I had great fun making these, it's such a simple technique you can't go wrong. AND it includes lustre dust. If you want to see how to make more natural flowers, you might want to try my Lacecap Hydrangea tutorial.
You will need:
Cookies flooded with white royal icing and fully dried
A range of food colouring pastes or gels (I used Sugarflair Melon Yellow, Chestnut, Christmas Red, Ice Blue and Grape Violet)
Fine food-only paintbrush
A little water
Black piping consistency royal icing in a bag with a tip no. 1.5
A range of lustre dusts, not necessarily matching your food colours (I used Sugarflair Royal Gold, Pearl White, Silver, Red Sparkle, Claret Wine and others)
1. Using your gels, a very little water, and fine brush simply paint basic shapes of leaves and circles, connected with brown stalks. Don't worry too much about getting the painting very even. Wobbly edges will be disguised by the black piping and blotchy painting by the lustre dusts.
2. Simply pipe around the coloured shapes with the black royal icing, adding dots for extra interest, and if necessary to cover up mistakes! Let the black dry thoroughly.
3. Now using a small amount of dry lustre dust on the end of a fine, dry paintbrush, dab and dust the areas of colour. If you get too much on the cookie, blow carefully to avoid smudges and specks on the white.
To add further interest and depth to these simple shapes, blend complementary colours: for example over the yellow paint I used gold and also a little pink. I also used both gold and green lustres over green paint. It's difficult to pick up in the overhead picture (above); you can see the shading a little better below:
And this is what the lustre looks like properly in the sunlight (below). Use what you have; the colour beneath will show through, so silvers will work well over blues, golds over yellows and reds and so on.
The lovely thing about this technique is that you can apply it to any shapes you like. I've enjoyed making these whimsical plants, but it would be a lovely take on otherwise plain silhouettes, or simply abstract patterns. And the best thing (apart from liberal use of lustre dust)...no hours of mixing icing colours!