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I recently started working with gum paste.  I LOVE how my flowers have turned out but I'm having issues with the gum paste sticking to my shaping tools and the craft foam!  Does anyone know what I'm doing wrong???  I have a feeling that I haven't added enough powdered sugar but then again, I don't want to dry out my gum paste either!  Any advice on working with gum paste would be greatly appreciated!  :)

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You need a little "puff" with corn starch in it to powder your surface.
are you making your own gumpaste or buying pre made? You might need to add a little bit of shortening...but that will soften it...if you like a stiffer consistency and you are making it from scratch add a little more powder sugar or cornstarch from the beginning. Different measuring cups will give different results and you might cut the water in the recipe back a little. ( I make my own fondant and gumpaste so this had been a problem with stickiness) Even the brand of powder sugar can make a difference as some are more course and some have more cornstarch...I always use the same brand because the results have been better with that brand where I live. If you are using pre made just add a little Tylose powder or Gum Tragacanth. Still add the shortening if it is sticking to your cutters. You might also leave it to cure longer if you are making your own...whatever the gum additive is in it may not have had time to absorb the water in the recipe...but not knowing what you are using it is hard to say for sure.

yes, cornstarch puff is a must I agree...and humidity is high were I am so we can't use the powder sugar cornstarch mix for our puffs but in drier areas I hear that is okay to do.
I used to have this problem when I was using the Wilton mat.... I use my Ateco mat and it never sticks. I generally use Satin Ice gumpaste but have made my own too and it rolls out nicely and does not stick to the Ateco mat. If you get any moisture at all on it it gets sticky. I know what you are talking about on the foam... and corn starch puff helps. I just puff a little onto the foam and that takes care of the problem. I prefer cornstarch over powdererd sugar for it.
I didn't think about the humidity. I live in a very dry climate too so humidity is never an issue here. I keep a piece of clear plastic, the kind you buy in a fabric store on the big rolls... about a 12x12 piece of it and I roll out my gumpaste then to keep it from drying too quickly, I cover it with the plastic. That way it stays moist.
Also, the Marcela Sanchez flower paste is AWESOME. It makes the most delicate flowers ever. I am making roses with it next week. Will share pics when I get them done.
Where I live, humidity is high. The gumpaste I made for this weather requires lots of cornstarch. But it does dry the gumpaste if I do not keep ot covered. A THIN layer of shortening on the palms does help tho.
Thanks for all the great advice! I've been using the Wilton gumpaste powder in a can, where you just add water. Maybe next time I'll try homemade stuff. I also tried the cornstarch and it worked so much better than powdered sugar. I made sure to keep the gum paste covered as well. All of these things seem to be helping! I'll post some pics of my sugar flowers as soon as their all done. Thanks again!
I have a question. I just used gumpaste for the first time, and I couldn't tell much difference between that and fondant. What is the difference? Thank you, Marsha
The gumpaste you can roll much thinner for delicate flowers etc. And fondnt takes much longer to harden up than gumpaste. Gumpaste usually has tylose in it to help with that. When working with fondant, you can add tylose to it but I never get the same results as I do with gumpaste. The mexican paste that GSA sells is good too. It is a powder that you mix with water. I use Satin Ice gumpaste most of the time. I love it.
Okay, I see. Thanks Jeri!
I have tried that Wilton powder stuff before just to see what it was like when students in my gumpaste class mentioned that they used it...that is NOTHING like the gumpaste that most people use...and it smells funny too. It is dry and crumbly or sticky. If you want simple and use Wilton products you can buy Wilton fondant and add Tylose powder to it to turn it into gumpaste....I use that a lot when I need quick gumpaste and have no time to let the homemade stuff set up. The more tylose you add the stiffer it will be and the faster it will dry. Satin Ice makes great gumpaste too...but I'm too cheap to buy that all the time.

Andrea Kratville said:
Thanks for all the great advice! I've been using the Wilton gumpaste powder in a can, where you just add water. Maybe next time I'll try homemade stuff. I also tried the cornstarch and it worked so much better than powdered sugar. I made sure to keep the gum paste covered as well. All of these things seem to be helping! I'll post some pics of my sugar flowers as soon as their all done. Thanks again!
I don't use Wilton products, but I love Nicholas Lodge gumpaste recipe. You can find it at his website. I use glycerin to restore dry gumpaste and Ck or Confectionary Art Tylose brands to make mine. I use ateco mat, or you can buy at Walmart, the pastic to cover furniture, and cut it as many sizes as you want. Is very good, and you can use it as well to transfer your fondant over a cake, I had different sizes as I use it as a guide to roll my fondant. I use cornstarch and not sugar powder cause changes the texture of the gumpaste.
I just made another batch of gum paste last night. This time I made it myself. I didn't use the Wilton instant powder. This time my gum paste consisted of Gum Tex, Corn Syrup, Water and Powdered Sugar. I haven't used it yet, but I'm excited to see how it differs from the instant Wilton stuff!

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