Fresh Flower Cakes and Bouquets

Martha Stewart Weddings, Spring 2003

Begin and end a wedding beautifully, with your favorite flowers showcased in creative ways: Make your grand entrance carrying a clutch of blooms you love, then send your guests off with sweet memories by displaying the same flowers on the tiers of your cake. Planning these two elements together lends a wedding a sense of continuity, and allows you to emphasize the style of the event in a vivid way. If, for example, you're having an outdoor garden wedding, lush pink roses in the bouquet and on the cake can provide just the right note of romance.

The bouquets shown here, which were designed by New York City florist Antony Todd, inspired our cakes. You can plan your creations the same way: Once you've decided with your florist which flowers you'll carry, talk to your baker about incorporating them into the cake design. Or you can work the other way: If you come across a floral cake you love, ask your florist to make a bouquet that goes with it.

Edible blossoms can be presented alongside each slice of cake as a garnish. If you decorate your cake with flowers that aren't edible, you'll need to take a few precautions: Use organically grown nontoxic flowers whenever possible, and remove them from the cake before serving it. Or ask your baker to arrange the blooms so that they won't touch the icing directly, by using clear acetate on top of the tiers, for example. Alternatively, a talented baker can often render blooms in icing or gum paste.

When using fresh flowers on your cake, it's best to leave them in water until an hour or two before the reception, so speak to your baker and florist about the logistics involved. This will help ensure that the blooms will look their freshest for their moment in the spotlight.

Parrot and Button Tulips
Chocolate Cosmos
Sweet Peas and Orchids
Garden Roses

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