Well I did it, delivered my first wedding cake today!!!! I know there are many out there in CC land who have much experience with wedding cakes. I need help in tips and tricks on how to make the process run more smoothly. I'm still stressing over it, probably because I got no sleep last night at all. I work full time so as much as I'd like to devote all day to it I am unable. I took yesterday of of work so I could devote the time needed but I'm eventually going to run out of days to take off...lol
What advice can you lend to make the process go easier? I have another cake due this coming weekend - two wedding cakes in a row, ugh!
I look forward to what you have to tell me! I've posted a pic in the gallery under my pics - I am totally open to all constructive critisim you might have - it's the only way I'm going to learn and get better!
I looked at the pics. It looked great! (Stop stressing and get some sleep). I bet your hand is sore from all that cornelli lace!
Maybe next time you can bake the cakes ahead of time and freeze them, so that you won't have as much to do at one time. You can also make flowers ahead of time (I make buttercream roses on waxed paper squares and store them in the fridge in a 9x13 with a lid). Fondant decorations are great to make ahead of time...I've been making fondant pearls and storing them in the freezer in the little plastic containers my kids get out of the gumball machine. I have some fondant flowers frozen too, but haven't tried to thaw them out yet so I don't know how well they will work.
I'm not selling cakes, though...just making them for friends and family...so I bet the pros here will have lots of good advice for you.
Was there a particular part that really stressed you out? What part made you say, "Whew! I'm glad THAT part is over!" Narrow it down a bit and we'll be more able to give some specific helpful hints for ya!
Well outside of the whole thing being stressful for the simple fact it was the first wedding cake, lets see.
I guess right now looking back on it one of my biggest issues was time. I had already baked the cakes for the 1st and 2nd tiers so they were done when I started out at 7am Friday morning. I don't work slow meaning I don't stop and take 15 min breaks every hour, but I can't seem to figure out where my time went. I literally was up all night and still decorating yesterday morning at 10am.
It was a hex cake - I'm not the best with corners some cakes work perfectly while others I could probably work on a corner til the cows came home and it still not look good. I'm at the point of saying I won't offer a Hex cake as a choice for wedding cakes because of how long it took me.
Any tips and advise from smooth crisp edges/corners would be a big help. I'm still reflecting on the whole thing while I'm typing this- I think time was the biggest factor. How do you prioritize and set a scheudle I guess. I do regular cakes along with the wedding cakes. So I had a bridal shower cake to do at the same time. This coming week, I've got two half sheets (eggless)(10 x 15) due along with a 12 edible image anniv cake due both of those are due Saturday and then the wedding cake due Sunday.
I guess I don't know how far out is ok to bake the cakes ahead of time and still have them fresh. I really don't want to freeze them as I have no experience what so ever with that. I don't want to change the taste or quality at all by doing that either. Not to mention I don't have the biggest freezer in the world..lol
I did notice I had some buldging on the two tiers that had filling, the middle tier which just had icing as the filling was smooth as a baby's bottom and looked great.
I'm going to have to think more on it but right now I'm sticking with time/schedule was my biggest problem. All I know is that I have to fix it some how because I can't go through another sleepless night. I'm still feeling the after effects today, I feel like I've got a hang over and I haven't had one of those in years!!!
I think you did a great job! Talk to you soon.
Time and timing is something that gets easier as you go along.
I also used to be a "I don't freeze MY cakes!" snob .... until the very knowledgable people on CC educated me on how to do it and the advantages of it. They are easier to work with when partially frozen, and they actually taste a bit moister, when frozen and thawed properly (Leave wrapped in saran while thawing).
Here is a thread with step by step photos on how I do corners. It might be a bit helpful to you on the hex corners.... http://www.cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopicp-5396443-.html#5396443
Here's a few things I've learned along the way: (I don't know if these were your issues or not, but I hope this helps)
1. Write up a list about a week before of all you have to do. Be sure to cross off as you go. (Silly, I know, but it makes you feel like you've accomplished!)
2. I do not recommend freezing though I know many people do it. I just tried it for the wedding cake I did this weekend. I rebaked cakes because I thought they came out too mushy. BUT, I had hard decorating and fondant that made it impossible to refrigerate the cakes after decorating, so this was my major concern -- leaving them out so that they would get mushyish inside.
3. Make the icing a couple days ahead if possible. That should refrigerate fine. Make as many fillings a couple days ahead as you can.
4. Make a list of all the things you can be doing while other things are setting, so you don't lose any opportunities.
5. Get ALL your boards/dowels, etc. together in one place, lined up, and ready to use when you need them.
6. Smoothing corners is easy if you use a crusting buttercream. Use the Viva method or the Melvira method. If you're not using a crusting bc, then use there's a way to use 2 spatula knives to do it, but it takes a little practice.
7. Fill and crumb coat cakes the night before you ice them if possible. That way all you have to do is ice, let set a bit. Or, get them iced the night before you decorate. Even better!
8. Put your icings in Saran Wrap (make icing tubes) before you decorate so that you'll have all you need when you're decorating. You just pop it in your bag and then replace when you need a new one. No need to take time on that one.
8. Get a friend to help you with dishes along the way. This has saved me tons of time along the way. She just keeps doing the dishes and I always have what I need.
Can't think of anything else right now. Hope this helps!