First Wedding Cake

Decorating By melissamc Updated 7 Oct 2013 , 3:32am by melissamc

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melissamc Posted 4 Oct 2013 , 1:11pm
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AHi, this is my first post and hoping for some advice. So I haven't been making cakes very long. Just played around making a couple 2 tiered stacked birthday cakes recently. Well I am maid of honed in my best friends wedding in June, and she loved my birthday cakes and wants me to make her wedding cake. I like this new hobby, but it's only been a couple months and I'm not very confident yet. Thank God I have until June. I went out and bought all tools and gadgets and stuff. Found some great recipes. Bought a kitchenaid mixer. And have been offering to make everyone I know birthday cakes just to get the practice in. I have 3 in the next 2 weeks actually. Back to the wedding cake, I've watched lots of videos on YouTube. But after reading some of these horror stories on here, I'm scared to death. I've never got that bulge I hear so much about. But I've also never had to stack a cake very high or make it far in advance. Since I'm in her wedding, I can't make it a day or two in advance, and I want to have enough time for screw ups. I figured I need to make it at least a week in advance. She is looking for a 4 tiered cake, with the second level being skinnier and a different color than the others. I don't think I have to be too fancy. I think a black fondant ribbon around the bottom of the tiers is also what she wants.

Any tips or suggestions? Should I make it, a a week and a half in advance, let it settle, then stack and fill the individual cakes and decorate it that weekend before the wedding? Then what do I do, refrigerate it until the wedding? Will it taste gross? Unless I can deliver it the day before, I won't be delivering this cake, there is no way, I'd have to teach my mom or sister how to stack it there, or at least have it in halves and have them stack the halves. I almost feel like I need to make a 100% practice cake like in March or even April as it gets hotter. I haven't decided on all fondant or buttercream. I found a delicious Swiss buttercream. But it's kind of thin. I'd almost have to add more crisco to it instead of butter to hold up the fondant. Any tips or suggestions are greatly appreciated. Thanks!!

8 replies
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liz at sugar Posted 4 Oct 2013 , 1:26pm
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It is hard to be a maid of honor and a cake baker on the same weekend.  Lots of stress.  But if you decide to proceed, you are going to need an empty, clean, operational deep freezer to store those iced cake tiers in if you have to make them in advance.  Otherwise, I don't see how you will fit in a rehearsal dinner, getting hair done, being in the actual wedding, etc. with finishing, stacking and delivering a cake.


Good luck on your decision!



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melissamc Posted 5 Oct 2013 , 1:34am
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AHow far in advance do you think I can make it? Even with a deep freeze. The bride has one, I'll just make her empty it between now and then.

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Norasmom Posted 5 Oct 2013 , 2:19am
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You can freeze a buttercream cake for weeks.  Once you defrost it you can add the finishing touches.  Good luck, practice a lot and have fun!  

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melissamc Posted 5 Oct 2013 , 3:31am
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AThanks!! Do you think I should use the cardboard box method to freeze? Or just wrap with plastic and then foil?

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Smckinney07 Posted 5 Oct 2013 , 4:11am
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ALiz is right, you are going to be super busy. You really must do a few practice runs! Practice doweling and stacking your cakes. You certainly don't want to run into any problems with your friends wedding cake :)

First, most importantly, your cake tiers must all be level or they will fall. Perhaps you can have your family or friend delivery the cake but I strongly recommend you set it up yourself.

You'll want to spread the work out: bake one or two days-wrap the cakes in plastic and foil stick in the freezer (you can do this weeks in advance), pull your cakes from the freezer (let them sit on the counter still wrapped so most of the condensation forms on the foil rather then your cakes) I like to torte and level my cakes while they are still cold/partially frozen, while your cakes are defrosting make your BC, stack and fill your cakes let set overnight. This make your cake settle, to avoid the buldge. Next day apply crumb and final coat of BC. *You can split these steps up anyway you want this is simply my process.

I would recommend purchasing SPS (Single Plate Seperator) they are very sturdy & inexpensive. If you're not familiar with them just google or look on YouTube for a demo. These will be your internal supports.

Some added tips, let your cakes get very cold and firm in the fridge before transporting-keeps your BC nice and firm for travel. Use some nonskid shelf paper in the trunk (or wherever you have a nice flat area) so the cakes don't slide. Pack an emergency kit with BC, spatula, etc. so you can fix any imperfections on site.

Good luck!

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mfeagan Posted 6 Oct 2013 , 12:21am
post #7 of 9

You still have time to back out! I think it's so sweet of your friend to ask you to make her cake because she loved what you have done with the other cakes, but that is a lot of stress to put on you being in the wedding as well. As a maid of honor, you are supposed to be there to support her on her wedding day and the days prior. You're the "go to" girl! 


I've been making cakes for quite a long time and would have to say no to my best friend if I was in the wedding and asked to make the cake. I just did a cake in August for a friend's wedding. My husband was in it. I declined going to the ceremony because of setting up the cake. It was too much of a stress on me to deliver, set up and get to the church on time. 


You could research bakers in your area to see who the best bakers are and give those names to her. Or you could suggest cupcakes. Anyone can set those up! (But you have to bake those the day before. You cannot let cupcakes sit for more than a couple days or they dry out. 

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Lindasicings Posted 6 Oct 2013 , 1:02am
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I just did my first 3 tiered wedding cake for a friend.  I baked all the tiers 2 weeks prior as I was worried about it all coming together and put in the filling and crumb coated them and put them in the freezer.  The Wednesday before the wedding take them out and let them thaw completely.  Frost them on Thursday and finish touches on Friday.  I stacked them at the reception on Saturday morning at 10:00 a.m.  The cake was very moist and everyone raved about it.  Do not freeze them totally frosted as the frosting picks up the humidity and my practice cake frosting actually slid off the cake, it was August and very hot and humid. Pic is my profile pic.

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melissamc Posted 7 Oct 2013 , 3:32am
post #9 of 9

AThanks for all the advice. Gonna keep practicing and see how I progress.

First fondant cake tonight. [IMG][/IMG]

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