Friday, August 30, 2013

I have been thinking of how to continually add value to this blog and educate brides-to-be so I decided to start the "What to Ask..." series. It's basically useful questions that brides or anyone planning a party should ask prospective vendors when thinking of hiring them. I shall start the series with the Baker/Cake vendor. I hope you find it useful, there are more gorgeous pictures of wedding cakes to inspire you, keep reading and take a look.

Wedding cakes have evolved over time and have become a decor statement piece in their own right. Brides have started pushing the boundaries from extravagant cakes to the more simple but beautifully decorated cake. You may have pictures in a folder of what you want your dream cake to look like, but in the euphoria and or stress of the wedding planning you may forget to ask some important and essential questions. Thats where I Do Weddings come in, to ensure there are no oversights and every 'i' is dotted and every 't' is crossed. Here are some questions to ask when you meet/ speak with your cake provider.

  • Can I see pictures of cakes you've made recently?
Make sure that you see a real life cake or a picture of wedding cake that your baker has made. You can show him/her a magazine clipping and he/she may say it's able to be done. This may or may not be the case so a good way of getting an indication that the baker can indeed make your dream cake is to see pictures of what has been created before. That way, you will get a sense of how creative the person is and whether or not they're skilful enough to create what you want.
  • Is it possible to have a cake that has different flavours in the different tiers?
You may decide you don't like the traditional wedding fruit cake and instead you want different flavours in the different tiers of your cake so that guests have a choice to pick from. For instance, the first tier could be fruit, the second chocolate, the third sponge and the fourth red velvet. 

  • I want a very tall wedding cake, can you provide dummy tiers?
You may want a tall looking cake to match a grand wedding. However knowing the labour time that goes into baking a cake and the cost attached you may wish to add some dummy layers whilst maintaining the overall look and feel. This may be a good question to ask.

  • Will you decorate my cake table?
This question is borne from experience on the job. Watching a decorator and baker argue over whose responsibility it was to decorate the cake table. It's best not to make assumptions so ask your baker if your cake table will be decorated. If so, it may be a cost you can take off your decorators budget. Or perhaps you may want your decorator to be the one to dress your cake table so that it goes with the overall look and feel of your decor. Either way, it's something worth considering.

  • How will the cake be displayed and decorated?
Even if your decorator is decorating the cake table make sure you ask about your cake display. The cake should be displayed on a nice cake stand and if not, at the very least on a board that matches and compliments the cake appropriately. The last thing you want is for it to be put on a foil-covered board. There also may be the option of a mirror or a silver platter just something to make it look pretty. If you like diamante initial monograms then this is a good time to ask your baker if they can provide it, otherwise add to your shopping list.

Decorations: This could be for the baker or decorator. Remember that the finer details add that extra touch. So think of candles, sparklers, nice table linen, fresh flowers, crystals, ribbons, or rose petals etc to beautifully embellish your table depending on your personal style. If combining your cake with fresh flowers or you're having fresh flowers on the table ensure that they are pesticide free for safety reasons as your cake will be eaten.
  • Will you provide a cake knife and is there and extra charge?
If your a detail oriented bride you may have bought your own cake knife (from I Do Weddings) and had it engraved with your names and the date of your wedding. But for the bride who isn't particularly into detail, it's worth asking if a cake knife is provided and what the cost is. If not one needs to be arranged. It doesn't look elegant in pictures when an ordinary knife is used to cut a wedding cake.
  • Will you transport the cake to my venue?
You may think this is a given and it should be, but it's always best to cross check. A small oversight such as this one could mean not having a cake on your wedding day! It doesn't hurt to ask. Find out if your cake will be transported and if theres and extra charge for this.
  • Can I taste a piece of one of your cakes?
As the saying goes 'The proof is in the pudding!.' Needless to say, taste the cake so that you are sure that not only will your cake look nice but it will taste good. If they don't have the particular flavour you want for your wedding it doesn't hurt to order the miniature cake to pick up later so you know what you are getting.
  • Can you make miniature cupcakes for me as well as my wedding cake?
Some people don't get married at a hotel and so don't have anyone to cut up their wedding cake. Having miniature cupcakes in different flavours could be a good way to circumvent having to go through the tedious task of dismantling the cake and having it cut up. Especially if your cake has over three tiers. 
  • Do you make other desserts that I can use at my wedding?
You may be pleasantly surprised at the variety of desserts on offer and it may save you having to go to too many dessert providers for your wedding. Your baker may be able to provide a variety of desserts and you may choose a few other service providers just to add more.

Now feast your eyes on some cake inspiration, I love how our Nigerian counterparts hold their own with international Bakers.

The picture above and below show what was said earlier about having a nice cake stand and not just putting a cake on a foil board.

Cake Factory by K's Craft +2348033118995 +8094263869 Email:

If you want a grand cake with a lot of sugar flowers then it's best to see real life pictures so that you know that the baker can achieve what you want.

Cakes above and below are for the beach inspired weddings.

Cakes by Tosan- 08023137893

Cake by Andy Clark Cakes 08075601312

This is an example of the monogram previously mentioned that one could ask if the baker has.It also shows a simple cake board matching the look and feel of the cake.

Fresh flowers (pesticide free) can provide a grand embellishment. See Sylvia Weinstock at work she takes the pains to decorate her own tables. 

Cake by Buttercup Enterprises 08033341358, Email: 
Picture from Bella Naija website, and photography, Kele Akaniro. For their full wedding feature see 

Just incase you were wondering what the serving suggestions for wedding cakes are, above is a guide. As Nigerian weddings tend to be rather large getting cupcakes or supplementary dessert is a good idea.


So that's it for the first 'What To Ask Series' I hope it has provided value, it will carry on with what to ask other vendors and service providers. Keep checking in on the blog for more. 

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