Ok, this was my first wedding cake. When I baked the 12" square bottom layer, I needed to level it. Well the only level I could find anywhere was one from wilton. It seemed to have just enough flex in it that it cut the layers crooked and my husband and I had to shim one of the corners. Even with doing that -- the top layer was still crooked to the side. Any ideas for how to level a cake bigger than 12" and not cut them crooked? I did it just like any other cake but it just cut them crooked. I promise I checked the level on both side to make sure that was the same!
one technique is to measure from the bottom say 2" mark with toothpicks every 3 inches or so and cut above them, like connecting the dots with the longs serrated knife you have all the way around then you can finish with dental floss or thread. Or connect the toothpicks by cutting with thread the whole way through.
By the way, shimming is okay if you need it and thick icing can help those imperfections as well.
Always remember the baker sees most of the imperfections and the "eaters" see a yummy cake.
I have a very long bread knife (about 16 inches) you can also use unwaxed unflavored dental floss and keep it taut on the top edge of the pan, helps if you start with a small cut from a knife. there are also directions on the site to take the large cake leveler from Wilton and modify it to be a more sturdy product.
Of course, if your budget allows, an Agbay is the best tool for leveling cakes. (start saving your cake money.)
Thanks for the suggestions -- and I will start saving my money!!!! I will do some research on how to modify the wilton one.