As a cake designer and owner of Cake Gallery London one of the most frequently asked questions from potential new clients is, “When should we book our wedding cake” This is such a great question because there is just so much information that bride and grooms are given, it can be overwhelming (and not always correct!). It is worth mentioning that you do not have to have a finalised design to book in your wedding cake.
Photo by Doriane Descamps
Essentially there are 2 options on where you can order your cake from:
The first is via your venue and/or caterers which can be either be an optional extra or included in your package. Although this is not something all venues and/or caterers offer, this can often be the most economical. It is worth nothing however that cakes are often not created by specialist designers so you may have to compromise on style or flavour as the choices may be limited.
The second option is to buy from custom bakeries or specialist cake designers. This again can be a little daunting as there are so many variants of cake makers out there. To break it down, bespoke cake design companies are small, cake-focused shops that typically work by appointment only. Some cake design shops offer a wide range of occasion cakes, from baby and children’s cakes to wedding cakes, and sometimes include other offerings such as decorated cupcakes or cake pops. Other cake shops may tailor their business to a specific category of cakes ie: wedding cakes.
Many wedding planning websites, blogs and bridal magazines use a time frame for ordering your wedding cake at 4 to 6 months before your wedding. If you have decided to order your cake from your venue/caterer, this time frame is good timing if you’re opting for the cake that is included in your venue’s meal package as you already have the date secured with your supplier, if you have decided to order from a specialist though, the time frame will differ.
For specialist cake designers, each cake will be handmade and bespoke and because of this, the number of orders that they can accept on any given day or weekend will be limited. Additionally, if you factor in peak wedding seasons, seasonal dates etc, there is a chance that the cake design company you have your heart set on may not have available.
So, what should you do?
I’d advise starting your research early. You do not require a confirmed date to start your research but it certainly helps if you have a style in mind. Alternatively, if you are unsure of the style you would like, look at reviews, quality of the design work, starting prices and reputation. When enquiring with a cake company, it is helpful if you have a venue, budget, date and approximate number or portions you require. There are, however, cake design shops that will allow you to secure your booking without this information however, make sure you read the Terms & Conditions thoroughly so that you are clear what will happen with your deposit/booking fee should the company not have available once you have confirmed a date.
Photo by Alessandro Piolanti
Do you have to know every detail of what you want for your cake when booking?
No, your cake designer should be able to guide and support you through the design process, flavour choices, sizes etc every step of the way
So, back to the question – when should you order your wedding cake? If a beautiful, unique and delicious wedding cake is high on your list of wedding priorities, start as early as possible as essentially the answer is, it’s never too early.