There's nothing quite as special as a showstopping wedding cake—but we get it, every budget has its limits. And if the price per slice of wedding cake is giving you budget anxiety, don't feel like you need to nix the idea altogether. Instead, speak openly with your cake baker, tap into your creativity and use these straightforward tips so you don't have sacrifice this sweet detail.

Whether you are a DIY bride or a very generous friend, making a homemade wedding cake for the first time can be intimidating. There is naturally a bit of a trial and error involved in the process, but you still need your first wedding cake to turn out perfectly — after all, it's for someone's wedding! I've made three wedding cakes now, including my own, and along the way I've learned two key rules: plan ahead and be flexible. No matter how much you plan, problems are going to arise. A frosting that's come out fluffy and sturdy 10 times may randomly end up watery, your biggest cake layer may stick to the pan, and you may run out of strawberries on the day you're filling the cake. But as long as you can keep a level head and get creative on the fly, everything will turn out great. Here's my step-by-step guide to making a homemade wedding cake.
If your heart's set on flowers, go with fresh blooms or choose flat designs such as painted flower motifs instead of ornate sugar flowers. Sugar flowers are very labor intensive—it can take anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours to mold and dust one pretty sugar replica. (Now you know why they're so gorgeous.) To pare down the cost, choose a simple cake with one large stem or a spray of flowers on a single-tier cake. Another trick is to choose sugar flower types that don't require as much time and detail. For example, skip the cascade of peonies and shoot for hydrangeas or calla lilies. But fresh flowers are one of your best bets for a cost-friendly alternative. Just let your florist in on your plans so they can source pesticide-free and food-safe buds.
Sugar flowers are beautiful things. With care and patience they can be delicate fascimiles of real blooms, created using an edible medium which will last for months if kept dry and cool. As well as cakes they can make good display pieces, a sort of floral sculpture. The flowers are made from flowerpaste (gumpaste) , a very elastic sugarpaste that can be rolled and mainpulated into realistic petals that dry hard and brittle.
Think ahead of how you want to decorate your cake and practice piping or icing ahead of time. You can easily make extra icing and practice shapes on test cakes (or even on silicone mats). Secure a wedding topping, flowers, or other decorative items well before the wedding. If you are using fresh flowers, be sure to order exactly what you want from a florist. Lastly, you will need to clear a large space in the refrigerator, perhaps taking out a shelf for the cake. You'll also need to arrange transport for the cake to the wedding venue. Speak to the caterer or venue manager about cake transport and refrigeration details at the event.
Consider scaling back on cake slices and see if your caterer can also include a round of sweets to supplement (think: passed chocolate-covered strawberries, assorted cookies or mini truffles). Let your caterer know they should cut tasting portions to about three quarters of the usual amount, and plan to plate your cake slices with the other desserts. Ask your caterer to place slices on a buffet or cake table instead of serving a plate at every place setting—or have the staff bring bite-size pieces right to your guests on the dance floor so they can enjoy cake while getting down.
The white color has been attached to wedding ceremonies since the Victorian era when Queen Victoria chose to wear a white lace wedding dress at her wedding to Prince Albert in 1840. Queen Victoria accentuated an existing symbol, the color white being frequently associated with virginity and purity in Western culture. The wedding cake was originally known as the bride's cake therefore the color white became common because the cake needed to reflect the bride – and the expensive ingredients that the family was able to afford, such as refined white sugar.[10][unreliable source?]
We’re still in the middle of planning everything and being very DIY-EY with it all. As a brownie leader I love crafting things from our invitations to our table centres and thr next big thing on my list-the cake! I love the idea of having a blank canvas cake to decorate ourselves! Our theme is rustic and natural/spring garden but with having a fiancee in the military we’ve have picked navy as our main colour to run through the day. If I was lucky enough to win, my ideal cake would be 4 tiers with some hessian wrapped around each tier, but every girl loves a bit of jewel and sparkle; so my idea would be to have some thin navy ribbon over lapping the hessian and then some pearls or sequins threaded into this! {Lots of hand threading to do!} The cake would be topped with an old fashioned style plane – like the ones used in ww2 and some bunting attached to the end of this plane saying ‘True Love.’
Will a faux cake or a faux tier save you money on your wedding cake?  I’m sorry to say, but the answer is no.  It seems like having a chunk of Styrofoam vs. a piece of delicious cake should cost less.  I know logically, it sounds like it should.  So in an effort to dispel that myth, I will explain why it’s not the case.  A faux tier, or cake dummy, as we call them, costs about the same it does to bake the actual cake.  So, no cost savings there.  Second, I personally find cake dummies more difficult to work with then real cake, so I’m my opinion, it actually takes longer to decorate them then it does real cake.  So the time that it typically takes to decorate can actually be longer, which means, you guessed it, no cost savings there either!
I love the idea of decorating our own wedding cake. I am very crafty and making lots of decorations for our big day. If I was to win this competition I would paint my own bride and groom peg dolls and have mr and Mrs bunting on top. I would probably also have the cake on a wooden slide and decorate the tiers with a dusty pink ribbon to match our colour theme 🙂
I usually fill and frost the cake the day before the wedding, so there's plenty of time to fix mistakes. Using a serrated bread knife or cake leveler, trim your first frozen cake layer so it is as level as possible. Place the cake on a cake board with about a half-inch clearance on all sides (you can always trim the cake board down if you don't use that much frosting). Pipe a circle of frosting around the circumference of the cake, and then neatly pipe in your filling. Place the next layer on top, and repeat until all the layers in this tier are stacked. Then use your icing spatula to apply a thin "crumb coat" of frosting all over the cake. Put this tier in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to set. After 30 minutes, you can apply your top layer of buttercream or smooth fondant over the cake if you're using it. Repeat with all your tiers.
When making any flower you start with the centre and leave it to dry hard to provide a stable base for the creation. For the poppies the centre is the seed head. This is made using some pale green flower paste. Either buy the paste coloured or colour it yourself by adding a small amount of green food colouring paste and kneading it through to an even shade. Take a 24 gauge wire and use some pliers to bend a small hook onto the end.
When it comes to where the cake ought to be placed in the function area, summertime wedding events and cakes have to be very carefully assumed about. Shut out of the direct sunshine, warm and also wedding cakes not a match made in paradise. Maintain covered in case of flies. Never under no conditions position your wedding celebration cake near the dance flooring since the boogie bopper might create a lotta heartache. A consistent table is a have to for the cutting of the cake.
For a bride on a budget, paying a large sum of money for a wedding cake may seem completely outrageous. But what are the alternatives, particularly when you don't have any baking experts in your family? Turns out, making a wedding cake is not as difficult as one might think. There is some significant planning and effort that will need to happen, so make sure you carefully weigh the expense of a cake versus your time (and expectations) as you make your final decisions. And if the cake isn't your thing, you can always serve pie, ice cream, or even an ice cream sundae bar at your wedding.
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