I have a wedding cake due this Sunday and I can arrive as early as 10am, if I like, but the reception doesn't start till 2 or 3. (I don't have the contract in front of me.) Is that too early? Keep in mind that I haven't done many wedding cakes and I'll be finishing assembling the 4 tier cake there.
I usually like to arrive no more than 2-3 hours before the reception to set up my cake.
It sometimes depends on how much work I have to do at the site; however, most of the time I arrive 2 hours before I expect the guests to arrive. I assume that it will take me an hour to work and then that leaves an hour "just in case" !! I don't like to leave it set up and on site any longer than a couple of hours. Sometimes I have to go earlier, but i try not to!
I get there before everyone else and set up the cake. Then I wait until someone in the wedding party arrives to view the cake just in case someone bumps into the table and knocks it over or sticks a finger into it after I leave. That way someone other than myself will have seen the final image.
Might also be a good idea to have that individual sign off that the cake was in tact when you left.
I was told that if I get there any earlier than noon that there will be no event staff there.
Of course it depends on how much set-up work and how much decorating you have to finish, but I arrive at receptions 1 hour prior to expected start time .... and that includes me and my crew unloading a full van and setting up a buffet. The actual cake set up never takes me more than 15 minutes.....I never deliver assembled and always have touch up / finish up decorating to do.
If there will be no event staff there before noon, will the table even be set up and ready for you, if you were to arrive at noon?
Yes, the table is to be set up by 10am.
I have a bit of a companion question to chocomama's. If you have a cake which has fillings like mousse or cream, which has been previously refrigerated, how long before do you guys suggest is safe for setup of the cake?