30th June, 2013 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
There are many aspects of planning a wedding that are drudgery at best, tortuous at worst. Fortunately, choosing a wedding cake is not one of them. Choosing a wedding cake is a seminal event in the planning life of many an engaged couple. With the advent of popular shows such as “Cake Boss”, the art of cake making has jumped into center stage, and nowhere is this more evident than in the arena of wedding planning.
There are so many types of cakes to choose from- not just in the form, but also the fillings and flavors. It is also possible to tailor a wedding cake to the overarching theme of the wedding itself- gone are the days of the simple sheet cake meted out in lackluster proportions, here are the halcyon days of carefully crafted fondant and awe-inspiring tiers of epic proportions.
In choosing the perfect wedding cake, a couple may schedule tastings with many local bakeries before they find “the one”. These cake tastings are a joyous affair; champagne or wine are often offered as accompaniments to the artful display of possibilities. Most modern bakeries are skilled in the art of catering to the finicky planning couple, and can tailor a cake specifically to special requests. Some even offer a different flavor and filling for each layer, making a wedding cake a mouthwatering, always surprising piece of edible art. Some couples choose to eschew the custom of serving and slicing a wedding cake, opting instead to serve an array of local goodies, a childhood favorite reproduced en masse, or even skip dessert altogether in the interest of protecting the waistlines of the guests, and controlling the ever-escalating cost of the celebration. In conclusion, finalizing the choice of a wedding cake needn’t be a stressful occurrence, but simply another choice in the long line of decisions a pre-wedded couple must face, albeit a fun and tasty one.
30th May, 2013 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
Planning a wedding can be a stressful task. Most women can think back to their childhood years and recall being a little girl and having their fairytale-like dreams of how they would like their wedding day to play out. Most little girls will have their own ideas and fantasize about their own dream weddings. Everyone’s opinion is as unique as their unique personalities, which leads many to not be so surprised when a bride-to-be becomes the dreaded bridezilla. Wedding guests often will pay the most attention to two attractions throughout the whole combination of rehearsal dinner ceremony and reception. The most obvious object of their attention will be the beauty of the bride in her gown during the ceremony and the second will be the beautiful and tasty wedding cakes and sweets which can work amazingly when attempting to dispel any darker memories of a bridezilla by allowing the day’s events to formally close on a much sweeter note.
Wedding cakes and sweets are a continuously evolving form of symbolism and tradition. In earlier times numerous sweet bread delicacies were stacked and the newlyweds were challenged with the task of sharing a kiss without disturbing the stack of sweets that sat between them. This practice introduced the idea of the traditional French wedding cake. Many other traditions began forming to add a flair of importance and more symbolism to the cake which would evolve into today’s bride’s cake. The bride is without a doubt the star of the whole event, yet a tradition also exists to give a nod in the groom’s direction with the creation of the Groom’s cake, which was typically darker and heavier than the light and delicate bride’s cake. Another tradition that formed was that the groom’s cake should be served in the evening before the wedding ensuring that the guests would all enjoy a piece of the bride’s cake. Accepting the piece of cake has long been considered a blessing of good luck and refusal to accept a piece of the bride’s cake was considered both rude and a form of wishing bad luck on the newlyweds and their marriage.
Today the fast pace of modern life has left some of the old traditions to disappear from memory, yet the cakes themselves hold their place within current tradition. Today’s convenient advances in culinary and pastry arts have advanced to the point that nearly any flavor or flavor combination desired or dreamed up is a possible creation should the bride desire any specific flavor or style. Although still common, the classic wedding cake is slowly being replaced with cakes made to match a themed wedding.
Finally, with the progression in trends in regards to the wedding cake, the large cake is often circled with smaller sweets to create a masterpiece for the guests and the newlyweds to behold following the conclusion of the wedding ceremony and enjoy the day’s sweetness. These sweets typically are chocolates and mints, but the choice is up to the couple to make for themselves
5th May, 2012 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
You Ain’t got a Thing if you Ain’t got some Bling.
Flowers, lace, music, glitz and glam; these are the things a fairy-tale wedding are made of. Oh, and don’t forget the bling!
Bling-the word for anything shiny and eye-catching; the perfect compliments to a day already filled with beauty. And the best part? It doesn’t cost much to get the bling-effect many brides want.
For the ceremony, consider filling the stage or area where the bride and groom will say their vows with ‘oceans’ of tulle that has been a) sprayed with gold or silver glitter b) sprinkled with sequins of silver or gold or c) embedded with twinkling lights.
Other stunning effects:
- Having the flower girl sprinkle synthetic white feathers with sequins on them
- Placing an archway at the front of the church for the couple to stand under that has been wrapped in twinkling lights and shimmery fabric
- Use gossamer sprayed with glitter to form a canopy over the bride and groom accented by large gold silk flower arrangements in clear glass or white milk glass vases.
- Fill the church with gold and silver candles which have been placed on mirrors to reflect the light.
- Gold, silver, bronze or jeweled colored dresses for the bridal party are stunning against a background of twinkly lights and/or sequins.
Moving on to the reception…
- Gold or silver table clothes and table service. Why not use both; silver table cloths with gold table service or vice versa.
- Place gold or silver candles on mirrors in the center of each table and sprinkle large ‘crystals’ or ‘gems’ around them.
- Fill the reception hall with twinkling lights, gold and silver balloons and clear glass bowls filled with gold and silver balls.
- Table cloths of shimmery fabric sporting centerpieces of gold or silver flower picks or bowls filled with glittery balls and ‘gems’ swathed in feather boas
Finding the shiny, shimmery décor for your wedding isn’t difficult, either. If possible, shop for these items during the Christmas season when there is an abundance of such items. You can also find unique items on wholesale floral supply websites as well as the popular party supply sites such as orientaltrading.
If you’re thinking less is more when it comes to bling, that’s okay, too. Adding some pizzazz to even the softest of color schemes can be done tastefully; making your day something special to remember.
** Mini Shimmer & Bling Inspiration Board**
29th April, 2012 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
Yellow, like most colors, comes in a wide variety of shades and hues and can be teamed with both complimentary and contrasting colors to make for a stunning wedding.
When deciding which shade of yellow to use, you need to keep the season of the year and the tone of your wedding in mind. For instance, use deep golden tones in the fall rather than the pastel or brighter shades that we usually see during the spring and summer months. Brighter, sunnier shades of yellow are acceptable for less formal weddings, while more formal affairs should use more conservative pale and muted shades.
When it comes to decorating with yellow, three are several flowers to choose from and ways to incorporate them into a number of different themes.
Daisies, with their bright yellow centers are quite common, but with good reason. They are quite durable in spite of their delicate look, and can be used for outdoor country-styled weddings, quaint garden weddings and simple, yet lovely indoor spring time nuptials.
Yellow roses represent joy, friendship and a new beginning. Yellow roses are appropriate in all but the most casual of weddings. Pair them with lilacs to fill the church with a heady scent or with ivy and ferns for a more classic look.
Yellow tulips are available year-round and can be used for any wedding-no matter how formal (or not) it
Sunflowers and black-eyed Susie’s are sturdy and plentiful throughout the summer months. But their strong personalities lend themselves to country or old-fashioned themes.
Depending on the shade of yellow you use, the following colors with well with yellow: pink, white, green, black, lavender, grey, brown, coral and even red.
Yellow can also be used with a bright, sunny beach theme or destination wedding or as an accent for a shimmery silver or gold theme. Here are some image-ideas to perhaps inspire you to add yellow, eben in small doses to your wedding theme!
(Wedding Invitations): www.greerloves.blogspot.ca, (Hair accessory): www.loboheme.com/, (Bridal Shoes & Sash): www.blog.malinder.com/, (Shoe with bow): Source unknown, (Necklace): www.weddingobsession.com, (Modern Cake): www.outstanding-obsessions.com
21st April, 2012 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
Sweet and gooey brownies are loved by many and are fairly easy to make. What are you waiting for, get baking and offer your wedding guests something decadent they can seek their teeth into. Make several sorts to add variety! Cut into bite-size squares or into hearts using a cookie cutter, packaged into dainty boxes and you’ve got yourself the perfect wedding favor!
Here’s a recipe I have tried myself, these brownies are absolutely delectable.
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Brownies
Yield: 32 brownies
Prep Time: 40 minutes | Bake Time: 25 minutes
For the Brownie: 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature 2 cups light brown sugar 4 eggs 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1 cup all-purpose flour
For the Cookie Dough: ¾ cup unsalted butter ¾ cup light brown sugar ¾ cup granulated sugar 3 tablespoons whole milk 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract 1½ cups all-purpose flour 1½ cups mini chocolate chips
1. Prepare the Brownies: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a 9×13-inch pan with foil, with enough to hang over all four sides. Butter the foil. In a medium glass bowl, melt the chocolate in the microwave in 30-second increments, stirring after each, until melted and smooth. Set aside to cool slightly. In a large mixing bowl, mix the butter and brown sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract, scraping the bowl as needed. Mix in the melted chocolate until combined. Reduce the speed to low, add the flour and mix just until combined (don’t over-mix). Spread the batter into the prepared pan. Bake 25 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool completely.
2. Prepare the Cookie Dough: In a medium bowl, use an electric mixer on medium speed to combine the butter and both sugars. Add the milk and vanilla and mix until combined. Reduce the speed to low and mix in the flour just until combined. Using a rubber spatula, stir in the chocolate chips.
3. Spread the cookie dough over the cooled brownies. Refrigerate until the dough is firm, about an hour. Use a sharp knife or a pizza cutter (my favorite way to slice brownies!) to cut the brownies. Store the brownies in an airtight container at cool room temperature or in the refrigerator.
Recipe and photos sourced at www.browneyedbaker.com.
19th April, 2012 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
Wedding trend alert! Metallic cakes are increasing in apperance at this year’s wedding. If you want to add a little bit of bling, think luxurious gold and shimmery silver metallics, presented in an unexpected way, having a metallic wedding cake at your wedding just may do the trick! What do you think? Will this be an ongoing trend or will the “lustre” dull out with time?
15th April, 2012 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
Did you know there’s a flavor of soft-serve yogurt called ‘wedding cake’? And it tastes like…wedding cake. The traditional white kind, that is. But today’s wedding cakes are becoming less and less traditional. Today’s bride and groom are breaking away from what has always been done and doing it their way when it comes to their wedding-the wedding cake included.
Wedding cakes these days are more about giving the guests something they’ll actually enjoy eating-something that compliments the meal or horsederves served at the reception. If that’s what you want for your wedding reception, here are a few suggestions:
Sponge cakes filled with your favorite or a few favorite fillings. Sponge cakes are light, airy and can be flavored just about any way you like. Fillings include fruit fillings, cream cheese, pudding-style fillings (sometimes called curd fillings) and fresh fruit.
Culturally traditional cakes. Sounds kind of out there, but it’s not as strange as it sounds. For instance…a ‘mountain’ of iced puff pastries forms a Croquenbouche; a French wedding tradition. African wedding cakes are often fruit cakes with a glaze-like icing over them. Italian wedding cake is a scrumptious white cake filled with coconut cream and slathered with cream cheese frosting. A simple internet search will put you in touch with your roots and what type of dessert would have been served at the wedding of your ancestors.
Chocolate is almost everyone’s favorite, so serving chocolate cake at your wedding will be appreciated by almost everyone. Chocoholics rejoice!
Autumn weddings often keep the theme going with apple cakes, carrot cakes or other varieties of spice cakes. The icings of choice for these are either a) cream cheese frosting or b) a sugar/citrus glaze.
Both the bride and her father at one wedding I recently attended were diabetic. So instead of serving sugar-laden cake, the wedding cake consisted of three beautifully decorated angel food cakes with sugar-free frosting and bowls of fresh melon and berries to go with it. Delicious!! Tradition is a wonderful thing. But when breaking from tradition only serves to make things better or more enjoyable, then go for it! And in the case of wedding cake flavors and variations, all that we can say is YUM!
Photos sourced at: Sponge Cake (herlittleplace.com), croquembouche (cozycot.com), chocolate cake (joythebaker.com), fall cake (creativecakes.com).
10th April, 2012 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
Every since I was a little girl I’ve always been drawn to ruffles. Ruffled dresses, princess or spanish style were an all time favorite for halloween, weddings, even casual family get togethers if I could get away with it!
If a ruffled wedding dress is a bit too much for you there are other creative ways to incorporate feminine, girly and frilly layers into your wedding!
How about a ruffled cake? This ruffled cake was created by Wendy McClendon and photographed by Brian Thomas Clay.
Or wedding shoes with frilly accents? We absolutely love these shoes by Badgley Mischka!
And finally, how about a dainty wedding centerpiece with ruffled faux flowers made out of balsa wood and rhinestones designed by Krislyn Design and shot by Gia Canali.
Long live ruffles! In small doses ofcourse!
6th April, 2012 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
A picturesque wedding that we adore is a rustic vineyard wedding. A vineyard is such an elegant yet natural setting for a wedding. There is so much that can be done when planning a wedding at a Vineyard, depending on your budget, resources and creative. Allow me to help you with the latter with some creative ideas for a fabulous vineyard wedding.
Menu: You’re at a vineyard, why not take advantage of those resources? Meet with your caterer to design a menu centered around the elegance and grape of the vineyard. Incorporate wine into your menu from the salad dressing, to the marinate on your roasted vegetables, or on your meat of choice. Wine brings such a unique and rich flavor to everything– you’re at a vineyard, what a fabulous way to tie your location into your menu!
Decor: Work with what you are given. Use the vines and green landscape to play into whatever you desire. Choose a flower(s) that coincides with the area of where you’re getting married. Roses? Peonies? Lilies? Make sure that the floral and greenery mesh well together. Consider using rustic lanterns, vintage pomades, put LED lights into wine bottles, or utilize all of those corks!
Favors: If you are not able to afford tinier bottles of wine for each guest (which is a fantastic idea if it’s in your budget), consider cork handled cheese knives, chocolate truffles, or a cheese & wine or cheese & cracker favor to send guests on their way. All are enjoyed with a great glass of wine so it will be a practical favor and also remind them of the time they spent at the vineyard celebrating your wedding day.
The Dress: Lace or tulle are the top choices here at a vineyard wedding. It’s elegant, yet simple. Both incorporate a whimsical and vintage theme to your style, which pairs perfectly with your wedding location. Check out designs by Alfred Angel and Sottero & Madgley.
Images sourced at stylemepretty.com.
15th March, 2012 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
Last week I finally got to attend my first cake tasting. I’ve emailed various bakers back and forth, had a couple phone conferences and exchanged business cards with a few bakeries at bridal shows. With so many different vendors to pick from, it’s hard to hone in on just one! Here’s some tips when choosing your baker:
1.Price. Know your cake budget before going into the meeting– find out the price difference between fondant and buttercream, edible flowers and decorations, and cake vs. cupcakes, etc. What are you willing to spend, and what can you do without?
2. Cleanliness. It’s important to see the facility of a bakery– I encourage you to go to the actual location of where the cakes are made so you can get a good idea of how clean and neat this particular baker is.
3. Reputation. It’s a wise idea to go with a baker that has built a reputation with other brides in the area. Ask to see previous wedding cakes and cupcakes, ask to be referred to their review Facebook page or feedback, know your baker and how they operate their business before you sign any contract or put down a deposit.
4. Ask Questions. You are paying your baker to give you what on your special day– so make sure that they are professional, give you what you’re looking for and will be able to create and deliver it within the time frame you need. Regardless if it’s just a matter of wanting a different shape flower, a different colored ribbon, or a food allergy– speak up and ask questions, give specifics of what you’re looking for.
Two of my possible cupcake designs from my chosen baker here in Grand Rapids.