Above is an illustration of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert’s wedding cake, made with the finest ingredients you could find in the Empire.

The then Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip’s wedding cake

Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge’s extraordinary wedding cake

This is a subject I truly enjoy! It is one of the best parts of organising a wedding, testing different cake samples!
There is a slight difference with traditions across the pond, here in England a traditional wedding cake is a three – five tiered fruit cake which is covered in marzipan and then thick white royal icing. In Italy it is much more traditional to have a flat sponge cake with Chantilly cream and fresh fruit on top. Sometimes there are tiered cakes but these tend to be on individual stands.
Having sampled both types I have to say they are both wonderful. Personally I’m not the biggest fan of fruit cake but this tradition has occurred as fruit cake lasts a long time. In England it is traditional to keep the top tier of a wedding cake and have it on the christening of your first child. There are variations on this tradition but the top tier is supposed to be kept, however I’m not sure many modern couples do this anymore.
The tradition of a wedding cake is said to have started in Ancient Rome where the groom would break bread over his bride to symbolize his dominance over her and their marriage. I, for one am glad we have moved on from this and actually the wedding cake has lovely symbols attached to it now. The colour white represents purity and the act of the couple cutting the cake is their first act together in their marriage. If a couple feeds each other some cake it represents their commitment to one another.
There are so many different options of what type of wedding cake you can have these days. I think it’s really nice to find a friend or family who may take on the challenge of making your cake, as this can be another personal touch for your wedding. If you can’t find anyone then there are plenty of good bakery’s and online stores that do fantastic cakes.
If you don’t already have a mood board of your ideas you can do one for your cake including decoration ideas and the style that you want. You can add pictures of cakes from around the world, some American ones or traditional English ones if that is the style that you choose.
If it is not traditional to have a tired cake and you want one it’s worth investigating how it is done, using rods and pillars to support the solid cardboard base of the cake is the best way. When the cake is being iced and decorated it is placed on a solid base, this is used when placing it on top of the larger cake beneath it. The cake below must have rods in place slightly protruding the top so the cake can sit on the rods and not the cake below. If you are going to use a bakery they will surely know how to produce this kind of tiered cake.
Even though there are some traditions I like to run a mile from there are some I think are sweet and the wedding cake is one I believe to be a lovely tradition that doesn’t need amending. By all means what the cake is made from is entirely up to you and the way it is decorated is your own idea. I just have to say that having lots of cupcakes as a wedding cake doesn’t seem to have the same effect in my opinion. Yes, cupcakes are cute and very much ‘in’ at the moment and I love them as much as the next person, but I can’t bare to see another wedding cake made up of hundreds of them. Having some to give to guests or as part of the reception is fine but a whole stack of them to have instead of a big cake is really really overdone and so unadventurous. Try out a new way to decorate a cake or the filling of it instead.

For the decoration of your wedding cake I have to say right now I’m loving fresh flowers on top and surrounding it. I love the tiered cakes and when they are more simple and elegant I think it makes a big impact. But really the decoration has to represent the theme and colour scheme of your wedding and maybe adding some personal touches is a good idea.

Some links:

Maisie Fantasie

Wedding cakes on stylemepretty.com