The bridal gown shimmers under the soft lighting. It’s the kind of dress that women dreamt about when they were five-years-old and planning every detail of their wedding.
From the hand crafted flowers and lace to the iridescent glow of the pearl beadwork, it’s sure to make any bride feel like a princess.
But this decadent dress isn’t made for wearing…it’s made for eating.
Despite appearances, the gown is not sewn from satin or silk. It’s a real-life wedding dress created with sponge, cream and icing.
As the trend for more extravagant weddings and one-of-a-kind touches grows – more and more brides are scrambling to make their weddings memorable.
And that’s where confectioner Donna Millington-Day, 36, steps in.
The mum-of-two runs Fairytale Cake Company, in Wombourne, West Midlands.
The skilled baker has been asked to make an array of crazy cakes from pillows and purses to castles and cars.
But when her six-year-old daughter Hannah came up with the idea of recreating Donna’s wedding dress into a life-size cake she jumped at the challenge.
The mother-daughter project started with a few drafts and countless hours of planning.
Donna used elements such as the sweetheart neckline and beadwork from the bridal gown she wore to marry hubby Myles in 2004 as the base of her design.
And Donna decided the finished product would be the feature piece displayed at her showcase at the National Wedding Show (if it wasn’t a complete disaster!)
Donna said: “We wanted to do something a bit different for the wedding show and Hannah was going through my old wedding photos when she suggested we recreate my dress.
“I thought it was a great idea and although it’s not an exact replica I have taken the details like the corset and styling on the side of it.
“It took awhile to plan but I was confident that I would be able to make a beautiful cake and one you would not have seen anywhere else.”
Over about a week, Donna painstakingly built the 17-tier cake using a whopping 224 free-range eggs, 28lb of flour, 28lb of caster sugar, 28lb of butter and 100s of sugar pearls.
The cake fit on a 30-inch base and stood at 6ft tall.
She hand piped thousands of swirls and crafted flowers from sugar to attach to the satin finish gown.
Donna said: “‘We chose to make a satin, lace and pearl simple yet intricate design with roses and drapes.
“The satin finish was achieved using a pearl lustre and each swirl was hand piped.
“I can’t even tell you how many hours it took, but I wanted it to look perfect.”
When the delectable cake was completed, Donna couldn’t wait to hear what the brides would say at the show.
And word spread about the remarkable piece as women lined up by Donna’s stall to catch a glimpse of the ‘unbelievable’ wedding cake dress.
Donna said: “The response was fantastic.
“People couldn’t believe it was actually cake. It was lovely because Hannah and I had put so much hard work into it, so when people actually recognised that, it felt amazing.”
But this little number didn’t come with a small price tag either. The cake cost a staggering £6,000.
However, the hefty sum didn’t stop some brides from enquiring about Donna taking orders.
“I think it’s the idea of a one-of-a-kind cake that attracts people,” Donna said. “Brides want everything about their wedding to be special and one way of doing that is to have a unique cake.
“The days of single-sheet ivory iced sponge are long gone. Now pushing the boundaries with wedding cakes, making something fun and memorable is the new normal.”