Help With Gumpaste :(

Decorating By CakeGalUK Updated 1 Nov 2012 , 7:48pm by Godot

CakeGalUK Posted 20 Oct 2012 , 9:26pm
post #1 of 17

Hello, I'm having problems making the 'loop' bows. They seem to end up too brittle and break too easily. I'm not sure what I am doing wrong... I take sugarpaste (usually the pre-coloured Renshaw because of the need for colour consistency) and add 1 tsp tylose powder per 250g. The paste definitely gets stronger and the loops dry and are reasonably ok, but still too fragile for my liking. I'm not sure if I'm adding too much or too little or... well... I don't know! But I really want to understand and get to the bottom of this once and for all. Any help greatly appreciated!!

16 replies
DeliciousDesserts Posted 20 Oct 2012 , 10:40pm
post #2 of 17

I wish I had better advice, but I am not familiar with the products you are using. Depending on how long I have for them to dry, I either use just fondant (satin ice or fondarific) or I mix it with a bit of gumpaste.

I've seen many tutorials where people place them on the side to dry. I don't. I had my husband make me a special t-frame just for making bows.

CakeGalUK Posted 20 Oct 2012 , 10:55pm
post #3 of 17

Thanks for the reply icon_smile.gif OK, so fondant is the same as sugarpaste (I'm led to believe!) I've tried using just that (with no added gum) but it doesn't set up at all... as in, it stays soft.

I left this one (+ tylose) to dry for 5 days as I wanted to give it plenty of time, and still I had a couple of breakages. :/

When yours are dry, how strong are they? Like, could you drop them? Squeeze them? Are the rock solid? I'm not sure what they SHOULD be like?

Doritta Posted 20 Oct 2012 , 11:11pm
post #4 of 17

you can take a look to the gumpaste section on galleries icon_smile.gif

cakemama2010 Posted 20 Oct 2012 , 11:54pm
post #5 of 17

I use only fondant. My bows are rock I COULD probably drop one at a small distance and it would be fine. But I don't want to find out.

CakeGalUK Posted 21 Oct 2012 , 9:43am
post #6 of 17

Doritta - I'm not sure what you mean?

Ahh ok, so mine are not right .I don't know what gumpaste IS in the UK then. Or how to make it properly. I thought it was flower paste but that is like £6 per £200 so no way I could make bows from that. Any UK people know brands or types that set up real hard? I could make my own but it's difficult to get the colour consistency through the rest of the design.

Godot Posted 21 Oct 2012 , 9:56am
post #7 of 17

Gumpaste (USA) is the same thing as flowerpaste (UK). There are many different brands in the UK - it's just a matter of trying out different brands and finding one you like. Renshaw have just come out with a flower/modeling paste which I like for general things like simple flowers and bows.

Sugarpaste/rolled fondant) plus CMC/tylose is NOT the same thing as gumpaste/flowerpaste.

DeliciousDesserts Posted 21 Oct 2012 , 2:49pm
post #8 of 17

Mine are very strong. I have dropped them from not too high & they are fine. I can certainly move them around touch them, etc. without breaking.

I live in Charleston, SC, so it is very humid here. Still, my loops dry in about 48 hours even when just fondant.

kakeladi Posted 21 Oct 2012 , 9:37pm
post #9 of 17

One thing that no one has suggested is that you may be rolling the gp too thin. Have you tried making them a bit thicker until you are satisfied with the outcome?

CakeGalUK Posted 23 Oct 2012 , 7:30pm
post #10 of 17

Ahhh ok, I thought I'd read somewhere that adding tylose effectively turned it into gumpaste. OK. So basically I either need to charge more for bows or make my own!!

I don't think it's too thin - in fact I wondered if it was too thick and that was causing an issue. I was looking at other peoples and they are literally as thin as flower petals! Mine are maybe 3mm thick. There are pics in my gallery of the recent "worrying" one I did.

Thanks for all your help, I've got some of the Renshaw stuff in stock so I'll have a go at a white one just to see icon_biggrin.gif

CakeGalUK Posted 23 Oct 2012 , 8:10pm
post #11 of 17

Although... it doesn't explain why some of you guys are able to use just fondant and have it set up!!

carmijok Posted 23 Oct 2012 , 8:28pm
post #12 of 17

If you are using gum paste, there is no reason to add additional Tylose. That would make it far too stiff and brittle IMO to work with.
The beauty of gum paste is that you CAN roll it very thin without having it split like fondant can. It also dries very light and hard...and very quickly.

I use gum paste for all my bows. If I need to not have it dry as quickly I add fondant to it.
You need to prop your loops open with something. I use rolled paper towels. I use Wilton's pre-made gum paste so I don't know if you can get that where you are located, but it works best for me.

Fondant will dry, but it takes a whole lot longer and the resulting product is usually a lot heavier than gum paste.

freakymama23 Posted 23 Oct 2012 , 8:35pm
post #13 of 17

I too use fondant( sugarpaste) and tylose powder and in the same ratio that you do. I keep shortening next to me so that if I feel that the mixture is drying too quickly I just mix a little into it. My pieces are always firm and hold shape but would possibly break if they were dropped or put under undue pressure. I am in Australia and depending on the humidity my gumpaste dries at different rates.
Kylie icon_smile.gif

kakeladi Posted 26 Oct 2012 , 2:27am
post #14 of 17

........ doesn't explain why some of you guys are able to use just fondant and have it set up!!...........

It might be your is very humid in the UK icon_smile.gif

carmijok Posted 26 Oct 2012 , 7:27am
post #15 of 17
Originally Posted by kakeladi

........ doesn't explain why some of you guys are able to use just fondant and have it set up!!...........

It might be your is very humid in the UK icon_smile.gif

I believe I mentioned it. Fondant just takes a very long time to dry as opposed to gum paste. Sometimes putting it in the oven with just the light on will help dry fondant.

CakeGalUK Posted 1 Nov 2012 , 6:16pm
post #16 of 17

Hmmm, ok so the fondant (sugarpaste) ones I made I left for 7 days and they still broke with not much pressure. 


I was adding tylose to fondant, not to gumpaste. I thought fondant + tylose = gumpaste but someone else has now said noooo. So I *think* fondant + tylose = modelling paste which holds it's shape but doesn't set up really hard (and therefore breaks). Flower paste sets up much harder, I'm going to try that when I have a bit of time to experiment.... needs to be soon before the xmas rush!


Thanks for all the replies, it's both interesting and confusing :D

Godot Posted 1 Nov 2012 , 7:48pm
post #17 of 17

Fondant + tylose/CMC is modeling paste, NOT gumpaste!


If you roll your gumpaste/flowerpaste really thin it will dry faster.

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