" Wedding Cake Fell Apart!!! I'm Sick!!!"

Decorating By KHalstead Updated 28 Sep 2008 , 6:27am by mydor

cakegrandma Posted 16 Jun 2008 , 1:36pm
post #31 of 63

Your cake was beautiful and I am so sorry it fell, however, it was a wonderful idea to have decorated the sheet cake to match the wedding cake design. I have taught cake decorating for many years and I would never transport any cake over 2 tiers stacked together. I always stack 2 tiers together and then any other tiers together in sets of 2 and put a dowel off center of each set of 2 to hold them together. When I get to the venue then I assemble all the tiers and then take a sharpened wooden dowel and run it down the center of all the tiers. I keep a small lightweight hammer to use only for my cakes and I use a small hand pruner to cut the wooden dowels. I got the hand pruner from "Big Lots" close out store for about $5.00 and they stay with all my cake stuff so they are used strictly for that purpose. You might want to either use double cardboard separators between each tier or foam board which works great also. Unfortunately, you learned an expensive lesson, but we all have at some time. Don't give up, your cake looked beautiful and I'll bet it tasted heavenly!!!! thumbs_up.gif


lomikesa Posted 16 Jun 2008 , 6:39pm
post #32 of 63

Can somebody tell me what SPS and SFS stands for?


acookieobsession Posted 16 Jun 2008 , 9:58pm
post #33 of 63

sfs is stress free support, you can get it from earlene's don't know the other sorry.


mjs4492 Posted 16 Jun 2008 , 10:43pm
post #34 of 63

(SPS: single plate support system)

I had a cake tragedy like yours - 5 tiered basketweave fell over in route - and I can definitely relate to your pain!!! and frustration!!! We ruined their most important day! icon_cry.gif Or at least I felt that way for a couple of weeks....

I'm interested in the difference between the SFS and SPS systems though because of the cost. I don't make that many larger tiered cakes to warrant the extra cost of the SFS system but will definitely consider purchasing it if it works better than the SPS system.

I'm sorry this happened to you!!!! A full refund will make you feel a little better - it did for me.

becky27 Posted 16 Jun 2008 , 10:53pm
post #35 of 63

so sorry to hear this happened...and i think its just as devastating for us as it is for the couple who bought and paid for it!!!! i have had this happened to me before too...i was so upset for couple at first and as soon as i moved passed that i was so upset for me....a weeks worth of work down the drain!! all my hard work....and truely disappointed that this even happened...horrific!!! time heals all and you are right lesson learned....and look at the bright side...they still had cake to serve!!! things could always be worse!!!! beautiful cake by the way!!!!!!

KHalstead Posted 17 Jun 2008 , 3:35am
post #36 of 63

yeah, time will heal and I did learn a good lesson..........my FIL just told my DH he's going to give me a year to heal before he starts bustin' my chops about the cake collapsing lol.

vdrsolo Posted 17 Jun 2008 , 2:38pm
post #37 of 63

SFS (Stress Free Support) is made up of internal stainless steel separator plates that has stainless steel rods on it that you thread your legs onto. A big advantage to this system is that you can adjust your legs to exactly the height of the cake. I believe each leg has about 3/4" of an inch or so adjustment, but there are different lengths available.
But the negative side to this system is that it is very expensive, and you need to charge a hefty deposit to get it back. Some brides look at the upfront cost when comparing bakers, and even though they will get the deposit back upon return, they don't want to pay that cost initially. The stainless steel rings are open in the middle if you still want to drive a middle dowel through the cake but I know many decorators who just use shelf liner between the tiers to keep them in place with no middle dowel.

SPS (Single Plate Support) is made of internal hard plastic plates that you attach the plastic legs too (they are a good tight fit). It is relatively cheap and I charge a deposit to get the legs and plates back. I have reused the plates over and over but the legs come back cracked every once and a while due to how the person pulls them out of the plate. You can charge and equipment fee to cover it, build it into the pricing of your cake, or get a deposit. The nice thing about this system is that there is a little peg in the middle of the plate that holds the upper tiers board in place (punch a hole in the board).

KHalstead Posted 17 Jun 2008 , 6:12pm
post #38 of 63

good info vdrsolo thanks so much!

mjs4492 Posted 17 Jun 2008 , 11:43pm
post #39 of 63

Bravo vdrsolo!!!!! Thank you for clearing up my questions!! thumbs_up.gif

terrylee Posted 18 Jun 2008 , 12:02am
post #40 of 63

Beautiful cake......So sorry it had to happen.......but a great save. a big "HUG" for you....That is everyone's nightmare....

I travel with each layer separate and still worry about layers slipping. I use the plate and connecting dowels, cut to height of the cake.

KHalstead Posted 18 Jun 2008 , 9:36pm
post #41 of 63

I just got an order yesterday for a 5 tiered stacked squares........how scared do ya think I am now????????? yikes!!! I ordered the square sps plates and stuff now......too bad I just spent close to a hundred dollars on round ones, and close to a hundred on square ones now (I ordered 2 plates of each size from 6"-16" and a bunch of legs) cuz now I have to spend almost another hundred on square cake pans LOL I only have an 8 and a 10! UGH!! This is getting expensive! lol

vdrsolo Posted 18 Jun 2008 , 10:47pm
post #42 of 63
Originally Posted by KHalstead

I just got an order yesterday for a 5 tiered stacked squares........how scared do ya think I am now????????? yikes!!! I ordered the square sps plates and stuff now......too bad I just spent close to a hundred dollars on round ones, and close to a hundred on square ones now (I ordered 2 plates of each size from 6"-16" and a bunch of legs) cuz now I have to spend almost another hundred on square cake pans LOL I only have an 8 and a 10! UGH!! This is getting expensive! lol

FYI, as long as your cake board under your cake is strong (doubled/tripled boards, foamcore, etc), you can use the round plates under the square cakes.

I bought my ML pans through www.countrykitchensa.com, they have a discount program if you spend more than $100.00

KHalstead Posted 18 Jun 2008 , 11:54pm
post #43 of 63

I actually bought a set of fat daddios' (cheaper than buying all the others I don't have (4,6,12,14,16) and I get the 4,6,8,10,12,14,and16 inch x2 pans all for $71 something. It's like 82 with shipping! Not too bad..only it's from a company that many people on CC say are terrible with customer service and delivering the goods, but I've ordered some airbrush colors and stuff twice from them and was always happy. My stuff was always here within 2 days (they're located in Ohio too) and actually within the hr. of me placing my order they had called me to say that the pan set was on back order and would be in on June 26 and was it okay to put my order on hold until then!

KHalstead Posted 28 Jul 2008 , 8:56pm
post #44 of 63

okay just an update....I got the square pan set and the corners are rounded!!!!!!!!!! I can't believe it...I'm out almost a hundred bucks on these stupid things that are now useless to me........when I want a square cake I didn't have rounded edges in mind and they won't take the pans back!!! STinks!!!!!!!!!!!!!

MikeRowesHunny Posted 28 Jul 2008 , 9:40pm
post #45 of 63

I think I read somewhere that Fat daddio's corners LOOK rounded, but they actually bake up square - I may be wrong, but I'm sure that's what I read. Can't you do a test 6in layer and see?

FromScratch Posted 28 Jul 2008 , 10:02pm
post #46 of 63

I have squares from fat daddios and the rounded edge isn't horrible.. it's not super rounded and I have no problems icing a nice crisp square edge. Just so you don't freak out thinking how are you going to get a nice crisp edge. They are much easier to clean than the really straight edged pans too. icon_biggrin.gif

darylrc Posted 28 Jul 2008 , 10:16pm
post #47 of 63

I have the stainless steel stress rings. I would not use anything else!!! I love them. I always get a deposit for enough to cover the rings and shipping so if they are not returned. I give the deposit back when rings are returned. I also drive a wooden dowel all the way through the stacked cake,

stephaniescakenj Posted 29 Jul 2008 , 4:56pm
post #48 of 63

I just wanted to offer a hug. A cake collapse completely sucks, but you did fantastic under pressure. And I just had to note, the cake that you used for your avatar. i saw it a little while ago when I was searching for ideas for my friends birthday cake and I loved it, it's one of my all time favortie cakes on here!

Tashablueyes Posted 30 Jul 2008 , 5:59am
post #49 of 63

It was a gorgeous cake, and to be honest, if it had been my wedding and the cake had busted and I still had that gorgeous sheet cake and the top tier for pictures, I would have just laughed it off to my guests and had a great story to tell... though I would expect a decent discount, lol!

kellertur Posted 8 Aug 2008 , 3:38am
post #50 of 63

That is a beautiful design... gorgeous swirling.

I've always wondered (but been afraid to ask) what you do in a situation like that... it's not like there's time to make another. What if you are dealing with BRIDEZILLA ? Scary... ~ I've never understood why anyone can act that way, so mean, about their wedding, it's one day....and accidents happen to everyone.

MichelleM77 Posted 8 Aug 2008 , 5:12pm
post #51 of 63
Originally Posted by K2cakes

I've never understood why anyone can act that way, so mean, about their wedding, it's one day....and accidents happen to everyone.

Well that's just it...it's only one day. Birthdays are every year, weddings (hopefully) are just once. I'm not excusing their actions, but I can understand it's a highly emotional time for some people and they have spent so much time and money planning this one day. That's exactly why I'm scared to death to do wedding cakes! icon_smile.gif

seasonsmoke Posted 11 Aug 2008 , 2:13am
post #52 of 63

I had the same thing happen to me. It was my 1st wedding cake and it was for my Nephew. I took the cake in two sets of two teirs. They sifted while driving. I had a lot to learn about packing the cake. I worked for hours trying to save the cake. I missed my Nephew's wedding. At the end only the top two teirs made it to the table and they were leaning. Family members that I had not seen in years were at the wedding. Thankfully my Nephew and his wife still talk to me.

KoryAK Posted 11 Aug 2008 , 3:31am
post #53 of 63

Don't fret about the rounded square pans. Hell, I can ice a 6" round cake into a 10" square if I need to - its not about the cake, its the icing. Just don't let it freak you out.

Melvira Posted 11 Aug 2008 , 3:53am
post #54 of 63

OMG, I'm SOOO sorry to hear this happened to you! This is exactly why I will NEVER deliver a cake with more than one tier assembled. Not even a simple 2 tier. FORGET IT!! Not worth the headaches to me!!

Can I say how gorgeous that baby was though?? Man, the scroll work is just lovely! You must have some fantastically steady hands! icon_wink.gif I love it and wish it would've made it!! icon_cry.gif

liapsim Posted 20 Aug 2008 , 3:14pm
post #55 of 63

I HATE the wilton wooden dowels!!!! I use the hollow plastic ones which are fabulous! And I find that they don't shift....I'm sorry that happened to yoru cake...it was gorgeous!!!

FrostinGal Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 5:14am
post #56 of 63

Count me as a Coast fan. I love that they are cheap and can be included into the cost of the cake, so no returns, no deposits!
A PVC pipe cutter works great for getting the lengths right on the first time, I hate to be sawing pillars! Too much mess! Also, if you drill a 1 1/2" hole in the center of each plastic plate, you can easily drive a sharpened dowel into your foam-core base for horizontal stability.
For years I worked in a bakery of a large catering company, and that is the system we used. We never had a cake fall. And the decorators never got to deliver the cakes themselves! It was always the party servers, most of whom were summer hires, and knew nothing about tranporting wedding cakes! icon_eek.gif
Occasionally, we would get a cake done in by a case of liquor stacke above and an abrupt slamming on the brakes, or dropped in route to the cake table, but no collapses!
Glad you got the new support system! Now that will be one less thing to worry about!

KHalstead Posted 25 Aug 2008 , 2:16am
post #57 of 63

you guys are so sweet!!! I really wish I would have read about the fat daddio pans not being too bad before I went and bought perfectlly square edged pans LOL anyhow...........I am loving the sps system I've made 3 wedding cakes with it so far, a 3 tier, 4 tier, and my biggest one a 5 tier. I am calm and cool (believe it or not) while setting them up...it's soooooooooo simple. I had a near disaster with my cake I delivered yesterday but I think I made a good save. the top tier scooted inside the box (it was like 94 degrees out too) and the fondant stripes stuck to the box, so when I pulled it out the stripes were messed up. I pulled them off the box and stuck them back to the cake but you could tell where they had cracked off and wouldn't you know it, the side that stuck was to be the front of the cake. I had extra brown fondant with me but the whole cake was sprayed with pearl airbrush spray before delivery so it wouldn't have matched. But I didn't panick, I just turned the cake around making the former back the front (which had a goofy stripe across the top I didn't know what to do with that looked awefull which is why it became the designated "back" of the cake) so I said to myself, "what the heck, make a couple fondant roses" I'm sure the bride didn't care, or at least I hope not......they were small and simple but they hid the mistake perfectlly and I don't think detracted from the topper at all what do you think??

Oh and it's funny, everytime I hide a mistake I think of duff on Ace of Cakes saying "you ever see a cake with a random dot or flower in a really weird place?, it's all smoke and mirrors baby" LOL cracks me up, it's so true!!!

Melvira Posted 25 Aug 2008 , 2:31am
post #58 of 63

Not only did it NOT detract from it, I think it seriously added a little something!! That is a slammin' cake! Gorgeous work! I SO want to get the SPS system, but I wouldn't trust anyone to return it! I know everyone says 'deposit', but who wants to pay a $200 deposit?? But I am so tired of trying to get dowels the right height and trying to be sure the cake is secure and sturdy. Ugh. What a nightmare. Good save on your part though!

FrostinGal Posted 25 Aug 2008 , 2:41am
post #59 of 63

Awesome cake! Very nicely done!

Kitagrl Posted 25 Aug 2008 , 2:55am
post #60 of 63

The cake with the flowers was just beautiful...how horrible!

(btw that was a pretty good price for those cakes!)

I find that transporting a cake cold has MAJORLY saved me heartache from cracking and shifting. The vibration and bumps in a car, in a room temp cake, can make the dowels or straws wiggle back and forth until they finally shift or make the cake crack. Since I started refrigerating ALL cakes before transport, I have alot less problems with cracking or shifting. I just use bubble tea straws for support with a dowel through the center. Heavier cakes I assemble on site if possible but that cake you made, if it had been cold, probably would have delivered just fine.

Sorry you had to go through that! I had a few cake disasters this weekend but nothing like that....that would be horrible. I'm sure its bound to happen though.

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