This is my second wedding cake, so I'm just a little nervous. The bride is a co-worker and very agreeable, but I don't want to disappoint her as she is so very nice. She did surprise me, though, w/ her total of 250 guests for the reception . . . .
Just a few questions--I haven't done many square cakes, and she chose all squares. I'm mostly worried about the 16" square on the bottom. Any tips on not cracking it as I handle it or getting fondant rolled out that large?
I plan on stacking at the venue--will that cause problems with the swirl piping on the sides (cracking)? Or the fondant ribbon around the base of each? Although I have a good support system, I'm just hesitant to stack before transporting due to the weight. (16, 12, 8, & 6 tiers w/ fondant, so expecting it to be heavy when stacked) Since the reception is an hour away from the wedding, I'm foregoing the wedding and should have plenty of time to pipe the borders and add the GP flowers (which I plan to have wired and arranged so that they just need to be added and fine tuned).
I hate to be a pest, but have read so many horror stories, I thought any tips to prevent problems would be appreciated. I start baking tomorrow for the wedding on Saturday. TIA!
I'm mostly worried about the 16" square on the bottom. Any tips on not cracking it as I handle it or getting fondant rolled out that large?
Make sure when you handle it, there's always a support board underneath (or freeze it before handling). Good luck rolling out fondant that large... you'll need at least 24-28". If you've done it before, you already know how difficult it can be. I'd suggest to keep doing whatever has been working for you, whether it be rolling onto a vinyl mat or getting assistance from a helper.
I plan on stacking at the venue--will that cause problems with the swirl piping on the sides (cracking)?
Not as long as your support boards are adequate. (I hope you're planning to use plywood for the 16" square baseat least a 20" square.)
Or the fondant ribbon around the base of each?
Hopefully not, if you're careful.
should have plenty of time to pipe the borders
That's great to hear that you'll be piping borders because when stacking on site, you'll need to have a plan to fill in the gaps (if you have gaps that show). So, it sounds like you've thought of everything and have a plan. Good luck!
Thank you so much for your suggestions! I'm a little behind in the schedule I tentatively had in mind, but the reception is later on Saturday than I thought, so I think I'm OK.
Both the 12" and 16" are out of the oven; the 12" is iced, but I still need to ice the 16" before calling it quits for the night. I kept the 12" supported, but somehow I don't do something quite right, as it cracked slightly in the center. Makes me dread the 16", but I will try to chill it first. (It won't fit in the freezer, which is what I would prefer at this point.)
Those are really the only layers I'm worried about, besides stacking at the venue. Do you use cardboard between the layers, or something stronger for support? Or do you just try to support the cardboard until you can get it stacked on the support system? (I have the cardboard wrapped so it won't get soggy. The support system has the metal rings--not quite plates--w/ the acrylic legs.)
Thanks again for your help! I'm in a small town, and just couldn't let the bride get her cake at WalMart--which is really the only coice here . . . .
Do you use cardboard between the layers, or something stronger for support? Or do you just try to support the cardboard until you can get it stacked on the support system? (I have the cardboard wrapped so it won't get soggy. The support system has the metal rings--not quite plates--w/ the acrylic legs.)
Yes, definitely use cardboard between the "tiers" regardless of which type of support system you're using (you'll need it for handling purposes and to prevent your plates from getting scored during the cut & serve process unless using disposable plates and it doesn't matter).
Since you already have your cardboard, and it's wrapped--use it! The system with metal rings--if it's the stainless steel rings that I'm thinking of, yes, there aren't any plates to speak of to really support the upper tiers evenly so you'll have to use cardboard or a support board of some sort. Acrylic legs? I thought they were also stainless steel.
I see you already have 10 or more stacked/tiered cakes in your pics, so you must be doing something right! Keep doing what's been working for you so far and you'll be fine... no worries!
You can also consider half stacking it ahead of time. In other words, stack the bottom two tiers and stack the top two tiers. That way you're traveling with two easily manageable two tier cakes. Then when you get there you just stack the top set on the bottom set...only one third the work when you get there and one seam to neaten up on site.
Thanks again! I hate to be such a pest, but I really don't want to disappoint the bride (nor embarrass myself in front of all of my co-workers).
CWR41--several of the stacked cakes in my pics are actually dummies. I think styrofoam is much easier--but I probably just need more practice with the real thing!
artscallion--I had wondered about partially stacking them. The wedding is here in town, then the reception is in a town about an hour away. I'll be missing the wedding to set up the cake, so hopefully I will have plenty of time (and peace and quiet) to work--but anything I can have done and not mess up at the last minute would be a plus.
I think my next worry now is just getting a sheet of fondant large enough for the 16" square--besides the size, any tips on rolling out a square? I seem to always end up round, no matter how hard I try . . . .
And thanks again for the help--I know questions get repeated on here frequently--but I appreciate your taking the time to answer me.
Using the sheet of vinyl is the best way I have to roll out that big a sheet of fondant. You don't have to worry about the weight of it carrying it over to the cake or even when you lay it on!