It’s cake time! Put on those stretchy trousers and let’s get tasting. Oh the joys of wedding planning – when else do you get to sit and eat cake all day? Well today is that day. Hooray.
A wedding cake is a staple sight at any wedding, symbolising the first meal eaten as a married couple (awwwww). From wheat cakes traditionally consumed by the Romans, into the endless variety of cakes, cupcakes, doughnuts and other delicacies available, we are going to help you whizz through that sugary sea.
1. It’s all about recommendations!
As with anything, start with recommendations! Ask your recently married pals, or even your venue for advice. A delicious cake can be made by your venue, by a patissier, a caterer, a supermarket, a novice or a cake designer, so your choices are ample! And that means there is so much more to taste and try!
2. What flavour?
Can’t decide on flavours? Well you’ve got the traditional fruitcake with marzipan, or anything else your heart desires – vanilla, red velvet, chocolate, the list goes on… In fact, if you can’t decide on just one flavour, why not opt for layers with different flavours? (Just make sure you try all of them first (don’t mind if we do!) and put the heaviest layer on the bottom).
3. What about the budget?
On average, a cake will cost £500, but the more decorative and elaborate your cake (think multiple tiers, ingenious designs and sugar flowers) the more it will cost you. In fact, be up front about your budget when you are meeting your cake maker, so that you don’t end up spending thousands. (Believe us, it has been done!)
4. Watch that cream!
When choosing a flavour with cream, remember that cream-based cakes do not keep unless refrigerated! So if you are having an outdoor or summer wedding, try something else. Also, when considering fresh fruit and flowers think: chocolate and fruit, icing and flowers. (Icing absorbs the juice from the fruit, resulting in a colour mess – just a little trick from us!)
5. Take your time
Allow yourself between 9 and 6 months to select your wedding cake. Decorations, stacking or layering can take time to make and order. But that does mean more months of tasting – bonus!
6. Size matters
Think about how many guests your cake needs to serve. This will affect price and size, – you don’t want an endless cake for a thirty guest wedding. Similarly, if you want to serve your cake as desert, it will need to be big enough to feed all your guests. Alternatively, you can provide them with yummy treats like cupcakes and then your cake doesn’t need to be as large. Want a sneaky trick? Use Styrofoam layers instead of real ones and serve sheet cake instead – behind the scenes of course. Regardless of what you decide, be honest about your budget.
7. How tall are you?
Ever thought about your height when picking out a cake? No us neither BUT if you are tall, you could dwarf a small cake and a massive cake can drown you if you are smaller. Also, remember when you are cutting the cake and how it makes an awesome photo? Make sure to angle yourself so that the photographer can actually see you! Aren’t you glad we are here!?
8. Who has the table?
Don’t forget the cake table! Couples seem to overlook this one until the last minute, but decorating the table and making sure its shape works with the cake is important! The cake will receive a lot of attention, after all.
9. Missing guests
If you want to send cakes out to guests who couldn’t attend, ask advice on storage from your cake maker. Do this and you will get brownie points for being the nicest married couple ever.
10. Yes! Tasting time!
Now for the best bit! Book a tasting. Even if you love the designs available, you can’t buy a cake based on design! So before you buy, have a relaxing afternoon with your beloved (or another trusted advisor) and enjoy all that cake! Here’s where the stretchy trousers come in.
Lastly, the tradition of eating your cake for your anniversary/ the birth of your first child is sweet in theory, but beware of brain freeze! Try to vacuum seal the cake if you do want to freeze it to prevent some of the potential freezer burn. Then you can enjoy it all over again!
Read our article on questions to ask your cake maker for more fun cake information!
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