Tips for decorating a wedding cake

Wedding cakes that taste good are a specialty of Connie Pollard of Brookline, Mass. Although she has some requests for chocolate cakes and carrot cakes filled with raisins and nuts, most brides choose her old-fashioned yellow cake, similar to a Lady Baltimore cake, with a hint of almond flavor.

Making your own wedding cake is not a difficult task, particularly if you are having a small wedding for about 100 people. Connie recommends baking it two days before the wedding, with the assurance that it will taste fresh, because the icing protects the cake from the air that will cause it to dry out.

Connie's recipe is simple and straightforward, but you will need to buy some additional equipment, such as cake pans, a pastry bag, and a 4-inch white ceramic souffle dish to hold the flowers on the top of the cake. Connie also recommends using a metal cake decorating spatula to ice the cake. If you don't have a good cookware shop in your area, write to Maid of Scandinavia for its mail order catalog, specializing in cake decorating supplies. It is in Minneapolis, Minn. 55416.

Even if you have never had a pastry bag in your hands, you can decorate your cake so it looks professional and attractive. Connie used a large (1B) closed six-point star-shaped pastry tip to make all the decorations on the cake shown in the accompanying photo. Practice a few on a piece of paper, or if you prefer , make them all on paper, choose the best, and place them on the cake with a small spatula.

Your selection of flowers for the top of the cake will vary according to the season, the color scheme of the wedding, and your budget. The buoquet of daisies and baby's breath on Connie's cake cost $8, but she has spent up to $25 on v arious arrangements.

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