From what I can make out from the cake picture - the texturered finish on the fondant base looks like frills or ruffles made from strips of fondant perhaps?.
Hope this helps
AOn my iPad, it looks like feint, undefined lace moulds.
That looks like a buttercream cake.
It appears to be rather poorly iced in ivory BC and then a rough "spackling" of white BC applied.
Soften some of the fondant to a mud consistency and spackle it over.
Thankyou everyone for your input. If i do something like this in fondant I'll probably try the suggestion from kakeladi.