Pillared wedding cakes are one of the most fashionable of wedding cake construction modes. Indeed, this technique can be utilized to create a striking centerpiece for a wedding celebration. The question, though, is whether or not pillared wedding cake construction styles are appropriate for any particular wedding.
Thus it is useful to reflect on the advantages and disadvantages of the pillared wedding cake style.
Added height provides drama – The wedding cake is traditionally the centerpiece of the design scheme for the wedding reception. A pillared construction adds anywhere from a few inches to more than a foot of drama to a wedding cake. This enables it to be the eye catching focal point of the wedding reception decor that highlights the spectacular nature of the celebration.
Particularly useful to make a small wedding cake look bigger – A wedding cake that serves a hundred people or less might not look all that impressive without the added height of a pillared construction. Simply using pillars to add six inches to each tier will turn a two foot tall, three tiered cake in to a three foot tall cake!
Allows more decorations on each tier of the cake – For a bride that wants more surface space for decorations (regardless of whether it is elegant crystal wedding cake jewelry, a succession of themed cake toppers, fresh flowers, fruit, or some creation she chooses to hire the pastry chef to craft), or to figuratively tell the story of their climbing the mountain of love, the pillared wedding cake construction allows space to add interest on each pillared tier of the cake.
Extra surface area means added decorating cost to the wedding cake – Extra decorations means extra labor. Extra flowers or fruit can be costly and a bride will still have to pay the pastry chef to arrange the flowers or fruit on the cake. Note: Since the reputation of the pastry chef is dependent on the appearance of the wedding cake, do not count on them agreeing to allow the florist or the bride’s aunt Martha to add to the cake later – of course, once the pastry chef has gone the cake is yours to do with as you choose… as is the risk.
Less stable – If there will be small children or animals at the wedding, or if the situation demands that the cake needs to be situated in a high traffic area then a pillared wedding cake construction might not be the right choice. Likewise if there is a relative famous for drinking way too much, way to early, then another construction might be wise. This is because the added height of the pillars makes the cake more liable to collapse so unless the new couple’s goal is to win some money on America’s Funniest Home Videos, they would probably be better off with a different construction.
Not Normally for Do-It-Yourselfers – Like most things in life, stacking a pillared wedding cake is not terribly difficult…if you know what you are doing. But the placement of each pillar is critical and, depending on the size of the cake, can be unforgiving. If a pillar is placed in the cake that later needs to be changed a hole is punched that will have to be patched and may create instability in the cake. It will, at least, make the decorating process more difficult because a patch is never as smooth as the original icing.
Is a pillared wedding cake construction for your wedding? That is for each bride to decide. The upside in drama and decor benefits is huge but the risk is large as well. It all depends on the couple’s comfort level with the risk and style choices.