Sweeten your special day with a cake to fit any palette … and palate

Pamela Hutzell draws from years of experience with multiple facets of wedding organization and planning at Fabulous Wedding Cakes based in Front Royal.

With formal floral design training and 21 years of self-employed cake design experience, Hutzell knows how to tie her confections into weddings of any theme with flavors and visual elements.

In most cases, brides come to Hutzell further down the road after choosing a venue, dress and color scheme. She then works with those elements to create a sweet addition to the occasion that fits in visually.

“The palette has to be established before you can really make a move,” she said.

According to Hutzell, the go-to trends for cakes in the past have gone from the basket weave icing on the sides to the extremely simplified white cakes with a single statement band of color. Today, different cake designs vary as much as the individuals who order them for their weddings – and there’s virtually no limit with creativity.

“Suddenly options are enormous, and now you can have a lot of fun,” she said. “It’s so exciting for people that are creative to show so many options.”

Couples can incorporate almost anything on their cakes: Hutzell works with a wide array of molds to create more ornate cakes and even has the ability to make her own molds.

Metallic sugar lace is a new and popular element she uses to add detail and a unique, much-desired metallic flair. Although many couples tend to opt for a cake that’s mostly classic white or ivory and limit the color palette, sugar fall leaves can bring out a wide array of seasonal colors.

“I like to, as the cake designer, try to sum up the event,” she said. “I want the cake to reflect everything else; that’s my hope anyway.”

Brides often find ideas from cakes Hutzell has designed for stylized photoshoots and posted online through social media. A single inspiration piece like a teacup or sash can create an intriguing motif, and Hutzell has upped the visual ante by using unusual items like glass bowls from an antique store to separate cake layers.

Silk or candy flowers decorating the cake can complement the ones used in the wedding. Fresh flowers require more planning and work with the florist, but they tie everything up nicely.

For manageability’s sake, Hutzell offers her clients a tasting selection of nine cake flavors with different fillings that work for any season. In the fall, couples can go for the tastes of the season with apple pie spice cake and apple pie filling or take a more classic route with the Italian wedding cake flavor incorporating pecans and coconut.

Hutzell said she finds herself reminding many brides not to overlook the foundation established in their choices in linens. The colors and textures draped on tables at a wedding are factors that bring the venue together with the cake and other vendors’ flatware, flowers and centerpieces.

With so many choices at hand, Hutzell encourages couples to make a bold statement.

“Above everything, you can see something that inspires you and have it done your way — I think that is the trend now,” she said.

Contact staff writer Rachel Mahoney at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or rmahoney@nvdaily.com