Wedding cake trends: Unique is key
BY NICOLE MARSHALL MIDDLETON World Scene Writer
Sunday, March 03, 2013
3/03/13 at 7:08 AM
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Pearls, lace, animal print and big sugar flowers are hot trends for wedding cakes, local bakers and sugar artists say.
And the more unique the cake is, the better.
Kerry Vincent, founder of the Oklahoma State Sugar Art Show, has seen many trends come and go during her time overseeing the Grand National Wedding Cake Competition here. Vincent is also a judge on "Food Network Challenge."
"Everyone wants something edgy and unusual," Vincent said. "They are all looking for something different these days."
Lately, Vincent said there is a huge emphasis on patterns that replicate animal skins, such as snake, giraffe and leopard. For one cake, Vincent replicated a python skin using a handbag as a pattern.
"You want it to have that kind of skin effect, without it looking like actual skin, because who wants to eat snake skin?" Vincent said.
Fantasy flowers made with sugar gum paste are also in style, yet the flowers often have creative designs and textures that are not botanically correct, she said.
"Before, everyone wanted to have a rose on their cake, but it had to look like a rose ... a rose is a rose, is a rose," Vincent said. "But now, there is more of a fine art approach."
Brides have increasingly sought cakes that stand out from the rest, said Erin King, manager at Icing on the Top, 111 W. Fifth St.
"People are straying away from the traditional. They like a lot of texture, fondant work and piping," King said
Ruffles, lace and shiny gold details are also popular.
And the groom's cakes have become a fun way to "bring out the groom's personality," King said, including interests such as comic books, sports and music.
The flavors can also be creative, King said.
"We do a lot of different flavors. With a four-tiered cake, we can do four different flavors," she said.
The color of the cake itself can offer a surprise that contrasts to the inside.
"We have done a few tie-dyed cakes recently. The outside can be very traditional and the inside is tie-dyed many different colors."
Brooches, edible pearls and bling are also in style for wedding cakes in the past few years, said Shannon Harris, of Ann's Bakery, 7 N. Harvard Ave. The bakery, now in its 75th year in Tulsa, makes an average of about 10 to 12 wedding cakes a week, she said.
But the "shabby chic, vintage" look for cakes also is popular. She described this "rustic look" as a texturing technique they use with buttercream.
And brides are getting a lot of their inspiration from the online pin board Pinterest, Harris said.
Although most brides are leaving the cake-making to the professionals, they have found ways to personalize their cakes with handmade touches.
"They are bringing in toppers that they have ordered from Etsy, or the DIY brides have brought in ones they have hand made," Harris said.
Vincent believes that up until about a decade ago, cakes were not as unique as they are now. But the impact of Food Network shows, magazines that feature wedding cakes and her own national wedding cake competition have inspired brides to seek something new.
Cakes designers are even choosing to mix buttercream with fondant designs, she said.
"There is absolutely no reason why you can't mix and match. Everybody should have the cake you want, not the cake that is forced upon you," Vincent said.
She emphasized that one thing she "absolutely loathes" is feathers on cakes. She has even banned them from the Sugar Art Show, citing the health hazard.
Fun With Sugar event
Before wedding season gets under way, brides can check out current trends from award-winning cake designers, and cake designers can gather new ideas before the competition season begins.
Fun With Sugar is set for 2-5 p.m. April 14 at Central Park Hall on the Tulsa State Fairgrounds.
The event is a fundraiser for the Oklahoma State Sugar Art Show, said founder Kerry Vincent.
Register by April 1.
For more info, go to tulsaworld.com/sugarartshow
Original Print Headline: Cake trends: Unique is best
Nicole Marshall Middleton 918-581-8459
Big sugar flowers are a hot trend for wedding cakes, as shown on this cake by the team at Icing On The Top. Ace Cuervo Photography, LLC
"Before, everyone wanted to have a rose on their cake, but it had to look like a rose ... a rose is a rose, is a rose. But now, there is more of a fine art approach," Kerry Vincent says. Courtesy