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Your Guide To Designing Your Wedding Cake

Designing a wedding cake is one of the best parts of planning a wedding. You get to sample decadent sweets to find just the right flavor cake. And, you get to exercise some creativity when coming up with the look of the cake. I mean, when else do you get to pick a cake in any size, color and shape imaginable?

And, that is why designing a wedding cake can also be a daunting task. With so many choices, it can be hard to choose a cake that is right for you. Here are some bits of advice I have picked up along the way that will help steer you in the right direction.

The Cake Costs How Much? #@&#!!!

Yes, a wedding cake can cost a lot of money but that is because a cake is determined by: size + style + expertise of baker. Before you design your cake, have a budget in mind and discuss it with your baker so you are both on the same page.

It’s All in the Timing

Give yourself plenty of time to find the right baker to make your wedding cake. I know, I know, there is an endless list of things to-do for your wedding but planning ahead will cause you less stress down the road. Most bakers recommend you make your wedding cake consultation at least six months in advance.

It’s All Relative

The size of your cake should relate to the size of the room. For example, if your reception will take place in a room with tall ceilings, your cake should be tall, too.

Wedding Cake Stands.

Extra Tip: If your cake is small, don’t worry, you can make it look bigger by adding a cake stand.

Location, Location, Location

The design of your cake should reflect its surroundings. If your reception is in a grand, ornate ballroom, your cake should be grand and ornate, too. If your wedding will take place outdoors on a beach, your cake should be vibrant like the ocean.

Color (the Secret Weapon)

Color has a huge impact on a cake. And, the best part? It’s inexpensive. By adding color, your cake will feel decadent and look expensive without killing your budget.

Brown Cake Stand.

Extra Tip: The color of your cake should match the colors of the room, not your wedding colors. Not only will your cake make a statement in the room but your wedding photos will look better, too. When in doubt, an all-white cake always looks stunning.

It’s a Seasonal Thing

When designing your cake, take into consideration the time of year and weather. You want to make sure your cake will hold up the whole night and does not collapse. Fondant, for example, holds up better than buttercream in hot weather.

Extra Tip: Choose ingredients that are available to you during the seasons: citrus in the fall, strawberries in early summer and chocolate all year round.

It’s All in the Details

Try not to go crazy and add so many details to your cake that you are over-designing it. Some of the most stunning and memorable cakes I have seen have had only one or two details added to the design. This cake by AK Cake Design is a perfect example. As the saying goes, less is more.

White Wedding Cake Stand.

Go For It!

Let those juices flow and get creative. Look for inspiration in magazines and blogs but go for an original creation rather than just copying another cake’s design. (Hint: our Lookbook is a great place to see a variety of amazing cakes.) By adding your own personal touch, you will make your cake a reflection of you and isn’t that what this day is all about?

Be Open

You may have picked your cake design by the time you go to your wedding cake consultation but keep an open mind. Your baker is a wealth of information and expertise and she may have some really great ideas to add to your design. So, go in with one idea but be prepared to leave with another.

Don’t Forget the Fun

Your wedding cake is your opportunity to draw outside the lines. Don’t feel forced to do what you think you should do. This macaroon cake by Crooked Tree Coffee and Cakes shows just how creative you can get. Want to have some crazy flavor combinations in your cake? Want to ditch the cake altogether and have pie instead? Do it! Whatever you choose, have fun with it.

Macaroon Wedding Cake.

The Finishing Touch

With all the wedding details to keep track of, the cake stand is often overlooked. But a cake stand is that decor item that will make your cake really stand out. It can be the pop of color that brings your cake design together or it can make a simple design sublime. I often say that a cake stand is like a perfect pair of high heels for a glamorous dress. Though, beware, many bakers don’t provide a cake stand so you will have to find your own (don’t worry, we got you covered with all these wedding cake stands).

Looking for ideas on how to display your wedding cake? Check out these 10 Tips For Displaying Your Wedding Cake.