I made my first peonies today (not yet assembled) and I have a problem threading the wires. The wires I used are 26g for each petals. Sometimes the wires will just poke through or you can obviously see that there is wire inside the petal. Is this a common problem with making wired flowers or is it just me?
Also, I have a trouble smoothing the embossed part (from the ridge of celboard). When I try to flatten it with a ball tool, I can see a seam/line. I'm not sure how to explain it but I hope you can understand.
Are there any tips/techniques you can share to help me with my problem?
Are you trying to thread the wires whilst the paste is still on the Celboard?
The way I do it - is to roll your paste on the celboard - remove and cut petal shape - I hold the petal shape in between my thumb and forefinger on one hand and use the other hand to sort of guide the wire in... I have seen other people pop the petal back on a flat surface to insert the wire.
I then pick up the petal with the wire inserted and put it on the veiner (I use a double sided veiner - So the "squish action" seems to flatten any ridge that might be there.
Not sure that I have answered your questions...LOL
Pam, that is what I do. I usually hold it between my finger to thread the wire. I also tried threading it while it is laying on a flat surface. I do get okay ones but some are just not clean.
I don't have a veiner for the peony petals so I had to flatten the ridges with a ball tool (could there be a better tool?). Sometimes, when I flatten it, you can see wire under the gumpaste (see through). I'm so frustrated with this--I feel like giving up on flowers now.
You don't need a special veiner for these - just something that will leave fairly deep ridges - silk veining tool, even corn husk would do
Do you think you might have your paste a little thin ? - the base of the petals are quite fleshy and the tops can be thinned with all the ruffling
DON'T GIVE UP !! After attending the CDA National Seminar recently and watching Greg Cleary pump out those peonies - I now am not scared of them - he uses a polystrene ball as the centre - on a 20gauge wire
and just normal rose cutter (4 graduating sizes) He very cleverly just used the pointed end of the cutter to 'chip' away segment on the top petal edge - Ingenius!! No need for all those expensive cutter sets... BTW - the Botun brand was the best cutter set I had seen ... before seeing Greg do it this way!
I do have a veining too but I just can't seem to fix that ridge without leaving a seam. I also have made a silicone mold from a corn husk but would it be too much lines?
I think I may have been rolling it out too thin. Hmm, I never thought of that. I will try to make it a little thicker, THANKS for the suggestion.
Oh and really? A rose cutter? That is awesome. I would have never thought of that.
Anyways Pam, thanks for the help. I think I would have to roll it thicker next time. Hopefully I can figure out a way to clean than ridge.
I'm right-handed. After I cut out the petals, I hold one in my left hand with the ridge from the cel board facing upwards and guide the wire into the middle of the vein. I've found that after a bit of pushing, you have to take your finger and guide some of the bunched up paste down the length of the wire. If you continue to poke through, your paste may be too thin and will require you to try a 28g or 30g wire.
I think it is also easier (this is from a Nicholas Lodge class I took) if you do not look at what you are doing, just "feel" the wire going through.
I know you will get this Rylan, you are gifted at this stuff!
Thanks Loucinda. I envy the class you took. Can you give me other tips to help me smooth the ridge that the celboard made? I don't have a double sided veiner so what are the other ways to do it without leaving a seam/fold.
Also, I just assembled it today and I wasn't very happy with it. It bloomed too much. I wanted a cupped look. I actually dried the petals upside down on styrofoam balls.
I haven't made a peony recently maybe ever so I'm not freshly brushed up on it--but you don't have to remove the seam--ok if you have to remove the seam then don't make it in the first place.
When you roll your petal, roll it thinner toward the tip thicker at the bottom so you can manipulate the wire & stuff--roll it thin at the end though so it's pretty.
Get you a bagel and fashion the size peony you want with some foil and set your flower in there. You could even adjust the foil too.
Are your wires sticking in good?
Glory that was the hardest thing for me! Key word--'moisten' doesn't even have to be wet--just moist. But back in the day we used egg white for glue too--kinda slippery that.
Now I'll go look up peony & see what else I can come up with for you.
So Nic makes his with the center vein but of course you just use the vein for half the petal the bottom half--is that what you mean?
Yeah just put the cutter over the tippy top part of the vein so that the top part of the petal will be vein free (duh--had to think one through if that's even what you mean)
And then I'd thin the petal on each side and up the middle only on the top like I mentioned.
And fashion you a nice holder to dry it in --you should be good.
The wire only goes half way up the petal like the vein only goes half way up.
The ball tool is used from the inside of the petal out -- you don't use it on the vein at all.
Peony power thoughts for you.
I should definitely try to roll it thinner on top while rolling it out on my celboard.
Yes, the wires did stick very well although I had 5 petals (2from peonies) that fell off.
As for the ridges, if I just put my cutter on the top part of the ridge (from the celboard), would the ridge be too skinny? Maybe rolling it thicker towards the end will help, right?. I think my mistake was rolling it super thin even on the bottom of the petal.
How do I flatten the ridge on the bottom of the petal? The ridge doesn't look natural--it looks more of like a thin pointed sausage on the bottom of the petal. Does it normally look like that?
Also, I'm confused. Does the ridge part usually face the inside petal or the outside?
Five is too many! Shoot one is too many huh. So:
You are using covered wire yes? (a friend of mine used smooth uncovered wire)
When you brush the wire with your glue, wipe off the excess--the paper or cloth covering the wire will remain moist and will dry better and hold perfectly. Scott Clark Woolley just wipes the wet wire on his hand--works great!
I would put my veins on the outside of the petal but Nic doesn't say in the book--btw, Nic says the wire goes one inch into the petal. Getting easier?
Also I was incomplete above on the tool--"On the same side as the veining (even though you don't have a veiner) work the edge using a dresden tool, on the coated side of the celpad working from the inside outwards. Turn over the pad and work from the outside of the petal to the inside to slightly cup."
I meant from 2 peonies hehe.
I used a paper covered wire. I don't usually wipe it off so maybe that was the problem--THANKS for the tip.
Oh one inch to the petal? Mines usually goes only half an inch. Hmm maybe that could also be the problem.
Thanks a lot for the info Kate. I'm still confused about the ridge (where the wire goes) that the celboard made on the petal. I'm not sure if I am understanding you right on that part. How do I hide that part? how do I flatten it. Do I just leave it like that?
what i do to flatten that ridge, when i don't have a veiner is just put it between my palms and flatten.
Well think of a leaf--they have prominent vein lumps. That part of the flower will not really be seen--it's the top most part of the cel board ergo tthe thinnest part of the vein right? It disappears in the top of the petal yes?
Peg's gotta a great idea to just flatten it in your palm. But I mean you need that to make your flower--now I'm thinking maybe your gum paste is too thick.
Why do you want to get rid of it. Nobody can see it right?
Y'know if I'm not in the process of making a gum paste flower I dunno.
Thanks Peg and Kate. I really appreciate all your help.
I hope it turns out fine the second try.
If you can't take a class, just buy a Nick Lodge video. His videos are great, although his classes are always awesome.
How is it going with the wiring Rylan? Sorry I wasn't here. K8 has you taken care of though -and I KNOW she has more experience with this stuff than me. About the ridge thing, if you look at the real flowers/leaves, they have them, so don't fret too much about making them so they can't be seen.
Gumglue is kind of "slick" like the egg white glue K8 is talking about - dip it, then just swipe it on the back of your hand and it will leave enough of the glue to hold.
I decided I will do the peonies for a cake next week instead. I changed the the design of the cake I am making right now--hopefully it turns out okay because it looks too fru fru. As usual, I am not very happy about it but hopefully it gets better later on.
Anyways, Thanks Loucinda and Sherri.