Ask The Chef: Part 4 – Identifying Classic and Modern Cake Trends

It's time for the 4th installment of our delectable "Ask The Chef" series with cake whisperer, Chef Dana. Today, the chef is discussing cake trends and how choosing a timeless design will make all the difference on your big day.

Chef Dana's Picks for 2015 and 2016 Wedding Cake Trends
I like nothing more than to talk about cake trends. Like the adage goes “as much as things change, somethings remain the same.” Or better yet history is always bound to repeat itself. Over the last two years we saw the resurgence of piping skills to wedding cakes. I love piping. Check out the cake trends for the rest of 2015 and 2016.

All-white cakes are some of the most beautiful and stunning cakes on the planet. In the old days, the whiter the cake the more money your family had because your quality of sugar and the ingredients were considered the finest around. Now a days it's a little easier to achieve a beautiful white color. The challenge however in making an all white cake is making something that is one color pop. My predecessors and instructors often said that of all cakes, all-white is by far the hardest. You have to create and design a cake that not only tastes amazing but looks amazing. The cake has to be done well because everything will show. Secondly you have to create designs that flow and appeal to the eye. To make an all-white cake you need to make one that constantly has your guests looking at a piece of detail that they didn’t see before.

This cake by Elizabeth Solaru–which was featured on Munaluchi's Most Beautiful Wedding Cakes–is an impeccable example. Notice how every tier is a little different but it all ties together through textures that she uses. At first glance the flowers at the bottom tie in with the flowers at the top, but upon closer inspection of the pillows, you notice that the ruffles mimic the delicate petals of a rose, and she even adds a floral finish to the corner of the one pillow.

Wedding colors have become very vibrant, and as the pantone colors for the year are released you are seeing them translated through cakes. You will see the teals, marsala, and other vibrant and rich colors used throughout cake design.

The cake below was featured on the Munaluchi Blog and it is very impactful. It allows for the colors of the wedding to shine through as well as the personality of the couple, while remaining elegant at the same time.

I am still a fan of solid color cakes as well and like the all white they are achieved through textures. Cakes can be done in any color now a days if you have a master sugar artist that knows what it means to take a color and achieve timelessness.

Metallics and Bling
Cakes have been taken to new heights with the incorporation of metallics. Many brides love the look of crystals and rhinestones to adorn their cakes. In addition they love the incorporation of silver and gold to give the idea of having a classic cake fused with the modern bride of today.

Notice in this cake how Melissa Payne has taken her classical cake design and added the gold confetti to the top for a bit of modernism while painting ornate borders in gold to give it a classic feel as well. Great example of a cake for a modern bride who wants something classic.

In this example silver and rhinestone are used to accent the white cake and accent the various shapes of this multi tiered design. Silver and gold are the most commonly used metallics. Other growing metallics are copper, bronze, and rose gold.

Naked Cakes
Naked cakes have taken the wedding industry by storm and they're here to stay. In the beginning most cake artists would say to themselves "why would they want that at a wedding?" And truthfully I was one of those artists. It was not until I made one and truly stepped back that I could admire the beauty and charm that these cakes bring. They're elegance in its simplest form. They work well with flowers, berries, powdered sugar or even nothing at all. New hybrids are starting to fuse fondant work with the naked cakes too.

This year cakes have truly become more rustic in their approach. We have seen the homestyle icing, ribbed or combed style and the spatula style. They have given a new sense of what it means to be intimate and romantic. It reminds you of the love mom and grandma used to put in the cakes they baked when you were growing up, or those family moments that we never forgot at the table.

Cake by Sky's the Limit

Cake by Elizabeth Anne Designs

This style for 2015 and 2016 will leave you speechless. I remember when I saw Dianne Valentine suspend a cake on her show I Do Over and I thought it may take a second but this will be huge and now it is. Couples have flocked to the idea of suspending the cake at their weddings. It's elegant, chic and modern. Cakes can be suspended from all sorts of places. Motors can be added so they rotate as well. Trust me I have done them from trees, porches, chandeliers, observatories and more. They are always amazing. Make sure however if you do elect to get your cake suspended that the person or company doing it has done it before. The last thing you will want is a cake that turns into a free fall.

Final thoughts
Cake trends come and go year after year. My recommendation is whatever the trend, make sure the cake is always timeless. Make that memory something that you will enjoy year after year with you kids and grandkids. Lastly, get the cake you want. You will have to look at it for 50 years. Make sure it's what you truly want and that it represents you.

Cake Vendors
Elizabeth Solaru
Desserts by Dana
Melissa Payne
Sky's the Limit
Elizabeth Anne Designs

For more answers to your most intriguing cake and culinary questions be sure to leave your comments on the blog or email them to

Coterie Members

View more members
  1. Ask the Chef with Chef Dana: The History of Wedding Cakes

    […] we're thrilled to present the next installment in the Ask the Chef series! Chef Dana of Desserts by Dana is here with another in depth presentation, this time […]


Add Your Comment

view blog