Written By: Shelby Smith, owner of Baking On The Bayou
The design process of a cake is strenuous and has many concepts that go into it, much like a model on a fashion runway. Elements that a Pastry Chef must analyze to have a successful product are: theming, sizing, and coloring, designing, and sparkling. The cake is on track to hit the spotlight wherever that may take it.
-The first step is making sure the cake fits the party theme. Although the act of creating a masterpiece takes time, designing it beforehand is the most crucial step. Decorators have to keep in mind shapes, sizes, textures, and colors.
-The second step is the internal design. It is extremely common to have pipes, metal rods, or wood to provide structure to an "out-of-the-box" cake; this takes time and trial and error to perfect. Wedding cakes require proper boards to hold each cake together as well as doweling material. If these are not present, cakes get bulges, lopsided, and messy. The most important part of internal design is the taste! Moistness, lightness, and flavors that rock taste buds are important to have in any cake; it may look good but it is no use if it does not taste good.
-The Third step in creating a cake masterpiece is baking, making fillings, and completing design work. This involves making and coloring fondant or icing, prepping cake boards, and cutting fondant designs. The cake is ready to be completed with your work once baked, stacked, iced, or coveted in fondant.
-Once cakes are completed it is necessary to get a professional photo which is step four. Taking pictures of cakes that the decorator would like to make again is the way to go. Through this picture is where he or she is able to market themselves out to future projects and customers.
-Step five is no less important than the rest. Delivering the cake and impressing people as well as providing top notch service is what drives that customer back or gains new customers.
These steps relate to a fashion show in similar ways:
Designing Show Theme
Impressions and Returning Audience
Cake and Fashion shows are fun to enjoy but require a great deal of work. The work designers put into each piece are worth it when they see bright, smiling faces next to their shining star!
By Kyleen Kiger-Smith, owner of Fairy Dust Cakes
Not every bride is concerned with what is trending. In fact some brides prefer to not be in vogue; the truly unique bride. For those brides planning a 2016 wedding you should already be finger swiping deep in Pinterest pinning for your once in a lifetime wedding day. A wedding is a milestone in which will be shared with friends and family. The bride and groom have this one chance to present their flair for the event. Trends do come and go but have proven, at least for cake designers, that what you see on the New York runway will indeed reflect in the styles of cake for tomorrow.
Metallic cakes are trendy now and into 2016. This gleaming style will be here for a while. Brides are now wearing gold shoes and champagne colored bridal gowns. Of course it has found its way to beautify the solid white traditional cake. It started with the rhinestone ribbon. Yes, you remember that ribbon. The rhinestone ribbon on a roll that you can find in any craft or fabric store. Brides have been using it on all their décor for years. Brides have demanded something bold and dramatic. Well there is nothing more vivid than a tier of cake beaming in luxurious 23k gold. Your guests are going to go “Wow! I can eat gold? I want some of THAT cake!!” There is such a demand for gold right now that suppliers are having a hard time keeping up with the bakeries demand for food grade 23k gold powders and gilding sheets. You are seeing brides using metallic colors like champagne, rose gold and silver in every aspect of their décor. From sequin table linens, brooch bouquets and pewter bridesmaid gowns, metallic is a color and is welcomed with open arms by wedding stylist and brides alike.
Well, you can’t have metallic without the bling. Sparkle cakes are twinkling the bride’s eye. Diamonds, sequins, gems and glitter are what a third of all the future brides of 2016 are requesting. Small metallic candy beads come in many shapes, colors and sizes. Gems molds and premade sugar rhinestones are readily available for your cake artist to arrange in a pattern to mimic your veil or dress. You could go for the fully encrusted sequin look, which is a personal favorite, or the delicate touches of candied pearls placed sporadically amongst the piped scroll details. Bling doesn’t have to come in an edible medium. Brides love to use rhinestone brooches and hand beaded ribbon to dress their cake. Don’t forget to set the stage for your wedding cake centerpiece; a dangling gem pedestal cake stand will do the trick. Most venues use spotlighting to show off your chosen ornamental confection. So all that sparkle and shine can be enjoyed by all your patrons.
Sugar flowers are nothing new. Flowers have been complementing wedding cakes for decades. Usually they have been placed in addition to the main cake design. Sometimes they sweep across the cake, climb up the side on branches or vines and even individual petals covering entire tiers for a very stylized texture. Individual petal designs can be found complementing the most posh of couture gowns, so it is only natural to adorn the cake. Sugar flowers can be molded and painted to look like it was just plucked from the bush or very bold with sugar gems and button centers. Hundreds of tiny flowers clustered over a tall tier or one gigantic flower placed strategically to one side of the cake will make a daring statement.
Hand painted cakes are totally unique and are going to be bigger than ever next year. With brides wanting that “wow factor”, some may seek out the cake artist that can use the paint brush just as easily as a spatula. Hand painting in food coloring on a fresh butter cream or fondant canvas is an exclusive experience shared between cake artist and the bride extraordinaire. Those brides that do not want the same look as the next collaborate with their cake artist to portray their style all on its own. Some may chose a water color wash, a motif from their invitations or even an abstract of its own accord. Your cake could have your guest wondering “How did they make this cake?”
Rustic cakes have been a favorite here in the South. Many brides want to bring the feel of flora and fauna into their wedding. Growing popularity is the Naked Cake. Yes, a cake with no frosting on the outside to shield the viewer’s eyes from seeing exposed layers of cake and gooey filling. This style has a homemade feel and budget friendly, but has a downside. The cake layers can tend to get dry if made to early and frankly some guest love the cake for its sugary sheath of frosting; more icing for me please. Either way with or without frosting, these cakes are trimmed with bountiful fruits and seasonal flowers. Who would say “no” to a cake covered in fresh berries and sprigs of mint? Not I. A slab of wood or an old suitcase to rest the cake upon really sets the stage for this rustic chic style. So if you have been dreaming of lace doilies, a few old books and tea cups filled with fresh herbs as centerpieces for your garden inspired wedding, this style is for you.
Texture has been fashionable and still will be top next year. Cake designs have gotten creative with the spatula lately; spreading the butter cream icing into many patterns of swirls, lines and even Stucco spackled patterns. Ruffles can really add femininity and volume. Fondant can be cut and layered into pretty pleats and ruching to resemble the bride’s dress. The fondant can also be crimped or embossed with texturing tools of geometric patterns following fashion runway looks.
Lace has been sought after by brides for a while now. Lace styles and techniques in which the cake artist has applied these delicate designs have evolved over the years. Lace isn’t considered frumpy or old fashioned. In fact lace designs resembling the bride’s dress is the most requested by our brides. The bride’s dress reflects her style. It is one of the most important elements of her wedding. The cake can capture the luxurious lace pattern of her dream dress in sugary sweet artistry. The lace can be mimicked in hand painting, piping in icing and molded from fondant or sugar paste. Delicate piped eye lash lace can border your cake tiers or for a dramatic statement fondant corded lace can cover an entire tier. These lace patterns can take it up a notch by embellishments of sugar pearls, edible glitters and luster painted highlights.
With so many ways to decorate a cake, how is a bride to choose? I say bring your Pinterest ideas to your wedding stylist, coordinator, florist and definitely your baker. These professionals will be able to cull through your pins very quickly and find your style popping through.
Written By: Ashley Holden, owner of N-Joy! Weddings & Events | Photo Credit: Carolynn Siebert Photograpy
Monograms are as essential as air to girls in the South. It is very likely that as soon as your mother got the news that her bundle of joy was going to be a girl, the very first thing ever bought for you was something pink…and monogrammed. And so begins a lifetime of having your initials on everything imaginable. It is not only a rite of passage in the South; it is one of our most sacred traditions. It only makes sense to carry this tradition on to a particular point in your life where tradition reigns supreme- a southern girl’s wedding day. I have to say, I was no exception. In fact, one of the first gifts I received (literally within a few hours of being proposed to) was a bracelet with a heart charm between two initials, an ‘A’ and a ‘J’ for Ashley and Jeremiah. It was given to me by two of my girls who happened to be one of my Bridesmaids and my Maid of Honor. I’m almost certain I’ve worn it every day since. Oh and let’s not forget the white clutch with what would become my NEW monogram with my married last initial. That was one of my favorite gifts my whole engagement!
Southern brides don’t stop at bridesmaid’s gifts. Oh no, they stay committed the whole way through and this includes the wedding day. It starts with invitations and the theme is carried on through things like personalized signs, cocktail napkins, wedding cake toppers, GOBOS , favors and the list goes on. Once again, I was no exception. I used a monogram on our invitations and then used the same one on signage throughout the festivities starting with the rehearsal dinner and ending with the champagne brunch the morning after. One thing I do suggest with this is that you don’t use your married initial until after the actual ceremony. For example, I used our first initials on our pre-wedding items instead of my married last initial of ‘R’. Then on the cake, which wasn’t seen until after we said “I Do”, I let the new initial come out! I feel like it’s a little ceremonial and makes it extra special.
The really fun part comes after the wedding - using your new initials on EVERYTHING! A Southern girl’s dream; getting to start all over with the monogramming! Towels, table runners, garden flags, door mats, serving platters, new address stamps, stationery, barware and the like. For a while after the wedding, anything monogrammed becomes a go-to gift option from family and friends. The desire to have your new monogram on everything will die down eventually. That is, until the cycle starts again with a baby in the carriage!