Whether your cake is high on your priority list or not, this sweet confection is one of the centerpieces of your wedding reception and could garner you and your spouse with a lot of complements. Make sure you take the time to read through this guide to help you choose the best baker for you. Your baker is one of the most fun and stress-free vendors to find, and you should even get to test out some tasty cake samples along the way.
Where To Find Your Baker
Ask Your Current Vendors
By the time you are looking for vendors, you should have already signed a contract with a photographer and caterer. Ask both of these vendors (and any others) if they have any recommendations for bakers. Your wedding vendors have more than likely been to more weddings than your entire network of family and friends—so tap into them. Photographers and caterers will especially know which bakers are good and which ones have a little bit to be desired.
In asking your current vendors for bakers, they are also putting their names on the line. If your baker turns out to be terrible, that will not shine very well on these other vendors.
Ask Recently Married Family And Friends
Vendors have a good idea of the quality of the final product, but friends and family have first-hand knowledge of how a baker works. If a baker is hard to work with, then you should stay away. By tapping into your own personal network, you should be able to eliminate or expand the search for the ideal baker.
Wedding shows are a great place to find and meet a lot of possible wedding vendors. Take some time to interview the bakers at these shows. The working relationship you have with your baker is not the most important of your vendors, but it is very important for you to communicate the vision of your cake with these creative people.
Before you sign on the dotted line with anyone at these wedding shows, be sure to ask for references. Check them out and make sure you find a baker that is easy to work with.
Will Your Caterer Bake Your Cake?
Many caterers could also create your wedding cake. So, if you have already signed a contract with a caterer, you may be able to get a good deal on a wedding cake. Make sure you see some of their previous work and ask for cake references though; caterers usually specialize in the main course not desert.
Search The Internet
Of course, you should always use the internet to find information on wedding vendors. You might be able to find a great vendor that has gone previously unmentioned by other vendors, friends, or family. As always, be sure to check references and be sure to critique the quality of their work displayed on their website.
Questions To Ask Potential Bakers
Most bakers will first meet with you (and your fiancée) for an interview. At the interview, you will get the chance to ask some important questions to a potential baker. It is very important that you are comfortable with your baker and their capabilities. Sometimes, at your first meeting (before you even have a signed contract!), a baker will even allow you to taste test their different cakes, frostings, and fondants. Here is an overview of questions you should ask any potential bakers of your wedding cake.
Can you create custom wedding designs? What is your design process like?
The design process of a wedding cake can oftentimes be quite difficult if you and your spouse are not visual and artistic people. If this is the case, the best way for you to communicate you desired wedding cake design should be through pictures of other wedding cakes that you like. Ask any potential bakers specifically about their design process. Normally, a baker will get your design instructions, and will then draw up a diagram showing the different layers on your cake.
How much cake will we need?
Give the baker an approximate number of wedding guests that you will have. With this information, the baker should be able to approximate how many tiers of cake you will need on your main cake. The overall size of the cake will help inform the design and scale of the cake as a whole.
How much does a tiered cake cost versus a sheet cake?
If you have enough guests, you should be able to save quite a bit of money by ordering a small tiered cake and a number of sheet cakes. The tiered cake used for the cake cutting is usually no less that three levels high, but each level can be made quite small to save money. To make your small cake grander, make sure that your baker makes the cake taller with spacers. Your main cake can be cut and handed out to a select number of guests, and everyone else can be served sheet cake. Sheet cakes usually taste exactly the same but significantly reduce the per slice cost.
Can I have different types of cake?
Most bakers can create a tiered cake where each level has a different cake type and filling. You should also be able to vary your sheet cake.
Do you make cupcakes as well?
Oftentimes a less expensive option for your dessert is to serve cupcakes in lieu of a cake. If you prefer cupcakes or would like to save some additional money, it cannot hurt to ask this question.
Do you offer additional embellishments such as cake toppers? If so, what is your pricing?
All bakers should be able to add cake embellishments, but you should be clear about the process and the pricing. If you have a cake topper you want on the cake, make sure they can use it. Also, if you would like flowers on your cake, see if your florist needs to supply the flowers.
When will the wedding cake be completed?
Usually, a wedding cake will take a few days to complete. It is important that your baker completes your cake as close to your wedding day as possible but NOT on your wedding day. This will ensure that your cake is as fresh as it can be, and it will ensure that your cake is delivered on time and intact.
How will the wedding cake be transported to our reception site?
Your baker should be the one and only person to transport your cake to your reception site. They should have the right equipment to get it there intact, and they should have the right equipment to make any necessary repairs when the cake arrives at its final resting place. Also be sure to ask if your baker charges a transportation fee.
In addition to your wedding baker, here is a quick list of all the other vendors you must book for your wedding day: