Photography: Bryan Gardner1 of 18
Complementing Cake Stands
Finding just the right plate for your wedding cake can be tricky. This bevy of 11 options from colorful to classic makes spotlighting your sweetest treat a piece of...well, you know.
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Lollipop Cake Decor
Photography: Johnny Miller3 of 18
Pinwheel Cake Topper
These pinwheels may look origami-grade complicated, but they’re really a breeze to craft.
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Early summer is the best time to choose a cake like this one, brimming with a fresh and varied assortment of the season's best berries.
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Bow Wedding Cake
Attach tiny bows to pieces of floral wire, and affix them to a white layer cake (remove them before slicing). Top it off with a larger version complete with flowing tails.
You'll Need: Mokuba New York 7mm embroidery ribbon ER 1540 and 20mm silk taffeta ribbon (for topper) #1549 (212-869-8900).
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Butterfly Wedding Cake
Pretty fabric butterflies transform a plain-Jane cake into a marvelous tiered wonder -- and there's nary a pastry tip in sight.
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Personalized Cake Topper
Celebrate your new name by crowning a simple cake with a sophisticated script initial covered with gilded trim. Complete the look by attaching matching braid to the tiers' edges with dots of royal icing.
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Banners that top individual wedding cakes bear a reminder of an enduring tradition without which no union would be complete: vows. Make extra banners -- they are quite fragile.
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Convey your love by spelling it out atop your cake, as we've done with these alphabet blocks that look charming, not childlike.
Photography: Grant Peterson10 of 18
Fluffy, snow-white meringue tops the layers of this cake. Unbaked meringue holds its shape well when piped; a large star tip (Ateco No. 869) was used to form these fluted peaks.
Meringue not only looks lovely, it tastes delicious, especially when flavored with a few drops of vanilla extract or orange-blossom water. (A pale or clear flavoring works best because it won't mar the pure white of the meringue.)
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This cake is as magical as the season's first flurry. Snowflakes made from royal icing are miniature at the top of the cake and larger at the bottom, giving the impression of a gracefully drifting snowfall. The tiers are frosted smoothly with Swiss meringue to resemble tightly packed snow.
Photography: Jonathon Lovekin12 of 18
Pair of Doves Cake Topper
A pair of white doves adorns a traditional wedding cake. This millinery pair perches on a beaded birdbath -- they are framed by an arbor of cotton lily of the valley and silk maidenhair fern, motifs repeated in the royal icing on the cake.
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Autumn Wedding Cake
Premade decorations dress up a wedding cake in an instant. Embellishments are crafted from gum paste or marzipan and painted with food-safe paint. Have your baker make a plain cake (this one is a basic three-layer cake topped with fondant) to use as a canvas for an assortment of adornments, which can be attached with royal icing. Piped trim at the base of each tier provides decoration.
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The traditional princess cake, an old Swedish wedding standby, is normally covered in green marzipan. In our decidedly floral interpretation of the confection, we cloaked the dome-shaped cake in pink fondant and topped it with a smattering of real cherry blossoms, some of which have been coated with sugar. If you're having a sizable wedding, consider serving a trio of cakes on stands of varying heights for an especially striking display.
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DIY Wedding Cake Stand
Although modern wedding cakes come in every shape, size, and flavor (vegan chocolate, anyone?), the stands that support them have mostly stayed in the bland category. Why not break the mold and create your own? It'll be a piece of cake!
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Photography: Dana Gallagher16 of 18
Snowy Pinecone Wedding Cake
Fondant that has been tinted ice blue blankets this cake like snow in the shadows cast by a winter sun. Real pinecones flecked with royal icing glistening with sanding sugar are accented with finely wrought chocolate pine needles; they add a natural-looking texture to the cake's modern lines.
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Greenery Wedding-Cake Garland
Store-bought accents are an easy, inexpensive way to dress up a plain wedding cake. This wired faux-boxwood garland from Bell'occhio, for example, is easily bent into swags and a wreath topper.
Have your caterer create a basic cake (ours is covered with textured fondant icing and piped royal-icing details), and affix the garland with dabs of royal icing. Form a wreath with more of the trim, keeping extra on the end to wrap around a wooden skewer; insert the skewer in the cake's top tier and add a dainty ribbon bow.
Photography: Annie Schlechter18 of 18
Jeweled Cake Stand
Glass cake stands sparkle with bands of beads used for chandeliers. Here, each tier displays a different method for hanging the beads, all of which combine satin ribbon and double-sided tape for easy application. Use the embellished stands to display treats at a wedding or shower.