First stargazer critique needed

Decorating By smittyditty Updated 6 Oct 2013 , 2:28pm by smittyditty

85 replies
smittyditty Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 5:39pm
post #2 of 86

nobody??? Come on somebody has to have some helpful info.

While I wait I'll share a tip. I didn't have any orange pollen so I just died some sugar orange and mixed in some cornstarch with the sugar during mixing. I think it worked really well. So if you come short of some pollen color make your own.

Also my flower at first was kinda dull...lifeless so I just pushed the flowers towards the stamen and it looked a hundred times better.

AZCouture Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 5:41pm
post #3 of 86

AI'm not a flower expert, bit I like them. Sometimes the ones I see are too perfect, or too ruffly...this looks nice. But again..I'm not an expert.

smittyditty Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 5:45pm
post #4 of 86

Ah just the person I needed. I am sticking them into a 4inch tier will that be a problem?


Do you know how to roll the stamens thinner?They kept wanting to come off as I was rolling them.

kikiandkyle Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 5:46pm
post #5 of 86

I don't have any advice for the stamens but the flower looks great, very lifelike. 


OK maybe I do, have you considered using regular flower stamens and adding the pieces that make it right for this flower?

smittyditty Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 5:51pm
post #7 of 86

4inch as in the top is 4inch second is 6 and third is 8

AZCouture Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 5:53pm
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AOh sure, insert a bubble straw into the top of your 4incher, and bend your stem first, so it is at the angle you need before inserting the flower into the straw. I take some of the same fondant that the tier is covered in, and make a paste, and scrape that over the hole the straw makes, to even it out. Rub it a bit to blend the seam, and you shouldn't see the hole anymore.

smittyditty Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 5:57pm
post #9 of 86

except its buttercream! I'm worried that tiny little 4incher is gonna collapse and I'm also supposed to put a hideous topper on the top. I'm thinking dowels and a cardboard the same size as the tier on top and buttercream over it so its hidden. That way it has the most stability?

smittyditty Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 5:57pm
post #10 of 86

Sorry I was unclear I have to put the flower in the side of the 4incher!

kikiandkyle Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 6:01pm
post #11 of 86
milkmaid42 Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 8:12pm
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Here is an idea for your stamens, compliments of Claire Webb's ********** Flower book: Cut white 30 ga wire 3" long. Bend 1/4" wire at a right angle then bend bend the short piece back on itself to make a T shape, (When I've made them, I rub a little appropriately colored petal dust over the wire first.) Roll a tiny piece of gum paste into a small sausage shape, tapered at both ends. Make a small slit lengthwise. Brush the end of the T shape wire with a little edible glue, or egg white, and attach to the sausage. Let dry then brush with edible glue and dip into your petal dust. Tap lightly to remove excess and leave to dry. Steam to set color. I've used corn meal, paprika  or even nutmeg, depending upon the color desired.


Lesley Herbert's Complete Book of Sugar Flowers gives a tip: "When the flower first opens, the stamens are long with slim, bright yellow ends. As the flower matures, the ends of the stamens change position and color, becoming a bright paprika hue."


I wish I could spend all day making flowers, interspersed with growing them. I love gardening and trying to replicate those I grow.


I hope this helps you in time.




I'm sorry, it looks like they censored even the title of the book. It is S  u  g  a  r  and the second part of the same word if c  r  a  f t . Or you might try the first word in Spanish, Azucar, and the second part is another word for a hands-on skill, or a small water boat. (Goodness, this can get complicated! Feel like I am playing charades.)

milkmaid42 Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 8:23pm
post #13 of 86

I prefer to make my own stamens whenever I can for I find them prohibitively expensive for my limited budget. But if you are wanting to purchase them, Scott Clark Woolley has a huge selection on his website: www.cakesbydesign. I think that's his site. You can google him if you need to.




smittyditty Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 8:40pm
post #14 of 86

Thanks everyone. I went and bought the stamens at hobby lobby it was a 30min drive that's why I didn't respond. Thanks for the idea kiki! I knew about them but didn't know they had lilly ones. So we will see how those go. If they don't I'll go your route Jan. Although I like your idea better I'm limited on white wire and it make for a big stem when I use all of those wires. I got the wrong gauge on hand. I would have bought the right gauge but this wedding was a two week notice one! lol..doesn't give way for much planning. Closest cake store is an hour away and I'm not driving that plus they NEVER have anything in stock.

milkmaid42 Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 9:02pm
post #15 of 86

I know what you mean about not being able to run to the store on a moment's notice. I have to purchase almost everything on line so I really have to plan ahead. I keep 9 empty Pringles containers, (painted to co-ordinate with my cake room's decor) on my workbench filled with wire ranging from 18 - 33 gauge. Michael's is an hour away and their stock is limited--primarily Wilton and Duff's----hence my on-line shopping.


Good luck getting everything done. I'm sure it will be as beautiful as your usual work.



cakealicious7 Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 9:18pm
post #16 of 86

AYou guy's are lucky that you have stores to go to, I have to order EVERYTHING online. Over here it's like a train ride away!! I like your idea Jan about the pringle tubs might try that myself ;-)

milkmaid42 Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 9:28pm
post #17 of 86

If you do try the Pringles tubs, I might suggest that you weight them down a little. I put some marbles in the bottom of mine so they won't be so likely to tip over. I also affixed a label to the sides, indicating what size each contains. (I know, I'm an organization freak.:)



cakealicious7 Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 9:35pm
post #18 of 86

ALooool!!! Thanks for the tip x

JWinslow Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 10:27pm
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Found it - it is under your second picture when you open it up.  Here it is anyway:


Very beautiful!  Am amazed it's your first!  For your next one try and make the stamen & pistil stems a little thinner.  You might want to consider showing a bit more white near the edges.  The spots on this type of  lily generally do not go to the edge onto the white.  So, just little things for next time but  Wonderful job !!

kikiandkyle Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 10:31pm
post #21 of 86

Yay glad you managed to get some! 

smittyditty Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 10:34pm
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Sorry Jeanne no I didn't get that. Thank you ya I used a pic I found online. The thing is that one shows the petal better. Better dot idea from that one. I also didn't have any petal dust in the right color so I'm having to use vodka and gel colors it was not such a sharp line on the pink as that picture so that looks easier to copy.


For your next one try and make the stamen & pistil stems a little thinner.  Ya how do I do that? It seemed to want to come off when rolling.


I bought some of the wilton ones we will see if I like those enough or I'll go back to perfecting the wire ones.

Thanks everyone for your help I'll post a pic of the next one I do and see what ya think.

smittyditty Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 10:37pm
post #23 of 86


This is the pic I went off Jeanne. Is that not a stargazer? I was thinking of doing RI for the dots as they appear to be spikey.

I don't want to do that though if this is totally the wrong flower. lol..

JWinslow Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 10:53pm
post #24 of 86


Originally Posted by smittyditty


This is the pic I went off Jeanne. Is that not a stargazer? I was thinking of doing RI for the dots as they appear to be spikey.

I don't want to do that though if this is totally the wrong flower. lol..

That's a good pic to use.  Notice the amount of white around the edges.  What size wire are you using when making the pistil & stamens?  Are you using gum glue or egg white?  Are you making a tiny sausage and inserting the wire or working the paste down the wire?  I'm not a fan of Wilton gum paste (dries to fast).  Nicolas Lodge's paste is perfect for this although I would still mix in some Platinum Paste but that's not necessary.


You could try the RI - but you will have to have an extremely light touch -  Remember, the pic you are using is a VERY close up.  I personally would concentrate on painting - just me.    You are doing great :)

smittyditty Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 11:03pm
post #25 of 86

Yep I see the white I thought you meant there wasn't dots on the white..I also didn't notice the detail of dots on other pictures so there for a moment

I thought maybe it was a different breed of lily.. :)

I have no idea the gauge because I bought it off ebay about 3 years too big. But I'm using a ball shape and rolling it down so maybe that is the problem. Then I make the sausage and poke it on the wire. Maybe I need to start with less gumpaste to begin with? I was using gum glue.

smittyditty Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 11:04pm
post #26 of 86

by the way while we are on the subject where do you buy your wires?

Jan you too where do you buy yours and I love the pringles idea. Except my chickens will have to eat the

JWinslow Posted 20 Sep 2013 , 11:22pm
post #28 of 86

Gum glue is fine. You have to be very careful with egg white, if you get a tiny bit where it doesn't belong, you will never be able to apply dust there - just won't penetrate the dried egg.

I would use a 26 gage wire for the pistil and a 28 (26 if you're not comfortable with 28)  for the stamens.  Notice how they are tapered and the stamens are thinner than the pistil.  Try and use less paste and work the ends.  keep a little shortening between your fingers to give you a longer working time.   It will take a little practice but given how well you have done with your first, you will achieve it rather quickly. 


I buy my wires either at Global Sugar Art or Sugar Delites.  I prefer Sunrise wires. 

milkmaid42 Posted 21 Sep 2013 , 12:32am
post #29 of 86

Smitty, I'm sorry I neglected to caution you about egg white. Thanks, Jeanne for mentioning it. It is a good thing to use, however, if you want to mask an area off and let the base color show through, veins on an ivy for instance. You gave a lot of good tips and encouragement.


I get a lot of wire from GSA, (among other places when I'm going to different sites). I'm always comparing and searching for different wire and different colors of floral tape.I have found only one place, though, that carries 33 ga.wire. (I use it for making stamens for alstroemeria). Those I get at


I am just getting ready to make some gardenias while mine are still in bloom, but all this talk about stargazers makes me want to make those too. It is like reading recipes when you are hungry!




I forgot to mention that it truly was a chore to empty those Pringle cartons. Sadly, I no longer have any chickens since I moved from my farm in Arizona. Boy were they ever handy. All the scraps went to them or the turkeys and I got a good return on them. Anyhow, my grand daughters enjoyed them. (I call them fake food. Yuk.)

scrumdiddlycakes Posted 21 Sep 2013 , 12:36am
post #30 of 86

I always use my dust dry to colour flowers, it blends much easier. Especially on the line down the middle of the petal, and like Jwinslow is saying, don't take it to the very edge.

So start with a dark line that goes about 3/4 of the way down, then a lighter shade and dust out from that line to about halfway between the line and the edge of the petal, does that make sense? Then you can blend it nicely, it leaves you with the white border and no abrupt lines.

The dots I do when the rest of the colouring is totally finished, and I do that with liquid dust and a toothpick, with just the tiniest bit of the tip snipped off. I'm sure there are better ways, but it works perfectly for me :P
I'd suggest clustering them around the base of the petal and then sort of scattering them out a bit.


I actually have a few different tubes/cans/etc glues down to a base that I use for drying petals lite this, all different sizes, works awesome.


Is this your first lily? They were way harder for me to get down than any other flower, you did a really good job!

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