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Before You Choose Your Baker Part I


Get excited because this is a two part-er!

We have showcased hundreds of gorgeous wedding cakes on here.  The supply of amazing and gorgeous photos of cakes is limitless…but we all know those cakes didn’t just appear out of thin air.  They came from somewhere.  They were made by someone who was inspired by an idea.

It’s almost as exciting as the story about where babies come from.  Almost.

If you truly think about it this is your one opportunity as a bride to truly create something that symbolizes your wedding.  You wedding venue has done thousands of weddings before.  Your dress? There are probably at least a hundred other girls wearing it on your wedding day. Well, unless you are The Duchess of Cambridge of course.  Even though your baker has baked thousands of wedding cakes before.  Each every one is unique and special in their own way.  To me that makes them the most important part of your reception.

However, before you run into your baker for that wonderful tasting there are a few things you should do before choosing your baker.  This post will be in the form of a list.  Why?  Because I love lists.

1.  Research!  You’re off to a good start if you’re reading this.  Research is so important–because honestly you can’t walk into a baker without any idea of what you want or else you’ll end up with something that isn’t truly yours.  While you won’t actually be the one baking, sculpting, and icing, you will have a significant impact on the design.  I have never heard a baker say, “She told me to do whatever and it was awesome!”  Most bakers like direction.  They want to know what you like, what your fiance likes, what you think is disgusting…and they want to learn a little bit about you as a couple so that you’ll be happy.  If you have a picture to show them…that’s great.  If not, just meeting you and hearing what you like and dislike is a great inspiration for them.  If you check out any baker blogs they almost always say something about how fun, sweet, energetic, exciting or happy the couple is.  Let them see you by showing them what you like. When you love your cake they are happy because they know they’ve made something you loved.  So here are some things to think about:

  • Shape.  It’s the easiest place to start.   Most people opt for the traditional round cakes.  However, square cakes are insanely popular and you may remember how Blair’s husband loved hexagons.
  • Stacked or Separated.  Most cakes are stacked (one on top of the other) but some people like the staggered look of many different cakes.  Also, some innards of cakes cannot support stacking so separated is the only option.
  • Your style.  Traditional or Funky?  Preppy or Eclectic?  Close your eyes and imagine what vibe you want your cake to have.  Don’t worry about the design just yet.  We’ll get to that.
  • And I can’t leave out the most important.  Do you have a thing for cupcakes? If you are leaning towards cupcakes but hate losing that tradition of cutting the cake, the cupcake tower with a cutting cake might be just the thing for you.

The best place to do you research?  Well A Wedding Cake Blog of course!  Scroll through the categories over here ——> or the archives and find cakes you like.  Then click on “Other Posts You Might Enjoy” to get more options.

2. Find samples of cakes you like.  It might just hit you.  You may be flipping through a magazine or scrolling through our archives and you see it.  YOUR cake.  You love it and can’t think of ANYTHING else in life.  That’s amazing.  If you aren’t that lucky (most of us aren’t), find photos of 4-6 cakes that you like and print them out.  Line them all up in front of you and think about what you like about each cake.  Look for common themes.  Are they all round?  Are they all stacked?  Are they all covered in white?  You don’t have to make a definitive choice–it’s just helpful to know what you like.  To make this a little clearer I’ll give you an example.  When the hubbs and I bought our first house we sent a list of 6 houses we liked to our agent.  She wrote us back and said, “So clearly you all want a front porch?”.  We had no idea that every single house we picked had a front porch..we were just drawn to them.  From then on she was able to choose other houses with porches for us to see.  Who ever you choose as a baker will probably notice common threads among your selections but it’s good to have a background on what you like beforehand. These photos will be a good inspiration for your baker.  After talking with you and seeing your photos your baker will probably sketch up a cake for you.  Even if you found THE cake your baker will probably want to change it up a bit.  It’s kind of a baking faux-pas to copy an exact cake that someone else has already made.  They are artists in the edible arts so allow them to be creative and see what they come up with.  I am getting off track!  On with number three…

3.  Research..again.  This time research bakers in your area.  Talk to friends who have gotten married and always, always, always ask the opinion of your caterer.  Trust me on this one.  Caterers know it all…the good, the bad, and the ugly.  After meeting with my caterer one time she had given me the skinny on just about every wedding vendor in town.  These people have been around the wedding block and have worked with just about everyone–you know if your caterer is a business and not your Aunt Myrtle whipping up goodness in her kitchen.  If you liked them enough to hire them–trust them.  And then go see for yourself.  With recommendations in mind, research them online.  Choose one or two that you like and call them up and book a tasting.  Tastings are one of the BEST parts of wedding cake planning (hello–free cake!) but there are lots of “shoulds” and “shouldn’ts” about wedding cake tastings that I’ll get to next week.

So you’re armed with your cake pictures and your tastings are booked.  What now?  Well, you’ll have to wait.

I’ll be back next week with part two of this series “Choosing Your Wedding Cake Baker”.  I’ll go over the ins and outs of wedding cake design, what you should look for when your choosing a baker, and what to look for and do at a tasting.

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