When it comes to creating one-of-a-kind designs, inspiration is key. I try to keep an open mind with all aspects of life, as beauty, design patterns, and cake concepts can sometimes be found in the most unusual of places. Typically, I find inspiration for cakes in stationary, party decor, seasonal flowers, and creative color palettes. When toying with new designs and concepts, I tend to favor my chic, feminine style. In the end, my favorite designs end up being inspired by fashion.
There are so many aspects of fashion that are influential to cake design. As clothing is forever evolving, endless trends can be created out of sugar to keep up with the fashion world. Colors, patterns, shapes, embellishments, and fabrics are all up for consideration. Within the world of fashion, wedding dresses are in a class of their own. A wedding dress can be the perfect muse for any cake designer. From silky satin to soft organza, elegant pearls to sparkling crystals, and hand-crafted lace to intricate ruffles- all elements are just begging to be translated into sugar.
It is widely agreed upon that the most memorable aspects of a wedding are The Dress and The Cake. As a cake designer myself, I obviously support this sentiment. But then I must ask, why not combine to two? Okay- so a bride willing to wear an edible gown might be hard to come by, but why not mimic your dress in cake?
Many of my brides come to their consultations unsure of their cake design. Since most are not bakers, artists, nor know the limitations (or lack there of) of sugar, I help guide them through the design process to come up with a couture cake that they love. To demonstrate some of the latest trends in fashion and their translation into cake, I created a series of wedding dress inspired cakes.
I personally love detail, embellishments, and cakes that make a statement. I am a believer that one of our cakes can be a centerpiece of any event. For this series, simple and plain were not in the cards. I don’t typically consider myself a girly-girl, but when it comes to wedding dresses, I love elaborate detail, feminine silhouettes, appliqués, and glitz. I chose three designer wedding dresses to mimic for these couture wedding dress cakes.
First up, I chose an ultra feminine A-line dress from designer Judd Waddell’s collection. From the swirling ruffles, satiny pleats, and ribbon detail, this dress has a classic silhouette with a modern twist. It is wonderfully wearable, without being too over-the-top. Although Waddell’s philosophy is generally based on basic designs, this dress is anything but ordinary. On the cake, I started by mimicking the bodice. Fondant pleats create a soft “V” and waistband, finished with a ribbon sash and bow. Intricate, double-ruffles swirl around the bottom third tier to create the dress’s skirt.
Straight off the runway, the second cake was inspired by Lazaro’s Fall 2012 collection. This dramatic ball gown is pure elegance. Known for his fanciful embroidery and beading, this dress is classic Lazaro. I was particularly drawn to the beaded scallops of the bodice. Their resemblance to sequins definitely inspired the top tier of this cake. To reflect the intricate beading and detail, I created a mixture of clear and gold sanding sugars and sugar pearls to coat these edible sequins. A ruffled fondant skirt finishes off the cake. Both cake and dress are clearly appropriate for any bride that wants to make a statement on her big day.
My favorite dresses of the past few seasons have evolved into the signature style of Monique Lhuillier. I found inspiration from several of her gowns and their contemporary, chic skirts. Lhuillier tends to use traditional fabrics and concepts but transforms them with modern silhouettes and cuts. Whether floral, embroidered, or origami-like, Lhuilleir’s full, A-line skirts are a dream! For the last cake in my dress-inspired collection, I hand-carved a sweetheart neckline into the rolled fondant icing. The skirt portion was created with a collage of fabric-like flowers and fondant ribbon rosettes. The entire cake shimmers with super-pearl luster dust.