As we continue our Wedding Cakes 101 series, this week we will discuss fake wedding cakes. In last week's segment, I mentioned that many couples are turning to fake wedding cakes to save a little cash.
Tiffany & Co. Inspired Wedding Cake, by The Little Cake Shop, Toronto
If you aren't aware how it works, companies rent fake cakes made from styrofoam in the shape of a real tiered wedding cake. The cakes are decorated just like an actual wedding cake. These wedding cakes are used as a prop on the cake table at the reception. Then, when it comes time to serve the cake, plated slices of sheet cake are brought out from the kitchen and served to guests. If you wish, you can have a real cake level at the top, so you can still cut the cake with your groom, take photographs etc, but the rest of the cake on display is just a "prop" and the cake served is still on sheets in the kitchen.
Sheet cake is generally much cheaper than an actual wedding cake. Therefore, by pulling off this trick, a couple can potentially save a fair amount of money on their wedding cake. The whole process is cheaper, yet the result looks just as good (if not better) and tastes the same. A better solution altogether, no? Well ... this is how it works, at least in theory.
To be sure, we reached out to bakers, cake designers and wedding vendors throughout Canada to talk to them about fake cakes. While some had very positive experiences with faux cakes, others explained why it just isn't worth it to the bride or the cake designer.
For example, Michel Danis of Decor Gateaux in Quebec explains that while they used to rent fake cakes, the do not do it anymore. Why?
"It was never what they wanted - the size, the flowers. Plus the time we spend on the dummy cake is the same as we take to decorate a real cake. There's not much money savings for the bridal party in these type of cakes."
On the other hand, Darlene Braybook from Silks 'N Satin Weddings had a completely different perspective.
"I do rent cakes and have done so for years. I suggest to my brides to save money that they use my rental and I decorate it using their theme," explains Darlene. "I rent cakes starting at $75.00 and add silk or real flowers with the sparkling details to match their theme. When it's time for the sweet-table, they order a slab or round cake to be decorated in the same style so the guests are unaware that the wedding cake isn't being cut. At the end of the night, the wedding couple has saved hundreds of dollars just to start on a simple 3-tier cake."
On the west coast, fakes appear to be just as popular: Sugar Fake Cakes in Coquitlam, British Columbia also offers a variety of fake cakes. They cover their cakes with real fondant and decorate them with flowers and other gorgeous accents. From simple modern designs to extravagant creations, each fake cake is uniquely designed and handcrafted with creativity and keen attention to detail.
On the very opposite end of the country, Cathy Fife of I Do Kustom Kakes, in Saint John, offers fake cakes to brides for sale or rental. She says,
"This service allows the bride to save money on the cake's ingredients allowing her the opportunity to have a larger or more intricate cake. The bride can also keep the fake cake to remember her special day. I have also done a number of cakes which are a combination of real homemade mouthwatering perfection and then have a few fake levels."
Take a look at the following selection of fake cakes and let us know what you think. Would you do it for your wedding?
Four Layer, Red Ribbon & Rose Petals Cake by TJ's Cake Design, Ottawa
Four Layer Square Cake by Sugar Fake Cakes, Vancouver
FALLing in Love Cake by The Little Cake Shop, Toronto
Three Layer Round Cake by Sugar Fake Cakes, Vancouver
Story by Kori Ellis