Q: I’ve picked out my wedding cake and I’m really excited about it. I think it’s going to be beautiful and super yummy. What I’m trying to figure out now is whether I need a cake stand. How do I know if I need one? Or what do I need to know to even make the decision?
Oh to cake stand or not to cake stand, that is the question…
Cake stands can be a great addition to your wedding cake, but it’s not always necessary or the best idea depending your cake. So, it’s great you are asking because it’s not a given.
There are 2 general types of cake stands, the kind that have a foot or a pedestal and the ones that are more of a base.
The pedestal cake stands are what you typically think of when you think of a cake stand. They come in all types of colors and styles and are mostly round, although sometimes they are square.
These tend to work best for smaller round cakes and I usually suggest them for cakes that are 3 tiers or smaller.
Since the pedestal raises the cake up, from a stability standpoint but also from a cutting standpoint, you don’t want your cake too high. And the taller your cake the higher probability of it falling over or of you having a cutting issue (especially if you are a shorter person).
In addition, these pedestal cake stands usually only come in a few standard sizes. What that means is if your cake is larger, your base tier will most likely be larger than the cake stand and won’t work.
A pedestal cake stand with a one tier round cake. (Photo credit: Bethany Carlson Photography)
The base cake stands are larger in size and are thicker, so they work better for larger and taller cakes.
These stands are better for non-round shaped cakes like squares or hexagons or ovals or a mixture of shapes.
They are generally metal, but they can also be wood as well (think wood slab).
Since they don’t have a pedestal, the base cake stand is more secure. But not everyone likes the look of these cake stands because they don’t have that traditional pedestal look.
A base cake stand with a 3 tier square cake. (Photo credit: VAS Photography)
Now that you know the types of cake stands and what they are good for (or not good for) you should have an idea of what the possibilities are given your particular cake. And we’re not just talking about size and shape, but design wise as well.
The last option is to not have a cake stand at all which many couples choose to do.
Your cake baker will provide a base layer to the cake no matter what, so you don’t necessarily need a cake stand. This can be the ideal way to go if you are concerned about height (if you have a tall cake) or just budget.
Your cake will still look great and be totally secure.
A mixed shape cake with no cake stand. (Photo credit: Chrisman Studios)
Now the decision is up to you and what you like best. Go forth and eat cake!
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