Choosing a wedding cake can be a very time consuming process. There are countless options to choose from, and many popular styles to consider. To find the right wedding cake, you could go from bakery to bakery looking at pictures and examples of cakes and spend hours and hours searching to find the one that seems just right. This process, however, is very tedious, extremely time consuming and in the end, may not necessarily provide good results. There are a few simple ways to ensure that you can get quality wedding cake, and do so with as little excess work as possible.
The first thing to do is figure out how much you can afford to spend on a cake. A wedding cake can easily cost hundreds of dollars, with elaborate cake designs breaking into the thousands. Having a firm budget to begin with is crucial as it should help narrow down your choices significantly. You want to stay within your cake budget, or you may limit your ability to spend on other aspects of your wedding. It is very easy to walk into a bakery and see an example of a cake that seems perfect, only to find out it is much more expensive than you can afford.
Before you go to the bakery, do some research. The Internet is a great source for researching different wedding cake styles. This will help you get a better sense of which type of cake fits your wedding’s theme best and help further narrow down your options. Knowing what your preferences are before you begin to talk with different cake designers will make it easier to get the results you want. In this stage of research, it is also important to learn the jargon of the industry, so that you will not get lost in the terminology used by the wedding cake community and can communicate well with your baker when you arrive.
One other aspect to keep in mind before you begin any serious discussions about the kind of cake you are going to purchase is to be aware of any food allergies your guests may have. You might not be able to cater to every allergy, but trying your best to avoid using ingredients that could spark an allergic reaction is a common courtesy.
When deciding on the flavor of cake and the type of icing you will use, beginning by finding out what you and your spouse enjoy will help the process go smoother. Before any talk of cost can be established, you should have at least a rough number of guests that you are expecting and whether cake will be served to everyone. With cakes being as expensive as they are, many couples will get a small cake for decorative and traditional purposes, but use another dessert with the meal.
For decorations, there are yet more decisions to be made, all effecting the final outcome visually as well as financially. Will the cake be hand decorated, or will the baker use pre-made decorations? Hand decorations cake look nicer, but will also cost much more. Many wedding cakes feature flowers, and not all of the iced variety. Using fresh flowers is common practice. Be sure to address this with your baker in advance. Many couples also opt to use colorful fruits and berries instead of flowers at all. They can be less expensive and just as beautiful.
Before you choose a baker, you should look at a portfolio of what the designer has done in the past to get an idea of his or her style. In you conversations with a prospective baker, you should also inquire into extra costs for cake stands, delivery and setup. You can avoid “hidden” fees by asking about them up front.
And finally, to some brides, a wedding cake is merely a pedestal for the cake topper. If you have the perfect topper in mind, be sure to let your baker know as soon as possible, so that the accents, style and color of your wedding cake will accentuate it perfectly.