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wedding celebration, wedding day, wedding
Find that perfect wedding dress, wedding cake, wedding favor, wedding flower, or a wedding photographer at Wedding Celebration!
Weddings are special to everyone. Make your wedding plans come true with a variety of wedding accessories and decorations available at Wedding celebration. Find wedding ring and wedding band sets, wedding flower arrangement ideas and wedding flower designers, wedding decoration themes, wedding dress and wedding gown styles, wedding cake designs, wedding songs and wedding music selections, wedding poems, wedding invitation tips, wedding favor and wedding gift ideas, and even how to choose a wedding planner and a wedding photographer. Don't forget to check out how you can have a Las Vegas wedding!

Wedding Cake

A wedding day celebration does not happen without a wedding cake to sweeten the ceremonial union of two souls. However, the wedding cake, believe it or not, started out as unsweetened bread 1900 years ago in Rome.

The wedding cake was originally made from wheat, which was a symbol of fertility and prosperity, and salt, and formed into a small cake. During the ceremony the groom would eat part of a loaf of this barley bread and then he would break the rest over his bride's head. Breaking the bread symbolized the breaking of the bride's virginal state and the dominance of the groom over her.

This breaking of the wedding cake was taken as a sign of good fortune and a blessing for long life and many children. The guests would try and obtain a crumb for themselves as they too believed they would then share in the good fortune and future prosperity of the couple. And not only did the wedding cake give good fortune to the couple, it could also insure a bright future for their as yet unborn children.

Later this tradition of breaking the wedding cake over the bride's head became impractical and gradually disappeared in practice.

Stacking the wedding cake

In Medieval England the wedding cake was bread made from flour without sweetening. However, no accounts tell of a special type of wedding cake appearing at wedding ceremonies. But there are stories of a custom involving stacking small buns in a large pile in front of newlyweds. The purpose for this is to make it difficult for the newlyweds to kiss one another over the top. If the bride and groom were able to kiss over the tall stack, it was thought to symbolize a lifetime of prosperity.

Icing on the wedding cake

Later in the 1660's during the reign of King Charles II, a French chef visited London and was appalled at the cake-piling ritual. The chef, who was traveling through England at the time, noticed the inconvenience of piling smaller cakes into a mound and conceived the idea of constructing them into a solid stacked system. This earliest tiered wedding cake utilized short-cut broom sticks to separate its layers.

Since such an elaborate wedding cake needed to be prepared days in advance and because of the lack of modern refrigeration or plastic wraps, the wedding cake was frosted in lard to keep it from drying out. The lard was scraped off just before serving. In later years, sugar was added to improve the taste of the lard and allowed the lard to be left on the wedding cake as a decorative icing.

Wedding cake legends and myths

Legend has it that sleepers will dream of their future spouses if a piece of wedding cake is under their pillow. In the late 18th century this notion led to the curious tradition in which brides would pass tiny crumbs of wedding cake through their rings and then distribute them to guests who could, in turn, place them under their pillows.

How to do it: Take a small piece of wedding-cake, pass it three times through a wedding-ring and then lay the cake under your pillow. In your dreams that night your future husband will appear to you. Place a small piece of wedding-cake under your pillow and put a borrowed wedding-ring on the third finger of your left hand. Before you retire to bed arrange the shoes which you have worn that day in the shape of a T. Then, it is said, your future husband will appear to you in your dreams.

White wedding cake

The white wedding cake as a symbol of purity has its basis in the fact that the wedding cake was originally referred to as the bride's cake. This not only highlighted the bride as the central figure of the wedding, but also created a visual link between the bride and the wedding cake. Today, that link is being further strengthened as more brides have a contemporary wedding cake coordinated with their wedding dress color, even if it's not white!

Previous to Victorian times, the wedding cake was also white, but not because of the symbolism. Ingredients were very difficult to come by, especially those required for icing. White icing required the use of only the finest refined sugar, so the whiter the cake, the more affluent the families appeared. A white wedding cake became an outward symbol of affluence.

Wedding Cake Mate: Groom’s Cake

There's a scene in Steel Magnolias when all of the women are in Truvy's beauty shop discussing the groom's cake, a red velvet affair with gray icing in the shape of an armadillo. Not exactly what one would consider wedding fare, is it? Actually, it all depends on the part of the country you're from. In the North, not too many people heard of a groom's cake before Shelby's wedding, but in the South, it's a long standing tradition.

What is a Groom's Cake?

A groom's cake is a smaller cake, usually one tier, following a theme that is of interest to the groom. For instance, if the groom is a sports fan, the cake can be in the shape of a basketball or football. If the groom is into golf, the cake can resemble a putting green. If the groom is into armadillos, then by all means he should have a cake in the shape of an armadillo. Generally, it's a gift from the bride to the groom.

Originally, it wasn't meant to be shared with all the guests at the wedding reception, the wedding cake served that purpose. Instead, it was sliced, packaged up, and handed out as favors to all of the guests. Single women who attended the wedding would take the cake home and place it under their pillows. Once they fell asleep, it was hoped they would dream of their future husbands.

When to Serve the Groom's Cake at a Wedding

If the wedding cake is to be sliced and shared with the guests, when does one eat a groom's cake? It's all a matter of preference. Some couples like to share it with those attending the rehearsal dinner. Others have it handy in case they run out of wedding cake. Still others offer it to the bridal party to eat if they're having drinks or a celebration after the reception. There's no set rule. The cake can even be taken home and placed in the freezer to be eaten after the Happy Couple arrives home from their honeymoon.

Is it a wedding cake too?

Traditionally the groom's cake is made up of the groom's favorite flavors; either chocolate or fruit. There's no rule.

Popular Groom Cake Themes

  • Sports
  • Sports Teams
  • Computers
  • Hobbies
  • Colleges and Universities

Where to Find a Groom's Cake for a Wedding

You can purchase the groom's cake from the same baker from which you purchase the wedding cake. Many bakers have a book of themes that can be browsed. Bakers specializing in these are a bit more open minded when it comes to making a something unique. Some bakers even offer the wedding cake and groom's cake as part of a package. Choose the baker who can make the tastiest cake and the best design.

Should I Have One?

It's clearly a matter of preference. Groom's cakes are very popular in the south, while virtually unheard of in many of the northern areas of the US. Still, if this is something in which you're interested, why not have one? Choose an interesting design and give the guests something extra to talk about.

History of Wedding Cakes - Maisie Fantaisie
Wedding Cake - Wikipedia
Groom’s Cake - Weddings

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