Friday, March 12, 2010

Dianne Gruenberg's "OSM" Workshop

This week I was lucky enough to have attended Dianne Gruenberg's original soft method of “botanically correct” gumpaste flowers. For those of you who don't know who Dianne is, you should! Dianne has been a cake decorator for 45 years and has 21 years of experience as a Sugar art instructor, demonstrator and show judge. She was recently on TLC's "Ultimate Cake Off: Wedding Celebrations" in October where she made over 200 flowers for Mike Terry's winning cake. Dianne is also the sole American distributor for Lin and Dave Cook’s creative molds, veiners and original platinum flower paste from Sugar City, UK. The catalog for their amazing products can be found here. Dianne’s site is currently being re-vamped so once that is up and running I will post her information here so you can check out her fabulous goods!

Okay, about the class! It was held in San Marcos at RoZ's Sweet Art Studio, so for all of you cake decorators or inspiring cake decorators you should really checkout her site. She offers a variety of classes six days a week and she has a retail store. After I took my basics to fondant class a few weeks back I knew I had to head back to the studio for more.

The class consisted of roughly 23 students that are the who’s who in San Diego baking, well, at least to me they are! I wasn’t initially sure if I was going to be nervous considering this was my first time ever making realistic looking anything but everyone was really warm and friendly. Sometimes when you go to events like this people can be snobby about their tricks of the trade but the lovely gal’s I sat near were fantastic about sharing their work and gave me some inspirational ideas!

For the class we made four flowers on our own after Dianne gave us the how-tos. This was done over the course of two days but she also gave demonstrations on products, techniques on quilling, feathers and several other flowers. Dianne was very patient with everyone and never really seemed bothered by the cry of the student’s help when we seemed lost, had broken a piece of a leaf or had torn a petal. We all kept chalking our “mistakes” into the beauty of nature and how imperfect some perfect flowers might be with a slight bite from a hungry insect.

I wish I had pictures of step-by-step techniques but my camera battery died, this would have come in handy for me to recreate at home but the overall impression and day’s work will be with me forever!

Thanks Mom and Dad for sending this broke maternity-leave mama to the workshop!

Below are a few pictures of my completed flowers!

alstroemeria - this one was my favorite! I love the stamen, the added bud, the color and the leaves. It truly looks real!

Pansy - I enjoyed making this one as well. I really like the way my leaves turned out.

Clematis - This was the first one I made and you an really tell! I was so ready to throw the towel in while making this, but I am glad I kept on going.

Orchid - This was the last one we made, I was so tired, but I am still pleased the way it turned out despite me mixing up the petal sizes, this is why it isn't as full, but you get the idea.


Alanna said...

These are so pretty! I love the orchid. I can't wait to see how you use them in your decorating!

Kim Elkins said...

Those are AMAZING!!!!

Whit said...

Those are freaking amazing Melissa... goodness.