Marie Porter takes the (wedding) cake

Twin City Bridal Association held its ICON Awards this weekend at the Minneapolis Convention Center and honored Marie Porter of Celebration Generation with the Excellence in Cake Design award. CityPages caught up with Porter to learn how she got into the business and how increasingly personalized weddings have been good for creative cakemakers.

In 2007, Marie Porter applied the design skills she'd honed in fashion, floral, and graphic design and applied applied them to food. Her first wedding cake, a favor to a bridal client with great taste and a tight budget ("I'm not letting you serve a grocery store cake at your wedding," Porter insisted), was so impressive, the party's caterer encouraged her go into business.

Porter's mother was a cake decorator, actually, who focused on character cakes and buttercream, while Porter trades in homemade fondant, merangue, sugar paste, and airbrush. One of Porter's winning cakes replicated the bride's gown--which Porter had designed.

How have weddings changed since you first got in the business? "In the past 10 years or so, people are starting to realize that the wedding is about them, and to really personalize the event. It's not so much 'I have to do this' or 'this magazine says I have to do that,' but about incorporating their personalities and interests.

In what ways, specifically? We're seeing more personalized menus, cakes, and favors, the favors are so much better these days...Before it was like 'we have to get monogramed napkins and our names on matchboxes,' now its like 'our first date was at a Japanese restaurant, so we’re going to have candy sushi as our favor.' What aspects of the wedding make the biggest impression on guests? Cookie cutter weddings really suck. The more personalized, the more memorable. In the past, the gown was seen as the most important part of the wedding, but that's really only important to the bride. The guests remember the cake."

Click here for a slideshow of some of Porter's cakes.

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