Trend We Love: Gravity-Defying Wedding Cakes

BG brides, not since The Royal Wedding has a celebrity's wedding cake received as much fanfare as Kaley Cuoco's! And with good reason — The Butter End Cakery fulfilled the Big Bang Theory star's wish for something "over the top" with their upside-down chandelier cake. Thanks to custom rigging, sandbags, and clever engineering, the blinged-out confection miraculously stayed in place for her entire reception on New Year's Eve.

Unable to get these magical (albeit outrageous) images out of my mind, I did some digging and it looks like the new Mrs. Sweeting might be on to something. Cakes are soaring to new heights at non-celebrity receptions, too. Check out some of my favorite editors' picks below!

kaley cuoco wedding cake
Cake Design: The Butter End Cakery / Photos by: The Butter End Cakery (left) and Kaley Cuoco / Twitter (right)

More Upside-Down Cakes

Cheryl McMillan from Perfect Ending Cakes gave us a quick tutorial on how a chandelier cake is constructed. First, she starts with a wood base that's covered in fondant to match the color and design of the cake. Then, she screws in a wooden dowel that's one inch longer than the length of the entire cake. Each tier is placed on a masonite board with a hole in the center, draped with fondant, and more plastic dowels are added for support. The tiers are stacked on top of one another and a hook is placed at the top of the dowel, which is hooked onto a veranda flower stand. Voilà!

"Transportation is the tricky part. If there are decorations hanging from the bottom (like with the pink cake pictured below), then someone must hold the cake by the chain the entire time — it's a good workout for your arms and nerves!" McMillan says.


Cake design: Cheryl McMillan / Photos by: Waldorf Photographic Art

Cake design: Cheryl McMillan / Photos by: Waldorf Photographic Art

Believe it or not, every tier in the red cake pictured below was completely edible! Rachael Teufel, the owner and cake decorator of Intricate Icings, tells us that it was held in place using a custom metal stand with dangling crystals.
upside down wedding cake
Cake design: Intricate Icings / Photos by: Jason+Gina

Holly's Cakes has an extensive collection of chandelier cakes that are available in three, four, or five tiers, and they can easily be dismantled from the bottom for cutting. "My chandelier cakes hang from our custom support system and definitely give that 'wow' effect that brides are seeking," says owner Holly Bowers.


Cake Design: Holly's Cakes / Photos by: Holly's Cakes (left and right) and Lifesong Photographic Art (middle)

If you thought just one chandelier cake is nerve-wracking enough, imagine having three! Pamela Horowitz from Provence Catering made the trio pictured below by using silver trays and custom-cut metal plates. The process is incredibly labor intensive since the cakes must be built on their bases before being inverted, weighed and then counter balanced with weights. "They are really fantastic and a true showstopper for the discerning bride," she says.


Cake design and photos by: Provence Catering

Suspended Cakes

Real Housewives of Orange County star Tamra Barney also opted for a suspended wedding cake at her June 15 wedding. Instead of hanging it upside-down, wedding planner Diann Valentine created a platform surrounded by floating pearls for the cake to rest on. A quilted pattern and edible crystals made for a lavish look!

tamra barney wedding cake
Event design by: Diann Valentine / Photo by: Christine Bentley on The Wedding Chicks via Lover.ly

Antonietta and Gianni selected their wedding venue, The Breakers, based on the "grand elegance" of the beautiful landscape and architecture. Their five-tiered cake and pedastal display was the perfect finishing touch for their reception in the Mediterranean Ballroom.

Cake design: The Breakers Cake Shop / Décor: The Design Studio at The Breakers / Photo by: Maggie Stolzberg

This three-tiered stunner was modeled after the bride Lindsay's custom-made, blush Monique Lhuillier gown. It was faux (surprise!), so she and her husband, Anthony, didn't have to break a sweat when it came time for the cake-cutting ceremony. The pros at Pelican Hill Resort's cake shop made frosting marks to indicate exactly where the happy newlyweds should "cut" into the cake.


Cake design: Pelican Hill Resort / Décor: Nisie's Enchanted Florist and Pelican Hill Resort / Event design by: Sugar Branch Events / Photos by Cami Jane Photography


Cake design: Pelican Hill Resort / Décor: Nisie's Enchanted Florist and Pelican Hill Resort / Event design by: Sugar Branch Events / Photos by Cami Jane Photography

Having a rustic-themed wedding? A swing is a sweet addition to this simple cake adorned with fresh flowers and monogrammed burlap.


Event design: Melanie Murphy of By Invitation Only Event Planning and Design / Photos by: Joshua Aaron Photography

We love how the swing below was covered in fabric to match the ribbon design of the cake!


Event design: Melanie Murphy of By Invitation Only Event Planning and Design / Photos by: Joshua Aaron Photography

With its ornate metal stand and wooden swing, this petite cake makes a bold impact.


Event design: Melanie Murphy of By Invitation Only Event Planning and Design / Photos by: Joshua Aaron Photography

More Topsy-Turvy Desserts

At this vineyard wedding, miniature cupcakes in different flavors were suspended from a tree using colored ribbon, creating a breathtaking dessert display.


Photos by: Evrim Icoz Photography

The following design is every chocoholic's fantasy: Baker Laura Loukaides made a rich fudge chocolate cake, filled it with chocolate ganache and wrapped it in chocolate-flavored fondant. What a fantastic choice for a groom's cake!

"Gravity-defying cakes need to have a strong internal structure to keep it 'floating' and, more importantly, to stop anything from tipping over," Loukaides tells us. To achieve this, a strong dowel was placed through the center of the cake and base boards, which was stable enough to keep the cream jug suspended in mid-air.

gravity defying cake
Cake design and photos by: Laura Loukaides

Tell us: Which cake is your favorite? Would you consider having a chandelier cake at your wedding or does the thought of it make you too anxious?

—Stefania Sainato

 


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