Your wedding cake might just be the most talked about confection of your entire life. So it has to be good! And with so many styles out there, options range from simple, single tiers with minimal decorations to bold, decadent cakes, serving as a statement piece for your reception. And while many may assume that spring and summer weddings offer more creativity when it comes to cake design, with blush palettes and cascading florals, there are plenty of stunning, elegant ideas to incorporate into a winter wedding.
From bright winter whites to textured showstoppers, there's a winter wedding cake design out there for every couple. And to get the creative juices flowing, we asked some of the industry's top wedding planners, photographers, bakers, and caterers to weigh in on some of the most gorgeous seasonal wedding cakes they've seen (or made) over the years. No matter your style, there are a plethora of design ideas out there.
Read on for wedding cake ideas that will be the perfect addition to your cold-weather reception.
Keep It Simple
It’s easy to think you have to go overboard with holly and other festive elements when it comes to decorations for your winter cake, but thankfully, photographer Kat Braman knows a thing or two about photographing cakes that are a little more toned down. “The perfect wedding cake for your winter wedding is both simple and sophisticated,” Braman says when describing this semi-naked carrot cake that showcases cream, blush, and white flowers. Don't be afraid to opt for simplicity when it comes to your day-of confection.
Go With Winter White
“A winter wedding is the perfect opportunity to showcase an all-white cake with striking details, whether buttercream with real flowers or fondant with intricate sugar flowers like this one,” says Becca Atchison, creative director of Rebecca Rose Events. Elegant and refined, a white cake also won’t take away from any surrounding festive decor.
Consider a Seasonal Stand
If you’re opting for a classic winter white cake, consider a colorful and detailed stand to incorporate a touch of festivity in your presentation. This festive cake from The Cake & The Giraffe paired one semi-naked tier with a seasonal knitted sweater look, topped with winter greenery and a pop of red. Pairing it with a textured gold stand brought all of the colors of the season together in a gorgeous way.
Bring the Outdoors In
Play with outdoor features like snow-capped mountains and trees, and bring those details to your cake design. This cake design from Intricate Icings incorporated inspiration from snowy mountains to create a simple, winter design.
Embellish With Greenery
For one couple’s San Francisco wedding, a classic white buttercream cake served as an elegant choice for their winter nuptials. “Add seasonal greenery for a subtle nod to the winter wonderland outdoors!” says Cassy Anderson, owner of Cassy Rose Events, who suggests complementing a moody winter color palette with dark and delicate blooms.
Think Outside of Red and Green
Any shade can be made wintery when paired with texture, design detail, and cozy elements. “A cake overlaid in subtle detail (like gold-veined marbling) can be winterized by accenting with lush winter greenery and a velvet linen,” says wedding planner Calder Clark. Opt for texture and detail but keep a neutral palette to make your cake a perfect example of the season.
Play With Textures and Sizing
Winter is all about textured, cozy sweaters and layered looks. Why not bring it to your cake? This cake from The Cake & The Giraffe incorporated multiple shapes and sizes of cake tiers, along with playful designs for a cozy, yet elegant, winter look.
Arrange an Assortment
Who says you have to choose just one cake design? “This bride and groom had a whole table of winter cakes,” says Kelly Cavanaugh, owner of Clementine Custom Events. Topped with snowy decorations and fresh fruits, each cake was an ode to the enchantment of the winter season.
Opt for a Holiday Color Palette
Aside from the vibrant red and green shades traditionally seen throughout holiday color schemes, consider varying hues in more saturated tones. “Nothing says ‘winter’ more than sweet treats and holiday hues!” says Demi Meeker, senior event sales manager at Cannon Green. “Get in the holiday spirit with a cake that features seasonal tones like burgundy and green, with added florals,” Meeker adds.
Add Festive Features
“Use subtle (or not so subtle) elements to bring the holiday season into your cake,” says photographer Julia Franzosa, owner of Julia Franzosa, who captured this pinecone-adorned cake for a festive holiday-inspired celebration.
Go Bold With a Decadent Look
Winter is all about rich, deep flavors and decadence. Consider bringing that concept into your wedding cake. This design from Lael Cakes incorporated rich flavors, decadent fillings, and luscious drips to add texture. Choose to have your cake topped with figs or seasonal fruits for a stunning look.