Wedding Cake 101

By on September 2, 2014
cake

Congratulations!  You’re getting married!  Well before that magical day arrives, you will have lots of planning to do.  Dresses, tux, flowers, reception site, DJ, cake, the list goes on and on.  Each one is equally important as the next one.  We will give you some tips on ordering your perfect wedding cake!

  • How soon should I order my wedding cake?  I would say at least 6 -12 months before the wedding.  Small cake shops limit the amount of wedding cakes they do a weekend so they will book up fast for popular  dates.  It is best to call the bakery and see if your date is available.  If it is, you can schedule a consult with them.
  • What do we discuss at the consult?  What vision do you have of your wedding cake at the reception?  Do you have a theme that you are using?  Are you wanting a tiered cake or are you thinking of only sheet cakes being served?  Your cake designer will go over all of these details with you at your consultation.  They are the experts, they have been doing this for years, take their advice and listen to their ideas.  You might want a purple and orange cake and the designer can tell you if that will look good together.
  • Can I order 10 flavors of cake?  Well, some couples might want that at their reception but that wouldn’t be a good idea.  The more flavors you offer your guests, the more they want to try.  It is best to limit your flavors to 3-4.
  • Do I have to put down a deposit?  Yes, most bakeries and cake shops need a deposit to book and hold your date.  Your deposit might be non-refundable and non-transferable.  Why?  The cake shop or bakery holds your date for your wedding date.  They might have turned other brides away because they knew they were making your wedding cake.  That means lost revenue for the cake shop.  They might have started making some of the decorations for your cake, ex. Sugar flowers.
  • Do we need to order enough cake for all of our guests?  Yes, you do.  You don’t want any guest to go without cake.
  • How do I keep costs down?  Let your cake designer know from the beginning of the appointment what your budget is.  They can give you ideas on what will fit into your budget.  A small wedding cake and sheet cakes is more economical than getting all of your servings out of the wedding cake.
  • What is the difference in buttercream compared to rolled fondant?  Buttercream is the sugary, smooth frosting that is covered on your cake.  Rolled fondant is just another covering of sugar paste that is put on over the fondant.  Some designs have to be done in fondant so discuss this with your cake designer.
  • Can I order a fancy wedding cake from the cake shop and get my sheet cakes at Sam’s? or Wal-Mart, Costco, Etc.  Most cake shops have a policy of making all or nothing for your wedding.  Why?  Cake shops have worked for years to have a very good reputation.  They don’t know what the quality of cake is like at another place.  Cake shops want to protect their reputation by making all the cake that is served at your reception.  If it is a question of costs, pare down your wedding cake size so you can afford to order all of your cake from one place.
  • My reception site says I have to have a cake vendor that is licensed.  How do I know they are?  If your cake shop or bakery is in retail, they have to be licensed by their city and or state to provide food for payment.  If your cake vendor works out of their home, they are more than likely NOT licensed.  Don’t take a chance with your guests getting sick at your wedding, go with a licensed bakery.  They have to pass strict sanitation and food codes to get a license.
  • Cake is just food, why is it so expensive?  Relatively speaking, the wedding cake is one of your least expensive items for your wedding.  Be prepared to spend $4.00-$6.00 a serving for your wedding cake.  Sheet cakes and cupcakes are quite a bit less than that.  Most couples spend $500-$800 for their wedding cake and additional servings.  The more intricate the design, the higher the price.  Labor is a big portion of the cost of the wedding cake.  Pick out a simple design and your costs won’t be as much.

Article courtesy of http://www.bridalfantasyshow.com/   Cake Photo courtesy of Amy Herfurth

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