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Find the Perfect Wedding Cake - Part 2

Once you have your cake design planned and your flavors picked out, it's now time to figure out different costs. Cakes are usually priced by the slice. Will the cake be large enough to feed your guests, or will you need to purchase another sheet cake to serve? Would it be cheaper for you to have a smaller cake and a larger sheet cake? Some even offer a fake cake (with real top tier) and a sheet cake in order to cut the costs. Also, what about the flavor/filling combos - you might love the fresh mixed berries, but if you're on a budget, replacing them with something else might be a good idea.

If you're going for floral decorations, make sure the baker is supplying them all, and if so, do you have a better connection that can get them at a better price? (Now's when I should also add, make sure the flowers you use are edible).

Don't overlook things like cake stands, cutters, toppers, either. Find out if they come with the cake (a cake always looks so much prettier on a cake stand), or if they require a deposit.

To read the last few tips,

Be sure to find out how busy the bakery is and how much time/attention they give to each cake. If they have a small staff and have several cakes needed for your wedding day, ask how they plan on pulling it off. Also, find out how far in advance the cake is prepared. The cake portion can be made up to a week in advance, but the icing shouldn't be more than a day or two.

One really important, and sometimes overlooked, fee is the delivery charge. Is there one? Does the place even deliver or will you have to pick it up (which to me, sounds like a recipe for disaster). Does a decorator accompany the cake delivery, or do they use a service. The ideal situation is one where a cake decorator accompanies the cake, this way if something slips during transportation, they'll be able to make any necessary repairs. Is it delivered whole or placed together on spot? Will the company travel to your location, or is it out of their delivery range? If they will, is it going to cost extra? Be sure to figure this stuff out, so that there are no "hidden" costs later.

Finally, have fun, be unique and be yourself - but don't skimp out, make sure it lives up to your expectations. As cake designer Edith Meyer (who created the two very different cakes shown here, and the one from yesterday) states, "Remember, it's the last thing your guests are going to remember from the reception, and it should be as special as the rest of your day."

Be sure to check out part one of how to find the perfect wedding cake!

Do you have any great tips on what to ask when choosing a cake designer? Or how about any great cake-tasting tales? Let us know below!

Join The Conversation
moosie7 moosie7 10 years
I love berries and i love chocolate so that first cake is just right for me
sbgirl sbgirl 10 years
Some bakeries will make you another cake for your 1st anniversary as part of the price of the cake. That way you don't have to save the top part in your freezer for a year. Our baker in Santa Barbara does this and I can't wait to have some on our anniversary because I can barely remember what the cake tasted like at our wedding. It was so good when we tasted - chocolate brownie with raspberries (2 layers) and lemon with lemon curd & raspberries (2 layers). YUM
ALSW ALSW 10 years
That first cake with the berries looks amazing! I want!
CestLaVie CestLaVie 10 years
I agree with celebrity_soup. That is one of the most delectable cakes I have ever seen. I would have trouble sharing:)
Food Food 10 years
great point haze1nut, I can't believe i forgot the slicing/plating charge. Be sure to ask questions everyone, there can be a lot of extra (sort of hidden) charges.
Hera119 Hera119 10 years
the cake looks so delicious
celebrity_soup celebrity_soup 10 years
seriously! to me that cake is like the TOP of the TOP of wedding cakes, the MOST delicious looking thing i have ever seen! and beautiful! BTW im talking about the first cake very berry! yum :drool:
celebrity_soup celebrity_soup 10 years
*falls on the floor* holly cow! that cake is... is... *speachless* I WANT IT!
haze1nut haze1nut 10 years
oh yeah, and the thing...that goes under the cake? i forgot but we had to 'rent' it out from the cake baker and paid a downpayment or something. they delivered it with the cake but you have to return it to them or else they'll charge you for it. silver platter? cake stand? i dunno, but our was silver, engraved with flowers, and was like a box shape. here's the cake we picked out for my parent's wedding annivesary wedding and we changed the designs a bit to have more silver (silver wedding anniversary) and different patterns for each layer. we also chose different flavors.
haze1nut haze1nut 10 years
I think you forgot to mention cake slicing and plating costs per person. Our hotel (St.Regis) charged us $2.50 to slice and plate for each person. unless you go with the hotel's baker they're going to charge you this. SO BE PREPARED and research this little fact before you buy your cake too.
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