One of the first wedding cake traditions began in Ancient Rome where bread was broken over the bride's head to bring the new couple luck in their marriage.
It was once thought that if a guest slept with a slice of the wedding cake under their pillow, they would dream of their future husband or wife that night.
Cakes are often coated in white icing. This is because the white icing represents money and social importance. In Victorian times, the sugar needed for white icing was extremely expensive therefore a lot of couples had to have yellow/beige icing on their wedding cake. The lighter the icing, the more wealth the family appeared to have. Nowadays, wedding cakes can come in various different colours.
One of the most famous wedding traditions is the cutting of the cake. This is where the couple join hands to make the first cut in the cake. Guests will gather round to witness the cutting of the cake. This is also a perfect photo opportunity! Cutting the cake is one of the first activates the couple will do as a married couple, which is why a photo gets taken for their album. Guests will know it is acceptable to leave the wedding reception once the cake is cut, (this is usually for the older guests and guest with young children.) In older traditions, the bride would cut the cake on her own, as this would symbolise her losing her virginity.
Sometimes after the cake is cut, the couple will often feed each other a mouthful of the cake. This is a romantic gesture and again a lovely photo opportunity. In a lot of recent weddings, the bride/groom will force the cake into their partner’s mouth, leaving them with cake everywhere. Not so romantic!
Another well-known cake tradition is to save the top tier for another occasion, usually the couple’s first borns christening. This is now becoming a lot less popular and the top tier is being used at the couple’s first wedding anniversary. Some may even have it when the receive their wedding photos, usually a few months after the wedding. If you want to save your top tier, make sure you wrap it carefully so that it is airtight and freeze it.
Now this may be a more American tradition but a lot of couples are having what’s called a ‘Grooms Cake’. This is just a wedding cake that is decorated with all things to do with the groom. For example you may have a cake with the groom favourite hobbies on. Maybe you have a sports themed cake or a fishing themed cake. A popular trend at the moment is to have a superhero themed cake!
Like most traditions, the wedding cake is constantly changing and evolving but if you want to stick to tradition, have a white iced cake with the top tier being made with fruit cake.