There are varieties of flowers that can be created with gum paste; this is achieved using different kinds of gum paste flower cutters.
Gum paste flower cutters are designed to help you cut out shapes of different petals from gum paste. Click here to read our previous article to find out more about gum paste.
These cutters are made of either metal or plastic. They also come in the plunger design or just plain petal shapes.
Gum paste flower cutters can be categorized either by the design or by the type of flowers they produce. We are going to use both categorizations. The first categorization we would use is the plunger cutters and the plain cutters.
Edible Flower Plunger Cutters
These cutters are designed with a simple mechanism that enables them to be pressed into the gum paste and cut out the shape. After this, you push the plunger to detach the flower.
Most gum paste flower plunger cutters would emboss veins on the petals as they cut them. But there are some that are plain without vein embossers.
Some people find the flower plunger cutters a bit more cumbersome to use; they say that it elongates the process of flower making. However, some decorators would use nothing else but plunger cutters because for them it shortens the process.
The merit of either side of the argument may be based on whether you want embossed petals or not.
One thing we have discovered however is that plunger cutters are good for filler flowers. The detailed cut out of flowers is also good for flowers that don’t require assembly line process. Examples of these include hydrangeas, daisies, sunflowers and blossoms.
Some of the flowers that require assembly line process include roses, dahlia, chrysanthemum, carnation and calla lilies.
Most large multi petal flowers require making the flowers petal by petal and as such would not work well with a plunger cutter.
Plain Edible Flower Cutters
These gum paste flower cutters are designed either as single petal cutters or as three, four or five petal cutters. They do not have plungers or veiners, they are shaped as cookie cutters but designed to cut out different shapes of petals.
One major disadvantage of plain gum paste flower cutters is that they can’t emboss the petals like the plunger cutters. So if your petals require veining, then you have to use a veining tool after cutting them out.
Apart from this, plain gum paste flower cutters are really versatile. They allow you to make different variations to a particular flower. Some bakers even use these gum paste flower cutters for purposes other than making flowers.
Each type of gum paste flower cutter has its own merits. To get the best of both you might decide to have both types of cutters.
Types of Gum Paste Flower Cutters
Apart from the above broad categorization of gum paste flower cutters, there are different types of cutters. This categorization is based on the kind of gum paste flowers they are used to produce.
In this segment we shall be discussing 10 gum paste flower cutters and the kind of flowers you can make with them.
Rose Gum Paste Flower Cutters
Rose flowers are unarguably the most common and popular flowers both in real life and sugar craft. There are many species, colors and varieties of the rose flower. As such there are also different brands and models of rose cutters to help decorators capture the different varieties.
Gum paste rose flower cutters come either as single petal cutters or the five petal cutters. The single petal cutters come in graduated sizes and can be up to seven sizes or more. While the five petal cutters come in three or four sizes.
Majority of rose gum paste cutters come as plain cutters; they were rarely designed as plunger cutters. However, in recent times some brands have started making rose plunger cutters.
There’s also this rose cutter that’s known as the 3D rose cutter; it doesn’t look like the conventional rose cutter.
With this cutter shown below, you can make your rose in two simple steps.
To make a full gum paste rose you’ll need the following: gum paste, rose petal cutters, leave cutters and veiners, foam pad, ball tools, corn starch and vegetable shortening.
If you need a step by step manual, you can check out Wilton’s gum paste flower kit and manual.
Peony Gum Paste Flower Cutters
The peony is another flower that’s gaining fast popularity. It can be used as a single large flower decoration for any type of cake. Or made into a bouquet for cake toppers or cascading décor accents.
The peony gum paste flower cutters come as single petal cutters or 5 petal cutters. The single petals are graduated in size and can be used to make different sizes of peonies. Some of the single petal cutters are designed to allow you cut and emboss the edges of the petals.
The five petal peony cutters are also in graduated sizes. Some come as set of three while others come as set of four.
The peony is one of those flowers that have multiple petals and have to be crafted one petal at a time. That’s why the cutters are mostly single petals and five petal cutters.
Gardenia Gum Paste Flower Cutters
The gardenia flower doesn’t have as much petals as the peony; they would usually have about three layers of five petals. The cutters also come in single graduated sizes or five petal cutters of three sizes.
Some of the single petal cutters are referred to as 3D gardenia cutters. Though they are specifically made for gum paste gardenia, they can be used for cookies and other sugar craft items.
Though there are basic steps to the creation of every gum paste flower, methods and processes differ. Different cake decorators have different methods of producing the same flower. In the same vein tools and cutters required vary from one instructor to the other.
That said however, you should note that gum paste flower cutters are the basic tools for gum paste flowers creation.
Calla Lilly Gum Paste Flower Cutter
This is actually the most unusual of all the flower cutters. The calla lily flower cutter is heart shaped and comes with a set of flower formers that are cone shaped.
To make calla lilies, you might not even need to buy a calla lily gum paste flower cutter. If you have a heart shaped cookie cutter, all you need are cones to use for flower formers.
Hydrangea Gum Paste Flower Cutters
The hydrangea is a four petal flower. The cutters are four petal cutters and plunger cutters. Most of the four petal cutter sets come with embossers and veining molds. The plunger cutters have their embossers in the cutter such that the petals are embossed as they are cut out.
The hydrangea is a small flower that’s usually used as filler flowers or as cupcake toppers/decorations.
They are quite easy to make since they are not multi petal flowers; this also makes using plunger cutters a better option because it reduces the production time. No need to cut with one tool and emboss with the other. The plunger does both cutting and embossing at the same time.
Orchid Gum Paste Flower Cutter
Orchids like roses have a wide variety but unlike roses, they do not have uniform petals. Different brands have endeavored to make cutters that would capture these varieties.
Orchid gum paste flower cutters come in single petal cutters and this is because each petal of the orchid has its unique shape. Plunger cutters would always give you uniform petals.
It is the different unique petals that make the orchid flower special. No two brands of orchid cutters would have the same shape. If you want to copy and get an exact replica of an orchid, ensure that you use the same cutters that was used.
Tulip Gum Paste Flower Cutters
Tulip gum paste flower cutters come in single pieces of graduated sizes. The single petal cutter is designed to allow you to cut out and work on each petal individually.You have to cut out the petals then use the veining tool to vein the petals.
And because of the shape of the tulip flower there are no plunger cutters for tulip flowers. Maybe we should say that we have not yet come across any tulip plunger cutter.
Sunflower Gum Paste Cutters
Sun flowers are single layer flowers with many petals. They do not require assembly line process and as such are quite easy to make. They are sunny flowers that would liven up any cake in a heartbeat.
So for those times when you are pressed for time but need to jazz up your cake, reach for the sunflower gum paste flower cutter. They most often come in plunger sets which make the process faster.
Daisy Gum Paste Flower Cutters
Daisies are great for cupcake decorations any day or time. They are great filler flowers for large flower bouquets. You can also use them alone for breathtaking designs on cakes.
They are single layer flowers and as such are easier made with plunger cutters.
You may decide to just cut out your daises with the plunger cutter and use without frilling or extra touch.
You can also cut out the flowers and do a little frilling and thinning out. The different methods would give you different effects.
Chrysanthemum Gum Paste Flower Cutters
Chrysanthemums are elegant flowers that would always make your cakes pop. There are different kinds of chrysanthemum flower cutters and most often they come singly. This would allow you to make any size of flower that you want.
The number of petals you make would determine the size of the flower. This is true for all flowers that have multi layered petals.
Some of these cutters may look similar but don’t be deceived; the slight differences especially in the three,four or five petal cutters determines the shape of petals that you would get. For this reason, ensure that you always use the right cutter recommended for the flower you want to make.
If you are new to gum paste flower making and want to buy your tools we recommend you buy a complete kit. It’s true that you might not get to use all the items in the kit but kits such as the Wilton gum paste flower kit would help you a lot. It comes with instructional guide for all the flower cutters that are in the kit.
By the time you finish practicing all the flowers in the manual, you’d have developed muscle memory for creating sugar flowers.
However, if you are more interested in making a particular gum paste flower, the cutters are also available individually.
Since there are many tutorials online, you can take them one at a time. And as you watch each tutorial, you buy the tools used. You’ll find out that once you’ve bought the basic tools, all you’ll need would be the specific cutter for the flower you’re making.
How to Clean and Maintain Your Flower Cutters
Gum paste flower cutters like every other cake decoration product have to be handled with care. The metal ones are susceptible to rust and being bent out of shape. The plastic ones are more liable to gather dirt (oil and grease) because of inadequate clean up.
To ensure that your metal gum paste flower cutters last for long, do the following: (a) wash with warm soapy water after use (b) Allow to dry properly before storing (c) store properly to help maintain the shape. Try as much as possible to store the cutters in the pack/container that they came in.
Though plastic cutters or plunger cutters do not have the risk of rusting or bending out of shape, they can retain a lot of dirt. To ensure that this doesn’t happen, always wash your cutters with warm soapy water and rinse out properly with warm water.
Most products come with cleaning instructions so you’ll do well to follow the instructions. This is especially true for plunger cutters as you might need to dismantle them to clean properly.
As with every product that you are unfamiliar with, it is necessary to read a lot of buyer reviews. This would help you to get insights into the product that you want to buy. You can also learn different ways of using the product or even improvising.
Like we earlier mentioned, tutorials would also go a long way in helping you determine the best type of gum paste flower cutters to buy. If you can’t afford to buy a complete gum paste flower kit, you can get your flower cutters one after the other.