies
beachcakes Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 12:54pm
post #2 of

Awww! So sorry this has happened to you! I've had the same problem with gumpaste - not just Wilton's - and I've switched to using fondant & tylose. It's heartbreaking! I had pieces that were cured for 6 months melt into a sticky mess. icon_sad.gif

The best thing you can do is keep them under air conditioning and maybe aim a fan on them. The gumpaste has absorbed the moisture from the air. Or I've read that some people have had luck with food dehydrators. The oven didn't work for me. Silica gel will also help remove humidity - you know those little packets that come in some shoes and vitamins that say Do not eat? Perhaps you could put the daisies in an airtight container with a few of those packets? I haven't tried that yet.

mbt4955 Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 1:28pm
post #3 of

Thanks, beachcakes. I started out using fondant and tylose, but I think I probably put too much tylose in and it started getting dry. I added more fondant, but then didn't want to take a chance so I started over with new gumpaste. The earlier fondant and tylose are definitely harder than the gumpaste ones are, so I guess I should have stuck with that method.

I'll put a fan on them and see what happens. Hopefully I won't be looking for a florist in Austin who has Circus Roses and white gerbera daisies on Saturday afternoon! icon_cry.gif

peg818 Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 6:50pm
post #4 of

Do you have either a food or room dehydrator. For the room dehydrator i would try placing the gp right on top, If you have a food one i would try a couple in it to see if you can dry them out that way. If you are able to get them dried out again, i would then put them in plastic tubs with the silca gels. I know walmarts sells something over by the laundry/cleaning supplies, it starts out blue then turns pink when it has soaked up as much moisture as it can (don't know the name of it, but i think its designed to use in closets)

mbt4955 Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 7:06pm
post #5 of

Thanks, Peg. I do not have a dehydrater, but I will go to WalMart and look for the product you are talking about ... after my cakes come out of the oven. I've got about an hour or so left.

I've never thought about needing those little silica gel packets, so I always threw them away. I might not in the future!

I have the flowers closed up in an air conditioned room. I can feel that they are hardening up some. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Thanks.
Martha

Cakepro Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 7:11pm
post #6 of

Martha, I'm in Houston and we had the same terrible weather. Yesterday we lost power for 9 hours and had the front and back doors open for cross-flow air all day, so it was 100% humidity in my house too. However, none of my gumpaste flowers softened or had any problems at all. What gumpaste are you using? The only time I have had the problem you described is when I used fondant with Tylose.

The suggestions to put the flowers in a dehydrator or oven with a pilot light are good suggestions, but we need to figure out why your gumpaste softened in the first place so this doesn't happen to you again.

(((Hugs)))

Cakepro Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 7:14pm
post #7 of

I'm sorry ~ I was totally oblivious to your 2nd post. DOH!

Hope it all works out for ya. icon_smile.gif

mbt4955 Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 7:16pm
post #8 of

Hi Sherri,

The problem gumpaste was the Wilton powder which is all I have ever used before this year. I have never had a problem and they were fine until yesterday. I had colored my roses and then painted the secondary color afterward and no problem ... naturally had a few break when they got a little bump. They were perfectly fine until late yesterday afternoon when they suddenly went soft. I'm about ready to give up and tell people they have to use fresh flowers. icon_cry.gif

mbt4955 Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 7:18pm
post #9 of

I'll try the cold oven with the light on after I get through baking ...

Martha

Cakepro Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 7:49pm

Oh dear. I sure wish we were closer so we could get together and re-make those flowers. Wanna come to Houston? icon_biggrin.gif

Please, please, for future gumpaste work, make Nicholas Lodge's gumpaste and keep it in your fridge. For all of my flowers, bows, decorative cake board, or anything that requires hardening, I use a 50/50 blend of Nick's gumpaste and Wilton fondant (stock up on those 5 lb boxes when Michael's has 50% off coupons!). That blend does not soften back up and it's a dream to work with. You can roll it out just a thinly as 100% gumpaste, and it's great for our area.

If you click the "email me" button and send me your email address, I will send you the recipe as a Word document. I altered it to include the weight of the ingredients in grams as well as change the wording of the instructions a bit to make them easier to understand.

Sorry that doesn't help you now but it will in the future. icon_smile.gif

bananabread Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 8:15pm

Last year I made flowers to participate in a wedding cake contest, but the climate was terrible, was raining almost all day, and the flowers got very soft. I put them in the oven with the light on for several days, until they got dry. Also you can use a lamp with a 100w bulb on close the flores, they will get dry.

The gumpaste recipe I used is

2 1/2 cups of poudered sugar, measured first and the shifted
1 egg white
2 tsp of CMC (carboximethilcellulosa)
1 tbs of shortening

mix 2 cups of sugar with cmc, mix the egg white and add the sugar mix then add shortening and work until is white and elastic. And then add the rest of sugar. Keep in a plastic bag and let resto for 24 hours. You can make very thin petals. This paste has to be worked with the table cover with shortening, not to use cornstarch because it gets to dry and breaks. Before you start working with the paste you have to soft it with your hands until is elastic.

Cakepro Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 8:19pm

I'm just curious ~ why would you continue to use a paste that you know gets soft when exposed to humidity, when there are recipes available for gumpaste that does not soften?

I lost a great deal of my gumpaste work last fall when we were without power for 11 days after Hurricane Ike. The problem ONLY occurred to the flowers and things that were made with fondant + Tylose. Nothing made of straight gumpaste or 50/50 was affected at all.

That taught me a very valuable lesson! icon_smile.gif

mbt4955 Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 8:56pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cakepro

I'm just curious ~ why would you continue to use a paste that you know gets soft when exposed to humidity, when there are recipes available for gumpaste that does not soften?




Is this question for me??? I haven't ever had gumpaste get soft. I have flowers from 3 years ago that are still perfect. I had used the Wilton powder gumpaste, which is what I used this time. As a matter of fact ... if I can save the ones for next weekend ... I will be using one of the 3 year old dogwoods in the arrangement (sentimental reasons).

I didn't know if the Wilton was going to work, so I made up a batch of Nick Lodge's gumpaste (MUCH easier than I had expected and it is what I will use in the future) and let it sit while I worked with the Wilton. I had already done my rose cones and daisy centers. The Wilton gumpaste worked extremely well, it didn't have to sit another 24 hours and it was already colored so I used it.

If I can't get these flowers to work, I will have to use fresh. I work full time and work on cakes at night and on weekends. Since the wedding is a week from today - no weekends left. icon_sad.gif

Martha

mbt4955 Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 9:04pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cakepro

Oh dear. I sure wish we were closer so we could get together and re-make those flowers. Wanna come to Houston? icon_biggrin.gif




I SO wish I had time to take you up on your offer. I have taken one class from Nick Lodge, but I would love some one on one instruction and your work is gorgeous.

I have Nick's recipe from his website, but I'll e-mail you and thank you very much for sending me your file. icon_smile.gif

Martha

Cakepro Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 9:05pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbt4955

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cakepro

I'm just curious ~ why would you continue to use a paste that you know gets soft when exposed to humidity, when there are recipes available for gumpaste that does not soften?



Is this question for me???




LOL, no!!! It was for the other person who said her flowers softened and then provided the recipe and instructions on how to make it! LOL

Wow, if your GP has never softened up on you before, it must be some kind of fluke with the paste or something.

You can use Nick's GP just a few hours after making it, if you need to (I have, and even asked him about it during one of his classes).

I sure hope those flowers harden back up for you. Sorry you're dealing with this stress.

mooclark84 Posted 14 Jun 2013 , 5:32am

Hi There,

 

I'm just wondering how you got on. I have made lots of roses for my sisters wedding cake in two weeks time and I've just noticed that they are soft. I don't want to start again. What did you end up doing to fix yours? Did it work? Please help!!!

 

Marie

Lilriv Posted 23 Jun 2013 , 4:47pm

AI'm having the same problem with humidity and rain here in the Caribbean. I'm using Satin Ice gumpaste to make roses and the ones I already did 3 days ago, already melted to the point of no return. I've let them dry uncovered and they're a sticky mess. I don't know what to do. Any help would be greatly appreciated it. Thanks

Lili5768 Posted 24 Jun 2013 , 1:57pm

AI know I'm a little late but I just saw this thread and wanted to comment that I use Edna's gumpaste recipe and it is easy to make and very good!

It hardens quickly and is not affected by humidity as much. It's on her website. Edna's Designs or Design Me A Cake.

Also I recommend when its humid to get your items in the oven with the light as a precautionary measure. As well as the silica gel packets placed wherever you will store them.

Its also sold in jars called DampOut. Although I don't know if there might be a toxicity issue with this.

I find that the store bought gumpaste tends to be softer whereas the homemade dries like porcelain

Best of luck!

southconft Posted 25 Jun 2013 , 3:49pm

Awhat about rice??? get the object stable and put i good layer of rice in aairtight container put your stuff in more rice and let it keep safe..has no one tryed the laquer spray??? i read about sealing up the gum paste with egg whites

southconft Posted 25 Jun 2013 , 3:49pm

Awhat about rice??? get the object stable and put i good layer of rice in aairtight container put your stuff in more rice and let it keep safe..has no one tryed the laquer spray??? i read about sealing up the gum paste with egg whites

flowerpoo Posted 8 Jul 2013 , 5:31pm

Aim having da same prmblem wit humidity. I have to make a shoebox cake and i have made da shoe two weeks ahead... cz this was my first time and i didnt want anything to go wrong at da last moment. Now iv noticed dat da shoe has got tiny spots on it... more like melted spots... and its increasing as the days go by... got one more week to deliver da cake and i fear dat the shoe wil luk a melted mess by dat time... any suggestions? pls help..

Lynne3 Posted 8 Jul 2013 , 5:54pm

Hubby had an idea.  He is a boater.  He said to go to the marine store and get a desiccant which is just silica gel in a container.

 

Put the flowers in a box with the desiccant.  Remember the dessicant in NOT EDIBLE but the flowers don't need to touch it.  It just needs to be near it.  

 

This is the same stuff you use to dry flowers.  It soaks up humidity really fast.

I never tried it but thought I would pass the idea along 

Annabakescakes Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 2:15am

Oh my gosh, I am having a terrible problem with moisture too! I walked out to the bakery today and there was a gumpaste butterfly on the floor. I picked it up and it was SQUISHY! Squishier than it was when I first made it, so I reached up to the dummy it was on, and noticed about 10 had fallen, and a couple dozen more were folded looking. I made this dummy 15 months ago!

JWinslow Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 4:25am
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynne3 

Hubby had an idea.  He is a boater.  He said to go to the marine store and get a desiccant which is just silica gel in a container.

 

Put the flowers in a box with the desiccant.  Remember the dessicant in NOT EDIBLE but the flowers don't need to touch it.  It just needs to be near it.  

 

This is the same stuff you use to dry flowers.  It soaks up humidity really fast.

I never tried it but thought I would pass the idea along 


You can also get this from Michael's for flowers drying.   Pour it into a knee high -tie at both ends.  make several if you need.  Put it near the flowers in a box.  You don't want it touching the flowers. 

I am having a humidity problems right now also, but not the same heat as you.  All my flowers in boxes are fine but the orchids I left just in the AC are not as hard as they should be.  Anyway, learned this from a Wilton Instructor years ago.  Hope all works out.

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