PHOTOGRAPHY: Foolishly Rushing In
Long gone are the days of wedding cakes always being multi-tiered confections covered in smooth white fondant or buttercream – an old tradition to denote virginity and purity. These days, a wedding cake – like any other aspect of a couple’s big day, can be customized in myriad creative ways commensurate with the baker’s artistry, and limited only to the couple’s imagination! One’s wedding cake is also unique in being a multi-sensory statement piece in your decor arsenal. Not only does it have the potential to be visually arresting, eliciting oohs and ahhs from your guests – it can also delight through taste, smell, and texture, becoming a conversation piece throughout the night as they experience the cake in different contexts.
With so many choices available to couples – from classic white to inky black, marble fondant to abstract watercolor art, dried floral decorations to edible flowers in the frosting, caramel drips to gold leaf, ruffled buttercream to naked cakes, geode designs to modern concrete vibes, asymmetrical rectangular cakes to traditional round tiers, and red velvet cake to “wedding cakes” that are not cakes at all (e.g. cakes made entirely of cheese or watermelon, for the couples without a sweet tooth!), how do brides and grooms go about selecting a cake that reflects their tastes and who they are?
This week, we’ve put together a fun little post with suggestions for cake designs to match different personalities!
PHOTOGRAPHY: Victoria Gold
You’re unconventional, offbeat, and even a little eccentric but still an undeniably stylish individual – even if it’s in your own way. Mixing and matching styles, colors, and textures is your forte, and your wedding will be a true sensory treat, filled with unique little details in every corner. Just as you have no use for a cookie cutter wedding, you have no taste for traditional wedding cakes. This boho confection features many beautifully contrasting elements – jagged lines and abstract art against smooth fondant and clean edges, as well as the geometric shapes of dried palm spears juxtaposed with soft, fuzzy bunny tail grass and surrounded by fresh blooms.
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Lemon Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Prickly Pear Preserves
PHOTOGRAPHY: Aga Jones
Your tastes run classic and in all your wedding fantasies, your dress has always been white, your cake has always been white, and your day, a picture-perfect fairytale set in a manicured rose garden or ballroom. Despite the plethora of alternative options to couples these days, there is nothing wrong with tradition and sticking with the classics if it feels like the right choice for you. Just because you CAN pick a midnight blue fondant cake embedded with gold stars does not mean you should feel pressured to. After all, your wedding should be true to who you are! As this photo shows, the classics are often beautiful. Who can resist this pretty cake with perfect layers of white buttercream and delicately perched fresh flowers?
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Vanilla Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Lavender Buttercream (or stick to Vanilla if you want to stay full classic!)
PHOTOGRAPHY: Pure Life Creative
You love nature and the great outdoors – running wild in the desert and barefoot in the grass. Nothing makes you happier than campfires and hikes along spectacular mountain trails. There is no way you would get married in a stuffy ballroom – only in the fresh, open air where you can party under the stars with your nearest and dearest! And if it rained on your wedding day, you’d chalk it up to Mother Nature wanting to join in the fun, and gladly dance down the aisle in the rainfall. You want to relish every mouthful of wedding cake in your favorite flavor but don’t want it buried under wasteful decor and mountains of fondant that may look pretty, but that no one is really going to eat anyway. A simple, rustic, semi-naked cake is the perfect dessert to send you off on your next adventure!
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Gingerbread Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Cinnamon Sugar Apples
PHOTOGRAPHY: Brian David Weddings
You’re a creative soul who will probably attempt to DIY some, if not much, of your wedding decor – not necessarily to save money, but because it’s your idea of fun, and half the reason why you were excited to be having a wedding in the first place. You don’t see the point in renting a wedding arch when you and your beau can paint your own ceremony backdrop, and then hang it in your bedroom after. And wouldn’t your guests appreciate receiving soaps handmade by you as wedding favors instead of something you ordered in bulk off the Internet? Despite being a free spirit by nature, your artistic eye is attentive to details and you appreciate the same dedication to craft in all your wedding vendors. Your ideal cake has a hand-painted watercolor drip design and painstakingly crafted sugar flowers that look real – but the love and artistry that went into making each and every petal and leaf makes you love them all the more!
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Brown Butter Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Alternate layers of Salted Caramel and fresh Raspberries
PHOTOGRAPHY: Kami Olavarria
MODERN + ELEGANT
You gravitate towards elegant simplicity in all facets of your life and your style can be described as chic and modern. A bride in this couple is more likely to don a sleek column dress than a mermaid gown or anything with a cathedral train. Choices for your reception venue might include a vineyard or winery, or stylish restaurant where buzzy food meets contemporary decor. Your dream cake would have smooth frosting and clean lines, gracefully appointed with a handsome flower and detailed with a little gold or copper leaf – just enough to add interest and draw the eye without being theatrical.
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Pistachio
FILLING SUGGESTION: Alternate layers of Chantilly and Lemon Curd
PHOTOGRAPHY: Sarah Sotro
You’re getting married because you want to express your commitment surrounded by the love of your family and friends – but not because you feel compelled to by any societal standards. As such, you plan to eschew any traditions that don’t serve a purpose or feel authentic to who you are as a couple. Perhaps you plan to enter the ceremony space together hand in hand while dressed in each other’s favorite colors! And sure, you want cake because who doesn’t love a good slice at a party? But you want a wedding cake that barely looks like a wedding cake – certainly not white or covered in ruffled buttercream. You’ll take a rich, decadent triple tier chocolate cake large enough to feed all your guests, with each tier frosted and decorated in a new and exciting way because THIS is what a celebration looks like to you!
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Chocolate Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Alternate layers of Salted Dark Chocolate Ganache and Milk Chocolate Mousse
PHOTOGRAPHY: Tyler Chase
FEMININE + MODERN
For the bride who was a girly girl throughout her childhood and grew up to embrace modern femininity. Perhaps you’re inclined towards a traditionally femme style and color palette for your wedding, incorporating pink, blush, peach, cream, and lots and lots of flowers! However, as much as you enjoy a feminine romantic style, you also don’t want a Barbie Doll wedding and fear looking like a 1950s housewife planned your event. There will be no lace doilies or food platters dripping in Swarovski crystals for you. A white cake with a marble tier and pale gold trim has a stylish modern-meets-classic vibe, while softly cascading flowers down one side exudes whimsical romance.
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Almond Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Fresh Strawberries
PHOTOGRAPHY: Victoria Gold
You epitomize easy breezy beach vibes and feel happiest lying on white sands, taking a dip in the salty ocean, or strolling down the boardwalk hand in hand with your love. Your wedding is the epitome of coastal chic – whether it’s a destination wedding in the Maldives, on a home town beach, or at a sailing club. It’s natural, therefore, that your wedding colors reflect your love of the sea, with shades of blue, aqua, turquoise, and oyster shell accents. Your cake should match, with hints of pale blue painted to look like splashes of water, silver leaf “foam” accents, and sea glass for a cake topper!
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Coconut Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Honey
PHOTOGRAPHY: Daniel Cruz
If you had it your way, you may have gone to City Hall to get married and called it a day. Spending tens of thousands of dollars to say “I Do” and feed dozens of acquaintances and distant relatives your parents insisted on inviting would not be your ideal way to spend money you’d prefer to invest in a house. But since you’re here, doing this thing, and paying for it, you’re going to get the best bang for your buck! If you’re looking for a way to impress your guests and create an Instagrammable wedding without blowing the bank, you might want to consider a rustic naked or semi-naked cake instead of fondant or even full buttercream. The look is always stylish and fun without looking like the couple is trying too hard. And because the baker uses less buttercream to frost the cake, and less time (than they would need for say, fondant or a complex buttercream pattern or piping), these cakes typically cost less and can be decorated cheaply and STUNNINGLY with fresh blooms!
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Maple Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Earl Grey Cream
PHOTOGRAPHY: Matthew David Studio
Less is more, not because you’re broke or cheap, but because you like how it makes you feel – fresh, unencumbered, peaceful, and free. You’re an avid fan of Marie Kondo – and if you haven’t actually read her books, you’ve probably heard of her and thought she sounded rad. Your wedding will resemble your life (or at least, how you aspire to lead your life) and contain very little clutter. Ideally, it will be a zen space where, free of unnecessary decor and hundreds of wasteful flowers, your love for each other can truly shine and take centerstage. Similarly, your wedding cake will be kept simple, as you have no need for cake toppers, piping, ruffles, ribbons, faux woodland creatures, and flowers – fresh, sugar or otherwise. To spark joy, you might request the frosting be made in your favorite color!
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: White Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Key Lime Curd
PHOTOGRAPHY: Stephanie Weber
After you say “I do”, you will spend your wedding simply counting down the minutes till you can hit the dance floor! Every guest in attendance is anticipating a fiesta in the highest degree. Knowing the couple, why would they expect any less? You are known for your fun-loving spirit, dynamic energy, and being the life of the party. Naturally, your cake is bound to be a little crazy and bring the wow factor. Being a social butterfly, your wedding will be huge and so will the cake, with a towering number of tiers. You’re not afraid of color or of incorporating interesting geometric shapes, patterns, and other eye-catching decorative elements either. A risk taker, perhaps you might find a wedding baker whose style and artistry you trust and admire, and simply let them go wild and surprise you!
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Funfetti Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Alternating layers of Dulce de Leche and Cereal Milk Cream
PHOTOGRAPHY: Victoria Gold
You’re a city slicker who likes the finer luxuries in life. You cannot understand why anyone would want to have a rustic wedding in a barn when this is the one major life event where you get to throw yourself the fanciest ball you’ve ever dreamed of. It’s white tie or die, and your guests will dine on caviar and oysters while sipping on Dom! Thankfully, glam does not have to equal tacky or dated when one avoids choosing only shiny/flashy decor items that supposedly scream “luxury” – instead, opting for a more understated old world glamor in the vein of The Great Gatsby or the golden age of Hollywood. Likewise, instead of picking a flashy 8-tier cake covered from top to bottom in gold leaf, pearls, complex buttercream patterns, and 500 large cascading sugar roses, go for an art deco design or a more modern style of cake that looks sleek, chic, and luxurious. More importantly, your discerning guests will ultimately remember how lavish your cake was by how it tasted, so you’ll want to ensure that your high-end baker isn’t just adept at cake decoration. Your fancy $15 to $25 a slice wedding cake had better be the most delicate, moist, creamy, and sumptuous piece of confectionery that every touched your lips!
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Champagne Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Pink Champagne Cream
PHOTOGRAPHY: Villa Visuals
You’re a traveling couple and your social media is plastered with photos of the both of you in exotic locations all over the globe, from Argentina to Nairobi. In fact, you’re probably having a destination wedding somewhere lush and tropical like Tulum or Bali, where the weather is sunny and gorgeous, your guests will have an amazing time, and the resort is probably equipped with the sort of spas you might require after the stress of wedding planning (and before you set off on your month-long honeymoon)! Pick a cake that reflects the local flavors and flora to immerse your guests in the destination wedding experience. They didn’t travel halfway around the world just to eat red velvet cake. Of course, if that’s your favorite cake and you won’t settle for anything else, don’t let that stop you! But always remember to incorporate a taste of local flavor into your destination wedding in some way so that your friends and family don’t feel like they spent more than a thousand dollars to see you get married inside a hotel ballroom in Thailand that resembled, exactly, a wedding inside a hotel ballroom in America.
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Coconut Cake or Pandan Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Passionfruit Curd
PHOTOGRAPHY: Victoria Gold
You’re not much into vintage trends or the folksy aesthetic, but you don’t identify with traditional elegance or glamor either. You’re a tech lady/guy living in an electronic world – whether it’s your actual job or you’re just really into science fiction, video games, computers, or electronic music. Purple uplighting is cool in your books, and you think it might be kind of awesome if there was a kaleidoscope projector at your wedding reception dance party. Your wedding look was always going to be hard for you until you realized no one was stopping you from doing whatever you wanted. Except you know, maybe Mom, who insisted you buy that dress/suit/uncomfortable garter because it’s “traditional”. Still, they’re just clothes and surely not as important as the CAKE! And the cake decision is yours. All yours. So you get to tell the baker all about the tech-inspired cake of your dream that’s just a little bit sci-fi, just a little bit rave party, just a little bit cake from the future.
CAKE FLAVOR SUGGESTION: Coffee Marble Cake
FILLING SUGGESTION: Espresso Cream
PHOTOGRAPHY: Gene Kang
JUST NOT A CAKE PERSON
Don’t worry, it happens. Our deepest condolences but sometimes, the love affair with cake does not work out for everyone. This Leilani bride, for example, had a Croquembouche! Other cake alternatives include cheese wheels (stacked up and decorated with fruit or flowers to resemble a wedding cake), wedding pie towers, doughnut wedding cakes, macaron towers, watermelons carved to look like cakes, etc. You may also offer guests a dessert table instead of a wedding cake – and with a good spread and variety, you’ll certainly hear no complaints from anyone!