Wedding cakes are a joyous tradition around the world. In many cultures, some type of decorated confection is served to symbolize fertility and good luck, and to allow well-wishers to share the good fortune of the happy couple. The art of the wedding cake reached its height in the stylized sentiment of the Victorians’ view of love, as well as their love of ornament.
According to confectionary tradition, wedding cakes in the United States are butter or sponge cake, and the Top tier is frozen until the couple’s first anniversary. One wedding-cake custom, however, has changed dramatically: The cake no longer has to be all white. Today cakes may be decorated to match the theme, colors, location, and season of the celebration. The decorations may suggest the architectural motifs of an ornate grand ballroom or the setting of a simple wedding on the beach, each having its own special meaning for the bride and groom. Sugar flowers and other ornaments can be sculpted to look so realistic that the cake may be the conversation piece of the wedding, sometimes even overshadowing the bride’s gown. And everyone loves to take home a flower from the cake as a cherished memento.