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Pre-made sugar flowers from Lucks - SO cheap...why bother??

post #1 of 59
Thread Starter 
So I am having a dilemma. I got a new catalog and see that pre-made sugar flowers are so incredibly inexpensive that I am wondering why I am spending hours doing it myself.

When I voiced this to my husband, he just looked at me like I had cursed on a Sunday. "What is the point of buying them? I thought you wanted to do all that stuff yourself?" - but MY point was, what is the point of making them......

One of the really nice roses I did took almost 3 hours for all of it (including the sprays of leaves, etc.) but stilll............3 hours! Now I realize I can learn to move faster but still!

They had 16 GORGEOUS 2 inch hibiscus for $16 - that is a dollar a piece for a stunning flower, hot pink with yellow accents in the middle. The list goes on and on - the Cattelaya Orchids are 4" and are 50 cents a piece.................. icon_eek.gificon_eek.gificon_eek.gif

I am already ordering the pressed sugar designs for the holidays but I was just wondering what your thoughts were one these? I was looking at Royal Cupcakes website and recognized the decorative flowers atop their cuppies at the very same......thx
post #2 of 59
I feel your dilemma. I always want to make everything for my cakes, but sometimes it's just not worth all the time that goes into making all the little extras. I say go for it and buy some of the premade flowers. They are still hand made.... just by someone else.
post #3 of 59
I just love knowing that I made them myself. But for time's sake, I can see why you'd want to order them! I just made a Hibiscus in Jen Dontz's class that I fell in love with. Just knowing that I made it was so worth the work that went into it. I am interested in see what you are talking about though. Is there a website available to look at?
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Hoping to one day have a shop of my own!


Proud Mom to Alania(21), Angelica(20-Go Wildcats!), & Tyler(14)!
Proud Army wife to Tony!!!
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post #4 of 59
Are you in it for the art ... or for the business?

As a business owner, I know that the cost of the materials is NOT my only expense. I'm also not under the illusion (dilusion?) that everything sold in a bakery or restaurant is made by hand or from scratch. I'm not playing the pretend game .... I'm in business.

Some buy premade fondant, premade icing (from Sam's or from another supplier), some use cake mix (even bakeries who buy their mixes in 50 pound-just-add-water-bags while some of us buy our mixes in 18 oz boxes from walmart), etc. Why should the flowers be any different?

there's a saying about "I work to live ... not live to work". Spending 6 hours making flowers when you can spend 3 minutes online ordering them means I get 5 hours and 57 minutes to spend with my family .... a rare commodity in this biz.

I had a bride ask me once about if my flowers were "made by hand". I told her my BC flowers were. If she wanted gumpaste, then I'd order those. Told her, "They're made by hand by someone, just not by me."

If you're in it for the art and take a lot of pride in how everything on your cake is made by you by hand, then continue with your craft, charging enough for your talent and time.

Me? "They're made by hand by somebody .... somewhere .... just not by me." icon_biggrin.gif
post #5 of 59
What website are you looking at? I have seen a couple and wonder which one you are looking at?
post #6 of 59
Thread Starter 
I'm in it for the business....definitely. I use Satin Ice fondant, Sam's icing (for most cakes) and some of my recipes are dr'd so I am definitely not a purist.

I use Satin Ice because it tastes great - easy to work with. The Sam's club icing because I HATE making icing and everyone loves it. The recipes I use that are dr'd because any 'scratch' didn't taste as good. (I assembled a taste-testing panel.....otherwise know as my kids, their friends and our neighbors! good times....)

So I totally 'get' what you are saying. I was ok with it but my husbands reaction kinda threw me off. icon_confused.gif
post #7 of 59
Thread Starter 
Sorry, it's Lucks.
post #8 of 59
Tell hubby he's welcome to spend HIS saturday and sunday making all of these flowers for you, if it's that important to him. See what he says then.

Related story (kinda): Last year, we ordered the Thanksgiving Dinner to go from Bob Evans for our family. Yes, I'm a caterer and I didn't cook on Thanksgiving. What a great holiday! Bob Evans food tastes like homemade, we spent the same amount of money and we had none of the work. Took us about 20 minutes to get dinner ready. No work, tasted great, we even had leftovers, even tho' there were 8 of us.

Hubby is complaining that "WE" are not doing that this year. Thanksgiving is POSTA be cooked (by the women!). I keep asking him, 'SOunds great! What time are you getting up to make the turkey?" Then he goes into some schpeal about what a dumba$$ I am to think that HE is making the turkey.

You either do the work ... or you shut the hell up. I've made turkeys for 32 years ... I think I've earned my break!
post #9 of 59
Thread Starter 
lmao - well, of course, you are right!! Not sure why I let him rile my cage..... but the funny thing is he totally encouraged me to order the fondant and HE is the one who makes the out-of-town Sam's Club runs for icing whenever I run low, so I don't get it. Oh well, I probably never will.

I am, however, ordering the damn flowers! icon_lol.gif
post #10 of 59
My 2 cents? Your time is worth an awful lot. Why not use them when you need to and make your own once in a while just to keep your skills polished or for clients that are dear to your heart. I don't think it makes you any less of a cake artist. icon_biggrin.gif

Indydebi - you almost made me pee myself. thumbs_up.gif
I hate people.
Not just you.
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I hate people.
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Everyone.
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post #11 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by CakeDiva73

So I am having a dilemma. I got a new catalog and see that pre-made sugar flowers are so incredibly inexpensive that I am wondering why I am spending hours doing it myself.

When I voiced this to my husband, he just looked at me like I had cursed on a Sunday. "What is the point of buying them? I thought you wanted to do all that stuff yourself?" - but MY point was, what is the point of making them......

One of the really nice roses I did took almost 3 hours for all of it (including the sprays of leaves, etc.) but stilll............3 hours! Now I realize I can learn to move faster but still!

They had 16 GORGEOUS 2 inch hibiscus for $16 - that is a dollar a piece for a stunning flower, hot pink with yellow accents in the middle. The list goes on and on - the Cattelaya Orchids are 4" and are 50 cents a piece.................. icon_eek.gificon_eek.gificon_eek.gif

I am already ordering the pressed sugar designs for the holidays but I was just wondering what your thoughts were one these? I was looking at Royal Cupcakes website and recognized the decorative flowers atop their cuppies at the very same......thx

I think you have to strike a balance between making or purchasing and your selling point.

It is wonderful to make everything yourself, but if you are investing more hours that the cost of the cake covers, you are in the hole. A lot depends on your market....in this video about Sylvia Weinstock, notice that she says the small two tiered cake would cost around $600! Video is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_rFecMIXOo
Now, I'd bet most of us can't get $600 for a cake that feed 20 or so people....so we can't justify the time that goes into making all the flowers.

That said, I see nothing wrong with buy flowers if needed. In fact, I but a lot of smaller flowers from unitedsugardesign.com. If you get on their mailing list, they send out sale brochures every month or so and they will have ridiculously low prices....for instance a box of roses that is normally $30 may be $6 on sale....and I stock up when they have these sales...especially on fillers and leaves which I hate making [I had a problem with my left hand and had to have surgery which now makes a lot of tedious work hard for me]!

So go ahead and buy them...you can always dust or airbrush them to add more color or to customize them the way you want.
post #12 of 59
okay, I don't want to hijack this thread, but what icing are you all talking about at Sam's? Is it BC I can buy from their bakery? I hate making icing too, so this would be a huge time saver.
We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals. -Immanual Kant
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We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals. -Immanual Kant
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post #13 of 59
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tootie0809

okay, I don't want to hijack this thread, but what icing are you all talking about at Sam's? Is it BC I can buy from their bakery? I hate making icing too, so this would be a huge time saver.



Yes, it is Sam's Club icing from the bakery. It has changed my life, lol. We heard about it, tried it and loved it. And everyone, from my kids to my Mom likes it too, which is somewhat shocking. I got so sick and tired of slaving over the mixer only to have everyone say 'It's too sweet'. (Icing, by definition is freaking fat and sugar, so what in the heck do they expect it to taste like????)

Anyway, we get a 5 gallong bucket of white and another of fudge- it is awesome. I blend it 50/50 with pastry pride when I want something lighter, or when I swirl the cupcakes. (The Sam's Club icing crusts almost as soon as it pipes so I have trouble getting sprinkles to stick on the cupcakes). They are each around $32.

Sooooooooo worth it! Oh, and you can add all sorts of stuff to get other flavores, fruit, espresso, peanut butter, etc.
post #14 of 59
I don't see anything wrong with buying pre-made flowers, if that's what you decide to do.

Me (personally)... I like to be able to say, if someone asks, that I made everything from scratch (cake, filling, frosting, fondant, flowers, etc.). It's totally doable if I plan ahead carefully enough. icon_wink.gif I'm a hobby baker, though, so I don't have business overhead, etc., to worry about. One of my favorite cake bakers/artists/companies is Sylvia Weinstock (who I see someone above mentioned).

icon_smile.gif
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* Gentleness isn't for the weak or the weak-minded. It's for the blessed who understand what grace is all about ~ Anonymous
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post #15 of 59
I wonder who are making these flowers that it can be sold for that price?

Think about all the middlemen from when it is made to when it reaches you. And it can be sold for such a low price.

Really underpaid people somewhere in the world most likely, aka slave labour.
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