To create this modern floral cake, we used a cutter to create a profusion of tulip petals out of gum paste, shaped them into three dimensions using a tiny ball-shaped tool, and attached them to a base of pink fondant. Each row of petals is just a whisper darker than the preceding one for an ombre effect. The square tiers are separated by tiny risers to let the petals hang over the edges.
The legendary Venetian fabric house of Fortuny first produced this glamorous pattern, called "Granada," in the 1950s, but it's so timeless that it remains a top seller today. To translate it into sugar and flour, two shades of fondant were blended—a pale pink and a rosy peach—to mimic the marbled appearance that hand-dyed cotton takes on in the light. Then, royal icing was spread over stencils of the pattern's sinuous floral design and painted it with edible luster dust mixed with lemon extract.
Your cake will be pretty in pink with these lovely layers inspired by the equally lovely camelia flower. The tiers were created by laying a custom stencil by Designer Stencils on the fondant; royal icing was then spread over it. Once dry, the reliefs were rubbed with edible pearl dust tinted with gold-green luster dust to make them glitter. M&S Schmalberg created the flowers used in the bouquet topper.
Fauchon's monogrammed pink pastry boxes, or boites roses, are interpreted in tinted white chocolate; the cake itself is vanilla sponge with strawberry syrup and mousse. Almond macaroons in raspberry, chocolate, pistachio, and passion fruit are piled on and around the tiers.
This happy rose confection may look couture, but just about anyone is capable of re-creating it. Start with a plain fondant cake from a bakery. Next, print out our template of abstract roses, place parchment paper over it, and trace with a piping bag of royal icing. Once dry, peel the paper from the piped roses, and adhere the designs to the cake using gum paste that's been mixed with hot water.
The spirit of a century-old French silk ribbon can be felt in every bite of this darling cake. On top rests a dramatic bow of molded gum paste (so realistic, you'll be tempted to untie it). Then we painted edible luster dust mixed with lemon extract onto the fondant in a rose pattern that evokes the blurry quality of an ikat weave.
Smooth poppies and white-on-white patterns cover a square cake with cropped corners; gossamer ribbon brings out a hint of green in the fondant blanketing its tiers. The flowers were made using floodwork: A border was outlined and then filled in with royal icing, which has a fluid consistency. The blooms were transferred to fondant panels, which were then applied to the sides of the cake.
Textiles -- whether found in upholstery or clothing -- are a rich resource for colors, patterns, and textures appropriate for this celebratory treat. Here, the cakemaker used a set of stencils to give royal icing on fondant-covered layers the look of old-world damask. The fresh color palette and the modern way the cake sits flush with the edges of its acrylic cake board shake up the ornate look.
This elegant cake features sugary versions of the defining piece of jewelry from this period -- the cameo. They're unabashedly sentimental, especially when they bear the profiles of you and your fiance and the message "Me & Thee." Pressed into fondant using custom rubber stamps, ringed with shimmering candy pearls, and dangled from real ribbons, these adornments grace the brown-sugar marble cake with edible poetry.
Pale pink and undeniably dreamy, this buttercream creation couldn't be more enchanting. The cake's magnolia blossoms were shaped from gum paste and rendered lifelike with edible paint. Then they were attached with cloth-coated wire. For guaranteed love at first bite, choose vanilla-bean cake with praline filling.
Most confections show their stripes only after they've been cut. This one from M. Robin Cakes gets the point across sans knife. Wondering where the frosting is hiding? The answer is inside. The outer layers of sponge cake are filled with mousses of different flavors, such as passion fruit and white chocolate. To drive the design home, display your dessert alongside flutes of bubbly, alternating Champagne with rose.
Working with designer Denise Sharp, we took poetic license with Elizabeth Barrett Browning's famed love sonnet, quoting it on this cake. Sharp's calligraphed paper garlands—dotted with ribbon flowers and bows, and adhered with royal icing—and paper bands encircle fondant tiers that graduate from rosy pink to paler pink on top. The bands are layered over satin ribbon and scalloped cardboard trim wrapped with embroidery floss. A crepe-paper bouquet on a fondant disk is the crown.
To mimic the tactile quality of Victorian ribbon embroidery for a cake, Ron Ben-Israel marshaled all of the ardent attention to detail of the era's seamstresses, shaping sugar-paste carnations by hand before affixing them to the sides of three fondant-covered tiers. Tucked between the sumptuous carnation-bedecked layers are two shorter tiers decorated with icing and sugar-paste flowers and stems.
Three square tiers, draped in pale-pink fondant, are embellished with a sparkling array of trims and ribbons. This is an easy, inexpensive way to turn a plain cake into a gilded confection. Here, trims of varying widths and designs are combined. The widest ribbon and heaviest cord are reserved for the bottom layer to give the cake a regal finish. The topper is made of three nesting boxes, each edged in gold ribbon, tied up like a parcel from an elegant boutique.
Highly detailed wooden springerle molds are traditionally used in cookie making; here, a selection of botanically themed ones were pressed into white fondant, which was then cut to the right size with cookie cutters. The resulting plaques were attached to the fondant bands on the tiers with royal icing. The bands themselves were attached to the cake with gum glue; royal icing created a picot edge. As a final flourish, delicate vines, leaves, and berries were piped onto the tiers in royal icing.
In the charlotte, featherlight ladyfingers surround a filling of raspberry mousse, raspberries, and fraises des bois, or wild strawberries, on soft almond biscuits. More berries and a drizzle of raspberry preserve crown the tiers. The baker's signature ribbon is wrapped around each tier, but a ribbon with the bride and groom's names would be a fitting substitute. Like all the best French pastries, the charlotte is at once light and rich.