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A Cake So Nice It Doesn’t Need to Be Iced

The “naked cake” seems to be here to stay.




Photos by Kelsey Kradel Photography
 

The traditional, multi-tiered wedding cake with white frosting and delicate piping has stood the test of time. But that doesn’t mean other trends haven’t gained traction. Some brides are opting for cupcakes or donuts in place of a classic cake, while others are incorporating a variation of the cake into their wedding receptions.

The name of the naked cake might raise a few eyebrows, but it’s a more than fitting name because the main point of the design is for the cake to be exposed. More traditional options will feature fondant draped over the cake or icing spread meticulously even for a uniform and smooth look. The naked cake takes that icing and places it between the layers instead. There is still icing for the cake, but not in the way many have come to expect.

With an icing pattern that resembles a delicate birch tree and accents of vibrant fruit and florals, the naked cake is becoming a top pick for more and more brides.

For Monica Minetola, deciding on the naked cake was a no-brainer.

“I didn’t consider a traditional cake at all,” she says. “Once I saw the inspiration picture, I said, ‘That’s what we’re doing.’”
 


 

Monica found her inspiration picture on Pinterest and was quick to add it to her wedding ideas board. She liked how the cake incorporated strawberries and raspberries because the deep reds and rich burgundies of those fruits matched the “pop of color” Monica had incorporated throughout the bridal party and wedding decor. With the help of her florist, the cake also featured a sampling of the wedding flowers.

“I really liked the way we were able to incorporate one of the flowers on top and we had the fresh fruits to bring in some color. I was done with the traditional, and I wanted to do something more trendy and rustic,” Monica says.

She says her guests loved the naked cake at her wedding to Patrick Baker on Sept. 20, 2017.

“People commented how much they liked the look of the naked cake and the rustic vibe that it brought — which is exactly what I was looking for,” Monica says.
 


Photos by Justin Boyd Photography
 

Natasha Brody, the vice president and director of events for the Pittsburgh-based Hello Productions, says the naked cake is the perfect option for any bride, especially those who are looking to add to a rustic theme.

“I feel like more for the rustic bride and the garden bride, I’ll tend to bring up the naked cake,” she says. “If they’re aren’t going for a more modern look, I’ll recommend it because it has more of a relaxed feel.”­

Brody also likes the way the cake can be personalized for each bride’s taste and theme. She says that the details such as fresh greenery or berries can set the tone for the cake.

“And they all add a different texture to the cake,” Brody says.
 

Katie Harbison, also a September bride, chose to incorporate the greenery of her wedding bouquet into the cake design to help tie everything together.

“Everything was very rustic, put together with a lot of greenery, and I loved the way the cake looked with the greenery and flowers on it,” Katie says. “The cake was important, but we didn’t want it to be a huge focal piece because there were so many other things going on.”

Katie and her husband Shawn McGregor put together a mostly DIY wedding to celebrate their nuptials, so many aspects of their wedding were intimately tied to different family members.

“It was really important for us to incorporate our family throughout the day,” Katie says. “My uncle married us, my husband’s uncle did the blessing, and we had some cousins play banjo at our rehearsal dinner. So, we tried to pull someone from every part of the family.”

And the cake was not excluded from that. Shawn’s aunt, known by family and friends as great baker, made the wedding cake.

“It was just amazing,” Katie says. “We had so many people ask where we got our cake from.”
Katie and Shawn also made sure their cake fit the fun atmosphere of their wedding with one small detail: funfetti cake.

“It tasted amazing, and it fit with everything else we wanted to do,” Katie says.

Even though trends are always changing, as a wedding planner, Brody thinks the naked cake will stick.

“Things come and go all the time,” Brody says. “But [the naked cake] will always be around.”

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