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5 Wedding Cake Tips

Sweet Heather Anne & Brian Weitzel Photography

Hi everyone! Welcome back to the Wedding Planning Collective blog. Today's post is a quick and straight to the point one, going hand in hand with our podcast of course (shameless plug here: Let's talk about wedding cakes.

I'm going to share with you 5 things that I bet you haven't considered regarding your wedding cake. Before we get into that though, I want to make sure that you've grabbed our 4 wedding guides over at I'll link them here for you to make it easier:

You can grab all those resources for free, and stay tuned for even MORE resources coming your way soon!

Back to the cakes.

1. First, if you're going to have any fresh floral, or a topper on your cake, make sure you have a plan for who is going to be placing those on the wedding day.

In most cases, the florist will be able to provide flowers for you, but they're typically not on site when your cake is delivered. Florists will likely be done earlier in the day with their setup, and bakers prefer to drop the cake off later so it's not sitting out too long. Some bakers will prefer to be the ones to place the flowers on the cake, and others want nothing to do with it. The same goes for florists. Some prefer to be the ones to decorate the cake, while others do not want to touch a cake.

Instead, they'll just leave a vase of fresh flowers sitting next to the cake for someone else to place. So make sure that you reach out to both your florist and your baker to confirm that you have a plan for wedding day. If you also have a cake topper or other décor for your cake, make sure that this is part of the conversation as well. Most toppers are pretty easy to place, they just set right into the top tier. But every once in a while we'll get a more complicated one that needs a little more preparation in advance of the wedding day.

2. In addition to the topper or flowers, you will need a knife & server, a plate, forks, and napkin for the cake cutting moment.

If you want, you can purchase a knife & server set, or maybe someone has gifted that to you during one of your showers. If it has been gifted to you during your engagement, the guest is most likely expecting to see that on the wedding day. So make sure that you have that with you. Sidenote: the same goes for toasting flutes. If you're gifted those, you probably want to make sure you have them on the wedding day. If you don't have a knife & server set, and you really don't feel like purchasing them, ask your venue, caterer, or planner if they have one that you can use.

I always have one in Fat Max (our emergency kit) in case we're in a space where we don't have access to a traditional kitchen. In addition to the knife & server, you'll also want to make sure to arrange to have a plate, 2 forks, and a napkin ready for you on the cake table. This is going to make it much easier when you're ready to cut the cake to be able to have those things ready to go. The third tip is regarding timing to cut the cake.

3. The two most common times to cut the cake are: right when you're announced into the reception before dinner, or just before the formal dances after dinner.

The answer is going to be based on a couple of variables. Most importantly, how you want your cake to be served to your guests. If you're planning on having cake served as a course, meaning that the wait staff will bring each guest a piece at their seats, then you'll need to cut the cake before dinner so the venue or caterer has time to cut and plate it in the kitchen. However, if you want to have a small break between dinner and dessert, or you're going to be serving it at a dessert station where the guests will go and pick their own piece out themselves, you can cut the cake after dinner.

This is actually my preferred timing, because it gives the cake more time to be displayed. Especially if cocktail hour wasn't in the same room where the cake will be. And if the cake has been a really important part of your décor, or maybe just a significant part of your budget, you'll want to make sure it is displayed and visible as long as possible.

4. The fourth tip I want to talk about is how you actually cut the cake.

It might sound funny but many couples get up the cake and aren't quite sure what to do next. Before we get into how to actually cut the cake, you'll need to discuss with your baker what tier is supposed to be cut. In most cases it's going to be the base layer, not the top tier. But if you have any fake Styrofoam tiers, or if you want to cut into a specific flavor, you'll need to clarify with the baker which tier is the best to cut. When it comes to actually cutting the cake, the most important thing to remember is that it's not going to cut like the typical one tier birthday cake or perfect triangle slice of pie, but rather a small thin rectangle shape piece that you will have to scoop out.

Ask your photographer where they would like to have you positioned at the cake, and then you will take the knife from the knife & server set to cut a piece several inches wide. Make sure it's not too narrow or it's going to be really hard to get that piece out. The tiers are often separated with a layer of cardboard, so don't worry if you get any resistance. Just make sure to slide the knife under the board from that tier and try again. Try to also angle the slice if you can, rather than just cutting straight back into the cake.

You'll then take the server to scoop out under that piece you just cut, and put it onto the plate that you'll have ready to go. Again, it's probably not going to be a perfect pie shape, it might be a little wonky, but that's okay. Once it's on the plate, you can each take one of the forks, and feed each other a little bit. It can be a bit awkward for sure, but just make sure you get enough on the plate for that first bite, and you'll be fine.

5. Think about whether or not you want to save the top tier of the cake after the wedding.

The tradition is that couples will save or the top layer to freeze for your first anniversary. However, I find that most couples don't either have the freezer space to save the whole top tier, or aren't that excited about eating freezer burned cake on their anniversary. Because of this, many bakeries offer an anniversary cake that you can pick up fresh instead of having the frozen version. Or, you can save a slice or two to freeze away rather than an entire tier.

Ask your baker if they can provide a box to pack the cake up in, as most of them will not provide a box unless it's requested. Even if you're not planning on saving any of the cake for your anniversary, there's almost always leftover cake and who's going to turn that down for breakfast the next day. Right? And if you're going to have a significant amount of extra cake, talk to your baker about saving a portion of it if you're going to have a post wedding brunch the next day.

So those are my 5 wedding cake tips that I BET you haven't thought of yet. ;) If you have another tip to share, head on over to the Wedding Planning Collective Facebook Group and share it there. And don't forget to grab those free wedding guides over at Thank you so much, and I will see you in the next post!

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