Terrified... First Wedding Cake

Business By noahsmummy Updated 12 Mar 2013 , 4:34pm by costumeczar

noahsmummy Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 2:46am
post #1 of 33

My first wedding cake is due to be picked up in 2 hours. I am terrified. I am very happy with the front, but the back is lopsided. =( Unfortunately I dont have time to take it apart and redo it, and it is a very very simple design so I cant hide anything. =( I am so scared the bride is going to say she hates it and then Im not going to know what to do.. so my question is, so I can get prepared, what do you do if a bride hates a cake? My first though will be to take money off, maybe give it for free if she hates it so much,as it is my fault and she has been lovely.. so far. 

32 replies
-K8memphis Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 2:54am
post #2 of 33

it's ok


a strange phenomenon occurs when a cake is delivered


people expect them to be beautiful and they are


i was all but crying once setting up a cake


i could not wait to get out of there


biggest goose egg ever laid


and i could feel people watching and i could hear them tittering behind me--early comers to the reception--oh god i wanted to crawl under the tablecloth


and they were murmuring about how beautiful it was


take a deep breath it's gonna be ok   wwhhhewwww


wait till they freak out before you freak out saves on that whole blood pressure thing


i mean maybe they'll drop it--then you're off the hook  icon_lol.gif

Izzy Sweet Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 3:01am
post #3 of 33

Can you post a pic maybe...I think maybe K8 might be right especially because it is your first one..if you post a pic though maybe someone can help you

noahsmummy Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 3:33am
post #4 of 33

I am still learning, and my abilities are not any where near most of the cakes on here, but I make that very clear in all transactions and advertising (i do not photoshop any images etc) I also dont charge much, and i made it clear to the bride that this was my first wedding cake. Charged $120 for it. I will try and attach the images so you can see the lopsidedness in all its wonder. (sorry for above rant, just wanted to make it clear that I know what my abilities are and make sure that my customers do too!)  We also had a massive heat wave, 43 degrees C, which meant the cake didnt get time to set up before i covered it.. otherwise I would have had a melted mess on my hands! 




ultraviolet Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 3:40am
post #5 of 33

AThe flower is beautiful !!! You should just throw on a piped border, can you free hand paint on it, or use a stenciling technique with royal, or possibly stencil on a design with shimmer dust after using a touch of Crisco to hold on stencil? Just a guess, keep at it, you will be fine!

ultraviolet Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 3:40am
post #6 of 33

AShimmer up the flower if you have time

-K8memphis Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 3:45am
post #7 of 33

there's a front & back to a cake for a reason!!!!


she will love it!


it's gorgeous!!

noahsmummy Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 3:46am
post #8 of 33

I was going to shimmer the flower, but she didnt ask for it so I dont want to shimmer it then her say she didnt want ti! lol. Much easier to shimmer a flower then to take it off! i might pipe a quick bead border. 

Izzy Sweet Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 3:47am
post #9 of 33

the flower is awesome

ultraviolet Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 4:07am
post #10 of 33

AI'd free hand a few swirls with a pearl shimmer, maybe filigree style. It can help camouflage fondant! And its real quick, few minutes..Use wider brush, maybe 1/2 " don't shimmer flower, it will be great! Also there's reasons for front/ back of cakes, it's all a learning curve.

ultraviolet Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 4:13am
post #11 of 33

AMaybe for future reference really work on getting that butter cream real smooth, use an aluminum painters shield, you can cut them to make smaller. Just spin your turntable and use painter shield. It works magic ! Buttercream smoothing is something everyone deals with. Do a few coats! Refrigerate before putting fondant, so it's super firm. Good buttercream smoothed= beautiful fondant.

noahsmummy Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 4:39am
post #12 of 33

ahh thankyou all for keeping me clam! She loved it! phew! Usually my fondant is a much better finish then that (i always use ganache), but with the heat we have been having (43C is around 110F) nothing was setting up properly, even though I used my super thick ganche recipe! Thank you again!! 

ultraviolet Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 4:42am
post #13 of 33

AWhere are you located? I'm coming to visit, cuz it's cold here even in tx, hehe keep up the good work. You know I think that flower would be extra amazing with the brush embroidery technique with color, ooohhlala, try it! And send me pic

ultraviolet Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 4:44am
post #14 of 33

AHey maybe try a portable a/c unit, to keep extra cool in your working space, they're awesome you can wheel em around where ever you need it

noahsmummy Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 5:11am
post #15 of 33

Haha I prefer the cold to heat myself! Im near Sydney in Australia.. so its summer for us now =) I would love a portable a/c unit, but unfortunately being a single mum to a chi9ld with special needs I'm not in a position to afford one along with its running costs, hopefully next year I will be able to though! 

-K8memphis Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 2:31pm
post #16 of 33
Originally Posted by noahsmummy 

ahh thankyou all for keeping me clam! She loved it! phew! Usually my fondant is a much better finish then that (i always use ganache), but with the heat we have been having (43C is around 110F) nothing was setting up properly, even though I used my super thick ganche recipe! Thank you again!! 


i mean for real what's not to love


that thing rocked the house


is it kerry vincent perfect no few cakes out for delivery are that perfect


not to say it's not a worthy goal


and ultraviolet--great call on that lustery pearlish swirl idea


wow i know that bride was deliriously happy


but who can't relate to those moments when the baby is out of the birth canal


your work is over and everybody in the delivery room (mostly you) is


holding their collective breath (to degrees of hyperventilation) 'till the youngun' squeals


and the bride loves it the crowd cheers and the endorphins pop


like so many happy floaty champagne bubbles


ahhhhhhhhhhh job well done


so so pretty--spectacular!


ain't life grand

sadsmile Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 5:10pm
post #17 of 33

Honestly you are lucky the bride loved it. To encourage you at this point would only be to practice. We all start somewhere, this is true. I have some monkey iced cakes in my history, back when I first began also, and this not a bash at all and I mean that sincerely. But I had the good sense to wait till I honed my skills enough to present a cleanly executed cake, before entertaining the idea of making cakes for people to pay for.  I encourage you to use this experience as a learning one. Step back and honestly reflect on it and then practice, practice, practice and practice some more. No doubt you'll get to a point where you can confidently present cakes that are executed well. Weddings=high standards. It's not harsh or mean to recognize the truth and set it gently. My honesty isn't meant to dash your spirits or crush your future...but to encourage you to raise your skill levels before putting yourself against wedding standards, or in tight spots with possible future scrutinizing clients. 

remnant3333 Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 5:54pm
post #18 of 33

For the first one you ever did I think you did a great job!!! The more you practice the easier it will get for you!!! I am glad the bride loved it.  For 120 dollars she got the better end of the deal!!! The flower was very pretty!!! Your next cake will improve with experience but remember you can always hide a lot with icing flowers or borders.  Hang in there and keep the faith!!!!


I did my first three tier cake free for a little girl's birthday down the street and it gave me some practice for a tier cake and the 12 year old girl loved it.  It was small 9 inch, 6 inch and a four inch. 

noahsmummy Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 10:06pm
post #19 of 33

Thank you everyone for your kind words and support! As I have said, I am aware that this cake had issues. My cakes are usually stacked and iced with a MUCH better finish then that, which is why I was so concerned with the cake going out. As to needing practice, yes I do, even the most accomplished cake decorator needs practice.. is that not one of the beauty's of cake decorating? As I have tentatively pointed out, I am basically poor. Raising a child with autism on my own along with attending full time uni does not leave me with much money, and I have been unable to find work on my own. Which is why I have started my business, I know my cakes are not of the highest standard, as I have said several times in this post, but I ensure that all potential customers are aware of the standard to which I can complete cakes. If someone does not like them, they don't need to order, its really that simple. I don't do many because I am also time poor, but the little income I do gain from them can be the difference between me having enough money to buy milk for the fortnight for my little boy or running short. Desperate people do desperate things I guess! 


Also, I would like to clear something up that seems to be a popular cake central myth; not everyone can afford to do elaborate cakes just for practice. 


I am sorry for the personal rant, but I have been a member here on CC for many years now, and it seems to me often times people either do not read entire posts before responding and/or they forget that there are real people behind the cakes. 

noahsmummy Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 10:22pm
post #20 of 33

p.s I ended giving the cake for $100 because I was personally not happy with it, even though she was. She also had 12 cupcakes for her and her bridesmaids which were beautiful that were included in the order. 

sadsmile Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 10:27pm
post #21 of 33

Check out youtube and search key words like fondant smoothing and butter cream icing, ganache, stacking and anything in cake decorating. Learning about your medium and how to get the best out of it will help you. That is honestly how I learned and improved my skills. There is a wealth of FREE information and tutorials out there for the searching.  I wish you much success! 

Evoir Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 10:44pm
post #22 of 33

ANoahsmummy...I don't think anyone was personally attacking you, hon. I think its admirable that you are wanting to bring in some extra cash while you are studying and raising your son. And I know you've been cake decorating for some years now, so you know what you are doing.

re your cake: Well done on your flower! The fondant looked terrible, but it was on the back of the cake, and the only that matters is the bride was happy with the result. However. You really can't afford to be working in an un-airconditioned space in summer, when we have days like these. I've been making a wedding cake this week too. Tuesday was the 40 degree day, so I avoided applying ganache on that day. Nor did I bake on Tuesday as I normally do*. You need to adapt. I think you've mentioned you have family nearby, do any of them have A/C for a contingency plan? Otherwise you risk having these uber-stressful moments when you clearly don't need that right now in your life.

Perhaps it would be less-stressful for you to make single-tier birthday and special occasion cakes until the weather cools down? With those you can keep them easily on the top shelf of your fridge, even after fondanting - no problem with squishy ganache etc. Just a thought. Caking should be enjoyable, not terrifying.

*(Saturday is also meant to be over 40 but that will be the venue's problem, not mine!)

lilmissbakesalot Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 10:50pm
post #23 of 33

Yikes!  43 degrees celcius is hellishly hot.  That's almost 110 degrees Farenheit.  Many would have had issues with buttercream at those temps.  You now it wasn't an awesome finish, you have said it again and again, your client knew what they were getting into too so I see no problem with you making the cake for her.  I would maybe have less petals in the future if you do this design so that some of the cake shows.  It is a bit like the flower is taking over the whole thing, and I think just a wee bit less petals would help that. 


Practice is fun though!  Keep it up and I hope the weather is kinder to you.  It was 43 here today, but Farenheit... MUCH different... LOL. 

-K8memphis Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 10:58pm
post #24 of 33



  • no air conditioning


  • in the heat of summer


  • not much time/money


  • a special needs child


  • single mom


  • a student


  • full disclosure --pulls no punches


  • gave a whopping discount to boot


  • not to mention cupcakes


  • there's a reward for people who overcome obstacles who seemingly do the obvious but actually are performing miracle after miracle


you are an amazing person and that was a stunning cake


that was a hard fought fight for a first cake battle


i doubt that very many of us would tener cojones to even try to pull that off

mcaulir Posted 10 Jan 2013 , 11:24pm
post #25 of 33

It is an absolute record heat wave at the moment. As in temps not recorded since records begain in the 1800s. No-one could predict that, and have an AC unit ready. I think we'd all be having troubles in that kind of situation.


OP, I'm glad you can relax now!

ultraviolet Posted 11 Jan 2013 , 4:31am
post #26 of 33

AI think its admirable after your goals and hurdles, and well dang we can use extra cash too! You're doing great! Do you have many cake tools? I may have a few extra I could send you

noahsmummy Posted 11 Jan 2013 , 1:54pm
post #27 of 33

Wow! What a response lol. Thanks agin to everyone for their kind words, i do appreciate them. Im sorry for life story rant, it was not for sympathy or anything, more to explain to some why I do sell my cakes, despite my knowledge of them not being perfect. This heat has been horrid, I dont cope at all well with it either! lol.. and we are in for another stinker (thats a hot day for the non-aussies) tomorrow. oh dear! Ultraviolet that is incredibly kind and generous of you, but I have all my basic tools, thank you very much for the offer though! I also just wanted to allay the fears of my ability to ganache a cake and cover it, so I am going to attach the photos of my little boys cake I quite literally just finished, sorry its not a stacked cake though (none of the photos in my gallery are anywhere near recent lol). But just wanted to make sure people know that I wouldnt be selling cakes if I didnt at least have the basics down. The wedding cake was certainly not my best which was I originally asked what I should do should she hate it. This next one isnt perfect either, but I dont really believe in perfection. icon_wink.gif





-K8memphis Posted 11 Jan 2013 , 2:19pm
post #28 of 33

noah has got to be one delighted boy with that happy cake his mum made for him 


the propeller looks as if it's gonna speak to you--pretty cool


i don't believe in perfection in cakes either--


i believe in bell ringing


making people happy with a great tasting work of art--


ringing their bell and knocking 'em out with a cake in a good way


<high five>

Ali3971 Posted 11 Jan 2013 , 4:20pm
post #29 of 33

The flower is beautiful! Let us know how it goes?

Janani65 Posted 11 Jan 2013 , 4:29pm
post #30 of 33

The plane looks awesome. Though I didn't post a reply, I've been following yours and others. I admire your courage and determination. I would have liked a little bit of color on the wedding cake. But it was beautiful. Wish you all the best!

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