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Review: The Rapid Rose from Immaculate Confections

Natalie Porter is the founder of Immaculate Confections and the talented designer responsible for many of the most beautiful wedding cakes that light up our newsfeeds.

Her journey into the world of all-things-sugar began back in 2012, when Natalie created her first wedding cake – her own.

When she and husband Chris were planning their wedding, they decided they wanted something very personal and a little bit different for their cake. They weren’t able to find what they wanted from their local cake decorators, so, much to the horror of their families and friends, Natalie decided to take on the challenge of making their wedding cake herself.

Luckily, Natalie’s edible recreation of Lord of the Rings’ Minas Tirith was incredible and she realised that she clearly had a real talent for sugar art.

Roll forward six years and Natalie’s eye-catching designs are now regularly featured in magazines and blogs, she has won a multitude of gold awards at an international level and she is now teaching sugarcraft to other designers and artists.

However, her award-winning cakes are not the only thing that Immaculate Confections is known for, because in 2016, Natalie introduced her first time-saving product to the market: the Rapid Rose – the Five-Petal Rose Support Pad. Natalie explains that her Rapid Rose allows users to create beautiful non-wired roses from flower paste in just a few simple steps.

As a very reluctant sugar florist, the idea of being able to save time (and effort) on my usual one-petal-at-a-time method of crafting sugar roses sounds like a real winner to me and, after one of my subscribers reached out and asked me if I could demonstrate the Rapid Rose, I decided to get in touch with Natalie and ask if I could have a play.

Included in Natalie’s Ultimate Rapid Rose Bundle are the Five-Petal Rose Support Pad, a set of Five-Petal Rose cutters in 90mm, 80mm, 70mm and 60mm, a set of Extra Large Five-Petal Rose cutters in 100mm & 120mm, a Water Brush Pen and a sample pack of prepared 20mm and 25mm Poly-Buds for use with the rose cutters.

With such an array of goodies included in the pack, one could become a little bit intimidated by all the bits and pieces, but fortunately, every purchase of the Rapid Rose comes with a free digital tutorial, packed with step-by-step pictures and detailed instructions to help users make impressive and perfect sugar roses. This is where I decided to start, before I even unpacked the kit.

The tutorial was incredibly detailed and full of lots of helpful pictures, which made the process of using the kit for the first time very easy.

Natalie’s guide recommends that we use flower paste to craft her roses, but with the variety of amazing products that have been coming to the market over the last year or so, I thought I would try using my Rapid Rose kit with a selection of different products, namely Renshaw’s Petal Paste, Renshaw’s Flower & Modelling Paste and Renshaw’s Modelling Paste.

For my first attempt, I decided to use the Renshaw Petal Paste – simply because I hadn’t got around to trying it yet. Available exclusively in white, I decided to colour it, and all of my other pastes before I used them, with Sugarflair’s Blush Pink. It took quite a while to fully blend the colour with the paste and I have a feeling that I may have overworked it in the process. My petals quickly became very dry, in spite of storing them using Vanilla Valley’s Petal Shield. When I went on to construct my first rose using the coloured Petal Paste, you may notice that some of the edges cracked and frayed a little.

For my next attempts, I was careful not to overwork the other pastes and I was keen to see which one would produce the best results.

When it came to crafting my roses using the Rapid Rose, the process was incredibly simple. Natalie’s photo-tutorial really makes each step clear and I actually found that regardless of the paste I used, I was able to create some very pleasing roses – that, if I am honest, were just as good as the ones that I usually spend days painstakingly crafting.

I arranged my flowers on a dummy so that I could keep track of which paste made each rose, but then I needed the dummy for something else in a hurry and they got moved. Now, I couldn’t even tell you which rose was made from which paste! I think it just goes to show how versatile the Rapid Rose kit is that I was able to create some pleasing roses using ALL of the pastes that I tried.

When it came to presenting some finished roses for this post, I had originally planned to dust and finish them, before presenting them in a complete arrangement on a dummy tiered cake, but then I got to thinking… My reader wanted to know what the Rapid Rose was like to use, not to see another post featuring a beautiful cake stuffed with beautifully perfect blooms.

Plus, Natalie already has that covered with beauties like this one…!

Instead, I decided to share a snap of a set of roses at various stages of the construction process so that you can see the sort of results I was able to achieve during my first play with the Rapid Rose.

Here are some roses with one layer of petals, some with two and some with three. To create even fuller blooms, one can continue adding another one or even two more layers.

Can you tell which ones are made from Renshaw’s Petal Paste, Flower & Modelling Paste or Modelling Paste? I bet you can’t!

Obviously, there are incredible sugar florists out there who are able to create stunningly realistic sugar flowers and, if that is what you want to be able to achieve, sadly there are no shortcuts to perfection. However, if you want to create a lot of good quality roses quickly, then the Rapid Rose is the perfect tool for you. As I’ve already said, if these were to be finished off fully, then they would easily stand up next to the usual roses I usually take days to create and yet these took me just over an hour. Yes, really!

Having been stung by other ‘quick’ or ‘easy’ rose Makers before (think colourful cabbages) part of me was initially skeptical about how these would come out, but I think it’s safe to say that I am converted.

If you think that the Rapid Rose from Immaculate Confections is the answer to your sugar-themed prayers and you would like to find out more, then you can visit Natalie’s website right here.

And while you’re there, you may wish to check out Immaculate Confection’s Perfect Peony as well.

I love peonies – they are absolutely my favourite my favourite flower – and I was so excited to see that Natalie had added them to her line up. I’m definitely going to have a play with the Perfect Peony next. I’m already seeing a projects to combine some fully finished Rapid Roses and Perfect Peonies together to create a beautiful floral cake. Not my usual style, as you know, but that’s how inspired Natalie has got me…

If you haven’t already subscribed to Mr Baker’s Blog, make sure you do before you go – you won’t want to miss out on my first attempt at peonies!

But until then, I must say a massive thank you to Natalie for letting me share her fabulous Ultimate Rapid Rose Bundle with you all. I hope you have enjoyed finding out a bit more about it…

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Cheers to the Freakin’ Weekend…

Happy weekend, cake chums!

Sorry it has been rather a quiet one on the blog this week, but real life well-and-truly got in the way of cake life this week! I won’t bore you with the details, but rest assured I am absolutely ready for a lazy weekend!

Hopefully Sarah Bray of Daisy Cakes’ rather fabulous Miniature Picnic Cupcake Toppers tutorial has kept you busy in my absence! Don’t forget to let me know if you have a go at it – I’m planning to tackle it myself at some point – when I’m not knee-deep in other exciting projects.

Coming in the next few weeks, I’ve got some absolutely amazing interviews lined up – with some actual caking legends – and, at the request of some of my subscribers, I will also be having a play with the Rapid Rose and Perfect Peony kits, which arrived today from the lovely Natalie at Immaculate Confections. As a very reluctant sugar florist, I try to avoid making flowers unless truly necessary, but Natalie assures me that her fabulous kits will revolutionise my life! Look out for my two-part review coming soon…

 

These are all alongside an absolute mega-project that I have been beavering away on for a while now. A clue? Well, it’s another project for a brand that I have previously collaborated with in the past. I wonder if you will be able to figure it out… 😉

The other big news of the week is, of course, this week’s cake shows on either side of the Atlantic. It seems half of the cakers on my social media timelines are heading to the Irish SugarCraft Show 2018, in Dublin this weekend, while the other half are jetting off to The SoFlo Cake and Candy Expo, in Miami. I’ll be honest, I have spent so much time on the FlyBe website this week, dithering over whether to book a last-minute jaunt over to the Irish show this weekend (SoFlo is a little bit out of my budget right now!) and it has taken some real restraint to stop myself hitting that ‘purchase’ button. I think it is only the thought of a full-on weekend – after the exhausting week that I have just had – that stopped me going through with it.

I do hope that everyone who has headed to either show this weekend has a truly amazing time though – and naturally, I have lined up some fabulous guest writers to share the highlights of each of them with us all when they get home.

Oh, and speaking of the Irish Sugarcraft Show, this weekend also sees the official launch of The Celtic Cakers Tutorial Book – if you’re at the show, be sure to head by the Ribbon Shack stand to check it out. And don’t forget that today also marks your last chance to get your hands on a copy in my Celtic Cakers giveaway, so if you haven’t entered yet, you know what to do!