For these fabric-like confections, one professional baker used textile-based muses.
Beautiful fabrics are found throughout weddings. They make up fashion items, like wedding and bridesmaids' dresses, and décor elements, like table linens. Brides and grooms choose the specific designs they'll used based on their texture and adornments; lush materials and intricate embellishments help to set the vibe for a gorgeous big day.
Textiles can be so lovely, they had us wondering: What if wedding cakes followed their lead? Instead of drawing inspiration from nature, for example, what if cake bakers used fabrics as their muses? Celebrity chef and cake designer Ron Ben-Israel helped us answer those questions. Working with him, we dreamt up the prettiest fabric-inspired desserts, styled in ways worthy of mimicking for your wedding.
Not all of the following ideas pull from wedding dresses, but many do. Other sweets take a broader approach, looking to classic fashion textiles (but not necessarily those used in wedding dresses) like cotton and leather. There are nods to clothing-making techniques like knitting and embroidering, creative incorporations of iconic prints, and bridal accessory-influenced sweets as well. There are even desserts that aren't style-inspired—one's based off of a table runner!
Ahead, a collection of some truly exceptional wedding cakes. They come in different flavors, sport different colors, and resemble different things, but they all have a few things in common. First, they're insanely unique. Second, they're impressively executed. Third, they're perfectly delicious. Before you plan your confection, consider these fabulous designs, or look to your event's own fabrics for something extra one-of-a-kind and unforgettable.
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This dessert, surrounded by bowls of snowy-white sweets, will warm your heart at a cold winter's fête. To give fondant the look of soft Scandinavian-style sweaters, Ron Ben-Israel used two methods: He pressed the fondant into molds created from actual sweaters (top tiers), and he braided thick strands (bottom tier).
Photography: Ngoc Mihn Ngo3 of 8
In Full Bloom
The rich texture of a floral silk-brocade table runner comes to life on this cake. "The process [of weaving] is ancient," says Ben-Israel. "It gives the weft a 3-D effect." To re-create that in icing, decorative rose-gold blooms were molded into appliqués. They flutter down the sides of the petal-shaped blush-fondant surface, accompanied by "Miss Daisies"—fondant-covered cream puffs from Bouchon Bakery.
Photography: Ngoc Mihn Ngo4 of 8
Into the Fold
Elizabethan formality, meet high fashion. Fans of very thin, accordion-folded fondant undulate across this all-white stunner—for a look that's edgy, chic, and classic at the same time. "Pleating is eternal," says Ben-Israel. "The diagonal placement creates drama, interest, and flow, as well as softening the lines."
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Talk about a blank canvas—fondant gets painted with fields of lush wild flowers conjured by an iconic Liberty print. Each blossom is hand-rendered with edible food paint in dusty blush, peach, coral, and cream for a garden-wedding-worthy watercolor effect.
American Heirloom "Stout" Cake Stand, $50, aheirloom.com
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Photography: Ngoc Mihn Ngo6 of 8
Delicate open-weave cotton can be alluring and sweet all at once. With its bands of eyelet and broderie anglaise, this lace-look dessert channels that spirit. Ben-Israel hand-cut holes in a variety of classical patterns with a craft knife before affixing each strip of fondant to the cake, using royal icing to "embroider" the edges of the openings with a detailed stitching effect. "I wanted each piece to feel light and airy and handmade," he says. You can almost picture the cloth billowing in the breeze.
Couzon "Silhouette Satin" Cake Server, $75, jungleeny.com
Photography: Ngoc Mihn Ngo7 of 8
For the ultimate wedding-day (or shower) accessory, consider the confectionery equivalent of Chanel's legendary flap bag. A tracing wheel was used to simulate quilted leather on fondant; a metallic fondant chain added a jewelry-like aesthetic. "I wanted to juxtapose a clean feeling with the puffiness of the leather," says Ben-Israel.
West Elm Rose-Gold Cake-and-Knife Set, $49, westelm.com.
Photography: Ngoc Mihn Ngo8 of 8
As on a shimmering red-carpet gown, the rose-hued metallic sequins that trail down this fondant cake catch the eye—and steal the show. "The execution was simple, but the process was very labor-intensive," says Ben-Israel, who began by hand-cutting circles of sugar paste, and then allowed them to curl while drying, before fastening them in place with frosting. "The top tier is more concentrated—then the paillettes cascade down to introduce depth and movement."