Wedding Cake Trends 2014/2015

Nicolette van Niekerk
Selecting colours when planning a wedding, plays such an important role. Most of our decisions comes from it. From which flowers to choose (even though they could be out of season) to planning a bridesmaid’s dress. I’ve also seen some wedding venues which will offer the bride to choose their particular colour scheme for the interior of curtains,drapes or even specific chairs to tie in with her wedding colours. When you are a cake decorator or a chef like us, you will know that all these factors plays a big part when designing the cake or even choosing the menu. We tend to stay within the wedding trends that is set out for us. Colour scheme is only one part and design the other.I spent the past two months researching trends that influence wedding cakes, and can *maybe* give a little away about the the 2014/2015 trends that is coming our way.
Rose buttercream cake by: La Petite Patisserie Photo by: Debbie Lourens Photography

Rose buttercream cake by: La Petite Patisserie
Photo by: Debbie Lourens Photography

The Pantone colour of the year was announced as Radiant Orchid. I absolutely love this colour.For the sake of cakes, this was really great news. Not only could we colour the buttercream a bit darker, come up with beautiful sugar paste colours when making lilies and orchids, but with regards to food, berries could be used! Loads of it. Imagine a handful of mixed berries: Purples, pinks, brown, red and even green from the stems. These colours are now starting to make their way to next year’s prediction of which colour will be selected as the most fashionable. I created these images below to show what I mean.Interior designers are now also mentioning the colours for 2015 to be Burned red, Radiant orchid, Purples, Forest green, Celestial blue , Navy blue and  some metals like Gold. Teal and Coral are still favourite colours selected for wedding cakes this year so it will be interesting to see which colour will be #1 next year. Colours 2014 / 2015 Wedding Cake trends are also starting to turn around into something different and hardly seen in years! Fondant / Pettinice or plastic icing over cakes has been a trend for the last 8 – 10 years. We wrapped all our training courses around it, mastered making flowers from sugar paste, sculpted bridal figurines and even put it on cupcakes! Can I just say with a “big relief” that this is now phasing out. Although some weddings will still call out for fondant as it’s beautiful, white, satin-feel and smooth, most brides will be happy to know that they have more options to choose from when ordering their cakes from Cake Decorators or bakeries. I’ve now been preparing my students for this change during the last year or so, and therefor created more Certificate in Patisserie Studies classes in desserts so that they can be trained to offer more variety to their brides during a wedding cake consult. The latest style (and one that made it’s comeback now since the 80’s) are Buttercream Cakes. It shows new techniques such as scraping the buttercream, piping in patterns or simply add fresh flowers on it. I created this one to show the radiant orchid colour as part of this design.
Radiant Orchid Buttercream Cake

Radiant Orchid Buttercream Cake

  The “undressed” or naked cake showed to be a trend starting at some weddings. Not that popular yet, some brides do prefer this as part of a “rustic” and “earthy” feel wedding.Cakes usually have a thin layer of buttercream on, scraped off and left open to achieve this look. Fresh fruit/flowers are added on them.I’ve seen some in different heights or even tiers. These cakes would be perfect as part of a dessert table.
Yogurt and Fig (Undressed) Cake

Yogurt and Fig (Undressed) Cake

Fresh Dessert-style cakes could be anything from a Crepe Cake with berries, cream and honey to a Macaron tower (shown below).Cakes with fruit and nuts, berries and even some alcohol makes me think we are moving back to the very traditional fruit cake from when we were growing up. Brandy that was infused into the cakes weeks before even decorating it, blended quite well with the fruit and nuts inside. Marzipan fell away when we began to make sponge cakes instead of fruitcakes, but almond flavouring is still found to be a very popular flavour in (can you believe it) – buttercream!
Fresh Dessert-style cakes: Crepe Cake, Chocolate naked cake and Coconut Vanilla Cake.

Fresh Dessert-style cakes: Crepe Cake, Chocolate naked cake and Coconut Vanilla Cake.

Ombre Macaron Tower and wedding favours

Ombre Macaron Tower and wedding favours

Returning back to our fondant cakes, there is still trends that seems to be very popular with brides planning their weddings in 2015.Chalkboard started to make it’s comeback end of last year.Not only in kitchen designs, children’s playrooms and even dining rooms but also in table setups at weddings like name tags. The Chalkboard cake is such a newbie, that even going online, you won’t find much.I made these three cakes to show some ideas that could make a statement. 1. Graffiti style cake (write personal messages or vows on the cake) 2. Chalkboard plate and backdrop behind the cake (write a favourite quote on the board) 3. Have someone paint a design on the cake with white edible paint or draw something pretty on it.  
Chalkbaord Cake

Chalkboard Cake

Chocolate Cakes are still very popular.They really can be made in different styles and not much has changed hugely in their appearance.I was just wondering the other day; now that buttercream cakes are making a comeback in a very rustic form, either by scraping the icing around the cake with a palette knife or merely doing an undressed cake. Will the same rule go for Chocolate Ganache cakes as well? I then decide to make this three-tier Chocolate Cake to see how the effect of “scraped/turned” Ganache would look on the cake.I kinda like it..
Rustic Chocolate Wedding Cake

Rustic Chocolate Wedding Cake

Gold “Glitter / Sequince” Cake. Seeing that gold is making it’s comeback this year, I predict that sequince will be making one too. Sugar flowers or Gumpaste flowers can be airbrushed with edible gold colour like I have done below. I wouldn’t do much more to the cake than having only one tier in a metal colour with or without flowers on.With regards to metal colours, less is really more.
Gold sequince cake

Gold sequince cake

Just something I have always said in class to our students. It doesn’t matter what colour is in fashion, or which cake made it’s comeback last, stay true to your own identity and style. Create your own brand and stick to your standards. Be careful to copy other’s work and remember that being a designer of something, makes your style unique. Trust your instincts when you put your wedding ideas together, or draw up a design for a cake or even a dress. Enjoy the work in progress!