Professionally prepared wedding cakes are priced by the slice. Add fresh flowers, a cake topper and set-up and delivery fees, and the cost of the cake alone can easily exceed a moderate budget for a wedding. There are many expenses and details to tend to, saving money on the price of the wedding cake is a good way to ease the budget.
Trim the Cost of the Wedding Cake
- Calculate how much cake is needed for the reception. Figure on one small slice for about 2/3 of the guests (see Resources below).
- Ask friends and family for references for in-home bakers who specialize in wedding cakes. Make contact early to secure a place on an often limited schedule of commitments.
- Visit the bakeries of local grocery stores and discount stores. Review the available wedding cake options, including information about delivery and set up. Find out if anyone in the family or among close friends bakes wedding cake.
- Limit the cake to one type and the icing to a simple butter cream, especially if multiple cake types and various icings add to the cost. Find out if charges are added for decorating the cake.
- Order a small, decorated wedding cake that’s three layers high. Set it on an elevated cake stand surrounded by a few smaller sheet cakes.
- Rent a cake topper, as opposed to purchasing one. Borrow a cake topper from a friend or top the cake with a small nosegay of flowers.
- Save on delivery and set-up fees. Ask the baker to show a friend or family member how to transport the cake and set it up on site.
Bake Your Own
- Bake 5 or 7 rounds cake layers using different size pans. Allow each layer to cool and turn it out onto a white cake circle (coated cardboard) available at any cake decorating shop (see Resources below).
- Frost each layer with white butter cream frosting, which holds up well in most temperatures. The morning before reception, decorate the sides and tops of the layers with flower petals and a few fresh flowers that match the wedding color scheme.
- Set up a cake table. Use boxes of varying heights and cover all with a large satin tablecloth that coordinates with the wedding theme.
- Arrange each cake layer on the elevated platforms or cake pedestals created by the boxes under the tablecloth. Keep the largest layers down low. Set the smallest layer on the highest platform and finish it off with a small bouquet of fresh flowers or a cake topper.