You hear of many people, who cannot afford it, organizing and setting up their own weddings or receptions. Well, my sister was one of them, and I sold her on the idea that we could make our own desserts worthy of any five star bakery. And that was without any decorating experience-- I am sort of hypnotic. I suppose you can judge for yourselves, based on my pictures, whether as first time cupcake floral engineers we did a praise worthy job or not. And yes, I think we did.
The cupcakes themselves were made from box mixes, neither of us having much experience with scratch baking. The icing was Wilton's from the fabric and craft store Jo-Annes. Now we discovered that your regular grocery store frosting tubs will not make such flowers, nor will they stay their shape. In order to save our pockets we tried the tubs first. The end results were globs of frosting on our little cupcakes, petals melting into petals and creating yummy gobs. We wanted flowers not yummy gobs. We tried every experimental thing we could in order to make use of our cheaper grocery store tubs of frosting. Adding cornstarch, adding meringue powder, confectioners sugar, even flour. In the end we decided to save our money and buy icing instead of experimenting with vast quantities of grocery store butter cream.
Now to make one thing clear, the people we learned out techniques from, were using homemade butter cream for the flowers. I do not know whether the brands we chose, the outside temperature, humidity, or even us, were responsible for the store tubs not working.
Now you ask, how did we learn to make these flowers? YouTube of course! The vast beautiful video encyclopedia of our time. I originally came upon this crazy amazing thing called a cupcake basket, where flower cupcakes were propped onto sticks and stuck into a foam filled clay pot. Amazing! And not as easy as a video makes it look. In the end, with our time crunch (we made the cupcakes fresh, the day before the reception) we decided to just serve the little 'flowers' as is. Simply search for flower cupcakes, in youtube and study the videos. You can practice on little saucers first, this way you can scoop it up and reuse it. Scooping it off of a cupcake will give you iceing with cupcake crumbs!