When it comes to wedding preparation, there are almost too many things to think about. Many of these task require a lot of brainstorming and planning, such as finding the right venue, the right caterer and the perfect photographer and videographer.
Something that many not take quite as long to plan is finding the wedding cake you want. Nowadays, cakes come in all shape and sizes, with some as tall as a small child, and others simple and maintained. But whatever the size, choosing a wedding cake is one of the most fun parts of planning as it’s always fun to test copious amounts of cake without feeling guilty!
Here are our 5 steps to choosing your wedding cake. Follow them, and we’re sure you’ll be looking forward to revealing it to all your guests on your wedding day!
- 1. Consider your budget and venue
- 2. Know all of the styles and alternatives
- 3. Adapt to your style of wedding and menu
- 4. Find the right professional for the job
- 5. Extra advice
It’s common knowledge that your budget will determine a large number of wedding details. This is certainly the case with the wedding cake, since options are plentiful, both for the style of cake and the professionals involved.
First of all, you should know if the catering service or the space you have hired includes the cake or if you have to find your own way. Of course, you can get started on your own from the word ‘go’ and throw yourself into the thick jungle of confectioners and professionals who, with their different ways of doing things, will strive to design the best possible cake for your big day. However, it is important to know whether the venues that offer cake services will allow one from another supplier.
The budget is key because you pay for quality and style. In this sense, master bakers that are skilled in the art of innovation tend to have higher fees. But, to establish a general price, think about £5-7 per guest, and depending on the total number of them, you will reach an approximate figure. Thus, the whole cake would move between £500 and £1000, based on an average of 100-200 wedding guests.
Obviously, the price varies depending on the details that you include in the final design. For example, flowers, specialised designs, gold or silver icing, the number of tiers… All of these require more work and can raise the price considerably.
The cake has to reflect your personality, not only as an aesthetic element but also your tastes. Each season comes with varying trends, but the person who makes your cake will advise you on these.
Among the cakes that are on trend today, there are also more traditional cakes delight guests at the most classic weddings. However, recently, there have been a large number of avant-garde or vintage variants. Among the most popular, we love these:
The classic (or fondant) cake is constructed with a white paste (or fluffy butter icing) used for many cakes or sweets. It is the quintessential wedding cake that you will always see at weddings, but it continues to triumph as a tribute to certain traditions.
The naked cake is one of the best recent trends. With a vintage/rustic style, it shows the interior of the cake, leaving aside the toppings and colours. It is usually accompanied by pretty flowers or delicious fruits.
The watercolour cake (or the canvas cake) has gained popularity for its beautiful appearance, since, using soft colors, it mixes tones and wraps any cake (with any filling) with artistic design. Watercolours are a type of paint diluted by water that evoke light and nature.
The ruffle cake is also highly popular for its appearance. Merengue is available in wavy forms that has a unique result and brings a special elegance. The result is obtained with a nozzle that allows the baker to create a variety of shapes when icing their masterpiece.
In recent times, different cakes, cakes, biscuits, muffins, cupcakes, macarons, ice cream and many other alternatives have been served at weddings. If you don’t like cake, for example, how about a cheese tower?
Although every wedding is different, it almost always follows a certain theme that corresponds to the personality of the couple, which is something very important. We spoke to Sandy Young at The Cake Garden who said that “couples should always ask the cake maker to create a cake that reflects them, rather than being too influenced with current trends or family influence”.
A vintage wedding style will usually entail a classic white cake with flowers that match the colour palette of the wedding decoration, while a bohemian style wedding is better suited to a naked cake, and a retro/alternative wedding with an alternative to the traditional cake, such as a cupcake tower.
In the same vein, the wedding menu also follows the tastes of the couple. And, if a menu has some characteristics in terms of shape and substance, the cake, which concludes the food, usually has many similarities to the style of the menu. The decoration of the cake, its flavours, the size and its final appearance should not differ too much from the set menu to avoid inconsistency.
Choosing the right person for the job is very important, even more so with the amount of new bakers and confectioners that are emerging. Natasha from The Sweet Stuff, told us that “before choosing a wedding cake designer, you must do your research to make sure that they’re a good match for you. Can they provide what you want? Does their style a match with yours? These are the important questions to ask“.
But, if you are are a creative individual who has dreamed of their wedding cake for years, remember that many pastry chefs are open to a challenge. Therefore, with the advice of the professional, and after reviewing your existing expectations, you can adapt the cake to your personality – it will be both beautiful and delicious! Obviously, all of this implies a higher price, but if the cake is a priority for you, you’ll be willing to invest a little more to have the perfect result.
Investigate the different options for your wedding cake and, although the decorative exterior is the main appeal, don’t forget about its taste. Consider whether you want it to be chocolate, red velvet, victoria sponge, or fruit cake – to name a few. As with the menu, brides and grooms usually have a cake tasting, closer to the day of the wedding.
Beware of allergies. The ingredients of many sweets are prone to contain substances that are potentially dangerous for allergy sufferers, since lactose, gluten, nuts and fruits are usually involved. So, get alternatives for those with allergies. All the ingredients of the final cake should appear on the menu to alert guests and avoid problems.
Take transport into account. If the cake isn’t provided by your venue, it is not always the responsibility of the bakery to deliver it to your venue. Inform yourself of this and try to arrange for its collection hours before the wedding. Find out what the best ways are of conserving the cake during and after the transfer. Luckily, if the catering or space accepts your cake from other suppliers, they will know about how to manage it.
Whoever is responsible for your cake will take pride in its design and will want you to enjoy it from beginning to end. As Kate from Rosie Rosie Cakes says, “It’s important to choose a wedding cake designer who connects with you as a couple and will design your cake bespoke to your requirements“. So knowing your personal taste will help you choose the cake of your dreams, which will be a delight for you and for your guests.
The wedding cake is a special moment in the celebration for both the bride and groom, and will remain in your memory for life, so enjoy choosing the symbol of this sweet moment.
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