I made this 5 tier wedding cake for my good friend. We were colleagues for more than 10 years at work. And knowing how much I loved decorating cakes, we used to talk so much about how we would both design her wedding cake, every time we come across a gorgeous looking one.
And when her big day finally came, she asked me to make her wedding cake, of course. I was very excited about the cake as she gave me full liberty with the design. She told me that the reception hall decoration would be in orange, yellow, and red colors and that the event will be in a setting with lots of brown wood furnishing. So I made sure the wedding cake design and colors matched the setting.
5 Tier Wedding Cake with Lace and Gum Paste Roses
A Tall Wedding Cake
And since she was a very dear and close friend, I thought she should enjoy the privilege of having a cake decorator as a close friend. And so I made it a point to make her a large 5 tier cake at a cost that is lower than what I would normally charge. Each tier was 6 inches high. Once assembled, the total height of the wedding cake with the flower toppers on was approximately 35 inches high!
She did however, request that the wedding cake be made out of dummy Styrofoam, except for a small section in the 4th tier for her and her husband to cut during the reception and the top tier for her to keep for the 1st anniversary. For the guests, she requested that I bake separate sheet cakes filled with buttercream and covered in fondant.
How to Make 5 Tier Wedding Cake
These were the main supplies I used for this 5 tier wedding cake:
- Cake – The real cake sections of this wedding cake was baked using my orange cake recipe.
- Styrofoam dummy – the sizes I used are 9, 12, 15 & 17 inches round dummies. Since I was only able to get Styrofoams that were 3 inches high, to increase the height to 6 inches, I attached 2 dummies in each size with hot glue.
- Buttercream – I used buttercream to fill and crumb coat the top tier of the cake as well as to fill it. I also used buttercream to fill the small cake section on the 4th tier of the cake.
- Royal icing – this was used to accent the lace design on the cake.
- Fondant – The whole cake was covered in Satin Ice ivory fondant. I also used fondant for the lace deco on the cake.
- Gum Paste – I used Satin Ice white gum paste for all the flowers on the cake.
- Petal dusts - I made all my flowers white and then dusted them with petal dusts. For the roses, I used orange and yellow, while for the hydrangeas, I used a light apple green color.
- Fondant glue - this was mainly to make the flowers.
- Shortening – I used this to stick all my fondant lace cut outs on the cake.
- Pearl sheen airbrush color – I used pearl sheen airbrush color to coat the whole 5 tiers of the cake with a pretty pearl sheen.
Gum Paste Roses for the 5 Tier Wedding Cake
- Lollipop sticks – I used these sticks to insert my floral wires so as to avoid direct contact of the wires with the cake. And these were only used on the first tier. For the rest of the cake (including the 4th tier), I was able to poke the wires directly into the cake since they were all Styrofoam dummies. The cake section on the 4th tier was positioned in such a way that it avoided the floral arrangement on that tier.
- Cutters for lace – I used a number of different cutters I had to make the lace design – these were paisley, daisy, small & medium 5 petal flower cutters as well plunger cutters in heart and flower shapes.
- Styrofoam cutter
- Gold ribbon - to wrap around the base of each of the 5 tiers of the cake.
5 Tier Wedding Cake in pretty autumn colors
And this was how I decorated the 5 tier wedding cake:
The gum paste flowers
- I started working on the gum paste flowers 2 weeks in advance. For this 5t tier cake, I used roses (full blooms as well as half blooms and buds), hydrangeas and jasmines. I made all the flowers in white and dusted them to their final colors once they were dry and set. And each flower was individually wired.
- Click on the images below for step by step tutorials on making the gum paste roses and gum paste hydrangea flowers. I do not have a tutorial for the jasmines, and will definitely update here once the tutorial is ready.
The dummy cakes
- Once I had the flowers done, I prepared my dummy cakes. Since I was unable to find those that came in 6 inches height, I had to purchase the 3 inches ones and stick two of the same size together to make up the 6 inches height. Click here for my tutorial on how to stack dummy cake tiers.
- For the 4th tier, since part of it was to be replaced with cake, I cut out a section of the Styrofoam dummy. I marked the section that is to be cut out and then used my Styrofoam cutter to remove the section. I then wrapped it with cling film so that once I fill real cake in the cut out section, it will not get into direct contact with the foam.
- And then, except for the 4th tier, I covered the remaining 3 tiers in fondant.
The real cake
- Next was the cake itself. The top tier of the cake which was made up of actual cake measured 6 inches in diameter and was 6 inches high. I used 1.5 times the measurement of my orange cake recipe for this. The cake was baked in 3 separate tins.
- I also had real cake in a small section on the 4th tier. This was also orange cake. Instead of baking the whole cake, I baked one layer of 12 inch round cake (half the measurement for 12 inch round cake I provided on my recipe page).
- For the top tier, once baked and cooled, I leveled each layer, filled and crumb coated with buttercream.
Fitting the real cake into a small section of the dummy cake
- For the 4th tier, I cut out a paper template for the section that is to be filled with real cake. I used the template to cut out 3 layers of cake. I then filled, stacked and crumb coated the layers together. And then I inserted the cake into the Styrofoam dummy and used buttercream to crumb coat the entire tier, making sure its all level and the joints between the cake and the dummy were not visible.
- And then I covered the entire tier with fondant, and made small lines on the cake to mark the border between the cake and the dummy. This was important to help the bride and groom identify and cut the right section of the cake during the wedding cake cutting ceremony.
5 Tier Lace Wedding Cake
The lace pattern
- Once I had all the tiers covered in fondant, I did the lace patterns. For this, I used my cutters, and randomly attached the fondant cutouts all over the top tier, third tier and the bottom tier. I used shortening to stick them to the cake. And then I used royal icing to pipe decorative dots on the cutouts. And finally, before starting the assembling work, I gave each tier a layer of pearl sheen coating using my airbrush.
Assembling the cake
- The wedding cake assembly was done at the wedding venue. Since the cake was too tall to fit into my car, I decided to assemble it at the event venue. To assemble the cake, I started with the 1st and 2nd tiers. I stacked them first, and then arranged the flowers on the top tier.
- And then, I went to the remaining 3 tiers, and stacked them starting from the bottom tier before placing the earlier stacked 1st and 2nd tiers on them.
The floral arrangement
- After that was the floral arrangement. Before I went ahead with the flowers, I made sure the 4th tier of the wedding cake with the real cake section was towards the back of the cake where the bride and groom would be standing to cut the cake. And then I attached the gold ribbon border around each tier with the help of royal icing. And finally, all the flowers went on. I stared with the full bloom roses and then added the half blooms and buds before accenting and finishing off with the hydrangeas and jasmines.
And that was how I decorated this 5 tier lace wedding cake.
Happy decorating 🙂