How To Make Cabbage Rose/peony Gumpaste Flower?

Decorating By vasmg Updated 6 Feb 2013 , 5:33am by clarita62

vasmg Posted 26 May 2009 , 12:38am
post #1 of 37

I'm working on a cake for a customer that wants one styled after the attached file. It has peonies (she called them cabbage roses) on it. Does anyone know where to find instructions on how to make these? They definately have a more cabbage look than a normal rose.


36 replies
Bellatheball Posted 26 May 2009 , 1:56am
post #2 of 37

I'm not sure but those are my favorite flowers and I'd love to know too.

yummycupcakes Posted 26 May 2009 , 2:14am
post #3 of 37

I just saw this cake on the cover of "Real Simple Weddings". I found it online as well.

It is in fact a gum paste peony. I have been trying to find instructions on it as well. I hope someone can lead us to the right direction.

artscallion Posted 26 May 2009 , 2:38am
post #4 of 37

A cabbage rose is an actual flower different from the peony. I know the article calls them peonies, and while the structure looks similar, the pictured flower has petals that look very different from the peony I know. The peony has very ruffled petals that have a very irregular scalloped edge. The flowers in your picture look like they have smooth rounded petal edges.

At any rate, Cakes by Design has instructions for a peony at their website . (on page 28 of the pdf file) They also sell the peony cutters.

Nicholas Lodge has a DVD on making peonies, though he also has the ruffly, scalloped version.

This may be somebody's version of a peony. but the one I see and make most often looks more like the following

Briarview Posted 26 May 2009 , 7:11am
post #5 of 37

Wow artscallion thanks for that info. I have saved it and am going to study each flower. Maybe try each one.

Vasmg. With the cabbage rose I would place a small round polystyrene ball in the centre and curve the petals around it and you should get the perfect shape.

sara91 Posted 26 May 2009 , 7:35am
post #6 of 37

I made, this flower very easily. I did not have any polystyrene balls so I rolled up some foil and made different sized balls. I then covered them in rolled out fondant and smoothed out.

I did not use any wires, I just kept adding cupped large rose petals to get the right effect.

Let the outside petals slightly dry before you add them to keep their shape. I used soup spoons for this.

Bellatheball Posted 26 May 2009 , 3:28pm
post #7 of 37

What a fabulous PDF file!!!! I'd never have found that on my own. Thanks for sharing.

vasmg Posted 26 May 2009 , 6:59pm
post #8 of 37

yummycupcakes - that's the exact cake they want.
artscallion - thanks for all the WONDERFUL information.

sara91 - These are the type of flowers she wants. Did you lay the fondant petals over the balls, dry, and then put together to make one or keep layering over one ball? I'm assuming it'd work well with gumpaste also.

nannie Posted 26 May 2009 , 7:17pm
post #9 of 37

Hey Sara,

can you post a pic?

I'd love to try this.

vasmg Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 3:29am
post #10 of 37

Ok, this is what I've got so far (ugh). I took a ping-pong ball, used the Jem 5 rose cutter and started covering it with gumpaste. This is my frist one. Maybe it'll look better tomorrow (hahaha).

Ideas? The sides aren't supposed to be ruffled. I tried drying on spoons but my spoons evidently don't have enough curve OR I wasn't understanding the directions.

Maybe it needs to be thicker? Maybe I need to express order somewhere?


Alice1230 Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 3:49am
post #11 of 37

wow the pdf posted is amazing!

claribelcakes Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 4:18am
post #12 of 37

Hi Sharon,

Maybe try thinning out your paste a little more. And try and use something like cotton or sponge between the layers of your paste so it forces the flower to open a bit while drying.

Regardless, dusts are really the key to everything so once its dry try dusting and it will look awesome.

Good Luck!!!

artscallion Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 11:01am
post #13 of 37

I agree your paste could be much thinner. Do you have a gum paste ball tool to cup the petals? Then maybe dry them over something the size of a tennis ball, rather than a spoon. If you cup them first, they'll form to the ball shape without ruffling or bunching.

tracycakes Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 5:22pm
post #14 of 37

I made peonies using my cutters and hated the way they looked. I ended up using teardrop shaped cutters and ruffled the edges a lot using the small ball end of my ball tool. I really like the way they looked when done. Maybe someday, I'll get around to posting pictures.

nannie Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 5:33pm
post #15 of 37

I'd love to see a pic tracycakes thumbs_up.gif

drakegore Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 6:02pm
post #16 of 37

me too tracycakes!

tonedna Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 6:11pm
post #17 of 37

You can dry them on a candy mold with an eggshape. The beggining of the flower starts with a foam ball. This depends on how big you want the flower to be. The petals should be thin.First few rows of layers should be added to the ball. Then as bigger as it gets, you want to add the petals on wire so the flower starts to open. Usually by the third row.

Edna icon_smile.gif

nannie Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 7:52pm
post #18 of 37

Um, Edna

How about a tutorial on this icon_lol.gif


cheatize Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 9:07pm
post #19 of 37

I have loads of peonies that line the end of my driveway. The buds look like the cabbage rose. The start out tight (like any other flower) then they let loose and look like the peonies pictured. I suppose if I did time lapse photography I'd find there's a point where they are open just a bit to look exactly like a cabbage rose. Maybe that's where people get confused- the tight bud of a peony looks like the cabbage rose.
They're in bloom right now- full, open, and beautiful- if anyone wants me to take some close-up pics.

nannie Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 9:11pm
post #20 of 37

excellent point.

walking the dog today, I noticed lots of buds and you're right, they do look the same.

our's haven't started opening yet so if you want to post some pics, I for one would love to see them.

cheatize Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 11:15pm
post #21 of 37

Okay, I popped outside and took a bunch of pictures. A light rain shower just moved through so the light was perfect and the raindrops on the flowers just add to the lovely. icon_smile.gif

I'm not sure how many attachments I can do per post, but I'll try to get as many on there as possible. I would have uploaded them to an album but the rules say no non-food items. PM me if you want more pictures.


cheatize Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 11:19pm
post #22 of 37

The gray in one of the pink peony pictures is my leg. I had to prop it up to get a good shot.

Anyway, here are some more.

pattycakesnj Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 11:30pm
post #23 of 37

I just took a class on making peonies (MY favorite flower) We used gumpaste rolled very thin, the peony cutter set, frilled the edges and dried them over an upside down egg carton. They came out great but it took hours to make one.

nannie Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 11:47pm
post #24 of 37

wonderful pictures icon_biggrin.gif thanks so much thumbs_up.gif


I hear different terms like "frill" the edges,
"ruffle" the edges, and
"soften" the edges

do they all mean the same thing or are you using different tools

pattycakesnj Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 11:54pm
post #25 of 37

nannie, I think they mean the same thing, you can use the dogbone tool (stick with ball on the end) and work the edge of the petal so it gets thins and ruffles somewhat. (In my pics, the ballerina's tutu was frilled using that tool)

nannie Posted 3 Jun 2009 , 12:31am
post #26 of 37

yes, I just discovered that little ballerina

she looks like the one I had on my jewellry box as a little girl, icon_lol.gif

tonedna Posted 3 Jun 2009 , 12:55am
post #27 of 37

Peony have ruffled edges..cabage roses dont. But then again, there are so many flowers under the same species that you will see bunches of differences between on plant of peony to the next. The whole point is to achieve the look you want..

Thanks for the photos.. they are lovely!

Edna icon_smile.gif

cheatize Posted 3 Jun 2009 , 1:07am
post #28 of 37

You know how there's a tendency to be critical of our own work? When I was taking pictures, I was reminded yet again how in nature there are variations. Some petals look like what we think of as perfection, some are ripped, some aren't bent "just so," etc.... However, it's the entirety of it that makes it realistic. The supposedly perfect petals, the ripped ones, the ones partially opened, and the ones not open at all combine to make it beautiful.

I need to remember this about my own work. There's no need to be disappointed because every little thing isn't perfect. It's fine to strive and improve, but perfection would actually not be true to life. Does that make sense?

nannie Posted 3 Jun 2009 , 1:55am
post #29 of 37


that is an excellent point. There is no perfection in nature.

pattycakesnj Posted 3 Jun 2009 , 2:33pm
post #30 of 37


Quote by @%username% on %date%