Making Gumpaste Dahlias Without Cutters.

Decorating By mw73 Updated 8 May 2013 , 3:26am by FromScratchSF

mw73 Posted 7 May 2013 , 5:37pm
post #1 of 12

AI was volunteered to do a wedding cake and agreed to do it with the brides understanding that I have never made a wedding cake or any kind of "fancy" cake. I'm not getting paid nor have I invested any money so I'm not feeling any pressure about it. I do want it to be beautiful and tasty. I decided on a "simple" design. Fondant covered with a large dahlia on the side, 2 smaller ones and a bud on top. I know that's probably a bit ambitious but I'm up for the challenge. My question is, is there a simple way to make the petals without cutters? Any suggestions or tips will be greatly appreciated. I have been lurking on this forum for the past 3 wks and have found a great deal ofy very helpful info.

11 replies
Spooky_789 Posted 7 May 2013 , 6:04pm
post #2 of 12


That is a tutorial for making dahlias with very easy to obtain cutters (could probably find them at your craft store, if you don't have them already).

mw73 Posted 7 May 2013 , 7:10pm
post #3 of 12

AThanks Spooky! I was looking for tips on how to do it by hand. I looked at Walmart and my local hobby shop. Neither place had the cutters. The closest Michael's is 30 min. one way. That's going too out of my way for something I will probably never use again. I'm cutting them out by hand in the general shape. May end up looking more like a rose, as long as its pretty I'm okay with that.

ellavanilla Posted 7 May 2013 , 7:20pm
post #4 of 12

I would think of all the flower shapes, dahlia would be an easier one to cut out with an exacto knife. They are tear-dropped shaped petals which are stacked with one end pinched.  you could also buy or borrow a few heart cutters and cut the hearts in half to make teardrops.



mw73 Posted 7 May 2013 , 7:46pm
post #5 of 12

This is my inspiration. Ella, Good idea for the heart cookie cutters. Thanks!

Norasmom Posted 7 May 2013 , 8:47pm
post #6 of 12

You could also make cutters by yourself, I did this to make a leotard out of sugar cookie dough.  I didn't want to pay for shipping for just 1 cookie cutter.  You take a cheap, foil lasagne pan, cut the bottom part into strips, and shape the strips into the shapes you need.  I taped the top too keep it in shape.  They are flimsy, you may have to make a few, but they do the job for cheap!!  I got that idea on here, so thank you to the original poster of this idea, whoever you may be!

Goreti Posted 7 May 2013 , 9:14pm
post #7 of 12

I made one like the yellow one on this site: by using the small oval shaped cutter from Wilton from this set  After I cut them, I stretched them out to look like the teardrop shape needed.  In order to get a larger petal, I would leave the gumpaste a little thicker.  I think it looked really good in the end.  Too bad it fell & broke.  Here is what I ended up with. Decided to try this out.  Color of the center is green but picture does not really show real color.  The outer petals were done using the same size oval shaped cutter but using different thickness of gumpaste so that I could thin it out in a tear drop shape & get larger petals.  Really like how it come out but takes a long time to do petal by petal and to curl each one.

ellavanilla Posted 7 May 2013 , 10:13pm
post #8 of 12
Originally Posted by mw73 

This is my inspiration. Ella, Good idea for the heart cookie cutters. Thanks!


You know, that looks a lot like a peony or a cabbage rose, you just might want to buy one of those, already made and save yourself all the trouble,

mw73 Posted 8 May 2013 , 12:17am
post #9 of 12

AGoreti, that's beautiful! You did an awesome job! Ella, it does look like a Peony. I've started making the petals. If I were doing this as a business and making several cakes a wk, I'd definitely consider buying them already made. This being only one cake, I'm enjoying the experience. Heck, by the time its finished it may be a different design. LOL! I have free reign over the entire cake other than I have to include purple.

kblickster Posted 8 May 2013 , 12:48am
post #10 of 12

Be careful with purple if you are using it to make your flower.  It fades fast.  I left some out to dry in my kitchen and it was blue in just a few hours.  I don't even have direct sunlight in my kitchen. 

mw73 Posted 8 May 2013 , 1:15am
post #11 of 12

AI didn't color the gum paste. I'll be using chalk for that.

FromScratchSF Posted 8 May 2013 , 3:26am
post #12 of 12

Making a good sugar dahlia is really hard.  I know, I'm still working on it!  Dahlia petals are not rounded, they are pointed, they are almost exactly like a daisy except the petals are cone shaped, have 3 creases in them and pointy at the ends.  The pink flower (above) has a correct center, like I said, very similar to a daisy, but have these weird cone petals.  If you want to see a really good sugar dahlia, check this out:


That dahlia is STUPID good, and I have no idea how she makes it - and I can generally figure flowers out.  I've tried to replicate it and I've failed miserably.  I have no idea what cutter she even uses - so the dahlia remains a mystery to me.


I realize I'm no help here, I just wanted to contradict the idea that these are easy to bang out - they are actually really complicated!

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