COSTA MESA — Vibrant sprays of lilies, orchids, daffodils and other blooms surrounded artist Shaile Socher's work space Thursday at the Orange County Fair's "Live, Eat, Grow" exhibit promenade.
The delicate, detailed petals looked real, but Socher's flowers were made entirely of sugar.
"A florist at a bridal show said that I pretty much fooled her," the Huntington Beach resident said as she molded white sugar-gum petals between her fingertips.
"She was at another booth, and she walked over and said that she wanted to check out the competition," Socher continued. "I had to tell her, 'Oh, no. I'm not really your competition because these are sugar-gum flowers.'"
The culinary curiosity has fooled more than a few fairgoers, she said.
"I couldn't believe that they were real," said fair attendee Marsha Kramer, who saw some of Socher's creations in the fair garden and floral pavilion.
"When I first walked in, I was attracted to this dazzling display of lilies," Kramer said. "They were amazing, so beautiful. I had to touch them to know that they were real."