We love a bold wedding. Whether you choose to pack a punch of color at every turn or keep it contained to a few key areas, introducing a loud pattern in gorgeous colors to your wedding is a sure way to amp up your decor. We created a fun dessert table for a bride that wants to make a statement!
We used wallpaper from Chasing Paper to create a backdrop for our dessert table. We bought a large piece of plywood (4ft x 8ft) and adhered the wallpaper to draw attention to the table and give it a boost of color! Chasing paper has a ton of different wallpaper designs so you could use this idea to create dramatically different backdrops for whatever your event needs.
We opted to serve the cake on a hanging mirror from West Elm. Don't be afraid to find an alternate purpose for home goods. We love the way the mirror bounces light onto the dark cake and it is a fun alternative to the traditional cake plate. Finish the look with gorgeous copper flatware, homemade napkins created with fabric we had on hand, matte black plates, and jewel-toned cups for some red wine! Our trick to making this bold backdrop work is keeping the rest of the table subdued.
A DIY naked cake is far more attainable than you might think and the addition of fresh florals on top (plus a lavender-infused buttercream frosting) just make it that much better. Perfect for the bride that wants to tackle her own cake! Recipe below.
Chocolate Naked Cake with Lavender Buttercream Frosting
For the Cake:
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons King Arthur Flour Black Cocoa
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup strong black coffee
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the Lavender Buttercream Frosting:
- 4 tablespoons whole milk
- 2 tablespoons dried lavender flowers
- 4 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
Make the cake:
- Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans and set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or in a large bowl with an electric mixer, combine the sugar, flour, cocoas, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Mix on low until dry ingredients are thoroughly combined. Add eggs, buttermilk, coffee, oil and vanilla. Beat on medium speed for about two minutes; the batter will be thin. Pour batter evenly into prepared pans.
- Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Allow to cool for 10 minutes then move to the freezer for 4 hours or overnight. You can freeze the cake layers until you are ready to assemble the cake so long as they’re wrapped tightly in saran wrap!
- Combine the whole milk and lavender in a small saucepan over medium heat. Warm until the milk is simmering and remove from heat when you see bubbles start to form on top. Strain the lavender from the milk.
- Combine the lavender infused milk, confectioner’s sugar, and butter in a stand mixer and beat until the ingredients come together.
Assemble the cake:
- On the base of your cake plate, start with a small spoonful of frosting smoothed into an even layer and place your first layer of cake on top. The frosting helps to anchor your cake to the plate.
- Using 1/2 of the frosting, create a level layer of frosting on top of your cake layer. The more smooth, the better. Stack the next layer on top of the frosting and repeat then add your final layer. We chose to leave the top of our cake naked so we could add fresh flowers as a topper!
- You can use whatever flowers you’d like to top your cake but be sure to wrap the stems with floral tape to avoid transferring any pesticides or poisonous plant parts to your cake. While you can use whatever flowers you’d like, remember they should not be eaten! For the top of our cake, we used delphinium, dahlia, aster, snapdragon, and iris. Simply poke the stems of the flowers into the cake until you’ve created an arrangement that makes you happy!