How to Choose Your Perfect Wedding Photographer

Your EXCITED, ENGAGED and ON A MISSION to find that special wedding photographer that is going to help you and your spouse remember and relive the day you said, “I do.”. If this sounds a little like a match making idea then you’re right. Of all the vendors that you will choose to help you make your wedding day fantastic, your photographer will spend the entire day with you. Think about it, your baker will bring the cake and leave, your florist will hand everything over and leave, your wedding planner will check up on you from time-to-time while there but your photographer will always be there recording every moment. Once you realize this and search for “wedding photography” or “wedding photographer” in Google and you’ll find yourself staring at a list between 2 – 12 million results. You don’t have the time or the desire to even begin to click and search through all of them so here are ten questions to help you find your perfect wedding photographers northern va.

1. You can’t know what you want until you know what you want.

Because there is uniqueness in your love and passion with each other your wedding portraits should reflect that uniqueness. As a result, you need to understand and be able to articulate the style of photography that will best fit for you. To do so you need to ask yourself two questions:

a. What types of movies do you and your fiancée like to watch and what types movies can you see yourself in? The movie(s) you choose will give you an idea as to the over all feeling of the photographs you most likely want to have. If you like family based movies then you are going to most likely want photographs that have an emphasis on friends and family. On the other hand, if you enjoy romantic, action or high drama movies, then you might be more interested in photographers who are able to produce dramatic photos that focus on you.

b. What magazines would you like to see yourself in? Every magazine has a customer base demographic. And this is not by accident. Do you like the photographs from Vogue, GQ, Modern Bride, or W? Look through magazines and find photographs that you would like to see yourself in and cut out those photographs for future reference.

2. Searching for photographer on the web

Because there are so many websites just using the best keywords to find what you are looking for can be a daunting task so here are some ideas to make it a little easier. Use words that are specific to you concerning the type of wedding photography that you are looking for. In addition you will want to search under the words of where you are getting married and/or where you would like to find your photographer. Here are some ideas:

  • [city] wedding photography
  • [city] wedding photographer(s)
  • wedding photographer(s) in [city] [state]
  • wedding photography in [city] [state]

These will give you a number of results to choose from. Each of these searches will give you a list of different photographers. You can also look at wedding advertising sites such as wedding photographers northern va.

These sites will give you more than enough results to look through. Once you see a list, start to visit as many sites as you can but ONLY LOOK AT THE PHOTOS. Your goal is to find a photographer with photos that you can see yourself in and that you would be proud and excited to show your friends and family.

3. The Photographers’ Website

The website is the wedding photographers personal gallery of their best work. The purpose of visiting the website is to not only assess if you like the photographer’s style but also to get more aquatinted with the photographer too. Once you click on the website then take some time to visit the “about us” or “bio” section of the website. Get to know the photographer a little bit. Once you do this ask yourself if this were someone you would befriend. You may want to make a list of photographers to compare them. However, no matter how good or bad the photos are, if you do not think that you would befriend the photographer then that photographer should most likely not be considered. While perusing the galleries begin to write down some notes about what you like about the photos, if you can see yourself in those photos, and if you would refer others to the photographer. Don’t be shy about your comments; be honest as if you were looking at your own photos. If you are not impressed with the photos then quickly move on t o the next site. Never stay on a website any longer than you need to. **Remember to resist any temptation to look at prices or any unrelated categories like children portraiture and/or high school senior portraits while on the website. You are on a mission so always remind yourself to stay on task. Once you determined that you like the photos on the website then bookmark that website and move on to the next one. You, Your Best Friend, and Your Nemesis Should I really trust my “gut feeling” on such an important decision? I can only answer a resounding “YES.” Our “gut feeling” is typically comprised of knowledge, past experiences, and perception of future events based on your learned knowledge. Making a great decision is going to be a matter of research and personal experience. So take your time and learn and see as much as you can so that when the time comes to make this important decision you will be excited and extremely confident that you made this decision.

4 – LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION

Believe it or not, not every photographer can produce artistic portraits in any given venue. As a Bride, you need to be honest with yourself and with your photographer about your photographic expectations for that day. You must always remember that you are hiring a photographer for a specific reason, to capture individual moments from that day so that those memories will never be forgotten. A big component of your day will be the location and venue you choose for your celebration. You need to know the venue’s photographic expectations and restrictions. Here are some questions to ask your venue:

1) Does the venue allow flash photography?

2) Are there any insurance requirements?

2) Are there any time limits in any venue that the photographer should know? (You can ask the vendor this question and let the photographer know about this.)

3) Are there any places at the venue that cannot be photographed? You need to know your venue’s policies on photographs and where they can and cannot be taken.

4) Ask the venue if there is anything that the photographer needs to know that you haven’t asked. (phrase this as a question as you did with the others.)

5) What was the worst infringement of the venue’s photographic policies? (This will give you an idea of how serious they are about their policies and what is important to them.) Be sure to bring up these answers with the photographer during your meeting.

HOW DO YOU GET THE BEST PHOTOGRAPHER FOR YOU AND YOUR LOCATION?

Ask your vendor for personal recommendations and view the photographer’s website. Put those sites that are most in line with your style in the list of your other potential photographers.

When viewing websites ask yourself: -

  • Does this photographer have that ability to adapt to his surroundings? (Are there a variety of photographs from a variety of locations?)
  • Is the photographer creative enough to be able to take high quality portraits anywhere? (Is the photographer creative in posing?)
  • Is the overall personality of the website something that you like? (Would you be confident to recommend a friend to the same website to get their advice and their recommendations on photographers)

Quality professional wedding photographers know how to use their surroundings as a backdrop for your romantic portraits. If you are going to have a candle light wedding then the photographer is going to have the equipment to correctly expose for that extremely low light setting. If you are getting married on the beach then your photographer will need the equipment and knowledge to ensure that the sun does not over power your beautiful dress and smile.

5 – Book Early, BOOK ASAP!!!!!

The key here is to make sure that you are happy and comfortable with your photographer. You never want to choose and settle on a photographer because of time or pressure from the photographer, friends, or family. Give yourself some time and space. This is really up to you. You need to feel comfortable and secure with your decision. Once you are comfortable and sure about the decision then sign the contract and be happy that that decision is out of the way.

6 – Calling or contacting your perspective Professional Photographer

Once you have a list of photographers then start calling! When you speak with your perspective photographer for the first time there are a few things you may want to keep in mind. Let the photographer know that you have seen their website and are impressed with what you have seen and you would like to ask a few questions that were not covered on the website. When you speak to a photographer you need to approach it as an interview. Remember, you are hiring a professional to do a job that cannot be repeated. There are no “do-overs” with wedding photos so try to get to know the photographer as well as possible.

Here are some things to keep in mind:

THE INTERVIEW:

You should approach this call as an interview. It is really to find out what this photographer is about and decide if you would like to meet the photographer in person.

  • When the photographer answers the phone how does he sound? Happy? Sad? Annoyed? Or glad to speak with you? Remember, you are calling the photographer’s business phone number. The photographer knows that you are calling for a business reason. [ There is no excuse for the photographer to answer any other than happy and glad to speak with you.]
  • Ask open-ended questions such as: what do you like about weddings, How long have you photographed weddings, what got you started in photographing weddings.
  • Ask any questions that you can think of about their personality and wedding photography career.
  • Ask about date availability and the location of the wedding and reception.
  • How long has the photographer been in business?
  • What does the photographer like best about photographing weddings?
  • Are you a full-time or part-time photographer? (The purpose of this question is still just to see who this person is.)

THINGS TO CONSIDER: When you make the appointment let the photographer know where you live and times you are able to meet. Also find out what location where the photographer is coming from then ask the photographer where would be a good place to meet in between. You want to listen to see if the photographer is flexible enough to go out of his/her way for you. If the photographer is not able to meet with you on the dates that you have given then the photographer should offer some suggestions that would help the both of you After the interview, if you are happy and your intuition says yes, then set up an appointment.

WORD OF CAUTION: Professional Photographers make their living on providing photographic services and not talking over the phone. The photographer may have a “strong urge” to have you meet them in person. This is not bad! What is bad is how they urge you to make an appointment. The photographer should converse with you and help you make the best photographic decision possible. Beware if the photographer is refusing (tone or verbal) to answer questions and wants to quickly set up an appointment. However, if the photographer is open with you and offers you advice and questions about what you want then the photographer has already decided that you are a good match for them and will want to set up an appointment with you. As always, if you feel comfortable then set up an appointment. Since there are more photographers than you could possibly meet in a year it is important to only set up appointments with 3-4 photographers. You may want to allocate four hours of time for each meeting. This takes into account travel there and back and speaking with the photographer. You can see then that if you are not careful you could end up making searching for a photographer your new full-time job.

7 – PACKAGES, COLLECTIONS, INVESTMENTS

So far we have spoken about the process of getting the best photographer for your wedding but have not even touched the topic of what you are going to actually get at the end of the day. Some photographers call the contents of what you get packages, collections, an investment, or a commission to supply you with your wedding day photographs. Surprisingly most photographers offer the same contents as other photographs. What is important is getting what you would like to have for the future and not what you think you need now. You want an album because of the story that you want to show to your relatives and your future grandchildren. Slide shows are nice because you can have music set to photos that will be heirlooms. Digital Negatives and Reprints: Some photographers will sell reprints directly to you. This means that you will only get prints of your wedding day (this is separate from your album) when you pay the photographer for them. These prices will vary depending on the size of the prints and how many you request. Other photographers will create a combination package in which you receive a CD/DVD composed of an unlimited or limited number of photos. You may be able to reprint these photos on your own or you may be only able to view them on a computer and email them with no option to make your own reprints. Albums: Albums, Albums, and more Albums! As the wedding industry grows, more and more companies are offering albums so it is important to see a model of the album you are choosing. It is important to see the album model because two photographers may use similar names for albums that in the end are not so similar.

Questions about the album you should ask:

1 – How many pages are in the album?

2 – What choices do I have about the album?

3 – On average how many photos will fit in the album? Some photographers will offer other products but the main thing that you want to consider is what you are looking for. Are you looking forward to having a plenty of prints to give away and a large album to show your friends and family or are you looking for something small like a day album? These are questions that you are going to have to consider thoughtfully. Whatever your choice is, make sure that there is clear communication between you and your photographer.

8 – CONTRACTS: Who needs them?!

A friend told me once that, ” contracts keeps friends friends and enemies from killing each other.” Because of the nature of the service you are requesting from the photographer it is incredibly important that you get everything that you agreed to in writing. Be sure that the type of album, numbers of pages, and the amount of time that you are requiring from you photographer is in writing. The reason that this is important is because if something were to go wrong then it can be held up in court. Contracts keep people a little more honest than if you didn’t have one. Personally, I go over everything in the contract before the contract is signed. This way, everyone understands what is going on and communication of what is expected is clear.

9 – PHOTOGRAPHER THE INTERVIEWER

The photographer should interview you just as much as you should be interviewing the photographer. As stated before, “not everyone is for everyone” applies here as well. The photographer should ask questions that identify your personality and the personality of your relationship with your fiancé. I always ask questions such as:

1 — When did the two of you meet?

2 – How long did you date before you were engaged?

3 – What is the most important detail in your wedding that you are most excited about?

4 – Is the venue you have chosen really important to you?

The photographer needs to ask questions that are going to tell a little bit about the couple and what’s important to them. If the photographer doesn’t know what is important to you then the photographer most likely will not photograph what is important to you. This most likely will result in you not being completely happy with your final product. In short, the photographer should have a good idea as to who the couple is and what is important to them.

10 – THE LAST QUESTION YOU SHOULD ASK YOURSELF.

What’s your gut feeling? Remember decisions that you make cannot be based on what you thought was true or what you hoped will be true. The best answer you can make about the decision is based on the information that you have now. In short, consider your gut feeling, remember what you want out of the photographer and the style that the photographer produces, and have a great time choosing the photographer that will best photograph you.

Peter Doyle is the Premiere Atlanta Wedding Photographer for the exclusive clientele of the Bespoke lifestyle. From New York to Charleston to Los Angeles, Peter captures not only your personality but also the personality of your entire wedding day. The emotions told throughout your wedding portraits of your closest friends and family will remind you of the anticipation and excitement of your day. The details and accessories that you chose will be recorded so that your children will be able to relive one of your most cherished days with you. The photographic collections that are created just for you will become one of your most treasured heirlooms. Peter has attended private teaching sessions and has become friends with some of the most honored and awarded photographers in the United States. These include: Joe Buissink, Joe Photo, Charles and Jennifer Marring, Jeffery and Julia Woods, and Matthew Jordan Smith.

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Memorable Wedding Cakes: Style and Taste

Wedding cakes play a major role in the wedding party. In fact, some brides actually plan their entire weddings around the style of their cake. While traditional white, tiered cakes topped with the bride-and-groom figures are still predominant, colorful cakes depicting kooky themes and personally-significant tableaux have taken a strong hold on our pop cultural psyche. They are the subjects of reality shows like TLC’s Cake Boss and Food Network’s Ace of Cakes. Which style of cake should you choose? What should it taste like? After all, you want that special day to last in the sensory memories of both sight and taste. With this guide you can make your wedding cake both a visual wonder and a culinary delight!

Style

The wedding cake style will relate to your choice for the type of wedding you are having and the overall tone you are taking, whether formal, informal, contemporary, traditional, indoor or outdoor. When you have set the style, you can make all of this information available to your cake designer and provide him or her with a photo or idea of the decor with colors and materials, themes and motifs.

Themed wedding cakes may not only reflect the reception but may be based on your honeymoon location. For instance, the wedding cake topper might include a Hawaiian motif as a palm tree on a sand bar, or a couple surfing or mountain climbing. In that manner, the typical bride-and-groom on top can be changed with a subtle bit of humor on an otherwise traditional tiered wedding cake by replacing the topper with Kermit and Miss Piggy, or any of your playful alter-egos.

You may want to tie into the architectural theme of the reception space and have Art Deco styling with zig-zags, or Classical columns and arches, or Contemporary simplicity with rectangles, angles and folds that mimic a Frank Gehry-music hall. If you and your fiance (or fiancee) are both musicians, you may want to share your love of music by inviting your guests to nibble on a Baby Grand confection or a Rock-and-Roll guitar. Marrying a Swede? Perhaps you want to eat the country, symbolically that is, in a blue-and-yellow flag-designed sheet cake outlining the country’s geographical shape. Did you and your spouse-to-be meet through the Star Trek convention or you share a love of Halloween?

So you see how the ideas grow and how wedding cake themes are endless, personal and precious to each couple and their circle of friends and family.

Traditional wedding cakes are the circular tiered type but these can be up-dated as a chic stack of diminishing squares. Another up-dating trend is embellishing tiered cakes with asymmetrical, cascading arrangements of vibrant, colorful fresh flowers. Cake Boss’ floral wedding cakes are leaders in this trend. Your baker needs to coordinate with your florist to mix and match the right blooms.

Another addition is placing wide ribbons around the base of each tier of the cake. Grosgrain or satin ribbon is typical or the baker can create faux ribbons from the frosting.

Mimicking a pattern or a motif from the bridal gown is another great trend which helps to coordinate the wedding as a whole. The cake designer might duplicate in frosting the gown’s lace or embroidery pattern, or copy the bride’s unique necklace. For a more playful look, he or she may simply put some jewelry on the cake, like crystals or faux pearls to mirror the bride’s jewelry. Meanwhile, the traditional wedding cake is still abundant with frosting flowers, swags and swirls.

Taste

Who doesn’t recall a richly frosted piece of wedding cake that was simply scrumptious? Even though your choice of cake and frosting can’t please everybody, you can make sure your choices are your partner’s as well, then do your best to choose a crowd pleaser!

White or Yellow Cake. The most traditional wedding cake flavor is white or yellow cake. To take it up a notch, you can add filling between layers, and here you have a variety of choices, such as custard, milk chocolate, butter-cream, raspberry, strawberry jam and apricot preserves.

Chocolate Cake. Many wedding guests love chocolate cake and brides are finally serving it more often, even though it may be concealed under traditional white frosting. Better yet, many brides are going for the “double-double” decadent treat–chocolate cake, chocolate filling, chocolate frosting and chocolate ornament!

Marble Cake. A marble cake can be your answer to try to please all, and each cut piece can make a beautiful display on its plate. Another method for people pleasing is to alternate layers or tiers with chocolate cake and white cake.

Lemon Cake. For variety, a refreshing lemon cake may fit with your overall wedding style, especially as you may have the color of lemons as a part of your color scheme. Yellow can be more appropriate for a spring or summer wedding.

Carrot Cake. A fall or winter wedding can be the opportunity for a carrot cake. Keep in mind that the traditional cream cheese frosting found on carrot cake is going to be cream colored rather than pure white.

Fruit Cake. In the United Kingdom, the traditional wedding cake is a rich fruitcake. It was the cake of choice for the 2011 wedding of Prince William and Kate. It is not a dense cake, but the traditional English version is, nonetheless, packed with dried fruits and chopped nuts and brushed with brandy. It is usually topped with Royal Icing which seals in the freshness of the cake.

Royal Icing. Due to the smooth and beautiful look of Royal Icing, it is often used for decorative wedding cakes and to create delicate decorations on the cake, such as a monogram. As it does not have as pleasant a taste as marzipan or traditional soft icings, it is not recommended for icing cakes, unless cake stands are used. This is because after Royal Icing dries and hardens, it tends to crack easily.

Fondant. This is rolled into thin sheets and placed on cakes for a very smooth finish. Fondant makes an excellent base for decorations, and is chosen more for looks than flavor so you may want a more delicious layer of frosting underneath it.

Marzipan. An almond paste, Marzipan is also rolled into thin sheets and glazed for icing cakes, primarily wedding cakes. This use is particularly common in England, on large fruitcakes. Persipan is a similar, yet less expensive product, in which the almonds are replaced by apricot or peach kernels. There are German, French and Spanish variations of Marzipan.

9 Tips For Buying Your Dream Wedding Cake!

Some Tips When Buying Wedding Cakes

When you want to knock their socks off; when you want them to stand up and cheer; when nothing but the best will do because it is your wedding day; that is when you serve a spectacular wedding cake.

Do not let the vision of confetti, the crash of cymbals, or the fanfare of trumpets deter you from attempting to come up with such remarkable wedding cakes.

Generally, wedding cakes are is the conventional cake being dished up to the guests at the breakfast after the wedding. It is characterized as a huge cake, different from the usual cakes we have on ordinary occasions. In most cases, wedding cakes are layered or multi-layered and are heftily decorated with icing, beads, and other embellishments that would reflect the grandiose of the event. On the top is a small image of a bride and groom.

Wedding cakes can go from the simplest to the most complex decorations; each has its own artistic distinctions depending on the creative juices of the baker. They should conform to the main purpose of the cake, that whatever embellishments it possess, it can still be edible and can be eaten.

Because the wedding cake is such an important part in the wedding celebration, here are some tips you need to know in case you will be buying a wedding cake in the future.

1. Check on the length of time required for you in ordering your wedding cake.

Time is such an important factor when making wedding plans. Of course, you would not want your wedding be hurriedly done or rushed. Because the wedding cake is a part of the wedding plan, it is important to devote an appropriate time in ordering wedding cakes.

It is best to ask your favorite bakeshop on the time frame that they usually give with regards to wedding cake so that you can make early orders if it will take such a long time to create your wedding cake. In this way, you will not be in a hurry coming up with a wedding cake to be served on your wedding day.

2. Verify the details of the cake and its cost.

A lot of couples are so fascinated with the luscious treats that go with their wedding cake. What they do not know is that each embellishment and every twists and turns embedded in the cake has a price.

Therefore, it would be better to clear it out with your baker how much will be the cost of every decoration are added features you wish to add on your wedding cake.

3. Tell your baker about the details of your wedding.

In today’s modern world, weddings are not just done in the church. A lot of ideas had come up in terms of wedding venues. Therefore, if ever you have any plans of having your wedding by the beach or anywhere else where it is open, it would be better to inform your baker about this.

In most cases, icings are vulnerable to environmental hazards. So, if the baker knows that your wedding will be a garden wedding or a wedding by the beach, he could make such arrangements with your cake in order to endure the environmental conditions where it will be placed.

4. In a budget? Why not decorate your own wedding cake.

It is not so uncommon nowadays to find somebody decorating his or her own wedding cake. In fact, it is a feasible idea especially to those who have a very tight budget.

All you have to do is to order a plain wedding cake and buy the decorations from the retail stores.

5. Choose the right bakeshop

If you have an idea on where the best bakery is in your city, then head to that place immediately. You can ask suggestions from your friends or family members also. Get a reservation at once. Do not procrastinate. The availability of cake decorators might be restricted. Be sure to drop by the bakeshop to talk about the designs, flavors and other things you wanted to add to your cake. Be sure to give a detailed description of exactly what you want your cake to be. Give the vendor ample time to prepare, approximately six months ahead of your big day would do. You may need to pay a deposit fee for reservation.

6. The right taste

Aside from the look of the cake, keep in mind that cakes are made primarily for eating. They should taste good as well as they look good. The texture and flavor of the cake itself is important. When scouting for a bakeshop, don’t hesitate to ask for cake samples of the flavors you want. If they do not allow this, jump to the next store.

7. Check on your budget

Wedding cakes ranges from $300 to $1000 or so. Cost primarily depends on the cake design you want. You have to pay for the cake decorator’s fee on top of the cost of the cake itself. Know what your budget is ahead of time. Some shops may give you free delivery too. Most bakeshop has a standard number of servings for each cake type. Know how many guests would attend your wedding so you would know more or less how much money you would allocate for the cake.

8. Flowers as decorations

Flowers have been a traditional thing on weddings. You can well put them in cakes too. You can either choose from fresh flowers or artificial ones. Fresh flowers are beautiful addition to your cakes. But it is very important that you choose fresh flowers wisely. Be sure that they are free from chemicals. Just to be on the safe side, sugar flowers are safer. These are edible gum paste decorations that have wire or toothpicks on them.

9. Where to place the cake

Most cakes, especially on summer, might end up melted under the heat of the sun. They can also cause flowers and flavored curls to dry up. Not to mention the possibility of flies gathering on your priced cake. Just be sure, always have a back up site where you can store your cakes to preserve its look and taste. Never place your wedding cake near the dance floor or where there is a heavy flow of traffic. You might just see your cake fall down. That’s not a good sight at all! Be sure to check the sturdiness of the table you would place your cake.

Buying wedding cakes can be fun and hassle-free. Remember that your wedding cakes needs to be presentable, most of the photo opts are done beside the cake. It’s always nice to give out that bright smile beside you’re well decorated cake that brings out your personal statement.

So, set aside some special decisive moment when it comes to your wedding cake because there would be no better way to glamorize your wedding than to have a perfectly made wedding cake.

Wedding Cakes Trends in the 21st Century and Some Very Popular Money Saving Alternatives

Everything evolves and just like wedding themselves, wedding cake of the 21st century represent some new and fresh ideas.

Personalization – a definite trend in wedding cakes

21st Century brides and grooms want the wedding cake to be as individual as they are.

There used to be a time when brides chose a cake from the catalog the baker gave them, or brought a picture from a magazine. Today brides as well as grooms, realize how special they are and do not want a replica of a pictured cake. Aware that the wedding cake is the centerpiece of their reception, they want to have their cake individually designed to their own personal style and taste, both taste in design and taste in flavor. So they put on their thinking caps and are coming in with their own ideas, usually coordinating their cake design, the frosting design, the decorations and the cake topper, with the wedding color scheme, wedding theme, bridal attire, flowers, wedding accessories, reception hall decor, and if they have children, the family.
Having provide the bakers with details to adhere to, they expect the result to be a totally unique and PERSONALIZED cake.

The Shape

Gone are the over-embellished cakes. Today brides and grooms want to express themselves with wedding cakes to look luxurious, classy and elegant, coordinate well with the wedding motifs and taste scrumptiously good.

Though round tiers are still the favorite, tiers shaped as square, octagon, and hexagon are gaining popularity, as do tiers of different shapes stacked together. For example, round tiers on square or hexagon tiers. Once assemble the shape(s) and color(s) chosen should produce a simple yet luxurious, classy and elegant look.

The Structure

The trend in cake structure offer a few choices all leave plenty of room for personalization and creativity.

A 21st Century traditional wedding cake is usually assembled of 3 to 5 tiers stacked upon each other without a separation such as the once popular Greek columns. A variation is a wedding cake ensemble that displays each layer individually rather than stacked. connected by a motif.

A relatively new comer is the drum. This is a popular technique that brides and groom appreciate. Basically, bakers add a layer looking Styrofoam insert that adds height and volume to the cake without the expense of a cake layer. The inserts provide a perfect place to tuck in charms for the charm pull, flowers or cake jewelry should the couple want to utilize it in this manner.

An ever-growing number of marrying couples are choosing alternatives to the traditional wedding cake save one tier for the bride and groom to slice and feed each other and for wedding photos.

With the costs of weddings in general and the rise in wedding cakes relating fees, a few new trends have become quite popular. Brides and grooms, especially if they have to stay within a specified budget are looking for ways to save money.
So, what used to be a creative alternative by some became a trend.

The trend concentrates on options that eliminate the cutting and serving fees usually charged by caterers.

Other benefits that were realized, are that they can also shave off the centerpiece expense and serve as dessert.

Following are two options that are favored.
An individual single layer wedding cake for each table to makes a spectacular and edible centerpiece. For additional fun, guests are invited to cut and serve the guests seated at their table.

A cupcake wedding cake actually, cupcake tower as a wedding cake is a well-liked trend. Most couples top their cupcake tower with a cake tier for the bride and groom. Quite a few brides and grooms we interviewed, planned to place a mini cup cake tower on each table as a dessert and centerpiece in one.

We even came across brides and grooms who chose Golden donuts because donuts look like wedding bands.There are a few reasons the single layer centerpiece. the cupcake or mini-cupcakes and even the donuts wedding cakes to some extent, are becoming very popular.

They are real money savers.

They do not require special skills and can be home-baked way ahead of time and frozen.

They can be lavishly decorated and makes a wonderful edible centerpiece to be enjoyed by all.

They can have different flavors, various delicious fillings, different though coordinating colors and fancy decorations.

Busy brides and grooms can order their cupcakes or single layer cakes in a supermarket bakery, or shopping clubs such as Costco and Sams Club where they are very reasonably priced.

They eliminate all slicing and serving costs.

They allow, actually invite creativity.

A common denominator we encountered was couples who utilized different icing colors and – or themes for their centerpiece cakes to distinguish the different tables. matching the place settings and place cards.

Whether sophisticated, whimsical or anywhere in between, Cupcake and mini cake centerpieces are unique and gaining popularity fast.

The Icing on the Cake

Though butter cream, and cream cheese frostings are still in demand, the current trend in cake frosting is flavor and color enriched Rolled fondant or the less expensive faux-fondant with its smooth and elegant porcelain look that encourages creativity. Cake bakers can match wedding colors, motifs, duplicate intricate details and create silhouettes and scrollwork to complement wedding themes.

The Flavors

When I got married, the weding cake was either vanilla, chocolate or a marble of the two. Today there are tens of flavors for the bride and groom to choose from. Many tend to choose a different flavor for each tier, cake, or a certain number of cupcakes to represent their individual favorite cake flavors. Some add different filling for each cake flavor as well as frostings of different flavors.

The Decorations

Personalization is paramount. Brides and grooms use their freedom of expression throughout the wedding and the cake is no exception. The latest trend is to surround the center layer with a ribbon personalized with the bride and groom’s first names and wedding date. Though the cake is consumed, the ribbon becomes a wedding keepsake.

Wedding theme and seasons are dominant throughout the wedding and the cake as well.

Cutout silhouettes may accent the wedding theme upon the wedding cake. Flowers, marzipan fruit , candy pearls, curving scrollwork, and family initials are also very popular cake decorations and so is incorporating two or more shades of the same color within the frosting.

The Wedding Cake Companions – recent trend.

Two 21st trends one a historical custom renewed and the other brand new are the Grooms cake and the Children Family wedding cake.

The Groom Cake is a concept that was unfamiliar, when I got married 42 years ago but was familiar earlier in history. It has made a comeback and is occupying center stage. placed on the same table with the wedding cake is a single-layer rectangle Groom Cake. Many brides like to choose his favorite flavor and color and have the decorations represent his unique personality, hobbies and interests.

Another cake that has recently been added to the cake table is the Children Family wedding cake. This is a rather new concept that evolved quite recently, as more and more Blending Family Weddings that celebrating the kids, began to take place.

Celebrating their becoming a family, many couples use a Family Cake topper.

We have come across a few variations of the cake.

A Single-layer rectangle, Frosted and decorated with the kids various, hobbies and interests, topped with a Family Cake Topper currently available with a bride a groom and a boy, a bride a groom and a girl or a silhouette style a bride a groom and two children.

A cupcake tower is very popular with the kids too. Each layer of cupcakes can be devoted to a single child.

The Cake Tops

Wedding Cake Trends: Unique Cake Top

The cake tops is the crown of the wedding cake. It is a keepsake that should also make the wedding cake a conversation piece.

Personalization is the current trend. Cake toppers are often chosen because they either reflect the lifestyle or hobbies the bride and groom share together, coordinate with the wedding theme, emphasize the wedding flowers or display their initials.

One of the hottest cake top trends is individual initials or a monogram created with stunning Cake Jewelry, another is a couple resembling the bride and groom.

Flowers and ribbon cake tops have never died out and though they are not a trend, they are quite popular.

For family weddings, family cake tops that represent a bride, a groom and children are in very high demand.

TIP:

Set and adhere to your wedding cake budget.
Visit with at least 3 wedding cake chefs, leaving room for negotiations.

Check out their portfolios and taste samples of their cakes.

Be sure to get everything in a written contract that does not leave room for price changes.

Budget Saving Wedding Cake Ideas

When I was 12 or 13, I remember being the hostess at my cousin’s wedding. One of the first things that I saw when I walked into the reception hall was this beautiful wedding cake. For years, I dreamed of a fairytale wedding cake just like hers. The cake was tall, separated by columns with a few tiers, although I can’t remember exactly how many there were. At the top of the wedding cake were the bride and groom, and on the side were the bridesmaids and groomsmen standing on staircases that led to the top. The staircases were also connected to smaller cakes that adorned the side and underneath the cake was a fountain. I think many brides remember the era of the big cakes with all kinds of special decorations on them. I just stood there amazed and looked at her beautiful wedding cake decked out in the colors of the wedding and dreamed of the day that I would cut into my own wedding cake that looked just like that. That cake was probably the second most admired part of that wedding.

As brides, we want that reaction to our wedding cakes as well. We want people to mill around it and admire the creation that is a symbolic of a couples new union. We have dreams of hearing those “ooh’s” and “ah’s” and the conversations about the décor, the colors, and the height of the cake. The right wedding cake should take the breath away of all your guests, and make them anxious to take a bite.

The wedding cake is one of the major elements of the wedding day. Because it is such a big purchase, much time and purpose needs to be dedicated into making the perfect cake. If you have never planned a wedding before, you may have a hard time figuring out where to start. Well, by the end of this article, I hope that you will have a clearer understanding about what you need to create that wedding cake of your dreams.

The Shape Basics

First, let’s focus on the different shapes of most cakes. The shape of your cake is very important because it can affect the number of people that can be served and the price as well.

Round: This is the traditional shape of most wedding cakes and is still widely used by most brides. Because the shape of the round cake is the most simplistic, it is usually the least expensive; plus it’s usually easier to decorate.

Square: The square wedding cake is, usually, used by brides that want to break away from the traditional round cakes; but at the same time, they still have the look of a basic wedding cake. The square cake can be more expensive because it may require more labor. Oftentimes, the baker has to cut the sides of the cake to make them look sharper and neater.

Heart: For those eternal romantics, this is the cake shape for you. Again it may be a bit more labor intensive depending on how it is to be frosted and decorated. It’s also important to keep in mind that the amount served from this shape may differ from that of other shapes.

Mad Hatter: This is for the couples that really want to have a more whimsical & fun feel to their wedding cakes. These cakes are usually uneven & slanted shaped. This is for the bold couples that are not afraid to be different. Instead of the traditional wedding décor, these cakes are usually decorated in bold colors and patterns.

Hexagon: This is a cake with six sides. This is another shape that is growing in popularity because it is a deviation from the traditional round wedding cake. Again, the price of this cake is more expensive than that of a round cake because of the time it will take the baker to cut and frost these cakes, but the finished product can be absolutely breathtaking.

The Icing

You basically have two different types of icing – butter cream and fondant.

Although there are a variety of recipes for making butter cream icing, it is usually made with butter, sugar, milk, and vanilla. It has a thick but creamy texture that is easy to cut through. For a bride on a budget, butter cream icing is a great way to go because it is usually cheaper than fondant. It can also be used as a filling for your cake as well. A downside to butter cream is that it can melt in hot settings, so if you are having an outdoor soiree, butter cream icing may not be your best option.

Fondant is made from sugar, corn syrup, and gelatin. It is very elastic in texture. With fondant, you can literally roll it out with a rolling pin. Because of its strength and elasticity, many bakers use it for unique architectural designs. It can be shaped and molded into many different designs. Fondant is usually more expensive because it is more labor intensive.

Your Dream Wedding Cake

One of the things that you may have been thinking about since you got that rock on your finger is what your wedding cake will look like. If you are anything like me, you have already flipped through the wedding and bridal magazines and even looked at the pictures on the wedding websites in order to get an idea of what you want.

I think a great way to figure out what you want in your cake is to think about your personality and what you like. Do you like for things to be grand and theatrical? If so, you may want a tall cake with lots of decoration. Are you planning a small wedding reception with a few friends and family and think that a huge cake for 200 is ridiculous? Maybe you want something simple in stature and design. Your personality should be key in deciding what you want. When thinking about my wedding cake, I just thought about my style when it came to decorating and how I dress. I don’t like for my house to look cluttered. I want everything neat and in its place. When choosing clothes, I tend to stay away from crazy patterns; I like a well-put-together classic, yet modern look. So knowing that I liked things to look sleek sophisticated, and clean, an intricate design for my wedding cake isn’t something that I am interested in. I decided that my dream cake would have three tiers with white frosting and the cake decoration will follow suit.

Another good way to figure out what kind of cake you want is to think about the theme of your wedding. Think about whatever motifs you will sprinkle throughout the wedding, the cake should reflect this as well because it will be a focal point in the reception. If you are having an urban sophistication theme, should you really get the grand cake with the tons of flowers flowing from it? Maybe not, however, a cake of this magnitude may be great for a garden theme. So once you pick your wedding theme, your cake will take its shape (no pun intended).

The Wonderful Realm of the Wedding Cake

In today’s world there are just so many different options and choices available to us. We can get a hold of people by traditional phone, smart phone, regular cell phone, email, or regular mail. If we want to get somewhere we can drive a car, ride a bike, take a bus, or stroll along. Given all the various options available to us today, it’s only natural that this variety should work its way into one of our most cherished and honored traditions…that of the wedding cake. Selecting the flavor of the cake and the color of the icing is just getting started with the process. You will also need to take some time to choose the best wedding cake topper for your special cake. In this article we will be exploring the realm of the wedding cake. We will be providing some background details on the tradition, and eventually working on up to the selection process of the perfect topper for that very special wedding cake.

The wedding cake is often proudly and strategically placed during the wedding reception. Often towering way up into the heavens, it can compete with the bride as the “center of attention” on her big day. This delicious work of art establishes a focal point that the other aspects of the reception can revolve around. For those who prefer a flare for the dramatic, the wedding cake can be wheeled into the room at the end of the reception, providing a “grand entrance” for everyone to see. To many people this grand entrance will perhaps trigger memories of the bride who walked down the aisle earlier in the day.

For Starters

The wedding cake has evolved over the years. Starting off as a simple symbol of fertility, it has transformed itself into an artistic tradition that can have many different artistic interpretations. For many ancient peoples wheat was a symbol of fertility and a bountiful harvest. The Ancient Romans used to throw grains of wheat at the bride and groom to “wish fertility” to the new couple during their wedding. This custom eventually evolved into bringing little cakes made from wheat to the wedding banquet itself. People would then crumble this cake over the head of the bride to wish the happy couple “many children”. The guests would then eat the fallen crumbs as a symbol of sharing in the couple’s good fortune.

Many think that this “crumbling of the cake” over the bride’s head may have evolved into another wedding day tradition? Do you know what it is? In order to protect the hapless bride from the wheat shower that is to come, bridesmaids draped a cloth over her head before the “crumbling tradition” took place. Many believe that this simple cloth evolved into the wedding veil of today.

Welcome The Middle Ages

During the Middle Ages buns or sweet rolls had replaced the original wheat cakes, but it was still very customary for guests to bring these tasty treats to the wedding. Placed in a huge pile between the bride and groom, if the happy couple was able to kiss over this huge stack of wheat, it was believed that they would be blessed with many children.

It is commonly believed that the next step in the evolution of the traditional cake was performed by a French pastry chef during the 17th century. During a trip to London he happened to observe this “cake piling” ceremony. Upon his return to France he dusted the stack of buns with sugar, and thereby “cemented” them together into one tasty art form. This was to become the first rendition of the tiered and frosted wedding cake, and a forerunner as to what was to come in the years ahead.

The Classic Style

Are you familiar with the classic style of the modern day wedding cake? You know, the one with the distinctive design of smaller tiers as the cake builds vertically? It is believed that this model was inspired by the spire of the 14th century Saint Bride’s church in London. How’s that for a bit of trivia for you?

Victorian England has brought us many of today’s valued wedding traditions. For example, Queen Victoria herself is said to have had a cake that weighed in at 300 lbs. As confectioners and bakers became more daring and skillful, their creations became even more daring and elaborate. When England’s Princess Elizabeth and Prince Phillip were married back in 1947, their wedding cake weighed in at a whopping 500 lbs, and was 9 feet tall.

The Version of Today

In today’s world the elaborate wedding cake is no longer reserved for the rich and famous. Every couple can share in the tradition of having a wedding cake added to their big day. The wedding cake specialists of today’s world have taken their art to towering heights (pardon the pun). Long gone are those bland days when you were limited to a white cake with white frosting. Although a white cake will probably always be the most popular due to its traditional meaning, today’s couple is limited only by the limits of their imagination (and budget) when it comes to their wedding cake.

Why White?

White is definitely the color of a wedding, but did you know that there is another reason why the white is the customary color of a wedding cake? Back in Victorian times the finer ingredients of a wedding cake were scarce and hard to come by. If the cake had a white icing, this revealed the fact that only the best and most expensive white sugar was being used. Brown sugar was much more common, and therefore much less expensive. So, the more white the cake, the richer the people.

Be Sure To Plan Ahead

Don’t leave your special wedding cake until the last minute. This is one of the most important things that you can remember. Whether you choose the baker down the road, a talented family member, or a pastry chef who specializes in these tasty masterpieces, if you plan well in advance you will be able to handle whatever obstacles might come your way. Some bakers require only a minimum notice, while many bakers are booked far in advance. It’s a shame to have that perfect cake of your dreams be “cancelled” due to the fact you cannot allocate a baker’s time.

What’s that you say? You have no idea who will be baking your wedding cake? If you don’t have a particular baker in mind, you have a bit of homework ahead of you. Shop around and get some good recommendations from family and friends. Browse the yellow pages and the internet as they are both valuable informational resources. If you happen to be surfing the web you will see that many bakers today are posting photos of some of their masterpieces. As a sort of masterpiece cake gallery, they showcase what they are capable of producing. This will jog your imagination as to what you would like your own wedding cake to look like.

Don’t Forget Your Budget

Be sure to consider your budget before you let your imagination get the better of you. You want your wedding day to be one of celebration, not the day that you started your journey into financial disaster. Many people are surprised at the cost of a wedding cake. Keep in mind that you are asking an artisan to create a masterpiece for you, and this can often be reflected in the price that he/she will be charging. The cost of labor is often the largest expense in the creation of a wedding cake but keep in mind the simple fact that fondant is more expensive than buttercream.

Have you thought about staging your masterpiece? This comes next. Be sure to take the wedding cake stand into consideration during your planning phase. While some cakes can be simply placed on flat boards that will not be seen by the general public, others are elaborately displayed on beautiful stands for everyone to see. Keep in mind the simple fact that actual size of the cake table must be in proportion to the actual size of your cake. A table that is too small will make the cake look way too big, while a table that is too large will make it look like a tiny cupcake. And before we forget, your cake table will need a beautiful covering to compliment its strategic location at the wedding reception. Oh, don’t forget the cake knife and cake server. There needs to be a place on the table for these two items as well.

The Topper

The topper “tops off” your special wedding cake. The “wedding cake topper” is the name for the elegant decoration or figure that sits atop a wedding cake. While it is true that some couples prefer to have the simple style of an unadorned cake, many prefer to have that final “crowning touch”, the wedding cake topper, sitting on top of the upper layer of the cake. In today’s world the simple plastic “bride and groom” of yesteryear has more likely been replaced by the classic porcelain figurine of today.

So what types of wedding cake toppers are available to us today? We’re glad you asked. Many different types of figures are available. They range from the classic poses to figurines depicting some of the potentially “humorous” aspects of the wedding. For example, a bride dragging the hapless groom back to the altar. Personalized wedding cake toppers are also popular these days, while niche toppers such as a “marine marriage” have their place as well.